The onset of inflation became top-of-mind at Mecum’s Harrisburg sale over four days at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg.
Many prices during the height of the action on Friday and Saturday were beyond generous, almost as if bidders were disposing of current dollars for inflation-protected physical assets that would inflate along with gasoline and groceries. It hearkened back to the early 90’s when the mantra was, “buy now before it’s more expensive.” The result, on the contrary, was that a number of the lots became already expensive. Five or even ten percent annual inflation will take years to bring some of these prices back to “market”.
Or, maybe I just managed to select from the Friday and Saturday dockets the most attractive lots.
By my standards 23 of the 50 sold lots in this report were “expensive”. Another two of them were “over-the-top” expensive. That is an unprecedented distribution and an extraordinary amount of money being lavished upon cars that didn’t deserve it.
Some of the lots, particularly the older cars among the 77 from “A Private Collection at No Reserve” (a dealer) were out and out auction cars: Treated to superficial cosmetic attention where it was readily visible but otherwise grubby, grimy and neglected where it was hard to see or expensive to correct, they were despicable.
It got so bad that in a line of many C3 Corvettes from the “Private Collection” I got tired of writing the same comments over and over. For the last two I just copied what I’d written for earlier examples. That’s lazy, but realistic in this case.
Mecum assembled an enjoyable and diverse consignment and, while some prices were generous, most were realistic. This was, by a wide margin, Mecum’s biggest Harrisburg consignment and it brought a large contingent of tire-kickers and spectators even in the heat of summer. The maze of buildings in the Farm Show Complex went on and on and each den in the complex had a few gems hidden away. Otherwise how do you account for a Henry J, even if it sold for a curve-setting $17,600?
Mecum Auctions, however, has cinched up its belt on data and now declines to provide chassis numbers with the auction results. It’s a departure from Mecum’s past practice where it freely shared results, VINs and Reserve status in the interest of accuracy, completeness and transparency.
VINs are essential for developing and evaluating the auction history of individual cars, showing their auction results over time and tracking the ups and downs of collectors’ opinions of relative value in different venues.
Mecum says, “There is no requirement that we disclose VINs [except in California] and we regard it as proprietary data”, much to the disadvantage of collectors or potential bidders.
Here are the numbers (excluding Road Art, scooters and motorcycles);
|Cars Sold/ Offered||Sale %||Average Sale||Median Sale||Total $|
Results are sorted in auction day and lot number order.
Lot # T36 1951 Henry J Standard 2-Dr. Sedan; S/N K514042859; Light Grey/Green, Brown vinyl; Visually maintained, largely original 3- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $16,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $17,600 – 134/68hp four, 3-speed, body color wheels, hubcaps and trim rings, Telstar radial tires, heater. – The back seat upholstery is different from the from the front and older. Old undercoat in the wheelwells. Rusty, pitted chrome trim but rechromed bumpers. Sharp gauge faces but surrounded by a pitted bezel. An unusual car but not a very good one offered here as a cosmetic redo. – Henry Kaiser built fleets of ships during WWII and quickly turned his attention to satisfying some of the demand that had been latent during the war’s suspension of civilian vehicle production. The Henry J was his answer, based on Jeep components and modern styling. The concept lasted until 1954 and was never successful. Henry Js are so unusual today that no one knows what they’re worth, but this one’s mediocrity and erratic presentation does not commend it to anyone. It brought a mystifying price, in absolute terms not a lot of money but still expensive for its consistent mediocrity.
Lot # T53 1952 Plymouth Cranbrook Convertible; S/N 95509771; Caribbean Mint Green/White, Black leatherette; White vinyl top; Visually maintained, largely original 3- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $22,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $24,200 – 218/97hp six, overdrive 3-speed, chrome wire wheels, 6.70R15 radial wide whitewalls, steering wheel spinner knob, pushbutton radio, heater, power top, dual remote spotlights, glovebox mounted modern stereo. – Painted assembled with masking oversights and some dust inclusions. Pitted door handles and weak spotlight chrome. Scratched bumpers are up to the standards of the paint. Various window seals are old, dried out and failing. The steering wheel is dirty. Doors close well and there’s no visible rot. The underbody is covered in old undercoat. A quick old cosmetic redo that has little going for it. – Intriguing and unusual, a fun car for weekend drives with the top down and bought for a responsible price despite its cosmetic shortcomings and superficial cosmetic treatment.
Lot # T98 1935 Ford V-8 Ute; S/N 48SD202; Blue, Black fenders/Brown vinyl; Beige cloth top; Older restoration 2- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $36,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $39,600 – RHD. 221/85hp flathead V-8, 3-speed, Tacoma cream wire wheels, Goodyear tires, wood bed lining. – Good paint that will benefit from some wet sanding attention. Good chrome, upholstery and dashboard. The engine compartment is sharp. Unknown history but based upon the RHD and Ute body probably first delivered in Australia. – Ready to make a statement at any early Ford V-8 gathering, this is remarkable presentable and usable. It will upstage any Roadster Pickup of the period and deserves the price it brought.
Lot # T99 1968 Pontiac GTO 2-Dr. Hardtop; S/N 242378G125241; Verdoro Green, Black vinyl roof/Black leather; Visually maintained, largely original 3 condition; No Reserve; Hammered Sold at $34,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $37,400 – 400/265hp (?), automatic, Hurst shifter, Rally II wheels, Firestone narrow whitewalls, woodgrain steering wheel, pushbutton radio. – Protective quality repaint with indifferent wet sanding. Good rear chrome bumper and most bright trim. Sound original leather upholstery. Old undercoat on the chassis. Good roof vinyl. – A 2-condition result for a 3-condition car, typical of Mecum Harrisburg prices.
Lot # T128 1954 Chevrolet Bel Air 2-Dr. Sedan; S/N C54B146729; Light Green, White roof/White, Green leatherette; Visually maintained, largely original 3- condition; No Reserve; Hammered Sold at $15,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $16,500 – 235/115hp six, 3-speed, electronic ignition, wheel covers, wide whitewalls, pushbutton radio updated to AM-FM with Bluetooth, heater, 12 volt conversion. – Dented sills. Sound repaint with erratic masking. Aged chrome. Repainted underbody over old undercoat. Clean and orderly under the hood. Good newer upholstery, but still a tired old car. – No one ever said it requires a lot of money to have an interesting old car for family outings, a position reinforced by this presentable old Chevy. The difference between a ’54 and a ’55 Chevy is bodywork; a small block V8 and later transmission will slip into the hole between the front fenders like it belongs there, but such an update would eradicate the pleasure of driving this ’54. It brought a realistic price here in Harrisburg, in contrast to many other seriously over-priced cars.
