Hey everyone! It has been a while since I thrilled you with my search for a classic car, so let’s return to another edition! (If you need to get up to speed, you can read my previous posts at the links at the bottom.)
PART III – Why I Suck At Buying A Muscle Car
This was supposed to be fun. This could have been simple. Find a car you like. Contact the seller. Pay some money. Get a car. Nope.
Back in November of last year I got excited about a 1967 Olds 442 that I wrote about in Part I, and I rushed up to the northern Chicago suburbs to take a look at the car, test drove it, almost reached into my back pocket for the checkbook, and then hit the brakes. I just had a bad feeling. I felt like I was rushing into it too fast, and that I was buying on adrenaline fueled impulse. The adult in me told me to take a pass and make sure I knew what I was doing. I kind of regret that. That car was pretty good, it was priced well, and the wife and I would have looked great in it cruising around town on the weekends. That car is gone, and I needed to move on.
And move on I did, onto a 1967 Plymouth Belvedere GTX convertible located in sunny Los Angeles, California.
This car looked great in the pictures online and I was hooked – hooked in the same way I was with the 442. I think part of my problem is that these cars are pretty rare. You could argue that the market for old muscle cars is plentiful, and there are plenty, but there just are not that many 1967 Plymouth GTX convertibles in turbine bronze metallic paint with white on black interiors. Trust me on that one. It’s not like you can go down to the local Plymouth dealership and place an order for one like they did in 1967. (Plymouth doesn’t even exist anymore, so there’s that too.) So when a cool optioned car becomes available, you kind of need to act on it if you want it. But with the 442 lesson learned I decided to wait. In late December we were going to be in Pasadena for the Tournament of Roses Parade with my daughter’s marching band. I had the great idea that since we would be in SoCal for the parade, I would take a ride to Chatsworth, CA and take a look at the car. But the trip was already pretty heavily planned out, and I had to take a pass on seeing the GTX.
I wrote in Part II of my search that I had done a little more digging into the history of the GTX and found out some things about the car that gave me a little pause, mainly it’s history of being auctioned three times, and that it had been in Virginia and Florida when the dealership was advising that it was an Arizona/New Mexico car. But that didn’t really deter me, so I kept a close eye on it.
I was kind of sitting in the midwest in the middle of the typical winter polar vortex, and I came to the conclusion that trying to buy a car and have it shipped here in this weather was a bad idea. But a few weeks passed and we moved into February and eventually I decided that I liked the idea of owning that car enough that I should either book another flight to California to see it myself, or have someone go look at it for me. Guess what, there are people who are experts at classic cars (i.e. the opposite of me) that you can pay to inspect it for you! I finally contacted one that I thought was trustworthy and was told that for my $400 I would get a detailed inspection of the car with an awesome report and tons of pictures. All I wanted him to do really was to drive the thing and give me a thumbs up or thumbs down, but what he was offering to do was cool too. So I contacted the dealer and told him I was going to send this guy over to look at the GTX and got the following email reply:
Thanks for reaching out.
The 67 has sold.
I have a 68 Hemi Coupe and a few other cars that I will be happy to have inspected.
All the best.
Bummer dude. That’s a real drag, man. He had the gall to suggest I buy a 68 Hemi Coupe. A Hemi. A HEMI WITH AN $80,000 PRICE TAG. Sir, you mistake me for a Rockefeller. And if I am heading into the year 1968, I’m buying a Road Runner, not a GTX. They are basically the same, but the Road Runner is much cooler. (I may regret that statement. Okay, I already do.)
Okay, the car is gone. Actually the second of two cars that had me drooling are gone! What the heck? I suck at this! Turns out being patient and making sure I was making the right purchase was dumb too! Buy on impulse = bad idea. Wait and make sure it’s the right one = also bad. I am really bad at this!
But I am learning, and I will keep looking. Here are some cars that are on my current wish list, that I am sure I will not be owning any time soon:
There are a few others I am following, but I won’t bore you with those for now. I’ll save them for the next blog when I write about missing out on the cars above. For now, I will keep kicking those internet tires and keep my hopes up for finding one that has my name on it.
Here are the links to the previous posts:
My Search For American Muscle – Part I
My Search For American Muscle – Part II