Classic Car Watch
Bargain Hunting

December 1, 2005
By Scott Lewis

This month I want to search for bargains. The problem is what is a bargain? No, I do not expect to find a pristine Hemi Cuda for $15,000... my normal monthly budget. If I found a Hemi Cuda for $50,000 it would be an expensive purchase... but definitely a bargain. A bargain means different things to different people. A Corvette is a bargain compared to a Porsche 911.

This month I will not be using my usual budget to determine the ceiling. However, I will not go to far beyond it. I expect to keep the asking price of all cars to under $20,000. That may not sound like a bargain. How will we define a bargain? Although I resent NADA's prices from time to time, they are considered an authority on this subject. We will define a bargain for this article as a car with an asking price below its average retail price on NADA's web site. I have been using NADA's average to high retail prices here for a few months, so we just have to take a closer look.

Now... if I come across a true Chevelle SS 396 for $16,500 it could still be a bargain because NADA says its average retail price is $20,900. In fact I did come across such a vehicle, but it was sold long before I had a chance to use it. I decided to use it anyway this month, just to emphasis an "expensive" bargain.

I spent a few months looking for cars for this month's column. Some were cars that have appeared here before, or where at least considered. Because of this I decided to skip my usual test of a car being available at the beginning of the month. Some cars here were sold a couple of months ago. The point is that you have to look for a while to find a bargain. To put this in perspective I will list the date I found the cars for sale on the Internet. This is not the day the car was put up for sale... just the first time I came across it. This will hopefully lead to a trend in what you can expect to find over time.

Granted, some of these cars could be falsely advertised and turn out to be junk if inspected properly. Since I have no way to determine that I will leave that to you.

I went way overboard with the number of cars, include a few Corvettes. I did this to emphasize how many bargains can be found if you are willing to spend a few month looking for a car. Nothing listed below was older than six months, so I feel this is realistic for the kind of searching that would be expected if you were going to be doing this for real.

Let's see what we can find:

     1969 Pontiac Firebird - $11,000
Runner Ups:
     Too many too list, 42 in fact.

1969 Pontiac Firebird - $11,000 (Sold)

69_firebird_ohc_blue_on_black_1.jpg (65121 bytes)Description: Rust free. Unmolested & original numbers matching ohc 6 cy. New Holley 4 barrel with dual pipes. 2 speed auto. New interior including headliner. New shocks & tires. Runs great. 22 miles per gallon. Great car.

NADA: $16,158 - $29,555

Source: Collector Car Trader

Found: 10/6/05

Comments: Perfect... well, almost. It could use a manual transmission. I was stunned when I found this car, and it sold quickly after my finding it. This is the kind of bargain you need to jump on when it comes around. With the OHC 6 it should make a great daily driver.

1965 Ford Mustang Fastback - $12,900

65_mustang_fastback_6_cyl_blue_on_blue_1.jpg (154733 bytes)Description: 6 cyl, at, Blue with blue int. Show condition throughout! Drives excellent! Same owner for over 20 years. Must see to appreciate!

NADA: $13,840 - $25,440

Source: Just Muscle Cars

Found: 09/21/05

Comments: Are we ready to bite the bullet and get a wussy 6 cylinder Mustang. Well, this one is very clean and a fastback. Too bad it doesn't have the Pony interior. This is a very plain car, but fastbacks are worth a lot of money, especially according to NADA. Even deducting a whopping 20% for having a six banger the fastback's price range is pretty much out of my range.

We need to add A/C to put this in daily driver use. Other than that we can just slowly add things like Pony interior, Rally Pac gauges, GT fog lights, etc. I really like this one.

1970 AMC AMX - $14,500

70_amx_360_4speed_ac_1.jpg (264129 bytes)Description: 360 engine, 4 speed ps, pb, factory air, disk brakes, posi trac, new original colors, all new interior, new brakes and front end, factory mags, duals, bumpers rechromed, absolutely no rust. 

NADA: $15,740 - $25,080

Source: Collector Car Trader

Found: 11/02/05

Comments: This is too good to be true. If I had the money on the day I found this car I would have bought it. What's not too like. A rust free southern car (the seller was in Louisiana) with a 4 speed and air conditioning. Unless this is a victim of a hurricane I can't see any reason not to buy it.

1971 Ford Torino Cobra - $13,900 (Sold)

71_torino_cobra_351c_auto_1.jpg (168108 bytes)Description: Very nice matching numbers car! 351 Cleveland still fitted with the original 4-barrel carburetor, original cast iron intake manifold, original cast iron exhaust manifolds, and the factory air cleaner assembly with the Shaker scoop and RamAir components. C6 automatic, 3.25 Traction-Lok positraction rearend, PS, PDB. Factory in-dash 8,000 RPM tachometer; works correctly.