Lot # T129 1973 Mercedes-Benz 300SEL 3.5 4-Dr. Sedan; S/N 10905712002051; Metallic Green/Palomino leather; Visually maintained, largely original 3- condition; No Reserve; Hammered Sold at $19,500 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $21,450 – 3,499/200hp, automatic, power steering and brakes, Becker Europa AM-FM, power windows, air conditioning, fog lights, wheel covers, Black Lion tires, power sunroof. – Erratically masked repaint while assembled. Weak chrome and dull aluminum trim. Cracked windshield and rear window seals. Sound upholstery. Good interior wood trim except on the glove box where the varnish is lifting. Good newer dashtop. Wiper scuffed windshield. Original underbody. – The 300SEL 3.5 V-8 was a barn-burner in 1973 and it still is an adequate performer in 2022, with room for a whole family and exceptional handling for a car its size. They are complicated and sophisticated cars to own and drive but the result here is representative.
Lot # T136 1995 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme Convertible; S/N 1G3WT32X8SD362019; Dark Teal Metallic/White vinyl; White vinyl top; Unrestored original 2- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $14,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $15,400 – 3,350/210hp LQ1 DOHC V-6, automatic, alloy wheels, Goodyear tires, air conditioning, cassette stereo, power 4-wheel disc brakes, power steering, power windows, cruise control. – Good original paint with some water spots and minor scuffs and scratches. Good interior, clear gauges. Clean underbody. An exceptional survivor in marvelous condition. – This is a remarkable variant of GM’s usual conservative design, a 4-cam V-6 with toothed belt camshaft drive and 2 valves per cylinder. This car was nearly immaculate and brought admiring looks and comments from everyone in the preview. It didn’t exactly blow away expectations on the block, though, and brought a responsible price for its specifications and originality. A solid value in a car no one really appreciates, or even knows exists.
Lot # T138 1962 Chevrolet Nova 400 Convertible; S/N 20467W115396; White/Red vinyl; White vinyl top; Unrestored original 3+ condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $30,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $33,000 – 194/120hp, Powerglide, power brakes, pushbutton radio, wire wheel covers, narrow whitewalls, bucket seats. – Good original paint with some small checking on the hood and rear deck. Sound chrome with light scratches. Sound but lightly soiled upholstery. Good dashboard and gauges. Original underneath with old undercoat. The odometer shows 39,020 miles which on the evidence of the car could very well be all it has covered. – This car turned many heads at Mecum Harrisburg, a clean, well-preserved and usable little convertible. It won’t set any drag strip records but it will be a rewarding summer weekend driver and a car that will be recognized by Chevy fans for its preservation. This is a curve-setting result but is fully deserved by the car’s preservation and condition.
Lot # T140 1974 Chevrolet Nova 2-Dr. Sedan; S/N 1X27K4W146796; Medium Dark Green/Green cloth; Unrestored original 3- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $21,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $23,100 – 350/185hp, L48, 4-speed, bench seat, Rally wheels with trim rings, Radial T/A tires, power front disc brakes, aftermarket AM-FM radio, Bosch steering column tach, bench seat, Pioneer rear speakers, original invoice and Protect-O-Plate documented. – Dull, scratched, damaged original paint. Driver’s seat back is worn through. Surface rusted, dirty original underbody and chassis. Doors fit well and no apparent body rust. Not gorgeous but intriguing. – An unusual Nova, badly treated as it may be, with the L48 and 4-speed. For its condition this is a generous result but the drivetrain changes all that and makes it something that has potential both for restoration or for spirited driving. In the end the bidders settled on a realistic number that should be satisfying to both the buyer and the seller. Now give it a decent paint job and recover the front seat.
Lot # T173 1966 Buick Skylark Gran Sport Convertible; S/N 44676B150707; Cream/Cream vinyl; Black vinyl top; Visually maintained, largely original 3 condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $23,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $25,300 – 425/325hp, automatic, power steering and brakes, Magnum wheels, Hankook narrow whitewalls, pushbutton radio. – Sound clearcoat repaint, bright new major chrome but flawed and scuffed trim chrome. The original upholstery has two seam pulls on the front bench seat cushion. The underbody and chassis are original, surface rusty and dirty. An attractive car that needs and deserves further work. – This Thursday car missed the frenzy that gripped the Harrisburg bidders on Friday and even more on Saturday. It is a sound car with a desirable drivetrain and a drop-top and it brought a realistic price with headroom for the new owner to address some of its needs.
Lot # T175 1974 Toyota FJ40 Land Cruiser Utility; S/N FJ40162052; Lime Green, Beige roof/Black leatherette; Visually maintained, largely original 3- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $25,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $27,500 – 3,878/195hp six, 3-speed, beige steel wheels, hubcaps, Warn front hubs, All-Terrain T/A tires, Toyota AM-FM, two rear-mounted spares. – Shiny paint but painted assembled and poorly masked. Cracked old quarter window and windshield seals. Cracked filler on the left in front of the door. Big oil leak at the back of the engine. The chassis is painted chassis black over old dirt and grime. Sound upholstery but ugly dashboard. A superficial cosmetic redo for the auction. – Bidders were not fooled by shiny paint and effectively rejected this Land Cruiser by giving it a price that meant it needs to be taken apart and done right.
Lot # T220 2006 Chevrolet Monte Carlo NASCAR; S/N None; Red, “Coca-Cola”/Black; Competition car, original as-raced 3- condition; No Reserve; Hammered Sold at $16,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $17,600 – SB2 small block, 4-speed, full safety equipment. – Retired NASCAR Cup racer once driven by Richard Petty. Signed on the rear spoiler by The King. Repurposed as a Coca-Cola display car and looks like it has seen plenty of use in a driving school. – A track day car in decent if far from pristine condition, bought for a realistic price with a modest premium for the autograph of The King on the spoiler.
Lot # T221 1997 Ford Taurus NASCAR; S/N None; White, Brown “UPS”/Black, Red, Brown cloth; Competition car, original as-raced 3- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $14,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $15,400 – 355 racing engine, Tex 4-speed, JFZ brakes, Eagle slicks. – Well used and competently prepared, a usable track day car while showing plenty of track laps. – And a usable track day car price, too. It cost less than the sum of its parts.
Lot # F35 1969 Dodge Coronet Super Bee 2-Dr. Hardtop; S/N WM23H9E133154; Hemi Orange, Black vinyl roof and tail band/Black vinyl; Visually maintained, largely original 3- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $63,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $69,300 – 383/335hp, 4-speed, Hurst shifter, power steering, aftermarket air conditioning, black steel wheels, hubcaps, Hankook tires, bench seat, no radio. – Represented as the matching-numbers engine with a date code correct transmission. Decent older paint. Sound upholstery in a non-standard pattern. No crankcase ventilation tube. Engine painted in place, chassis not given much attention. Superficial and scary. – It is difficult to find much good to say about this Super Bee. It claims to have a “recent rotisserie restoration” but that rotisserie must have turned very rapidly considering the result. Rotisserie restorations have come to have a positive connotation in recent years. This one, however, hearkens back to the bad old days when “rotisserie restoration” meant “quick and dirty”. The result it brought here is wholly inappropriate for its presentation, a 2+ price for a 3- car and a home run for the seller.
