1991 Chevrolet Camaro Z28 1LE; image by the author.
When covering auctions for our print publications, a simple rule of thumb–that we do our best to adhere to–is to review a few extra vehicular lots. It’s good practice, since one never knows if a lot is going to be withdrawn at the last minute, or–worse–we forgot to snag a photo of the car we just examined, only to discover that error when we return to the office. Which means that by the time our more detailed coverage is readied for print, we end up with a few on the proverbial cutting-room floor. It doesn’t mean they are any less interesting, we simply ran out of space, so we’ll present a few of them here.
Regular readers of our Hemmings Muscle Machines magazine will begin to see in-depth gavel action–from Scottsdale, Arizona’s 2018 Auction Week–in our May 2018 issue featuring coverage from Barrett-Jackson. Based in the famed desert city, this year marked the 47th annual sale for the auction house, the dates of which were January 13-21. Conducted at WestWorld, their expansive catalog featured 1,721 vehicular lots alone, in addition to 10 charity lots, and given that 99 percent of them were offered at no reserve, it should be no surprise that the auction house was the leading volume seller of collector cars once again, to the tune of nearly $117 million. One of those 1,730-plus lots was the car pictured above: a 1991 Chevrolet Camaro Z28 featuring the 1LE package.
Some of the details presented to bidders were as follows:
This 1LE Chevrolet Camaro has 490 actual miles (title reads mileage exempt) and is powered by a 5.7-liter 8-cylinder engine and automatic transmission. It is one of 478 examples made and is finished in its factory Bright Red paint over a black custom cloth interior with protective plastic still on it. It retains all of its original documentation including handbooks, and driver tapes and CD. Window sticker and delivery tags still on the car.
Other information provided on a show board outlined an extensive list of accessories the Camaro had been ordered with, including but not limited to the G80 differential, G92 performance axle, larger front rotors and spindles, special 18-gallon baffled fuel tank, and aluminum spare wheel. Documents also confirmed that three items were deleted from the build: Air conditioning, fog lamps and T-Tops. When new, the bottom line on the window sticker stated that it would take $17,787 claim ownership. As to its presentation during the preview hours 27 years later, our notepad was conspicuously devoid of demerits since the Camaro looked like it had just been rolled off the carrier at the dealership. The latest value guides suggest like-new examples (we gave this Chevy a condition grade of 1-) should fetch $7,000, but when it crossed the block bidding heated up to $36,300 (including buyer’s premium).
1969 Ford Torino GT; image by the author.
If (former-now-antique) late-model muscle isn’t your cup-o-tea, also up for grabs in the preview tents was a hi-po FoMoCo Torino (above). Per the consignor-provided window placard:
This 1969 Ford Torino has undergone a frame-off restoration from top to bottom. It is powered by an upgraded period-correct 1969 428ci Super Jet engine built to stock specifications and an automatic transmission. It features all-original sheet metal, original spare tire, original seats and vinyl top. It has won at top-tier car shows and was awarded a 98 out 100 in the Gold Concourse division at the Fairlane Nationals. It has its original Window Sticker, Build Sheet, production sheet and tons of pictures of the restoration.
We didn’t happen to see the stated documents when we examined the Ford; however, we were able to confirm, and uncover, a few tidbits when we looked at the VIN. The good news was that the Torino was a legitimate GT and, more specifically, one of the 17,951 Formal Hardtops made during the model year. The fifth digit in the VIN, though, was an “S,” which indicated its original engine was a 320-hp 390-cu.in. V-8. Featuring a bench seat up front, excellent trim, and near-perfect paint, all we jotted down in the demerit column was a note pertaining to the raised white letter Firehawk radials, the letters of which looked terribly out of place considering the high level of presentation the restoration effort achieved (we gave it a condition grade of 1-). In this condition, value guides suggest that $30,000 (390 engine; shaker hood) is reasonable money for the GT, or $40,000 for the same car with a factory 428SCJ. Under the stage lamps, it achieved $38,500 (including buyer’s premium).
Be sure to check out the aforementioned May 2018 issue of Hemmings Muscle Machines for 15 additional muscle car lots, as well as another 24 featured lots covering an array of domestic and imported collector cars in an upcoming issue of Hemmings Motor News.