Classic Car Watch
Raising The Bar

September 1, 2005
By Scott Lewis

This is another cooperative article with my Car Corner article. This month I wrote about restoring my 93 Camaro Z/28. I detailed all I would like to do to it to get it in really nice shape... for another 100-200K miles. At the end of that article I mentioned I would be doing that in coordination with getting a classic car. I also mentioned the budget I was contemplating... $30,000, with $20,000 to go toward a classic.

So this month I am raising the bar. Normally this column has a $15,000 budget. I am raising the bar to a budget of $20,000. Because I strongly feel everything is negotiable, I will search for cars in the $15,000-$22,500 range.

Since my first true love of classics is a 69 Camaro I will definitely be looking to see what Camaros I can find in this month's special price range. I would hope I could find a lot, but ultimately that will not be up to me.

I will try to look at my usual web sites, but will be looking harder at sites that tend to have slight more expensive cars. If I just through a blanket over the whole search I would be here forever. Considering the number of cars I find below $15K, image how many I could find under $20K.

To keep things from getting out of hand I will search for a select few special cars, on top of my usual hang outs. The special cars will be: 69 Camaro, 67-68 & 70-73 Camaro RS (hide-away headlights for 67-68, and split bumper for 70-73), 68-72 Chevelle SS,  

Oh, and one last thing... at $20K I expect air conditioning. I will be much harder on this than normal. As usual I will allow $1,500 for A/C to be fixed or installed. This will not be something I would consider for negotiation.

After completing the list below I can say a few things:

  • I can find plenty of Camaros at this higher price level.
  • I would have found a ton of Mustangs, but decided against it.
  • I found a lot of cars in general, and had to turn away quite a few.
  • I wish I had twenty grand burning a hole in my pocket.

Here are the cars:


1969 Chevrolet Camaro - $17,900

69_camaro_rtb_green_4speed_1.jpg (130259 bytes)Description: Price reduced on this Fathom green 4-speed Camaro SS clone with a strong running 350 engine. Very nice correct dark green interior. Very shinny paint and a rock solid body with original undercarriage.

NADA Price: $16,433 - $27,410

Source: American Dream Machines

Comments: Because this car is out of my "normal" price range I was not tracking it to know what they reduced the price from. Regardless, with a $20K budget this car fits pretty well even though it needs air conditioning. Besides, it has a 4 speed. Since this car is advertised as a clone I might have reservations that this car does not have its original engine. In fact, the NADA prices I quote are for a 69 Camaro with a 350 and 4 speed... which assumes a numbers matching car. If not we should at the least deduct for not having a 350, which bring the price range to $14,400 - $23,975.

On the emotional side this car looks great. I want it.

1973 Plymouth Barracuda - $18,950

73_barracuda_rtb_green_440_2.jpg (54564 bytes)Description: Sharp Sublime freen E-Body Mopar! Modified w/ 440ci V8 big block, "Billboard" decals, Go-Wing, Rallye wheels. Nice interior, bucket seats & console, auto, P/S, PDB. Loads of eye appeal In a great running and driving car!

NADA Price: $12,500 - $20,344

Source: Brockers Beautys

Comments: This one came up at the last minute, literally. I was checking to see which cars on this list were sold and I saw this. I couldn't resist. I love the "billboard" graphics on these Mopar Pony Cars. I was even generous and included the 440 engine when I priced it on NADA's web site. Which is a dig at NADA because the 440 was not available in the Barracuda in 73. If I had not done it this car would have been overpriced.

Regardless, I really like the overall look. All we have to do is get them down enough in price to afford an aftermarket air conditioning system. I liked this car so much I jumped it was above all the other Mopars (see below) and put it right in the mix with the Camaros. That's saying something.

1969 Chevrolet Camaro - $20,500

69_camaro_rtb_red_ac_pw_1.jpg (47820 bytes)Description: 327 engine, matching numbers, protect-o-plate, auto, ac, power steering, power brakes, rare power windows, beautiful red exterior, mint black hounds tooth interior, must see, always garaged.

NADA Price: $14,905 - $25,190

Source: Collector Car Trader

Comments: This is one of those times when I really wish he would have posted more pictures of the car. The picture here looks good, but it is the only one. However, I really like the look. I especially like that he did not advertise it as some kind of clone. It is ever so slightly above this month's price cap, but I think that is easily negotiated. Plus it has power windows. If this car looks as good inside as it does outside I am sold. It just better be rust free. Since my first choice would be a manual transmission I could not give this car the top spot... but I spent a lot of time juggling that in my mind. I like this car that much.

