Cars, Cars and More Cars

If you are among the few Disaffected Musings readers who comes for something other than cars, maybe you shouldn’t read today.


From this post by Classic Cars comes the first results for the Scottsdale auctions in 2020. According to Classic Cars, the gross sales amount for all of the auctions in Scottsdale, and there were eight of them this year (and you wonder why my wonderful wife and I want to move there…), was almost exactly the same as for 2019. Compared to the “disaster” of Monterey Car Week in August, 2019 when auction sales were off by a third compared to 2018, this result was welcome. However, 17 percent more cars were sold in 2020 than in 2019, so—obviously—the average per car was still significantly less than last year.

For whatever reason(s), the collector car market is softening. Potentially this could mean an entry point for collectors, experienced and novice alike, to get into the market.


As usual a lot of these were offered for sale at Barrett-Jackson. German or not, these are fine cars:


2004 MERCEDES-BENZ SL500 ROADSTER - Side Profile - 236083


This is a 2004 Mercedes-Benz SL500 offered for sale on Wednesday the 15th, one of 22 SL500s offered at Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale this year. This car sold for $17,600 all in meaning it hammered for $16,000. The copy stated that the car had only 32,751 miles.

Before I bought my BMW Z4 in May, 2016, one of the cars I test-drove was an SL500. The car was in obvious need of new brakes and I didn’t care for the extreme pushiness of the salesman. Of course, I didn’t keep the Z4 very long as I sold it in October, 2018. Maybe the child of Holocaust survivors shouldn’t own a German car. The Z4 was the least reliable car I’ve ever owned.


Also from Wednesday the 15th, this basically brand new car (25 miles) was offered for sale:


2019 FORD MUSTANG BULLITT - Rear 3/4 - 236593


This is a 2019 Bullitt Edition Ford Mustang. This car has a 5.0 liter, 480 HP Coyote motor mated to a 6-speed manual transmission. The car sold, all in, for $49,500. You FoMoCo guys out there, how does that compare to the price of a brand new 2020 Bullitt Mustang?


Also on Wednesday, this car was offered, supposedly not long after a frame-off restoration:


1972 TRIUMPH TR6 ROADSTER - Front 3/4 - 237433


This is a 1972 Triumph TR6. My wonderful wife’s father used to own one of these although I’m not sure how he could drive it because he is well over six feet tall. The car must have made quite an impression as it sold, all in, for $55,000.


Of course, one big US car auction took place in January somewhere other than Scottsdale, Arizona. The Mecum auction in Kissimmee, Florida offered more than 3,500 vehicles for sale as well as some guitars. Although this is a picture of a 1964 Chrysler Imperial convertible offered for sale by Mecum, it’s NOT the one offered at Kissimmee this month (on Wednesday the 8th, to be exact). I am loathe to write this again, but Mecum does not allow online photos of its current and recent lots to be captured.


See the source image


The one offered at Kissimmee this January was beige over beige and sold, all in, for $28,600.

The majority of Mecum lots are offered with reserve so many of them do not sell, either on the block or at “The Bid Goes On” desk. From Midwest Car Exchange, a picture of a car very similar to one offered at Kissimmee and that did not sell:


See the source image


This is a 1987 Buick Grand National, but not the rare, top of the line GNX. At Mecum, a car like this was bid to $40,000 but did not sell. I REALLY like these cars and they are a sleeper contender to be the companion to my Z06. However, I would not spend anywhere near $40,000 for a car like this. I have seen these cars advertised in places like Hemmings listed between $17,000 and $25,000. Even the top half of that range is more than I want to spend, but to get one of these for $17,000-$18,500 could work.

As you can probably guess, I could go on and on (and on and on) about the January auctions and the cars offered, but I’ll stop here.







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Thorough Thursday

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Recently, I have been mentioning my Ultimate Garage 2.0, which was posted last May/June. Here are all of the relevant links:


The Cars That Missed The Cut, Part One

The Cars That Missed The Cut, Part Two

Car #1

Car #2

Car #3

Car #4

Car #5

Car #6

Car #7

Car #8

Car #9

Car #10

Car #11


Yes, I am aware of the saying “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink.” Nevertheless, please feel free to click on as many of these links as you want.


From this post comes this picture of a beautiful 1954 Kaiser Special:




Anything with Richard Langworth involved is worth reading.


Although the annual January Scottsdale auctions are over for 2020, here is a post on how to buy a car at an auction. Interestingly, the author’s name is Andy Reid. Here is his first and most important tip:


“First and foremost, I would not ever recommend buying at auction if you have never attended a classic car auction before. There is a lot to know and it is very easy for a first-time auction attendee to get excited and bid more for a car than it is worth.”


My wonderful wife and I attended multiple Barrett-Jackson and Mecum auctions before I ever bid on a car. I think that is very sound advice. I knew how much I wanted to bid and I didn’t forget about the buyers premium. Remember this car?



This 2014 Corvette “Custom” was offered at the 2019 Barrett-Jackson auction in Scottsdale, which we attended. I knew what my max bid would be and I didn’t deviate. My maximum bid was $65,000 ($71,500 all in) and the car hammered for $70,000 ($77,000 all in). The same scenario occurred the next day on a 2015 Z06 convertible. In the end, it worked out for the best as I found my 2016 Z06 a couple of months later and paid much less.

I’m virtually certain my wonderful wife and I will attend automobile auctions in the future. The experience of having attended many times before is quite valuable.

I would like to read about your car auction experiences.








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