Lot # F45 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air Nomad 2-Dr. Station Wagon; S/N VC57N139068; Dusk Rose Pearl, White roof/Silver vinyl, Black cloth; Recent restoration 2 condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $100,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $110,000 – 265, 4-barrel, Powerglide, power steering and brakes, aftermarket air conditioning, spinner wheel covers, whitewalls, aluminum valve covers. – Excellent clearcoat paint, brilliant chrome, fresh interior. Restored better than new with little use evident. The engine number is thickly painted over and illegible. The existence of a 4-barrel on a 1957 265 is otherwise unknown and this is not early enough in Norwood production to have been a carryover from 1956. – There’s probably a reason the engine number pad on the block is so thoroughly painted over but the car is so beautifully done and practical to drive with its added A/C that the bidders willingly overlooked the inconsistency. Then again, Hagerty has never recognized in its otherwise reliable Price Guide that there was a 220hp 4-barrel “Power Pack” step in 1957 Chevrolet engine output, so who are we to judge? Although, even taking that into account this car brought big money for an inherently flawed car.
Lot # F63 1955 Ford Thunderbird Convertible; S/N P5FH212663; Yellow, Yellow hardtop/Black, White vinyl; White vinyl top; Visually maintained, largely original 3- condition; No Reserve; Hammered Sold at $24,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $26,400 – 292/193hp, automatic, power steering, power windows, two tops, wheel covers, skirts. – Part of the “Private Collection at No Reserve” from a dealer. Decent older paint on the car but the hardtop paint is awful, the side window seals are old and failing and the hardware is rusty. Dull old gauges and pitted steering wheel chrome. The engine compartment is old and grungy. – Sold at Mecum Kissimmee in 2018 for $24,200 and bought here for close to the same money, a price appropriate to its mediocrity.
Lot # F79 2005 Pontiac GTO Coupe; S/N 6G2VX12U35L378088; Metallic Blue/Black leather; Unrestored original 3- condition; No Reserve; Hammered Sold at $14,500 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $15,950 – 364/400hp, automatic, power brakes, steering and windows, CD stereo, dark grey American Racing alloy wheels, Accelera tires. – Part of the “Private Collection at No Reserve.” Sound but aging original paint with water spots. Cloudy headlight covers. Sound original seats and interior trim. Curbed wheel rims. Dirty engine compartment, body color painted engine covers. Orderly and not on the surface modified but also not appealing. – This is a Hagerty Price Guide correct result for an unmodified 2005 GTO with an automatic but given the uncertainties and the hints of modifications a more circumspect result would have been prudent. I love my ’05 GTO 6-speed, now with 106K miles and driven 350 miles each way to Harrisburg, and hope the new owner of this one is happy with it.
Lot # F82 1991 Cadillac Brougham 4-Dr. Sedan; S/N 1G6DW54E9MR705581; Black, Black vinyl roof/Burgundy leather; Unrestored original 3+ condition; No Reserve; Hammered Sold at $18,500 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $20,350 – 305/170hp, automatic, power everything, wire wheel covers, Goodyear narrow whitewalls, CD and cassette stereo. – From “A Private Collection at No Reserve”. Good original paint, interior and chrome. Orderly original engine compartment. Clean and lightly used consistent with the 29,833 odometer reading. – Assuming the 29,833 miles on the odometer are accurate (and there’s no reason the car’s condition contradicts that) this is a generous originality premium for the 90’s version of Cadillac luxury and somnambulant performance from its over-taxed corporate 305 V-8 hauling around 2+ tons of road-hugging weight. It isn’t powerful enough to be a viable vintage racer tow car, as much as the sprawling interior space might commend it for that purpose. It would have been appropriately bought at half this price, except for its preservation, and how many people care about that? Enough, apparently, based upon this result.
Lot # F83 1977 Cadillac DeVille 4-Dr. Sedan; S/N 6D69S7E674393; Light Yellow, Light Yellow vinyl roof/Light Yellow leather; Unrestored original 3+ condition; No Reserve; Hammered Sold at $7,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $7,700 – 425/180hp, automatic, power everything, air conditioning, chrome wheels with wire inserts, Sigma Shadow narrow whitewalls. – From “A Private Collection at No Reserve”. Soiled vinyl roof covering. Sound original paint with touched up rust at the right taillight joint. Very good lightly stretched upholstery. Dirty engine compartment with duct tape air intake hose repair. Good chrome. Cracked steering wheel rim. The chrome wheels are tacky. Well-maintained consistent with the 48,346 mile odometer reading. – Overlooked by many, this actually is an attractive and apparently well-maintained old Cadillac sedan that has avoided being left out to see its exterior plastic succumb to the sun’s ultraviolet rays. The money it brought is appropriate for its preservation and with 320 lb-ft torque it can actually pull its own 2-ton weight and maybe even a trailer with a Lola T70 race car without expiring from exhaustion. The colors are cheerful and optimistic and if its eleven foot length fits in your garage it’s a sound value at this price.
Lot # F88.1 1969 Ford Mustang GT Fastback; S/N 9R02R107729; Candyapple Red, Matte Black hood, Gold accents/Black vinyl; Older restoration 3+ condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $87,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $95,700 – 428/335hp, automatic, power steering and brakes, air conditioning, shaker hood, Eagle ST tires, a Ford District promo car loaded with options, sport deck rear seat, rear window slats, spoilers, AM-FM radio, Magnum wheels, Marti Report documented. – Orange peely wing paint but very good body paint. Good upholstery. Cloudy gauges. Orderly but aged and oil misted engine compartment. An honest older restoration showing its age and some miles. – Not as good as it might have been but still an impressive and rarely thoroughly optioned Mustang. With the 428/335 Ram Air engine this is a GT500 without the Shelby trim or the Shelby premium which would add another 10K+ to the price, and as a Ford promotional car this is more rare by a wide margin. It is a sound value at this price.
Lot # F89.1 1967 Ford Mustang GTA Convertible; S/N 7F3S178578; Dark Moss Green/Saddle vinyl; Black vinyl top; Older restoration 2- condition; With Reserve; Not sold at Hammer bid of $87,000 – 390/320hp, automatic, power brakes and steering, air conditioning, Magnum wheels, Goodyear red line tires, AM-FM. – Very good paint, chrome, interior and top. The engine looks good from the top, but older the deeper you look. Good underbody in red primer. Not fresh but better than a driver. – Not shown in Mecum’s online results 7/31/22, not on a different lot number, either. A car that disappeared.