1969 Camaro Z/28 Clone - $19,000 (Sold)

69_camaro_rtb_black_black_1.jpg (970270 bytes)Description: 350 V8, rebuilt TH350 auto trans, 12-bolt posi rear end, new exhaust/magna flow mufflers, power disk brakes, center console with gauges, new hounds tooth interior & weather striping, new paint, new black vinyl top, new tires & shocks, tilt wheel & much more. Drives great. Nice Car!

NADA Price: $15,583 - $26,335

Source: Collector Car Trader

Comments: This is one of the cleanest Z/28 clones I have seen in recent memory. I guess I can forgive the automatic. This car needs air conditioning, which means we need to negotiate the price down a little to fit it into our $20K budget for this month. I really like the look and would call in a heartbeat if the cash was burning a whole in my pocket. Again, I priced this with the 350 engine to give the benefit of the doubt to it having the original engine.

1969 Chevrolet Camaro SS - $19,000 (Sold)

69_camaro_rtb_blue_white_stripes_1.jpg (406766 bytes)Description: 350, automatic, center console shift, true X-11 code car, 12 bolt posi rear, chrome wheels, vinyl top, SS stripes, nice clean car, ground up restoration, very solid. Optional accessories: bucket seats, dual exhaust, vinyl, alloy wheels, vinyl top. 

NADA Price: SS 350: $26,105 - $42,090
                        Coupe: $15,583 - $26,335

Source: TNT Got Cars

Comments: I love this color combination. We have to check to see if this is a real SS. Numbers matching engine is also important. For an SS this car is a bargain, but for a regular coupe it is pricey. We need to do some research before dropping cash. We also need to add air conditioning requiring negotiating the price down a little.

1969 Chevrolet Camaro - $19,950

69_camaro_rtb_red_396_4speed_2.jpg (47094 bytes)Description: 2dr hardtop, Super Sport trim, 396ci V8, 4-speed trans, P/S, P/Disc brakes, bucket seats & console, Rallye wheels, dual exhaust, beautiful paint & interior, front & rear spoiler. Drives like new!

NADA Price: $17,110 - $28,555

Source: Brockers Beautys

Comments: 69 Camaro, 396, 4 speed. Need I say more? I don't think so. I don't care if it is clone. We will have to add air conditioning, so it might be a problem in this month's budget. Well, everything is negotiable.

1968 Camaro RS - $17,800 (Sold)

68_camaro_rs_rtb_350_4speed_red_1.jpg (42707 bytes)Description: 350 engine, 4 speed trans! New red exterior paint with black stripes. New metal includes, quarters, fenders, hood, top & bottom valances, tail pan. All new RS grill & headlight buckets! New SS emblem kit! New rocker, drip well & wheel moldings! New exterior door handles, new tail light bezels & back up light bezels! New front & rear bumpers! New black interior that includes seat covers, headliner, dash pad, radio trim bezel, glove box liner, carpet, door panels, package tray! All new door, roof rail, trunk, u jamb & vertical weatherstripping! New fisher plates & window felt kit! The list goes on. New Dayton tires on Rallye wheels & new Flowmaster exhaust! New hoses, etc, etc!

NADA Price: $20,670 - $34,590

Source: Herman's Classic Cars

Comments: If I can't have a 69 Camaro with a manual transmission then a 67 or 68 RS with a manual is the next best thing, right? Well, this one is very nice looking. We have a lot of body work here, so we need to check the craftsmanship very carefully. This car requires a close in-person inspection. If all is as good as the pictures then I like it. We have just enough money in the budget to install air conditioning. I wonder if this is a factory 275 hp four barrel engine. Nah, that's too much to hope for.

1968 Chevrolet Camaro - $17,995 (Sold)

68_camaro_rs_327_4_speed_blue_1.jpg (61300 bytes)Description: This car features the numbers matching 327 motor. Factory 4-speed. RS headlights and trim. Excellent body and paint. The interior is also in great condition. Runs and drives great. Super nice car in and out.

NADA Price: $21,510 - $36,020

Source: Premium Motors

Comments: Red or blue. Hmm. Blue is my favorite color. Well, the red car above had a lot more pictures, so it got the nod. But this car is a perfectly acceptable second phone call away.