NADA: $25,500 - $42,375

Source: Sports Car Gallery of Beaver Falls

Found: 10/28/05

Comments: This car should probably be number one. It is clearly the best "bargain" on this list with an asking price over $10,000 below its NADA Average Retail Price. Something must be wrong... and I bet it is NADA.

Regardless, this looks like a bargain to me. I would really prefer a 4 speed in a car like this. Oh well. Just add A/C to make a great driver out of it. I do not find it at all surprising that it sold in less than a month.

1972 Chevrolet Corvette - $14,900

72_corvette_warbonnet_1.jpg (85842 bytes)Description: Beautiful T-Top coupe. Matching numbers 350 cubic inch V-8. Factory 4 speed. Very nice original. Correct Warbonnet yellow with black interior. Power disc brakes and power steering. Tilt steering. BF Goodrich Radial TA raised white letter tires on rally wheels. Aftermarket am/fm CD changer. Very clean throughout. Very stock and original. Runs and drives great.

NADA: $17,050 - $26,500

Source: Gentle Touch Motor Cars

Found: 10/1/05

Comments: Not only is this car a bargain by this month's standards, it is also within my normal budget. Imagine... a number matching Mako Shark style Corvette with a 4 speed in my price range. If I can get a sports car I want this, or something very close. What would make it better? Blue and air conditioning.

1970 Chevrolet Corvette - $17,995

70_corvette_4speed_ac_blue_1.jpg (357940 bytes)Description: This is a 1970 Chevrolet Corvette that is powered by a 350ci motor and 4 speed manual transmission. Painted in LeMans Blue with Black interior this Corvette is a shape ride. Optioned with air conditioning, power windows, power brakes, power steering, disc brakes, AM/FM radio, tilt and telescopic steering wheel, Rallye wheels and painted T-Tops. If you would like a Corvette from the past that is a great driver this is the one for you. Don’t miss out on this inexpensive fun.

NADA: $19,900 - $28,550

Source: Holt Auto Sales, Corvettes & Muscle Cars

Found: 9/29/05

Comments: And here it is... blue and air conditioned. As a bonus we even get power windows. I am pretty sure I would desperately try to save up the extra $3,000 for this car over the yellow one above. This is a perfect example of a car over my budget, but clearly a bargain (according to NADA's pricing). Unless the condition is less than good we have no reason not to buy. I just need that cash in my pocket.

1966 Chevrolet Corvair Monza - $3,800

66_corvair_4speed_black_1.jpg (571258 bytes)Description: This great Corvair Monza is black on black. With 106,925 miles, the engine is a 6 cylinder with 4-speed manual transmission. This is a nice daily driver road ready and one you can drive and eventually bring up to a show quality. It is an original car with good paint. Interior is in good condition. The driver's back has one rip seat repairs. There are new rubber seals around the windows, doors, trunk, and hood.

NADA: $6,250 - $9,250

Source: Classic Lady Motors

Found: 05/09/05

Comments: I have listed this car before, and probably wouldn't list it now if it wasn't still for sale. The pictures look good. Why isn't this car selling? The price is surely low enough for a Corvair fan. I would like the opportunity to use this as a project car. Maybe make a Yenko Stinger out of it.

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: $20,900 - $40,618

Source: Gas Pump Classics

Found: 07/07/05

Comments: I love it when they tell you right up front they are a motivated seller. I put this car here just to show you how a bargain for a high priced car can turn up.

1980 Pontiac Trans Am - $10,900

80_ta_turbo_white_on_gray_auto_1.jpg (218865 bytes) Description: Here is a super clean 1980 Pontiac Trans Am Pace Car! This gorgeous 3 owner car has been pampered - it's never been driven in snow. Powered with the original Turbo 301 V8 motor and automatic transmission. Power options include steering, brakes & windows. Also equipped with air conditioning; cruise; tilt; glass T-Tops; AM/FM stereo w/ cassette; rear defrost. This car has fresh decals; new Cragar SS wheels and new tires. Also includes original wheels.

NADA: TA Pace Car: $17,188 - $21,125
              Regular TA:   $8,313 - $11,938

Source: Classic Auto Showplace

Found: 07/08/05

Comments: I could go on and on about this car. Pontiac's desperate attempt to maintain performance in the late 70s, early 80s. Never mind that. I like the attempt, failed as it was.

They say it is a Pace Car. We need to verify that. Notice the price difference between a regular Trans Am and a Pace Car. This car is a real bargain for a Pace Car.

I always thought it would be cool to take a factory Turbo Trans Am and put a better engine in it, and use a modern turbocharger. Let people think it is the crappy Turbo TA, while having 400-500 horsepower of Gale Bank twin turbo power under the stock hood. Oh, and try to get the hood mounted "boost indicator" to work. That would be very cool.