Lot # F97 1965 Pontiac LeMans GTO 2-Dr. Hardtop; S/N 23737P336679; Iris Mist/Black vinyl; Cosmetic restoration 3 condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $60,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $66,000 – 400, Tri-Power, 4-speed, Hurst shifter, power steering and dual circuit brakes, Rally wheels with trim rings, Silvertown red line tires, 3.23 Safe-T-Track, console with tach. – The engine number is painted over but the YS code is possible to make out indicating a 389/335hp 4-barrel block for an automatic transmission, not the 400 indicated in the description unless it came from a 1968 or later. The engine is not represented as original to this car. Very good clearcoat paint. Bright chrome and unblemished aluminum. Good interior and gauges. The top of the engine is clean but below the exhaust manifold it’s dirty and grimy. – The color is gorgeous, the interior is inviting. The configuration as represented is confusing and so is the price, at least based upon the inconsistent specifications. But GTOs were strong at Harrisburg this year, and this is a strong result for a weak car in a cherished color with all the right stuff.
Lot # S41 1974 Chevrolet Corvette Coupe; S/N 1Z37T4S412376; Yellow/Saddle leather; Visually maintained, largely original 3- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $22,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $24,200 – 350/250hp, 4-speed, power steering, air conditioning, cowl induction hood, polished alloy wheels, Firestone tires, power windows, AM-FM, T-tops. – From “A Private Collection at No Reserve”. Represented as the matching numbers engine. Superficial old repaint not applied to door jambs. The top of the engine is cleaned up and repainted in place but the rest is grungy and surface rusted. Sound interior. Dull gauges. Generally neglected and superficially cosmetically fluffed. An auction car. – This is the first of a string of C3 Corvettes from “A Private Collection at No Reserve”. All were similar in their condition and presentation, that is, “superficial auction cars”. At least this one has a 4-speed, but that doesn’t support the price it brought, and it is seriously expensive for what it is.
Lot # S42 1974 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible; S/N 1Z67J4S400079; Red/White vinyl; Visually maintained, largely original 3- condition; No Reserve; Hammered Sold at $29,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $31,900 – 350/195hp, automatic, power brakes and steering, air conditioning, cowl induction hood, Rally wheels with trim rings, Firehawk tires, power windows, Sanyo cassette stereo, luggage rack. – From “A Private Collection at No Reserve”. Superficial old repaint. The top of the engine is cleaned up and repainted in place but the rest is grungy and surface rusted. Sound interior. Dull gauges. Generally neglected and superficially cosmetically fluffed. An auction car. – Maybe it was the luggage rack, because there is nothing else appealing about this neglected and expediently fluffed up old base engine Corvette to support the 2 condition price it brought. It is expensive by nearly a factor of two.
Lot # S43 1973 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible; S/N 1Z67J3S405758; White/Black leather; Black vinyl top; Visually maintained, largely original 3- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $21,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $23,100 – 350/190hp, automatic, power brakes and steering, air conditioning, cowl induction, Rally wheels with trim rings, Radial T/A tires, AM-FM. – From “A Private Collection at No Reserve”. Represented as the matching numbers engine. Superficial old repaint not applied to door jambs. The top of the engine is cleaned up and repainted in place but the rest is grungy and surface rusted. Sound interior. Dull gauges. Generally neglected and superficially cosmetically fluffed. An auction car. – It took a fair amount of work to fluff up the more obvious aspects of this C3 Corvette, but how much more would it have taken to fire up a steam genny and clean off the chassis grunge? The price it brought is $5,000 or so more than should have been paid, a considerable amount on a $21K car.
Lot # S44 1971 Chevrolet Corvette Coupe; S/N 1Z37L7S419024; White, Gold stripes/Beige leather; Visually maintained, largely original 3 condition; No Reserve; Hammered Sold at $18,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $19,800 – 350/270hp, automatic, power steering and brakes, power windows, air conditioning, t-tops with tinted glass inserts, aftermarket AM-FM radio, chrome alloy wheels, Radial T/A tires, luggage rack. – From “A Private Collection at No Reserve”. Mediocre old repaint wearing through on the fender ridges. Sound interior. The T-tops are fiberglass with glass panels dropped into them by some custom shop. Then they were painted assembled with poor masking. Polished aftermarket intake manifold, chrome accessory valve covers, aftermarket air conditioning compressor. Orderly but aged. – The gold stripes are a little assertive, and the crude glass panels dropped into the T-tops are crudely done and don’t give much assurance of security in a monsoon, but otherwise this is a decent mildly customized C3 Corvette from 1971 that still retains some of its pre-’72 performance. It brought a realistic price.
Lot # S45 1978 Chevrolet Corvette Coupe; S/N 1Z87L8S430345; Silver, Charcoal Silver lower body/Red cloth; Visually maintained, largely original 3- condition; No Reserve; Hammered Sold at $23,500 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $25,850 – 350/185hp L48, automatic, power steering and brakes, air conditioning, power windows, polished alloy wheels, Radial T/A tires, t-tops, AM-FM-CB radio, Silver Anniversary livery, built sheet and window sticker documented – From “A Private Collection at No Reserve”. Represented as the matching numbers L48 engine. Dull old repaint with tape accent stripes. Good lightly stretched upholstery. Good gauges. The top of the engine has been dressed up and repainted in place but the rest of the chassis and underbody is original and dirty. Scratched console. A used car fluffed up for the auction. – Chevy built over 15,000 C3s this year in this livery and every ’78 Corvette could have “Silver Anniversary” identification making this a distinction without a difference by any rational standard. The Mecum bidders didn’t care, however, got all excited and paid more for it than for a Pace Car replica with the same anemic engine and similar condition.
Lot # S46 1979 Chevrolet Corvette Coupe; S/N 1Z8789S449220; Dark Green/Dark Green cloth; Visually maintained, largely original 3- condition; No Reserve; Hammered Sold at $14,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $15,400 – 350/195hp L48, automatic, power steering and brakes, air conditioning, power windows, AM-FM-8-track, polished alloy wheels, Eagle GT2 tires, glass t-tops. – From “A Private Collection at No Reserve”. Represented as matching numbers engine. Poor older repaint with dust, scratches and microblisters. Sound interior. The engine compartment has been fluffed up on top but is original and dirty where it is hard to see. An auction car. – Disappointing at best, particularly at this price. The paint is awful. The price is a gift to the seller.