1967 Camaro RS - $18,500

67_camaro_rtb_rs_blue_white_1.jpg (153777 bytes)Description: LeMans blue with a white vinyl top and a deluxe interior. It has a nom 327ci engine and a 4 speed transmission. There was approximately only 2000 vehicles produced in 1967 with the deluxe interior. The headliner, carpet and seats are all in good condition. There is a rare fold-down back seat. This is a good running and driving vehicle. This car was a high option car based on information on the cowl tag.

NADA Price: $19,550 - $32,325

Source: Mark VII Classic Cars

Comments: They say this is not the original engine, and the price is a little higher than the previous two RS Camaros. It does have the deluxe interior, which I could give some credit for. The traction bars indicate a little hot rodding. Look this one over carefully. I priced it on NADA's web site with no engine option due to the lack of original engine.

NOTE: When I was checking if this car had sold I saw they raised the price... to $19,750. Oops. That's unusual I see priced going up, and means I would put it bellow the next cars... if I had time to adjust their comments as well.

1971 Camaro Z/28 RS - $17,500 (Sold)

71_camaro_z28_rs_fake_1.jpg (197438 bytes)Description: True Z-28/RS split bumper. Strong 350 w/Holley 750, Muncie 4spd. Original racing wheels, BF Goodrich tires. Beautiful royal blue w/black racing stripes. Chrome/paint/interior in excellent condition. Has A/C but no compressor. Many new original spec parts. Must see to appreciate. Price is negotiable.

NADA Price: $24,190 - $37,985

Source: Collector Car Trader 

Comments: "True Z-28." That's what he says. Then where did the air conditioning come from. I would have to verify this, but I thought the Z/28 didn't come with A/C until 1973. That makes this car worse than a clone... it's a fake. However, this car has a number of things going for it. 1) I like blue, though I would prefer white stripes. 2) It has a 4 speed. 3) It is located in Texas so I could easily make a trip to see it. 4) He comes right out and tells us the price is negotiable. How nice.

Wow, NADA gives the Z/28 RS a lot of credit in the price department. I did not price this with the air conditioning because I am hoping it was added on and this car is real. If this is a real Z/28 RS I would be all over this car. If it is a clone or fake, then I would low ball an offer around $13K and see were it went. It's hard to say how much I would be willing to go in price for a fake.

1972 Chevrolet Camaro RS - $15,950 (Sold)

72_camaro_rs_blue_white_stripes_1.jpg (27662 bytes)Description: 350 with console shift auto, new 17 polished Americans. Very clean car. Hurry on this one. 93,481 miles.

NADA Price: $9,978 - $15,210

Source: Collector Car Trader

Comments: He only included one picture. That means we need to contact him for more. I like the picture, and I like the color combination of whites stripes on a blue car. But he didn't say much else. He is also asking a lot for this car. With our NADA book in hand, and reminding him that NADA prices are retail, we should have no trouble talking him down. Just remember, if you are going to low ball an offer bring cash. I bet if you showed up on his door with $12,000 in cash he would take it. But that's just me. We still need to determine if it is even worth twelve grand. Get more info and pictures. Too bad this car doesn't have a manual transmission.

1971 Chevrolet Camaro SS - $15,900

71_camaro_rs_ss_gray_1.jpg (202026 bytes)Description: This is an original awesome 1971 SS Camaro 350 that has been updated with Z28 badging! This beautiful car sports a fantastic Metallic Charcoal paint job with exquisite black interior. Looks like a new car. The strong running 350 engine is backed by a very solid Turbo 350 transmission, followed by a stock-geared Posi rear. Top it off with AC, power steering and power brakes.

NADA Price: $15,750 - $24,000

Source: American Dream Machines

Comments: Again, we need to verify this is a true RS/SS. If so it is worth the money. Make sure the engine is the original. If only this car had a manual transmission.

1971 Chevrolet Camaro RS - $15,995

71Camaro_rs_rtb_citris_green_1.jpg (78793 bytes)Description: 56,000 Actual Miles, 350 C.I. V8 Engine, Automatic, Power Steering, Power Front Disc Brakes, Deluxe Interior (Original), Factory AM-FM Stereo, Rear Defogger, 15" Z28 Wheels, Front/Rear Spoilers, Dual Exhausts, Factory A/C, Citrus Green with Black.

NADA Price: $12,788 - $19,530

Source: Berry Motor Cars

Comments: Deluxe interior... and no picture of the interior. How can I appreciate that? Well, it is an RS with low mileage and this dealer is located in Texas, always a bonus for me. Let's take a trip up to Arlington to have a look.

