Mucking out the SCM Stable

We began to wonder if the BMW had had some conjugal visits with our
failure-prone Fiat 2100 and been the recipient of its DNA

You might think that with all the transactions we track, and all the conversations we have, the principals at SCM world headquarters would make nothing but brilliant deals. We’d buy perfect cars cheap, have no repairs or unexpected surprises during their time with us, and then Read More

On the Road Again

If you’re reading SCM, chances are you’re an enthusiast. Your friends may uncork a vintage Barolo and marvel over the bouquet; you’d just as soon go out to the garage and inhale the gasoline and oil vapors that constantly seep out of a vintage car.

This has been an exceptionally busy year for me and SCM, as well as our parent corporation, Automotive Investor Media Group. We’ve launched a new magazine, Corvette Market, to critical acclaim, and subscriptions and Read More

Why Market-Driven Beauty is Only Skin Deep

Buckle your seatbelts and tighten your shoulder harnesses. Based on the results from Monterey, the collector car market is in the midst of a wild and woolly ride, with little way of predicting the crests and valleys in the year ahead.

There are a few things we can all agree on as we plow through the voluminous reports by SCM analysts in this issue. First, both American classics and European sports cars continue to climb-some with reason and some Read More

Factory Fake or Certified Authentic?

As the market continues to surge toward all-time highs and surpass the prices made 18 years ago, questions about authenticity and provenance continue to be one of the keys to valuation. As we noted in our review of RM’s blockbuster $45m Maranello sale (September, p. 68), we believe cars that had a Ferrari factory Certificate of Authenticity consistently brought better money than they would have without.

The reasons are simple. For a Ferrari, there is no higher authority of Read More

Time to Buy, Sell, or Hold?

It’s been nearly 25 years since we’ve seen prices like this in the sports and exotic market. As nearly everyone knows by now, RM came within just $500,000 of setting the record for the most expensive car ever to sell at auction at their Maranello sale, where the 330 TRI/LM, s/n 0808, brought $9,281,250. It is our cover car this month, and ably profiled by Steve Ahlgrim inside this issue.

The previous high sale, long ago in 1987, was Read More

Jurassic Swamp Meet

Fifty years from now the Petersen Museum may feature a diorama dedicated to the social gathering once known as an “automotive swap meet.” Young children will tug on their daddy’s shirtsleeves and ask, “Thousands of people just showed up and walked around for hours, hoping they might find something?” And Daddy will answer, “Yes, and they called it fun.”

If the display is accurate, few of the vendor and shopper manikins will be wearing Armani suits; variations of denim Read More

Old Car Tricks

“Push? We’re going to push the car?”

It was a balmy day in the Pacific Northwest, so I had decided to take out our orange and black 1979 Triumph Spitfire. My 15-year-old daughter, Alex, was pleased with my choice, as the previous owner had put large speakers behind the seats, making it a perfect car by her standards.

After a morning spent shopping (I was surprised at just how many pairs of Citizen jeans and Juicy jackets fit in Read More

A Six Pack of Sense and Sensibility

We at SCM have long maintained that a well-filled garage is like a well-stocked wine cellar. Just as different times of day, different events, and different meals call for different pourings, so, too, do different motoring adventures require different motoring choices.

And just as each wine has its own trademark taste, bouquet, and color, each car that captivates a collector’s interest has its own unique approach to motoring. A car worth collecting has an essence to it: it is Read More

Somebody Stop Me!

Perhaps SCM should be in the soft adventure business. But rather than offering a chance to parachute off mountaintops attached to a safety-line, or fly a Russian Mig with an instructor who will keep you from nosing into the ground, we have something even better.

Last year, my former editor at Automobile Magazine, Joe Lorio, announced that he had purchased the car, or actually station wagon, of his dreams: a 1968 Mercury Colony Park.

When I was last in Detroit, Read More

A Steering Wheel as the Circle of Life

“How did you get started with cars?” is a question I’m often asked.
While I have been fortunate to have a variety of careers and occupational passions, cars and machinery came first.
My earliest memories of the mysteries of the internal combustion engine revolve around my grandfather, Thomas Lester McDowell, who, along with my grandmother, Dorel Evelyn, raised me.
Although our family home was in the Parkside district of San Francisco, Gramps, as the family called him, had what Read More