1968 Pontiac Firebird - $11,900

68_firebird_4_speed_red_on_black_1.jpg (220393 bytes)Description: Very solid, strong running Firebird with a 4-speed and an Auburn posi rear end. Nice black interior and a solid undercarriage. Very strong running Pontiac 350 engine in a nicely detailed engine compartment. Driver quality paint over a solid metal body.

NADA: $18,063 - $35,875

Source: American Dream Machines

Found: 10/01/05

Comments: It has a four speed. What more can I say.

1972 Pontiac Grand Prix - $7,950

72_gp_blue_on_black_ac_pw_1.jpg (77344 bytes)Description: Model J, 92,000 Miles, 400, auto, factory air, power steering & brakes, power windows, new paint, brakes, exhaust, tires, much more, runs & drives like new.

NADA: $9,719 - $15,688

Source: Noel Davis Auto Sales

Found: 9/28/05

Comments: I have always had a fondness for the Grand Prix. This one has power windows, which I love in a car over 30 years old. Also, love the color.

1968 Pontiac Firebird - $15,900

68_firebird_350_ac_green_1.jpg (178535 bytes)Description: All numbers matching 350 V-8 engine. A Texas car with NO known rust. Heads have been redone, two speed automatic transmission, bucket seats, power steering, factory a/c, and new weather stripping. 61,800 original miles on this beautiful 'Bird. Car cover is included.

NADA: $17,340 - $34,440

Source: AutoMania

Found: 9/27/05

Comments: I would love to negotiate the price down on this one, mainly because two days after buying this car that Powerglide transmission will start slipping and need replacing within a month. It's happened to me before. Figure about $1,000 to cover the cost of a TH-350 upgrade. I would rather jump to an overdrive tranny, such as the 200-4R. It has a lower first gear for more power off the line, and the overdrive to help highway mileage. The best of both worlds.

I know this dealership, I pass it everyday on my way to work. I know he would take $15K for it. But that tranny makes me want to offer $14K. Either way I like this car. It is a neat old car ready for daily driving once again.

1969 Plymouth Road Runner - $14,900

69_rr_hemi_orange_383_1.jpg (148912 bytes)Description: Exterior paint finish in rare R4 Performance Red. Black vinyl top with black hood treatment complemented by the original black vinyl interior. This car is a documented 1-owner, #’s matching, 383 Road Runner with 82,174 miles. We have service records dating back to 1969. Less than 150 miles on engine rebuild, fuel tank, & sending unit. Original fender tag & broadcast sheet are present. Paint and vinyl top are original with the exception of passenger side front fender. Interior is 100% original but in need of seat cover replacement. Car is 100% stock with no modifications. Purchased new in Oklahoma, it spent it’s entire life in Georgia. 3:23 Sure Grip rear end, Magnum 500 wheels, original owner’s manual & warranty book, dealer installed under dash A/C. This car is in need of cosmetic restoration. If you are looking for an easy project, we have the perfect candidate. It is the right color & has all the documentation that will make this car very valuable when completed.

NADA: $22,990 - $40,590

Source: Brandon Classics

Found: 9/27/05

Comments: They are dead on. This is a an easy restoration. At least from what they show and say. This car looks presentable in the pictures. It might make for a driver/project car. From NADA's price range for average to high retail this car is a bargain. If everything works (engine runs well, tranny shifts good and A/C blows cold) and this car is rust free I am all over it. Why can't I have the money to by this now.

1969 Plymouth Roadrunner - $13,900

69_rr_nom_blue_1.jpg (83596 bytes)Description: RM21H9Axxxxxx with a 383/335 hp Hi-perf V-8 engine (NOM), Weiand intake, Edelbrock carb, tachometer, four speed manual transmission with pistol grip shifter, 3.54:1 rear end, B-5 blue, heavy duty suspension, heavy duty brakes, heavy duty shocks, and power steering. The new headliner material goes with the car along with the original door panels. This one just needs to be finished.

NADA: $21,945 - $38,745

Source: AutoMania

Found: 9/27/05

Comments: Even if we deduct for not having a numbers matching engine, this car is a bargain. We just have to finish the interior. Let's do it.

1974 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible - $15,995

74_corvette_conv_4_speed_1.jpg (77491 bytes)Description: 350 cubic inch L-48 Numbers Matching engine hooked to a 4 speed transmission. Bright Yellow with a beige interior and a brand new convertible top. Get ready for Top down fall nights!

NADA: $17,700 - $32,200

Source: Muscle Garage

Found: 9/21/05

Comments: I didn't list an engine with NADA when pricing this car. Why? Well, they listed a 350, but it didn't say if that was the L-48. They did specifically list the L-82, which is better. But when you actually price them they are the same. NADA gives a 20% boost for the 350, and a 20% boost for the L-82. Personally, I would only give extra credit to the L-82. Let's assume for right now that the L-48 was the base engine in the Corvette in 1974.