1965 Ford Mustang - $15,900

65_mustang_pont_3speed_black_on_white_1.jpg (76500 bytes)Description: 3 Owner California car, 289 V-8, 3 speed, power steering, built in Milpitas, professionally maintained and excellent throughout, books and records. Pony interior, center console, vinyl top new 3 years ago. Major service just done so ready to rock and roll.

NADA Price: $12,150 - $18,600

Source: Specialty Sales

Comments: I am a sucker for a Pony interior with a console and manual transmission. If this car only had air conditioning. Since we are raising the bar this month I can add A/C and even some nice wheels and stay under $20K. I would still try to low ball an offer because it doesn't have a 4 speed. I love the interior. It is the exact color I really like on a dark colored car. I want it. I didn't see power steering in the engine compartment, so we may need to do some serious negotiating.

NOTE: Well, I have said it many times... everything is negotiable. Well, when I went to see if this car had sold I was faced with the fact that they lowered the price to $13,995. It pays to wait. In fact, that puts this car in the normal price range. I was planning a Mustang only month, so maybe we will see this car here again.

1969 Ford Mustang Fastback - $19,900

69_mustang_fastback_rtb_green_1.jpg (110582 bytes)Description: Factory correct Lime Gold with the factory front spoiler, factory rear wing, Mach 1 graphics, rear window slats, chrome Magnum 500 Wheels, and BF Goodrich T/A radials. Only 60,303 miles!! 302 with factory Motorcraft 4V intake manifold, Holley 600cfm 4-barrel carburetor, street Comp cam, Thorley headers, and dual Flowmaster exhaust. Power disc brakes, no power steering. Excellent seats, carpets, headliner, and door panels. Fold-down rear seat. Extremely nice body with no dents, no dings, no waves, perfect panel fit, and all of the body lines are factory straight. I cannot find any body filler, replacement panels, or evidence of body repair anywhere. Beautiful paint in the correct I-code Lime Gold done in modern base/clear acrylic enamel to show standards with a smooth glossy shine and a deep luster.

NADA Price: $15,700 - $24,200

Source: Sports Car Gallery of Beaver Falls

Comments: They don't come out and say it is a Mach 1, just that it has Mach 1 graphics. I think it is just a fastback. Besides, I think the Mach 1 came standard with a 351 engine, not a 302. That's all well and good. I love the look of this fastback Mustang. The only flaw I see is the lack of air conditioning at this price. Let's low ball an offer in the $18K range and complain about the lack of A/C and lack of a manual transmission. Maybe we can get lucky.

1971 Ford Mustang - $15,500 (Sold)

71_mustang_conv_red_white_1.jpg (1188539 bytes)Description: This recently painted Burgundy/Maroon convertible has the original style motor which is a 302 cid overhead valve, cast iron V-8 with a Motorcraft 2-bbl carburetor and dual exhaust. Standard equipment included automatic transmission with floor shifter, high-back bucket seats, power convertible top, factory air, power steering , power disc brakes and much more. The interior is original and in good condition. Features include a Mustang wooden steering wheel, Kenwood AM/FM cassette radio, Magnum 500 Mustang wheels with raised white letter tires. Overall good conditioned car that runs and drives great.

NADA Price: $13,973 - $25,501

Source: Lawrence Marshall Antique Cars

Comments: "Original style motor." Does that mean it is not the original motor? Probably. That might make this car a bit overpriced. I really like the look of this car. I can't tell you why, I just do. This car has that undeniable advantage of being located in Texas. Just a Saturday's drive to see it in person.

1968 Chevelle SS 396 - $16,500 (Sold)

68_chevelle_ss396_seafrost_ac_1.jpg (47057 bytes)Description: I'm the original owner of this car and let it get away after 13 years, then literally stumbled onto it on the internet 5 years ago. It's a beautiful numbers-matching example, and very enjoyable to drive. The car is in basically original condition, with minor updates, including replacement quarter panels, vinyl roof and exterior paint, which is the original color, Seafrost Green. The car was ordered with positraction rear, PS, PB and A/C, plus the optional gauge package. This isn't a trailer queen. The car gets driven frequently, though not for any great distance. It's not a perfect car, but then its not priced like a perfect car, either. I'm selling due to a job change and need to free up some cash. I'm anxious to sell, and will entertain any reasonable offer.

NADA Price: $20,900 - $40,618

Source: Gas Pump Classics

Comments: I love it when they tell you right up front they are a motivated seller. If I can't have a really nice Pony car, how about an original SS 396 Chevelle... with air conditioning. All the power accessories are here in what seems like a nice driver quality SS 396. Perfect, as long as the condition is worth the price he is asking.