Lot # S47 1979 Chevrolet Corvette Coupe; S/N 1Z8789S438204; Red/Red vinyl; Visually maintained, largely original 3- condition; No Reserve; Hammered Sold at $16,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $17,600 – 350/195hp L48, automatic, power steering and brakes, air conditioning, T-tops, power windows, Rally wheels with trim rings, Radial T/A tires, Kenwood CD stereo. – From “A Private Collection at No Reserve”. Indifferent old repaint with microblisters and dust inclusions. Sound upholstery. Dull gauges. Fluffed engine compartment with the engine painted in place. Corroded t-top brackets. Usable but unimpressive. – About this time I was totally used up writing the same dispiriting description of a dispiriting car and began copying and pasting from others from the same “collection”. How one person could own, and treat so poorly, so many similar cars is a mystery. It must have been a slug when he got it and new engine paint doesn’t cure a slug. This is a generous result for a badly treated ’79 Corvette coupe even with A/C.
Lot # S48 1995 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible; S/N 1G1YY32P9S5111443; Black/Torch Red vinyl; Black top; Unrestored original 3 condition; No Reserve; Hammered Sold at $20,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $22,000 – 350/300hp LT1, 6-speed, air conditioning, power sport seats, FX3 suspension, polished ZR1-style wheels, Toyo tires, CD stereo. – From “A Private Collection at No Reserve”. Flawed original paint, surface cracked original upholstery. Orderly engine compartment. Used car, but no obvious reason to doubt the odometer reading of 31,000; pedals not worn more than that. – This is a whole different car from the earlier “A Private Collection at No Reserve” C3 Corvettes. The 1994 introduction LT1 was a breakthrough after years of anemic 350 Corvettes and with the optional ZF 6-speed (automatic was standard) it had the versatility it deserved. Only 4,784 out of over 20,000 1995 Corvettes had the 6-speed making this combination relatively rare but also rare is the deteriorated original condition of this car which looks like it has had many more miles than the 31K indicated by the odometer and the relatively original pedal pads. The bidders in Harrisburg liked this car better than most people would, perhaps taken by its (tired) originality, and paid a major premium for it.
Lot # S90 2023 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible; S/N 1G1YB3D43P5102250; White/Red, Black leather; Unrestored original 2 condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $100,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $110,000 – LT2 375/495hp, 8-speed AutoManual, black alloy wheels, Michelin tires, GT2 seats, red calipers, heated/cooled seats, Heads-up display. – From “A Private Collection at No Reserve”. 15 miles and in showroom condition. – This result is congruous with reported asking prices for 2023 LT2 Corvettes in the secondary market even though they are $10-$20,000 more than MSRP.
Lot # S100 1968 Chevrolet Chevelle Nickey 2-Dr. Hardtop; S/N 136378K196078; Grotto Blue, Black vinyl room/Blue vinyl, cloth; Older restoration 2+ condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $66,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $72,600 – 327/325hp, 4-speed, Hurst T-handle shifter, Torque Thrust wheels, Firestone red line tires, headers, steering column Sun tach, pushbutton radio, 4.10 Positraction, bench seat, Protect-O-Plate and Nickey Registry documented. – No power brakes or steering. Nickey modified engine with intake manifold and Holley carburetor. Represented as matching numbers engine, documented. Excellent paint, chrome, interior, gauges and vinyl roof. Clean, beautiful engine compartment. Underbody and chassis are restored like new. A multiple award winner in the mid-teens and still better than new. – Sold by Mecum at Indy in 2011 for $48,760, at Chicago in 2015 for $56,100 and offered at Kissimmee in 2020 where it was bid to $50,000, this represents a high water point for this car, and probably for Nickey Chevelles in general. It is a special car and it brought a special price 30% or more over a standard Chevelle 396/325hp in comparable condition.
Lot # S102 1973 Mohs Safarikar 2-Dr. Hardtop Convertible; S/N 322101H942198; Black Naugahyde/Black vinyl; Recent restoration 2- condition; With Reserve; Not sold at Hammer bid of $60,000 – 391/253hp International V-8 with 4-barrel added, automatic, power steering and brakes. air conditioning, lift off roof, straight opening doors, 3 front seats, chrome wheel covers, narrow whitewalls, AM-FM, Motorola 2-way radio. – Based on a 1969 International Travelall. Meticulously restored with some fabric fitting issues. Clean, orderly engine compartment. Represented as one of two remaining of the three built. AACA National First Prize Improbable but impressive. – Built by Bruce Baldwin Mohs, owner of the Mohs Seaplane Corporation, a polymath with varied interests (not including Mohs surgery for basal cell (skin) cancer). It is hard to appreciate what led him to conceive this gigantic vehicle with its multi-functional design: You can drive it, you can sleep on its folding bed, you can shoot from its rear compartment with a locker for guns. It is impressively restored and simply monumental but it is impossible to argue with the Mecum Harrisburg bidders’ reluctance to place great value on it.
Lot # S105.1 1953 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster; S/N E53F01202; Polo White/Red vinyl; Black cloth top; Recent restoration 2- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $370,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $407,000 – 235/150hp six, Powerglide, wheel covers, Firestone whitewalls, pushbutton radio, heater. – No representation this is the original engine. Excellent fresh paint, tight top, bright chrome, crisp dash and gauges. The engine compartment is not as good, with some engine paint dribbled on the frame and smudged on the right engine mount. There’s storage dust where it’s hard to reach. The water temperature capillary tube is kinked. Good but not great. – The price it brought, however, is great but not good, an expensive result even for a ’53 Corvette. This is a flawed example that brought a beyond perfect, show car, price. Mecum sold E53F01300 at Kissimmee in January for $418,000, but it was the last ’53 Corvette built. It was a result that propelled this otherwise undistinguished example to a magnanimous price. RM sold E53F01227, a better restoration, at Amelia in 2021 for $201,600, which is a better value benchmark.
Lot # S114 1967 Chevrolet Camaro Z/28 2-Dr. Hardtop; S/N 124377N216227; Engine # 7N216227V0322MO; Marina Blue, White stripes/White vinyl; Recent restoration 2+ condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $195,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $214,500 – 302/290hp, 4-speed, Hurst shifter, tube headers, cowl induction, power front disc brakes, 3.31 Positraction, pushbutton radio, Deluxe interior, Rally wheels, trim rings, Goodyear red line tires, heater. – Represented as and appears to be the matching numbers engine. Excellent paint, chrome and interior. Bright, crisp gauges and gorgeous engine compartment without being overdone. Restored like new with better paint, chrome and assembly although the description says it has “NOS GM sheet metal (not original to the car)”. – Well, this is exciting, a Z/28 without 4-wheel disc brakes or a cross-ram dual quad intake selling for roughly double what comparable cars bring. There was no accounting for the enthusiasm (and deep pockets) demonstrated by the Mecum Harrisburg bidders both for exceptional cars like this Z/28 and for cars with abundant and apparent shortcomings. Spending their money before it becomes worth less (as opposed to “worthless”) is a fine idea but paying well over market value isn’t and recovery of the premium brought by this immaculate Z/28 depends upon inflation, which is a false equivalence.