I don't normally look at this year Corvette. I didn't like what they did when they took away the chrome bumpers. But this car was priced reasonably and has a 4 speed. Good enough. Too bad it doesn't have air conditioning. We could try talking them down to cover that. Anyway it seemed nice to look over this car. Besides, how else would I ever get a Corvette convertible in this column.

1976 Chevrolet Corvette - $16,495

76_corvette_brown_L82_4_speed_1.jpg (115231 bytes)Description: T-tops. 350 cubic inch L-82 engine hooked to a Muncie 4 speed transmission. Nice dark brown exterior with a clean buckskin interior. 43,000 original miles. She has new wheels with black powder coating. It Runs and Drives like original, no squeaks or rattles. Turn key ready for your garage!

NADA: $16,445 - $24,730

Source: Muscle Garage

Found: 9/21/05

Comments: When I was in College a friend's older sister bought a 76 Corvette. It was just a plain Vette, but it had the same wheels as this car. I bought all the stuff to polish wheels from Eastman's. She paid me what it cost to buy all the stuff. I made the wheels look like chrome. They were awesome. I would love to do that to these. BTW.. another friend had a set of aluminum slotted wheels (yes, like Starsky & Hutch) and he paid me 50 bucks to polish his wheels. So I was a head of the game on polishing and still had plenty of material left over.

I never liked the 73-79 Corvettes with these cheesy bumpers. But if you are going to look for an affordable classic Corvette these are the years. And the L-82 is the engine to get. The L-82 replaced the LT-1, and had all the goodies: Forged pistons, forged steel crank, forged connecting rods, 4 bolt mains, etc. It was a bulletproof short block just waiting for some power adding parts. A nice cam and head swap should wake this car up nicely. Plus this one has a four-speed.

I know this one is $50 over the limit for a bargain, but I couldn't resist. In reality, if I wanted this car I would have to talk the seller down a mere $1,495 to get this in my budget. As you can see from NADA it is worth it.

1982 Chevrolet Corvette $14,995

82_corvette_silver_green_1.jpg (257209 bytes)Description: This is a rare colored 1982 Chevrolet Corvette. It is finished in Silver Green paint with Silver Green interior. This Corvette has ONLY 61,914 ACTUAL MILES. A 350ci Crossfire engine with automatic transmission powers this car. In 1982 this Corvette was ordered with power windows, Power locks, Power mirrors, Air conditioning, Power drivers seat Mirrored Glass T-tops, and Cruise control. If you are looking for a Corvette that will stand out in a crowed. This is the Corvette for you.

NADA: $14,883 - $21,960

Source: Holt Auto Sales, Corvettes & Muscle Cars

Found: 9/29/05

Comments: O.K. We are $112 over the bargain limit. So what. I really like this color. Too bad the Crossfire Injection engine sucks... big time. Also the Crossfire engine only ever came with an automatic.

1971 Buick GS - $15,995

71_gs455_gold_bench_ac_1.jpg (140606 bytes)Description: 455 4BBL V8 / 310Hp, automatic (Turbo 400), 10 bolt w/3.08 gears, power steering, power brakes, AM/FM-cassette, factory A/C, Ram Air hood & air cleaner, correct Cortez Gold, dual exhaust, Buick Magnum 500 wheels, jack & spare, drives great, true Grand Sport car! Great Classic Muscle Car!

NADA: GS455: $22,330 - $36,740
             GS:        $15,950 - $27,280

Source: Fast Lane Classic Cars

Found: 09/30/05

Comments: If this is a numbers matching car it is worth plenty. They state it is a real GS, but they don't make mention if it is a real GS455. I priced out both on NADA's web site just to show this car is a bargain either way. Now, it's just a little over my budget, but it can't hurt to offer them a mere $995 less.

1966 Ford Mustang GT - $12,900

66_mustang_gt_maroon_black_vinyl_top_1.jpg (240388 bytes)Description: Very nice burgundy Mustang GT hardtop with very nice original deluxe interior and a black vinyl top. Very strong running 289 engine with an automatic transmission.

NADA: $12,700 - $21,175

Source: American Dream Machines

Found: 10/25/05

Comments: Without an engine compartment picture I have to assume this car needs A/C. That's alright at this price point for a real GT. So it better be real. I like it!

1969 Ford Mustang Convertible - $14,995

69_mustang_conv_red_on_black_clean_1.jpg (689992 bytes)Description: 302, V8, auto, power steering, new custom auto sound radio w/cassette and Sony 10 disc CD changer, new Magnum wheels and tires, new dual exhaust, interior excellent, runs and drives great. A nice weekend driver that always turns heads.