Look at the difference between average and high retail, according to NADA. This guy seems to have priced it a fair amount below average retail. From his description this seems about right, after all he is not a dealer. The car has serious investment potential. I bet we could poor $10-15K into this car restoring it and still make a profit selling it.

1969 Chevrolet Chevelle SS396 - $20,495 (Sold)

69_chevelle_ss_396_rtb_blue_1.jpg (335077 bytes)Description: Great original Chevelle SS. 396ci V8 and 400 Turbo automatic transmission, both rebuilt. Power steering & disc brakes. Beautiful new "Show" paint & striping, bright work, Rallye wheels & white letter tires. This one is solid throughout & drives like new! An excellent original SS!

NADA Price: $29,040 - $56,160 ($19,900 - $39,350)

Source: Collector Car Trader

Comments: For a real SS 396 I don't even mind the lack of air conditioning. The quality better be a good deal better than the silver car above for the price. I listed two price ranges here. The higher price is for a SS hardtop with the 325/396 engine. The lower price is for a SS 396 Sport Coupe (which already should include the lowest 396). Quite a price difference. Why both prices? Because NADA sucks, and they should be more clear on these matters. We would need to do some serious research to make sure we are looking up the right thing in NADA's price guide.

1972 Chevrolet Chevelle SS - $17,750

72_chevelle_ss_rtb_350_nom_1.jpg (76319 bytes)Description: Restored in 1996 with 15,000 miles on a rebuilt engine. Not the original block, but a correct 4 bolt main with an Edelbrock intake, crane cam and lifters, and Hedman headers. Blue exterior with white Rallye stripes and a black interior. It has a turbo 400 transmission with the center console and bucket seats. It comes with a correct SS dash, Rallye wheels, raised air induction hood, a flow master exhaust system, and new front brakes. This car comes with the original build sheet. It runs and drives great. You can view additional pictures on our web site.

NADA Price: $16,600 - $25,500

Source: Mark VII Classic Cars

Comments: We need to verify this is an original SS, but it doesn't have the original engine. We may need to pass at this price for a non numbers matching car. I did like the pictures though.

1970 El Camino - $17,995

70_el_camino_4speed_bench_red_1.jpg (318368 bytes)Description: This is a 1970 Chevrolet El Camino that has only 54,031 actual miles! This is finished in Bright Orange Paint with Black SS strips. A 350ci Chevy and 4-speed manual transmission with Hurst shifter powers this American Muscle car. The interior is finished in a Black vinyl. The El Camino is optioned with Upgraded aftermarket CD player, Power brakes, Power steering, and Rally wheels. If you are looking for an affordable Muscle car that will get looks wherever you go this is the one for you!

NADA Price: $11,950 - $15,200

Source: Holt Auto Sales

Comments: Of course, once we get past SS Chevelles we move to the pickup version with the El Camino. I really like the look of this non SS. They don't claim it to be a clone, it just has the look. Also it has a 4 speed and a bench seat. perfect for driving my two sons around in. All we need to do is add air conditioning. Clearly they have this seriously overpriced. I would expect to show up with my NADA price guide in hand ready to negotiate. The pictures are high resolution and excellent, so I left it here.

1967 Pontiac Lemans - $14,900 (Sold)

67_lemans_black_on_black_1.jpg (84391 bytes)Description: Clean Virginia car, slick black paint, black cloth interior, 350 ci. engine, automatic transmission, Edelbrock 4 bbl, Edelbrock RPM Performer intake, manifolds, power steering, power brakes, chrome breather, bucket seats, B&M shifter, gauges, am-fm-cassette, GM seat belts, dual exhaust, 10 bolt rear end, factory jack with spare, 225/70/14 tires, Rally II wheels, original owners manuals & protect-o-plate, Ready to Cruise!

NADA Price: $10,211 - $17,299

Source: Southern Motors

Comments: Once we get past the Chevy intermediates we might as well take a quick look at some other GM cars. I realize this car basically fits my normal $15K budget, but it does not have air conditioning, which works in with this month's special price range of $20K.

I was blown away by the appearance of this car. It looks sweet. But let's take it apart. The LeMans in 67 came with a 326 engine. Pontiac's 350 didn't come out until 1968. So this is a non original motor car. When I priced it on NADA I didn't list any engine.