Lot # S115 2014 Ferrari California Convertible; S/N ZFF65TJA2E0197234; Blue/Cognac leather; Unrestored original 2- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $112,500 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $123,750 – 4,297/460hp, 6-speed AutoManual, SF shields, grey 5-spoke alloy wheels, yellow calipers, Bridgestone tires, carbon brake discs, climate control, navigation. – From “A Private Collection at No Reserve”. Odometer reads 24K miles and the car looks at least that good with no visible wear or use except for crazing on the nose and some burnishing on the driver’s seat cushion bolster. – Unlike some of the older cars in the “Private Collection at No Reserve”, there’s little to question about this California which shows modest mileage and careful use. If “climate control” is a feature of modern cars why can’t the engineers figure out how to fix “climate change”? The result here is appropriate for the car and its condition.
Lot # S130.1 1985 Lamborghini Countach LP5000S Coupe, Body by Bertone; S/N ZA9C0050FLA12786; White/Crimson leather; Unrestored original 2- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $425,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $467,500 – 4,754/375hp, 5-speed, white O.Z. wheels, aged Pirelli P7 tires, Alpine cassette stereo, Bosch fuel injection, white painted urethane bumpers, wing. – Sound original paint with some crazing and scuffs. The top of the engine compartment is clean and detailed but the bottom and the chassis are original and surface rusty. Good upholstery with minimal use. Original underbody. One family owned since 1989. – While this is a premium price for an LP5000S it has several factors that vitiate the premium like the 18,548 kilometers showing and single family ownership for over three decades. It has been carefully (if not consistently) maintained, a survivor that is something of a gem and its price is understandable.
Lot # S132.1 1977 Pontiac Trans Am SE Coupe; S/N 2W87Z7N202963; Black, Gold accent/Black vinyl; Detailed to restored 2+ condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $400,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $440,000 – 400/200hp, automatic, Y82 Black and Gold special edition, glass T-tops, factory Uniroyal tires, air conditioning, cruise contro, gold alloy wheels. – Represented as the matching numbers engine. Excellent paint and original interior. Shows only slight age and no use. The odometer reads 15 miles and nothing in the car’s on-site description tells us it is an original, unused car but there are a few clues like the factory tires and taped door sills. – Smokey and the Bandit in the metal, an impressive, even astonishing, example of meticulous presentation. Mecum sold another Y82 Trans Am at Indy two months ago (s/n 2W87Z7N145675) for $187,000, which was hard to understand at the time, but this transaction is something else. The only way to make sense of it is to consider it a 15 mile original unused Trans Am that has been meticulously detailed to pristine showroom condition, and even then it is a curve-setting result.
Lot # S141 1961 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible; S/N 10867S109472; Engine # F228C; Roman Red, White coves/Black vinyl; White vinyl top; Modified restoration 3 condition; No Reserve; Hammered Sold at $67,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $73,700 – 283/170hp 2-barrel engine with dual quads, MSD distributor, 4-speed, Hurst shifter, WonderBar radio, spinner wheel covers, bias ply whitewalls. – Good recent paint, bright chrome, scratched window sill moldings. Older chassis repaint with road use, age and storage dust. Sound upholstery. Old dash and gauges. Exterior overspray in the wheelwells. – Sold at Kissimmee a year ago for $78,100, then at Orlando in July for $83,600, the result here restores a modicum of balance to its value, but is still excessive and valued like a true dual quad Corvette, which it isn’t.
Lot # S147 1965 Buick Riviera GS 2-Dr. Hardtop; S/N 494475H931995; Silver Cloud, Black striping/Black vinyl; Older restoration 3+ condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $100,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $110,000 – 425/360hp, dual quads, automatic, 15″ chrome wire wheels, air conditioning, pushbutton radio, power brakes, steering, windows and seats, limited slip, Protect-O-Plate documented. – Beautiful clearcoat paint over flaws on the hood. Good chrome showing some age. Sound interior. Older undercoat in the wheelwells. Dirty engine compartment. The color makes the car. – The flaws under the clearcoat on the hood are concerning, and the dirty engine compartment is even more so. It’s an apparently sound car but it brought $30-$40,000 more than it should have given its condition. The color (and subtle coachlining) made it pop among Saturday cars at Kissimmee.
Lot # S148 1963 Chevrolet Corvette FI Convertible; S/N 30867S117597; Engine # 3117597F531RF; Red/Black vinyl; White vinyl top; Older restoration 3+ condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $92,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $101,200 – 327/360hp, 4-speed, alloy wheels, Nexen tires, AM-FM. – Represented as, and appears to be, the matching numbers engine. Good recent paint and older chrome and interior. Clean engine although it isn’t fresh. Same for the chassis. Clear, bright gauges. A 360hp Fuelie in good driver condition. – Among ’63 Corvettes the “Split Window” coupe reigns supreme so, as in this case, anyone wanting a real Fuelie ’63 Vette can take refuge in a convertible, buying it well under Fuelie coupe values. This transaction is appropriate for this Corvette’s equipment and condition, a price that’s fair to both seller and buyer. It was reported sold by Mecum at Indy six years ago (in 2016) for $82,500.
Lot # S155 1967 Chevrolet Corvette 427/435 Convertible; S/N 194677S115353; Engine # T316JE7115353; Lynndale Blue/Blue vinyl; White vinyl top; Older restoration 3+ condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $270,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $297,000 – 427/435hp L71, 4-speed, Rally wheels with trim rings, BFG red line tires, AM-FM, woodgrain steering wheel. – 7,285 miles from new and fully restored long ago. Good paint, chrome, top and interior. Well done but many years ago and showing age and storage dust. Represented as and appears to be matching numbers engine. Window sticker and Protect-o-Plate documented. – With so few miles this L71 powered Corvette has been carefully preserved since its originality-destroying restoration years ago. The restoration obliterates much of its history and obviates a “preservation” premium in favor of cosmetic presentability and does little to support this beyond-perfect condition freshly restored price. A desirable car, it is seriously expensive at this price.
Lot # S160 1973 Plymouth Duster 340 2-Dr. Hardtop; S/N VS29H3B139476; Panther Pink, Matte Black hood scoop/Black vinyl; Visually maintained, largely original 3- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $33,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $36,300 – 340/240hp, 4-speed, Hurst pistol grip shifter. power steering and brakes, heater, no radio, Silver steel wheels, hubcaps, Radial T/A tires, 3.73 Sure Grip. – Good looking repaint while assembled, casually applied with shadows where it’s hard to reach. Sound old upholstery and interior trim. Rechromed bumpers but aged trim chrome. Grungy engine compartment underneath the shiny repainted air cleaner and new brake booster. An auction car. – A car that will never be overlooked or passed by even in the most crowded parking lot or car show field, Panther Pink is that obvious. Its appeal is further evidenced by the price it brought here, far more than its quick cosmetic restoration deserved.