NADA: $18,100 - $29,300

Source: Collector Car Trader

Found: 11/02/05

Comments: This looks sweet. I looked at a car just like this when I was last shopping. I ended up getting a Camaro instead. Because we are at the top of my budget I have to ask two deal breaker questions? 1) Does it have a power top? 2) Does it have air conditioning? Without a power top I have to pass. Without A/C I would have to low ball a price in the low $13K range to cover the cost of adding it. NADA seems to think this car has investment potential.

1967 Pontiac Firebird - $14,900

67_firebird_400_dark_green_1.jpg (39379 bytes)Description: 400, 100% rust free, Turbo 400, 12 bolt w/new gears, bearings and Detroit tru-trak, newly painted interior, all new weather stripping and window guides, PHS documentation. 

NADA: $17,348 - $34,560

Source: Collector Car Trader

Found: 11/01/05

Comments: Now this is the shade of green I really like. The black vinyl roof is perfect. I just like the look of this car. They don't mention A/C, so we might have an issue here with price vs. driving. A little negotiating will be in order. Besides we need better pictures. What does "newly painted interior" mean? Did he change the interior color? Let's call. NADA gives a whopping 30% increase for the 400 engine sending this car into the bargain territory.

NOTE: When checking if this car was still for sale I saw they raised the price to $16,900. Oops!

1968 Ford Mustang Convertible - $14,900

68_mustang_conv_4speed_blue_on_blue_1.jpg (87146 bytes)Description: Pretty Bright Blue Metallic Exterior. Mostly Original Two Tone Blue Interior in Excellent Condition. 302 Cubic Inch V-8 with Hard to Find 4 Speed Transmission. Black Power Top Like New. Power Steering. Gorgeous Chrome Bumpers. Very Clean Throughout. Very Stock except for Stereo and Crager Mag Wheels. Spare even has a Crager on it. Runs and Drives Great.

NADA: $18,370 - $30,030

Source: Gentle Touch Motor Cars

Found: 10/12/05

Comments: Perfect, except for lack of A/C. But that four speed and power top makes up for it.

1969 Ford Mustang - $8,900

69_mustang_fastback_acapulco_blue_1.jpg (42967 bytes)Description: 302CI, Acapulco blue, black interior, power steering/brakes, well maintained, Hawaiian car, garage kept, stock original.

NADA: $16,500 - $26,600

Source: Collector Car Trader

Found: 11/02/05

Comments: Don't cars in Hawaii rust away worse that those in the snow belt? Be very careful of rust on this car. Otherwise, I really like the look. The color is perfect. I need more than one picture though. Let's call, just for fun.

1972 Ford Mustang Mach 1 - $9,900 (Sold)

72_mustang_mach1_half_vinyl_roof_1.jpg (283802 bytes)Description: A one family owned Mach I (05 code) in very good condition is shown here. It was repainted many years ago and is factory stock. 63,000 actual miles. It features a 351 block with automatic trans, power steering & brakes, AM/FM, both spoilers, rear defogger, tinted windows and styled stock wheels. The heater core has been bypassed, but the balance of the options function properly.

NADA: $15,375 - $27,750

Source: Classic Auto Showplace Ltd

Found: 11/02/05

Comments: I am not inspired, but I like the idea of a low mileage, all stock Mach 1. NADA gives a 25% boost to the value for the 351, so this better be a numbers matching car. Other than that I see potential here. I wouldn't mind tinkering with this car. What would Chip Foose do?

1967 Camaro RS - $15,000

67_camaro_rs_327_yellow_1.jpg (54788 bytes)Description: True Los Angeles built Rally Sport! Power steering and power disc brakes, console, 327 (non matching numbers) and TH-350 automatic transmission. New paint! This is a dry and solid Southwest Los Angeles built car without rust in the floors or trunk and nice straight solid body with good fit all around. New weatherstripping, new window felts, new carpet kit, new bumpers, new rocker panel moldings, new dash pad, new Rallye wheels. Rock solid southwest body; no rust and good body fit. Interior has aftermarket seat covers on original buckets. They are not ripped or torn but rather simple.

Value: Base:     $18,100 - $30,500
            W/ 327:  $22,625 - $38,125

Source: USA Classic Cars

Found: 4/15/05

Comments: I am stunned. I could not believe my eyes when I looked up the price of this car. My 67 Camaro RS Convertible had an NADA Average retail price of $16,100 just three years ago. The average retail for an RS coupe is $18,100 now. In case you want to know, the average retail for my 67 is now up to $24,200. Let's not go there, it is too depressing.