They had quite a few pictures of this car on their web site and I am in love. I am truly inspired. This car looks so good "as is" that I wouldn't even go for the GTO look. Since the engine is not original I would probably tinker with it as well as improve the suspension with bolt on equipment that will make the car drive and handle more like a modern car. Mix in a Vintage Air air conditioning system and I could see driving this as my main car.

1970 Buick GS350 - $13,900 (Sold)

70_gs350_gold_ac_tach_1.jpg (143594 bytes)Description: All original real GS, 350, cold ac, at, ps, pb, rd, factory tach/gauges, buckets/console, factory 8-track, paperwork, Excellent condition throughout, Drives as new!

NADA Price: $12,705 - $21,230

Source: Just Muscle Cars

Comments: Wow, a clean GS 350 with Ram Air and A/C and it fits my normal $15K budget. When I saw this one I just had to add it to this month's cars. I really like it.

1966 Pontiac LeMans - $19,500

66_lemans_rtb_green_1.jpg (172568 bytes)Description: This 1966 Pontiac LeMans is a restored PHS documented vehicle. It is a true rare marina turquoise on turquoise car. It has a 326 ci engine with a two barrel carb. The new paint, vinyl top, carpet, headliner and window felt are part of the restoration. The strato bucket seats and rear seat have been recovered. In the console is the automatic transmission shifter for the two speed power glide transmission that has been rebuilt. The bumpers have been rechromed, new battery, wiring, alternator, belts, and rebuilt radiator. The Rallye II wheels have been restored with new red line tires. The other options are soft ray windshield glass, custom seat belts, power steering, dual exhaust, electric clock and rear speakers. This vehicle runs, drives and looks great. A reproduction dealer window sticker and receipts come with the car.

NADA Price: $5,500 - $8,050

Source: Mark VII Classic Cars

Comments: This car looks very nice. Too bad it doesn't have A/C. It seems a little pricey to me, but we might be able to get away with a lower offer. There were plenty of nice pictures on their web site to get me interested.

1970 Ford Torino GT - $19,995

70_torino_gt_351_4speed_ac_1.jpg (139404 bytes)Description: 351 Cleveland 4BBL V8, (correct date coded block), 4 speed (toploader), Power steering, Power front disc brakes, Factory tach, Factory AC, Shaker hood, Buckets/console, AM/FM/CD, Hurst shifter, 9” Ford rear w/3.08 posi, Traction bars, Chrome Cragar SS wheels, Dual exhaust, Gorgeous paint, Hard to Find Ford Muscle!!

NADA Price: $12,680 - $20,160

Source: Fast Lane Classic Cars

Comments: Not that we looked at GM's intermediates, I guess we should give Ford a chance. This seems to have all the right pieces for a solid Ford Muscle Car. Definitely worth a closer look. "Correct date coded block" usually means "non original motor."

1972 Chevrolet Monte Carlo 454 - $19,750

72_mc_454_blue_nice_1.jpg (103771 bytes)Description: Beautiful, original and documented factory 454 Monte Carlo Custom. Blue with black bucket seat interior. Automatic, A/C, console and tach and gauges. Show ready!

NADA Price: $7,350 - $14,000

Source: Northern Illinois Classic Auto Brokers

Comments: Enough with Intermediates, let's take a look at some Heavy Chevys. I have a soft spot for the Monte Carlo, and a high school friend's parent owned an SS 454, so this is pulling at my heart strings.

This dealer usually spews NADA prices when they are selling high dollar cars, but then they go and price something that should be affordable by NADA standards out of my price range. That's not fair. I would bring the NADA book with me and tell them that this car is only worth $14,000 in excellent condition. I have seen this dealer lower the price of a car by $5,000 before, so let's try that here. Offer NADA's high retail price of $14,000 and see what happens. I bet if you wait a couple of months they will drop the asking price by about $2,000, maybe more.

NOTE: Now I have seen everything. I went to see if this car was still for sale. It was... and no wonder. They raised the price to $28,000. I have no idea what would cause such an increase in price. Bye, Bye! I don't do rip offs.

1972 Chevrolet Monte Carlo - $15,900

72_mc_tuxedo_black_pw_350_1.jpg (81062 bytes)Description: Rock solid body! Factory (19) Tuxedo black, black netted vinyl interior, black vinyl top, 350 ci. engine, 3 speed automatic transmission, Holley 4 bbl, Edelbrock aluminum intake, power steering, power disc brakes, factory air conditioning (comes with), manifolds, chrome breather, bench seat, power windows, tilt wheel, factory dash, original am-fm radio, seat belts, remote drivers mirror, dual exhaust, 12 bolt rear end, factory jack with spare, 215/75/15 Firestone tires, Rallye wheels with disc brake flat caps, original owner manuals, Beautiful Car! Runs & Drives Excellent!