Lot # S161 1968 Chevrolet Camaro RS/SS 396 Convertible; S/N 124678N386660; Island Teal, White nose band/Parchment vinyl; White vinyl top; Visually maintained, largely original 3- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $68,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $74,800 – 396/325hp, automatic, power brakes and steering, Rally wheels with trim rings, Radial T/A tires, JVC CD stereo, console gauges. – Represented as the matching numbers engine. Sound clearcoat repaint in the original color. Sound original upholstery and replaced inside door panels that don’t match. The top of the engine has been cleaned up and repainted in place. The rest of the engine compartment and the chassis are grungy, Dash gauges are good but the console gauges are foggy. A superficial cosmetic redo. – This result is marginally better than it might have been in a more restrained environment but Harrisburg this year was exuberant. Bidders were spending money with abandon, not least perhaps because their dollars are worth 5% or more less now than they were a year ago and “buy now before it costs more” is looking ever more like a plan. This cosmetically restored RS/SS 396 would have looked better at $60,000 than at the $74,800 it brought but as things went in Harrisburg that’s a fairly small premium.
Lot # S163 1970 Plymouth ‘Cuda 2-Dr. Hardtop; S/N BS23V0B131212; In Violet/White vinyl; Older restoration 2- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $72,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $79,200 – 440/390hp Six Barrel, automatic, pushbutton radio, body color wheels, hubcaps, Polyglas GT tires, wing, console, power steering and brakes, Argent Shaker hood, Rally gauges, 4.1 Sure Grip, rear window slats. – Good older paint with dust inclusions. Good chrome and interior. Worn steering wheel rim. Shiny but storage dusty and no “matching numbers” claim. – While thsi result is a significant discount from a 440/390hp ‘Cuda in comparable condition it also is a car for which no representation about the origins of the engine is made. Yes, it’s a V-code 440/390 Six Barrel chassis, but perhaps (probably) not the 440/390 that today lurks under the Shaker hood. All in all, it is a responsible value in and attractive ‘Cuda in High Impact In Violet (the correct name for a Plymouth with FC7 paint that would be “Plum Crazy” on a Dodge Challenger.)
Lot # S163.1 1968 Shelby Mustang GT500KR Convertible; S/N 8T3R211037-03910; Wimbledon White/Black vinyl; White vinyl top; Older restoration 2- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $215,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $236,500 – 428/335hp, 4-speed, power steering and brakes, 10-spoke Shelby wheels, F70-15 Goodyear Speedway tires, pushbutton radio, Lucas fog lights, 3.50 Traction-Lok. – Represented as the original engine. Excellent clearcoat paint. Tight, clean top, Like new upholstery. Other than peeling factory labels the engine compartment is restored like new with some subsequent use. The underbody also is restored and driven a little. Restored better than new and carefully enjoyed. – This GT500 KR sold at Barrett-Jackson WestWorld in 2009 for $165,000 when it was Red and the odometer displayed 54,309 miles. It has since been returned to its original Wimbledon White and now shows 57,468 miles, 3,159 more than thirteen years ago. The passage of time has only served to make it more desirable but the Harrisburg bidders weren’t carried away and this is a responsible price for a very good car.
Lot # S166 1991 Ferrari Mondial t Cabriolet 2+2, Body by Pininfarina; S/N ZFFRK33A1M0090306; Rosso Corsa/Tan leather; Black cloth top; Unrestored original 2- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $120,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $132,000 – 3,405/300hp, fuel injection, 5-speed, 5-spoke alloy wheels, Eagle ZR55 tires, Sony CD stereo, air conditioning, power windows. – The odometer shows 5,208 miles. Good but water spotted original paint. Nearly pristine upholstery. Clean, tight fitting top. Lightly scuffed rear window. Orderly engine compartment. Impressively maintained and impossible to fault in any meaningful way except the water spots. – This would have been a really good value without the “1” in front of the price. Mondials are the neglected Ferraris. They have good V8 performance but odd styling. V8 Mondials never reached the mainstream Ferrari owner and have fallen off the want list subsequently. The best of the 2+2 cabriolets struggle to bring $50,000. Originality (and there was no claim the 5,208 miles were from new) is a plus, but is limited by inattention to V8 Mondials generally. The Harrisburg bidders had no sense of Ferrari values, based at least on this transaction, and paid roughly three times its real value. The price was enough to buy a 360 Spider, an altogether better and modern car even if it seats only two. This result is absurd.
Lot # S167 1955 Buick Roadmaster Convertible; S/N 7B4056356; Light Blue, White/Light Blue, White vinyl; White vinyl top; Recent restoration 2 condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $175,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $192,500 – 322/236hp, Dynaflow, power steering, pushbutton radio, chrome wire wheels, wide whitewalls, power windows, power bench seat. – Represented as the original drivetrain. Excellent paint, brilliant chrome, inviting but barely soiled interior. Clean, sharp gauges and engine compartment. Barely any evidence of use much more than on and off show fields. – Resplendent in its eye-catching two-tone livery and bright chrome this is a choice Roadmaster. It’s also an expensive Roadmaster even taking into account its impeccable presentation. It could be argued that it’s not egregiously expensive – it’s that pretty to look at – but it’s still expensive by 20% or so.
Lot # S171 1986 Porsche 944 Coupe; S/N WP0AA0955GN157424; Guards Red/Black vinyl; Older restoration 3+ condition; With Reserve; Not sold at Hammer bid of $25,000 – 5-speed, Blaupunkt CD radio, sunroof, alloy wheels, Continental tires, power windows. – Very good fresh paint and good interior. The engine compartment is clean and well-maintained. Represented as a restoration, it has some miles. Identified under the hood and on the tail as a Turbo which corresponds with the VIN, but there is no evidence of one on the exhaust system. – The Harrisburg bidders were as unsettled as I am about this 944 Turbo with no evidence of a forced induction mechanism on its exhaust system and declined to give it any consideration. It might be a fine, balanced, enjoyable driver but at a stoplight it isn’t going to distinguish itself.
Lot # S181 2005 Acura NSX-T Coupe; S/N JH4NA21635S00022; Silverstone Metallic/Grey leather; Unrestored original 3+ condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $107,500 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $118,250 – 3,179/290hp, 6-speed, 6-spoke alloy wheels, Neova tires, gold calipers, air conditioning, cassette stereo, power windows, power seats, limited slip, Comptech exhaust. – Stone chipped nose, otherwise shiny original paint. Good glass, gauges and interior. Repainted scuff on the right front fender. A clean and well-maintained carefully used car with 39,394 believable miles showing. – An honest looking NSX-T that shows all the evidence of limited, careful use and consistent care. It brought a modestly superior price based on the confidence it conveyed to those who looked at it. It is a sound, if generous, value.