I was going to pass on this car because they listed a number of interior issues. Nothing serious, but you could expect to spend about $500 - $1,000 in parts getting the interior up to snuff. But after looking this car up on NADA I have to think this is a good candidate for a mild restoration. If the car is truly rust free and the paint is decent we can spend a few thousand restoring this car and still hold its value. The non-numbers matching motor is a big problem, though. Since I need to put A/C in this car I would try offering $13,000. Hey, they were asking $15,900 for my 67 RS Convertible and I got it for #13K.

NOTE: I was tracking this car for a while and the original asking price was $16,900 then $15,900, then $15,500 and finally down to the current asking price of $15,000.

1967 Chevrolet Camaro - $10,700

67_camaro_very_plain_gold_ut_1.jpg (23693 bytes)Description: 327 2bl, at, 147k original miles, #s match, protect-o-plate, Utah car, all original except wheels and interior, trunk & floor pans all Exc.

NADA: $18,063 - $29,375

Source: Collector Car Trader

Found: 11/01/05

Comments: Why not take a look. It's almost all original. The price is right for a rust free blank canvas.

1967 Chevrolet El Camino - $14,900

67_el_camino_matching_396_ac_auto_white_1.jpg (78271 bytes)Description: Matching # 396 / 325hp, Turbo 400 automatic. Power steering, power disc brakes, factory air conditioning, AM-FM, bucket seats with center shift console, tonneau cover, Chevelle SS hood, Weld wheels with new TA's. Runs and drives exceptionally well. Beautiful white base/clear finish with immaculate stock black interior.

NADA: $18,053 - $22,620

Source: Memory Lane Motors

Found: 10/27/05

Comments: Numbers matching big block with factory A/C! What more do I need to say. Buy It! NADA lists the 396 as only coming in the SS 396, so check the authenticity of this vehicle... then buy it!

1967 Chevrolet Impala - $6,750

67_impala_fastback_gold_1.jpg (82666 bytes)Description: Totally original, cold a/c, 289 engine, gold in color. 84,000 original miles. Unmolested car.

NADA: $10,615 - $15,895

Source: Jackson Classics & Autos

Found: 10/20/05

Comments: I hope that is not really a 289 engine... from Ford. It should be a 283. This is perfect. I love this body style. The price is totally reasonable for an unmolested numbers matching car. A perfect blank canvas. Now I just have to stretch my imagination and think what Chip Foose would do with this car.

1967 Ford Mustang 2+2 Fastback - $13,000 (Sold)

67_mustang_fastback_red_auto_1.jpg (42722 bytes)Description: 289 V8, auto, new tires & rims, ruby frost, all new chrome bumpers & lights, new front windshield, tint, am/fm/cd detach face, runs & drives great.

NADA: $15,500 - $24,625

Source: Collector Car Trader

Found: 6/2/05

Comments: Bullit... in red. Close enough. When I was a teenager the 67-68 Fastback was my favorite Mustang. I came very close to building one back in 1986. I saw one at a Midas muffler shop with a for sale sign. It was dark green (Bullit) with an automatic. It had speaker grills cut in the back, but that didn't matter. I can't remember exactly how much it was going to cost, but it was between $2,500 - $3,000. Imaging that. By the time I could arrange the money the car was sold. Darn!

Here is another chance at that... for an extra ten grand... and it's gone before I have the cash... again.

1968 Chevrolet Chevelle Malibu - $7,495

68_chevelle_yellow_uninspiring_1.jpg (232465 bytes)Description: Have loads of fun in this pretty 1968 Chevelle Malibu. Repainted about 5 years ago in yellow with a black vinyl roof and nice black interior. Mostly new chrome. Powered with a 350 V8 motor and automatic transmission. Also equipped with power steering; am/fm w/ cassette. Also includes car cover. Great driver!

NADA: $9,775 - $15,755

Source: Classic Auto Showplace

Found: 10/26/05

Comments: Just a plain Chevelle. Nothing to inspire me, but then the price is reasonable. Just hope for rust free with this one.

1968 Mercury Cougar - $8,500

68_cougar_white_clean_1.jpg (52987 bytes)Description: XR-7, 302 engine, 50.5k original miles, clean & garage kept, original interior.

NADA: $14,605 - $22,885

Source: Collector Car Trader

Found: 11/01/05

Comments: Really? 50K original miles. It sure looks clean. It looks like a red interior, which I hate. But maybe it won't be bad. Definitely worth a call.

NOTE: When i first found this car it was listed for $10,000. We already saved $1,500 by waiting only a month. Cool.