NADA Price: $5,775 - $11,000

Source: Southern Motors

Comments: Another overpriced Monte Carlo. Here is where NADA is our friend. I priced this car with air conditioning since they say it comes with it, though it is not hooked up in the engine compartment picture. We should definitely low ball an offer enough to cover the cost of fixing the A/C. However, NADA says this car is way overpriced. Just low ball an offer all the way down to NADA's high retail of $11,000. I don't think that will fly, but I think this car should be under $13K. I am in for $11-13K, but not at sixteen grand. Regardless, if the car is as good looking in person it might be worth it. We can afford it... in this month's special $20K budget.

Note: Another price drop. This time down to $14,900. Everything is negotiable.

1967 Chevrolet Impala SS - $19,995

67_impala_ss_rtb_327_gold_1.jpg (334649 bytes)Description:  This is a beautiful 1967 Chevrolet Impala SS that is powered by a 327ci motor and automatic transmission. Painted in a Gold Metallic with Gold interior this Impala is a great Cruiser that you can look good in. Optioned with Power Steering, Power Brakes, Air Conditioning, AM/FM Radio, and Column Shift this car is nicely equipped. If you are looking for a beautiful Impala to go or show this is the one for you. Don’t miss out on this very solid Chevrolet Impala.

NADA Price: $17,955 - $27,270

Source: Holt Auto Sales

Comments: Now here's a really nice Heavy Chevy. I love the body style. Hopefully this car has the 275 hp, 4 barrel version of the 327 hooked to a Turbo 400 transmission. Nah... that's wishful thinking. With my luck it's a 2 barrel and Powerglide (2 speed automatic). It looks like a 275 horsepower engine in the pictures, but I can't say for sure.

Either way, I really like the look and I could see myself cruising the tires off this car. Thankfully it already has air conditioning.

1971 Plymouth Duster 340 - $19,750

71_duster_340_rtb_plum_crazy_1.jpg (63101 bytes)Description: Code: 2006, Very rare and sought after 1971 340 Duster. Numbers matching 340 engine. In Violet purple, Torqueflite transmission, bucket seats, console, A31 High Performance Axle Package with 3.91 Sure Grip, power disc brakes, tinted glass and AM radio. Includes original window sticker and invoice.

NADA Price: $9,400 - $16,925

Source: Northern Illinois Classic Auto Brokers

Comments: Now this is what Plum Crazy is supposed to look like. I love it. There are only two things that could make this car better. A 4 speed and air conditioning. We will have to negotiate the price down a little to put in the A/C. But this car should be pretty fast. This was a heck of a power to weight combination in its day.

NOTE: Another serious price hike. This time to $25,750. What is happening with this dealer. I guess I won't be visiting their web site anymore.

1972 Dodge Demon - $19,900

72_demon_rtb_340_4speed_1.jpg (1189699 bytes)Description: This Demon is a # match 340 CA car. That is equipped with a factory 4spd, 3.23 sure grip, Bucket seats, Sports Hood, Black stripes, spoiler, pdb, dual mirrors, 14' rally wheels, broadcast sheet, Orig invoice, #2 condition car.

NADA Price: $12,100 - $20,570

Source: Carroll St. Auto & Collectibles

Comments: Darn... no air conditioning. I guess we need to get the negotiating hat on. I really like these Mopars as being almost affordable. The 4 speed was the final selling point for me. I would look away otherwise. This is at the top of this month's special budget, and it doesn't have air conditioning. Maybe we can get them down to around $18K.

1970 Plymouth Duster 340 - $17,900

70_duster_340_rtb_green_4speed_ac_1.jpg (109883 bytes)Description: This car is one of 200 340, 4-Speed, air conditioned Dusters produced in 1970. It is a dry Arizona car with all original floor, trunk and body panels. We have the original factory broadcast sheet and lots of service history receipts. The car is also equipped with power brakes, factory rally wheels and new white lettered tires. This is a strong Mopar investment!!

NADA Price: $10,753 - $19,953

Source: Cole Classics

Comments: Wow... A/C and a 4 speed. Cool. This car is a bit plain, but that's part of the sleeper charm. I would love to test it out. If this car had better looks it would have easily been ahead of the Duster and Demon above. I might change my mind with an in person visit. Plus the price is right. I should jump at this one.