Lot # S183 1967 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible; S/N 194677S103232; Lynndale Blue, Lynndale Blue hardtop/Black vinyl; White vinyl top; Visually maintained, largely original 3- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $122,500 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $134,750 – 327/350hp, M21 4-speed, two tops, side exhaust added, original exhaust included, Rally wheels with trim rings, Silvertown Radial tires, both tops, documented with the original tank sticker, Protect-O-Plate, invoice and window sticker. – Bloomington Gold Benchmark, 3-time Bloomington Gold Special Collection, multiple NCRS Top Flight, Gold Spinner, Triple Crown. Represented as the original paint but crazing everywhere. Sound upholstery and chrome. Nice car but needs to be carefully stored before the crazing original paint starts lifting. – An outstanding example of a carefully, almost religiously, preserved Corvette relic made even more unusual by it being a high output L79 small block. These small block cars are often overlooked in the pursuit of Big Block Corvettes, and this car’s survival in largely untouched condition is verified by its multiple awards and comprehensive documentation. It brought a nice premium for preservation that can’t be realistically challenged. Finding another one like it will be a long time coming.
Lot # S184 1989 Porsche 911 Carrera Speedster; S/N WP0EB0916KS173444; Linen Grey Metallic/Black leather; Black cloth top; Unrestored original 3+ condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $200,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $220,000 – 3,164/231hp, 5-speed, black center Fuchs wheels, Continental tires, air conditioning, Alpine CD stereo, window sticker documented, books and owner’s manual. – Good lightly swirled clearcoat paint, lightly stretched upholstery consistent with the 25,000 miles showing. Dusty original underbody and chassis. Unexpectedly free of stone chips. Some soiling and failing seams on the top, lightly scuffed back window. – Sold after it crossed the block with this all-in result, a reasonable result for a Carrera (all Porsches in 1989 except Turbos were “Carreras”) Speedster in such fine and well-maintained condition.
Lot # S185 1964 Porsche 356 SC Coupe; S/N 217171; Ivory/Tan leather; Older restoration 2- condition; With Reserve; Not sold at Hammer bid of $80,000 – 1,582/107hp, 4-speed, AM-FM, chrome wheels, hubcaps, Michelin XZX tires. – Very good older paint with small flaws and scuffs. Good lightly stretched front seat upholstery. Clear, sharp gauges. Sound chrome. Restored in the 80’s by Holbert’s, AACA National First Prize 1989 and 1990. Remarkably well-preserved and still presentable. – This should have been a six-figure car and no wonder the consignor took it home when offered this paltry bid, even without a claim of the engine’s originality.
Lot # S186 1993 Porsche 911 RS America Coupe; S/N WP0AB2969PS418038; Midnight Blue Metallic/Black cloth; Unrestored original 3- condition; With Reserve; Not sold at Hammer bid of $150,000 – 3,600/247hp, 5-speed, sport seats, limited slip, alloy wheels, Yokohama tires, air conditioning, whale tail, sunroof – Stone chipped nose like an asteroid’s surface, repainted front bumper. Dirty engine compartment. Good upholstery and gauges. Worn rear tires. A used car. – If there was money anywhere on the planet at this bid the consignor should have jumped on it like a peacock on a bug. This is generous America Roadster money and a curve-breaking bid for a coupe in this condition.
Lot # S187 1963 Chevrolet Corvette Coupe; S/N 30837S112964; Engine # 3112964F408RE; Silver-Blue/Black vinyl; Cosmetic restoration 3+ condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $165,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $181,500 – 327/340hp, 4-speed, AM-FM, spinner wheel covers, bias ply narrow whitewalls. – Represented as the matching numbers engine and transmission. Very good clearcoat repaint but with some texture. Orderly engine compartment showing some age and use. The chassis doesn’t look like it’s been apart and has old finishes and remnants of road grime despite this being described as a “Nut & bolt body-off restoration in 2014”. The engine has an odd idler pulley where a power steering pump would have been. Good upholstery and chrome. A presentable cosmetic restoration to good looking driver standards. – An attractive car that doesn’t promise anything more than an enjoyable driving experience, although it is an expensive one at this price.
Lot # S188 1958 Mercedes-Benz 190SL Roadster; S/N 12104275002243; Dark Red/Tan vinyl; Beige cloth top; Older restoration 3 condition; With Reserve; Not sold at Hammer bid of $110,000 – 1,897/105hp, 4-speed, hubcaps, trim rings, Michelin narrow whitewalls. – Good older paint with some scuffs and swirls. Good upholstery and interior trim, lightly used. Brightly polished but pimpled and spotty chrome. Good gauges. Mikuni carburetors. Oil misted engine compartment and leaky brake fluid reservoir. Looks good at first but not in detail. – The consignor obviously wanted more than the reported high bid although considering the presentation of this 190SL the bid here should have been sufficient to see the car off and away to a new owner.
I appreciate that you addressed the effect… or non-effect… of the economy at the top. I watched some of this auction online but I left because the prices seemed unrealistic to me. You helped to unravel some of my questions about it.
Mecom’s decision to stop supplying chassis numbers is understandable as they move from collector cars to high volume, specialty used car sales. You cannot blame them, it is hard to argue with such financial success.
I’m glad my speculation — and it really is speculation as it’s not based on specific data, only inference — was valuable. We’ll see how it works at Monterey.
As for VINs, Mecum made a case for “proprietary” in a conversation last week, but a VIN is a very specific attribute of each car — which is why it’s on the title and registration — and no more proprietary than the year or the color. Note that for the upcoming Monterey sale the VINs are prominently displayed. That’s because California says it has to be, just as it has to be displayed on the window stickers required by federal law. Others don’t withhold VIN data. But, in truth, there are apparently only three organizations that care: me, Hagerty and Sports Car Market.
As a fellow Car auction archiver I find it quite annoying that Mecum withholds VINs. I have long speculated this is because Mecum often re-offers cars frequently and they hide VINs to cover their tracks.
That would seem to be the case. Where we have VIN data the number of previously auctioned cars is consistently high, especially among high profile cars that may be used to attract paying spectators. At Mecum Monterey there were 106 (of 454 lots offered including motorcycles) that had prior auction appearances. Not all were at prior Mecum auctions, but many were and quite a few quite recently.
I’ll add you to the list of three organizations that care.
Rick – appreciate this site. I own one of the cars you featured above from Harrisburg (albeit at a markup after the dealer bought it from the auction), but didn’t discover your site till after I got it. Feels good to know that my highly amateur evaluation was validated by your comments as to condition and appearance.
Nice work and thanks for doing what you do