1968 Buick GS 350 - $10,500

68_gs_350_green_on_black_1.jpg (234891 bytes)Description: Matching numbers car with 39,671 actual miles: factory HiPo 350 4-barrel 280 horse engine, automatic transmission, 3.23 rearend, bucket seats, center console, factory floor shifter, power steering, power brakes, factory am/fm radio, factory tissue dispenser, 4-way power driver's seat, factory dual mirrors w/remote, factory vinyl top, factory rallye wheels, brand new Firestone white wall tires. Original window sticker, original owner's manual, original accessories pamphlet, original warranty booklet, original protect-o-plate.

NADA: $11,500 - $19,100

Source: Sports Car Gallery of Beaver Falls

Found: 9/16/05

Comments: Now this is what I like to see. A super clean, less than popular Muscle Car with ultra low miles. Cool. And the price is right. Just add A/C and cruise.

1969 Chevrolet Camaro - $15,000 (Sold)

69_camaro_blue_no_details_1.jpg (60680 bytes)Description: 350 auto, bucket seats, console, floor shift, many extras.

NADA: $16,388 - $28,980

Source: Collector Car Trader

Found: 11/01/05

Comments: Here is one we should call about. We have far too few details and only one picture that just looks decent. However, call before it's sold.

1969 Chevrolet El Camino - $8,950 (Sold)

69_el_camino_champagne_1.jpg (80613 bytes)Description: Very nice documented original. Matching numbers 350 cubic inch v-8 with automatic transmission. Champagne exterior with saddle tan interior. Power disc brakes and power steering. 250 horsepower. Custom bed topper. Rally wheels. Raised white letter radials. Aftermarket air conditioning (needs charging). Aftermarket stereo. Comes with original build sheet, protect-o-plate, dealer documents. Etc. Even comes with original receipt of a/c addition (1971). Runs and drives great.

NADA: $10,900 - $13,750

Source: Gentle Touch Motor Cars 

Found: 6/4/05

Comments: Let's see... we have a car with a 34 year old aftermarket air conditioning system that just needs a charge. What dealer doesn't bother paying $40-100 to charge an A/C system so they can claim it blows "ice cold" and charge an extra $1,000. It needs more than a charge, I'll bet on it. However, I like this dealer because they always seem to price their cars fair. This is no exception since they are below NADA's average retail price for an El Camino without air.

What this boils down to is that this is a project car. We will need to remove that old A/C system and install a new Vintage Air system. The interior looks yucky, so I would convert it over to black. At that point we could have a neat old car/truck to enjoy. Or we could do a more in-depth project and turn this into a nice street machine. I heard that the late sixties early seventies El Camino actually had a better weight distribution than the Chevelle it was based on. This is probably due to the fact that it used the station wagon frame with its longer wheelbase. Speaking of longer wheelbase... take two cars that are identical except for the wheelbase and the car with the longer wheelbase will provide a better ride. Simply because of the longer time between the tires hitting the same bump. It's true. So we have the potential to build a good handling car/truck with a nice ride. I am intrigued.

1969 Pontiac Firebird - $10,500 (Sold)

69_firebird_green_on_green_350_350_1.jpg (45370 bytes)Description: Original car, numbers match, 68,398 miles, 350/350, ac, power steering, p/disc brakes, beautiful car, ready to drive or restore, must sell.

NADA: $16,860 - $30,840

Source: Collector Car Trader

Found: 10/01/05

Comments: If you don't mind green this is perfect. Not a Camaro, but a 69. It's also in Arizona so I am expecting it to be completely rust free. Why not!

1969 Pontiac LeMans - $7,500

69_lemans_green_on_green_400_auto_1.jpg (421899 bytes)Description: This is one great running & driving Green Metallic 1969 LeMans! Over $7000 in Receipts for Recent Work. Powered with a fresh 400 V8 motor and automatic transmission. Professional rebuild; bored .030 over; all new valves & springs, cam, lifters, rings & bearings; motor all balanced; new Edelbrock intake & carb; new radiator; new steering parts; new front brakes & rotors; new tires; fresh alignment. Also equipped with power steering & brakes. Wow!

NADA: $7,250 - $10,350

Source: Classic Auto Showplace Ltd.

Found: 10/26/05

Comments: O.K. This one missed the "bargain" criteria by a measly $250. It looks real clean. It has lots of new stuff, so is this a money pit? Check carefully for rust. If it is rust free just buy it.

1970 Dodge Challenger - $14,900 (Sold)

70_challenger_340_plum_1.jpg (150597 bytes)Description: RT trim, 340, at, ps, pb, ac, buckets/console, slap stick, Original Plum Crazy car, code FC7, Rock solid, Great shape throughout!

NADA: $13,860 - $22,770

Source: Just Muscle Cars

Found: 7/6/05

Comments: I know, this car is over a grand out of the "bargain" contention. Not really. See, NADA doesn't even list the 340 engine as an option on the 70 Challenger. That's wrong. I am sure the price would increase at least $1,000 if we could option it properly. So it stays.