1970 Plymouth Barracuda - $19,500

70_barracuda_rtb_yellow_on_white_pw_1.jpg (65643 bytes)Description: This Gran Coupe is a matching numbers, fully optioned, rust free Oklahoma car with fender tag and build sheet. The odometer shows 55,749 miles, believed to be correct for this one owner car. Original 318cu/230hp engine, original A904 automatic transmission, power disc brakes, power steering, a/c, power windows, original radio, overhead console, rear window defogger and fender turn signal indicators. This is an unbelievably original and unmolested example of a 70 muscle car. Everything appears to be original with the exception of the repainted rear quarters, gas tank, hoses, belts, battery and tires.

NADA Price: $15,813 - $25,625

Source: Pat's Auto Sales

Comments: Is every car from the mid sixties to the early seventies a Muscle Car. Gee... a 318 powered car would never have been called a Muscle Car in the seventies, or even the eighties. But now every 383/440/426 Cuda is taken or costs more than my house that they call a 318 powered Gran Coupe a Muscle Car. What is the world coming to.

Now, it just so happens that I really like the Mopar Pony Cars. With today's gas prices this would definitely make a better daily driver than a big block. I love the power windows. I would serious consider this car, especially if it had better pictures. I like it.

1973 Dodge Challenger R/T Clone - $15,950 (Sold)

73_challenger_gold_1.jpg (53975 bytes)Description: Beautiful Arizona vehicle! Loaded with lots of options. P/S, P/Disc brakes, A/C, bucket seats & console, Rallye wheels, dual exhaust, excellent paint & interior, drives new!

NADA Price: Challenger 318: $12,960 - $21,150
                         340/360:            $14,580 - $23,794

Source: Brockers Beautys

Comments: What engine does this car have? As you can see from the value, a 340/360 car is worth more than a 318. Either way this car is priced in this month's budget, and in range of NADA's average to high retail. They claim it to be an R/T clone, but they didn't make the R/T in 73. They cloned a car that does not exist. No big deal here, the Challenger only had two good years before the Muscle Car Era dropped out from under them.

1973 Dodge Challenger Rallye - $15,500

73_challenger_rallye_340_ac_console_1.jpg (52888 bytes)Description: 340-V8, Slapstick auto, buckets, A/C, a real "H" code Rallye car, FenderTag, Rallye wheels, Rallye hood, very straight body, clean interior, a great driver!

NADA Price: $17,888 - $28,181

Source: Texas Toy Box

Comments: The Rallye version jacks the value of this car by quite a bit. I am not too thrilled with the color combination here. This site usually mentions numbers matching engines. Does that mean this one is not? Since they priced it below NADA's average retail I assume this is not a numbers matching car. I would use that to negotiate the price down some more. The price I listed above is NADA's price for a 340 car with air. A 318 Rallye edition has  an average retail of $15,900. Still more than they are asking. Just be careful here, if you get a non numbers matching car you could have trouble getting a good price should you have to sell the car later.

1971 Dodge Challenger R/T - $16,950 (Sold)

71_challenger_rt_340_green_2.jpg (47925 bytes)Description: Stock 340ci V8 4 Barrel Slap Stick Automatic P/S P/B Bucket Seats & Console Dual Exhaust Rallye Wheels Nice Paint & Interior Drives New!

NADA Price: $24,100 - $34,200

Source: Brockers Beautys

Comments: Now this Challenger has the look. The first Challenger I remember seeing was a 70 or 71 R/T with a 383... in green. And that leads to the trouble with the car. NADA shows the R/T with a 383, 440 or 426... but no 340. So is this really an R/T. I listed the price for a R/T 383 just for the fun of it. We should do some research before we go look at this car.

I still like this car a lot. And it fits in this month's special budget, even with us having to add air conditioning.

1968 Dodge Charger - $18,950

68_charger_440_ac_green_2.jpg (48288 bytes)Description: 2dr Hardtop Recently Restored! Stock 440ci V8 P/S & P/B A/C Dual Exhaust Magnum 500's R/T Striped Drives Fabulously!

NADA Price: $19,250 - $35,970

Source: Brockers Beautys

Comments: I wanted to find a lot of Chargers for this month. That was harder than I thought... even with a $20,000 budget. At least I came across this one. It is almost perfect. What would make it perfect? Let's see... if it were Plum Crazy with a white interior. Maybe if it had a black vinyl roof, but we are probably better off without that for a driver as it would be a place for rust to start. O.K. To make this one perfect we need to add buckets seats and a console. That's possible... and in this month's budget.