All Over The Place Wednesday

I wrote that between the UAW strike and the coronavirus 2020 C8 Corvette production would be around 5,000 instead of the original estimate of 40,000. That might not be correct. It is possible, maybe even likely, that people who ordered a 2020 model before the end of 2020 ordering in mid-March will still receive a 2020 model Corvette. While in Arizona for the recent Mecum auction John Kraman told me that 2020 production would be reduced to 30,000, but that was before the coronavirus led to GM closing its plants. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.


Most of you have heard the expression, “He who hesitates is lost.” From Mae West via The Muscleheaded Blog, “He who hesitates is a damned fool.”


A few of the many funny lines from this post:

I threw a boomerang a few years ago….
….Now I live in constant fear

I couldn’t believe that the Highway Department called my Dad a thief….
….but when I got home, all the signs were there.

Coles’ Law….
….thinly sliced cabbage

My wife accused me of being immature….
….I told her to get out of my fort

Parallel lines have so much in common….
….It’s a shame they’ll never meet

I have the memory of a woolly mammoth….
….It’s like an elephant’s, but a little fuzzy.


Some more cars from the Mecum Glendale 2020 auction:



From the staging area a picture of a 1960 Studebaker Regal Lark VIII convertible. Studebaker produced about 8,600 convertibles in 1960 and about 58,000 Lark VIIIs, but how many convertibles had the V-8 and not the six-cylinder engine is not easy to unearth. Extrapolation yields an estimate of about 3,900 1960 Lark VIII convertibles. This car went unsold at a high bid of $17,000.



This is a beautiful 1967 Ferrari 330 GTC. Only 600 were produced and it is a Ferrari so I guess it should be no surprise the car didn’t sell despite a high bid of $500,000. This car has its original engine which was rebuilt in 2013 and has about 1,000 miles since the rebuild. I don’t think many auction houses have the diversity of lots like Mecum. It’s not too often one will see a 1960 Studebaker and a 1967 Ferrari in the same auction.



A picture of the car with maybe the most famous face of all American cars. This is a 1936 Cord 810 convertible. The auction copy reads, though: “Meticulously restored to 1937 812 SC specs” and that the car was re-bodied at the time of restoration. Many of you know that Gordon Buehrig designed this car as a protest of Harley Earl’s maxim that the face made the car. Buehrig tried to design a car with no face, but wound up with this most famous of car faces. This car hammered sold at $190,000 meaning it was $209,000 all in to the buyer.



My wonderful wife and I really liked this sign. I’m not sure we were present when it was auctioned, but at $354 all in it certainly wouldn’t have broken the bank. My car is probably capable of 200 MPH, not that I would ever drive it that fast. He who hesitates—or is absent in mind or body—is lost.


Although the last few days have seen a flurry of comments, for which I am very grateful, in general 2020 has not been a robust year for them. Please don’t hesitate to submit thoughtful comments, the more the merrier. Thanks.







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J’ai Fait Une Faux Pas

I am a very happily married man and am also about to “celebrate” a birthday that, for me, marks the passage into old age. Still, I notice women. One of those women is Laura Landis, a bidders assistant for Mecum and daughter of Mecum auctioneer Jimmy Landis. As I told Scott Hoke, I think she is adorable.

The first day of the auction I did something that I thought was “cute” at the time, but quickly realized it was a mistake, a misstep, a faux pas. As my wonderful wife and I walked to our seats we passed Laura Landis. I said, “Good morning, Laura” and kept walking without stopping to introduce myself. For the rest of the auction I tried not to make eye contact with her, but when I did I felt most uncomfortable. Oh well…


Here’s a photo having nothing to do with the auction:



It does rain in the desert, but that can also mean a double rainbow.

Here are some auction photos:



Most of you probably know the identity of these cars, but from top to bottom: a (1968) Dodge Charger, an AMC AMX (1969), a (2013) Ferrari 458 and a (2004) Cadillac XLR. With the possible exception of the 458 all of the other cars have been shown in this blog before. Hey, I like what I like and I know what I like. Of the 1,200 or 1,400 or whatever the number was of vehicles that crossed the block during the auction I probably only have photos of 40 or 50.

Here is another non-auction photo. I don’t think the picture really conveys the breathtaking nature of this view from Camelback Mountain, but here goes:



If you haven’t figured it out by now I think Arizona is beautiful and I am chomping at the bit to move there. I hope this coronavirus situation passes quickly and without doing lasting damage to the country and to the economy. Selfishly, anything that threatens to delay or to derail the move is most unwelcome.







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A Look Back

I’m not sure I have expressed just how much fun my wonderful wife and I had attending the Mecum auction in Glendale, Arizona. Scott Hoke and John Kraman, the two hosts of the broadcasts on NBCSN, were most gracious with their time. Scott even arranged for us to take a tour of the TV production truck. Here are a couple of photos:



From the outside one would never know how many people are inside the truck and just how much goes into producing the broadcast. Thanks again to Scott and to Aaron, a member of the TV crew.

Of course, the stars of the auction are the cars. I haven’t posted too many Studebaker or Packard photos recently, so here’s one:



This is a 1932 Packard 902 Coupe Roadster. The car crossed the block on Friday the 13th and hammered sold at $57,000 or $62,700 all in. The 902 Eight was available in 12 different body styles in 1932 (!) and a total of 3,737 were built.


Oh…Mecum also auctions motorcycles and guitars. Given I used to play the guitar I have some interest in those auctions. Take a look at this photo of the main screen in auction arena:



That guitar did sell at $51,920 all in. Guitars and road art have a higher buyers commission than the 10% charged for automobiles. Still, if I could spend that kind of money I would rather buy a 1965 Buick Riviera GS.

The auction was held in the home of the NFL Arizona Cardinals, State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. Glendale, of course, is a suburb of Phoenix and like many Phoenix suburbs it has experienced enormous population growth in the last few decades. In 1970 its population was about 36,000; the 2018 Census Bureau population estimate was approximately 250,000. This next photo is probably a little disorienting, but here’s a shot of the stadium floor. The building is not small…



This car really caught my eye:



This is a picture of a 2005 Maserati Cambiocorsa Spyder 90th Anniversary Edition. In person, the lines appear perfect, in my opinion. The Mecum listing incorrectly showed the engine displacement at 2.4 liters; the actual displacement is 4.2 liters or 258 cubic inches for Bill Stephens. An aside: we did not meet Bill during the auction. Maybe next time…back to the Maserati, when new the Ferrari-built engine produced 390 HP/333 LB-FT of torque.

Speaking of Maserati, I was overwhelmed by the looks of this car almost to the point of tears. This is a 1959 Maserati 3500 GT Coupe:



This is yet another car whose lines appear perfect to me. The car was offered on Friday, but did not sell at a high bid of $80,000. Depending on condition these cars can be worth multiples of the high bid.

Please let me know if you want to see more auction photos.








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