I love Plum Crazy Mopars, and if you have to have an automatic the factory slapstick is the best way to go. Let's take a trip and check this one out.

1970 Mercury Cougar XR-7 - $9,000 (Sold)

70_cougar_yellow_plain_1.jpg (305988 bytes)Description: Florida car, one owner, always garaged. Completely original. Yellow color w/black leather interior, buckets w/console. Engine 351C V8, good running, recent paint, and absolutely no rust. Sequential tail lights work. Great collector car. Serious inquiries only. Price negotiable.

NADA: $13,365 - $21,230

Source: Collector Car Trader

Found: 11/01/05

Comments: A little plain for my taste, but he says the price is negotiable right out of the box.

1970 Chevrolet Monte Carlo - $10,995 (Sold)

70_mc_350_green_green_pw_ac_1.jpg (88935 bytes)Description: 2-Door hardtop, 350 V-8, automatic. Clean as a pin, great driver, professionally maintained and excellent, garaged and pampered, serviced as needed, original Protect-o-Plate, manual, receipts and records, bucket seats, center console shifter, air conditioning, power steering, power windows, tilt wheel, AM/FM stereo cassette, power disc brakes.

NADA: $12,430 - $18,590

Source: Specialty Sales

Found: 6/20/05

Comments: I tracked this car for a long time. I think it sold during the month of November, so I included it here before deleting it from my archive. I still like it.

1970 Ford Mustang - $13,000 (Sold)

70_mustang_fastback_351c_no_power_1.jpg (1695942 bytes)Description: Chrome Yellow Paint with hand painted striping and numbering. NO DECALS. Engine is 351 Cleveland / 295 HP with new Edelbrock Thunder Series 4V, 650 CFM Carb. Automatic C-6 Transmission, Magnum 500 Rims, Dunlop radial tires. Tektronics solid state ignition, Chrome alternator, oil pan and Monte Carlo bar.. Flowmaster dual exhausts. NO power robbing power steering, power brakes or A/C. Exterior is extremely clean, good paint job, NO dings or dents. Interior new 3 years ago, no rips or damages. Strong running, strong engine. Never been raced but an "ASPHALT RIPPING BEAST" that will set you back in the seat. Past show winner, trophies included. A true muscle car that turns heads whether parked of moving.

NADA: $19,320 - $33,120

Source: Collector Car Trader

Found: 11/02/05

Comments: This is what I want my 70 Mustang Fastback to look like. Close to a Boss 302 with the stripes, spoilers and slats. Perfect. Just get rid of the dorky 351 painted on the fenders. No power robbing accessories? Too bad, because I need some of those. We might have to talk him down to cover the cost of adding A/C and such, but it might be worth it, especially since we get the trophies. Worth checking out.

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: $20,538 - $32,705

Source: American Dream Machines

Found: 8/8/05

Comments: This car will fall off the bargain list quickly if anything is wrong. The base Camaro SS is $13,250 (average retail). We added 15% for the 350 engine, 10% for air conditioning, and a whopping 30% for the Rally Sport option that provides the split bumper front end. So this better be a real RS/SS.

Price is just a tad high for us, but I don't know a dealer that wouldn't drop the price $900 for a willing buyer. We just have to be willing.

NOTE: Another price increase to $16,900.

1971 Pontiac Grand Prix SJ - $9,900 (Sold)

71_gp_sj_white_400_1.jpg (254823 bytes)Description: Many new parts, rebuilt engine and transmission are some of the things that make this Grand Prix SJ desirable. The new Air Conditioning system will keep you cool wile cruisin' during those hot summer nights. Come check out this classic Pontiac and you could be cruisin' in style!

NADA: $11,060 - $18,130

Source: Classic Auto Showplace

Found: 6/9/05

Comments: They didn't tell us the engine, so I took it upon myself to price it with the very popular (for the Grand Prix) 400 engine. Otherwise this car would have been just a little over the bargain threshold.

I like these cars, coming from vaguely remembering my parent's 69 (I think) Grand Prix and later my mom's 76 Grand Prix that I put far to many miles on to remember. I like this version better than the quad headlight version in years close to this. I would be picky if I were ready to buy a Grand Prix, but clearly there are bargains to be had.

1972 Chevrolet Camaro RS - $8,000 (Sold)

72_camaro_rs_green_desert_1.jpg (40852 bytes)Description: Green, power steering, power brakes, air, 350, auto, 700R4 conversion, 4.10 posi, 4 way disc brakes, factory horseshoe console, rust free, desert car.

NADA: $11,270 - $17,990

Source: Collector Car Trader

Found: 11/01/05

Comments: Sounds good. The price is right. The picture sucks, but doesn't show anything bad. Call and get more pictures.