Sifting the Auctions for Hidden Gems

The old saying of “Can’t see the forest for the trees” also applies to good deals at the Monterey Car Week auctions.

Despite auction houses working to get high-end cars for record-setting sales prices, there are inevitably a few consignments that don’t fare as well as hoped.

Throw in car consignments that are staged to fill in less-desirable time slots — or to lead or follow heavily hyped vehicles — and a screaming deal will appear once in a while.

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Durable, Good-Looking and Cheap

If you have a hankering for an older Multi-Purpose Vehicle (old enough to predate the whole soccer-mom SUV thing), but feel that you missed the boat on first-generation Ford Broncos or 1969–72 Chevy Blazers, I have good news for you.

There’s one out there made in large enough quantities that availability is good, parts support is excellent, and it is still priced at chump change: the 1980–96 full-size Ford Bronco.

The genesis of the Bronco line, the first generation built Read More

1944 Chrysler M4A4 Sherman Tank

The M4 is undoubtedly the most famous World War II Allied tank. It was the most-produced American tank during World War II, with close to 50,000 units (all versions included).

The British gave the tank its nickname, “Sherman,” when they got delivery of their first units through the Lend-Lease agreement. “Sherman” referenced the American Civil War Union General William Tecumseh Sherman. The U.S. Army quickly adopted this nickname.

This M4A4 Sherman tank recently joined the Normandy Tank Museum collection and Read More

In Memoriam: Chet Krause

Chet Krause; December 16, 1923 – June 25, 2016

Chester Lee “Chet” Krause, founder of Kruse Publications and the Iola Old Car Show, passed away on June 25.

He was 92.

To state that Chet left an indelible mark in the collector car hobby would be an understatement.

Born in rural Wisconsin near the village of Iola, he grew up in the area and graduated from Iola High School in 1941. He served his country during World War II in Read More

1991 AM General M998 Humvee

From the Ground Force Collection, this 1991 authentic military M998 Humvee/M998 Humvee cargo/troop carrier is built for almost every terrain imaginable and gets to its final destination. It has automatic transmission, a strong 6.2-liter diesel engine, a removable cargo cover, and was upgraded throughout its military life. Due to U.S. military rules, this vehicle cannot be exported and must be purchased by a U.S. citizen.

1972 BMW 3.0 CSL

Scott Nidermaier, courtesy of Bonhams

The early 1970s were landmark years for BMW, for not only did the German manufacturer power Jean-Pierre Jarier to the European Formula 2 Championship, it also captured the European Touring Car Championship using one of the most iconic racing saloons of modern times: the 3.0 CSL, known popularly as the Batmobile.

BMW had returned to 6-cylinder power for its range-topping models in 1968 with the launch of the 2500 and 2800 saloons. Also new was the 3.0 CSL’s forerunner, the Read More

A Mercedes for the Farm, Woods or Battlefield

In the United States, Mercedes-Benz Unimogs are rare enough to qualify as mild curiosities, but these tough, fear-no-road trucks are also inching up on the cool meter, especially with military-vehicle buffs.

You’ll see them scattered around the countryside — often in the mountain areas of the western United States — but few know their long, fascinating history.

For example, Unimogs were originally designed as farm vehicles. Let’s jump into the Wayback Machine for a little Unimog history.

Out of the Read More

All Over the Map With the FJ40

Patrick Ernzen ©2013, courtesy of RM Auctions

Back when I first profiled the Toyota FJ40 Land Cruiser as an Affordable Classic (February 2012, p. 34), they were the up-and-coming thing. I won’t be so forward as to say that my scribbles helped push the market up, but the ink was barely dry before they soared in value.

Superb examples were selling at either side of $100k, and because of that, it seemed like every auction house had to have one on their docket.

Fast forward to 2014, Read More

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