3 April 2015

Auction Preview: Mecum's 2015 Houston Sale

As Mecum Auctions builds momentum towards their headline sale in Indy next month, we have two sales in April to keep us occupied. The first is the annual Houston, Texas sale to be held at the NRG Center, right next to the old Astrodome, from April 9-11. There are 1,000 automobiles expected to be in attendance, which always makes it tough to narrow things down to just a handful of cars to highlight. Regardless, here are five worth noting as they cross the block.

1974 Pontiac Trans Am Super Duty 455/290 

Hagerty Price Guide:  $52,800 - $128,000

Many say that the muscle car era was done by 1972, for Pontaic it didn’t end until the last Super Duty Trans Am left the factory in 1974. Just like in the early 60s when GM was still involved in factory racing, the Super Duty engine meant something very special. Not only did the engine create the most horsepower in the Pontiac lineup, but you got a heavier duty engine block that could handle serious modification. Considering that the Trans Am’s sister car, the Camaro Z/28 only came with a 245 horsepower 350, it is easy to see why the 455-SD Pontiac carries such astronomical values for a mid-70s pony car.

1968 Chevrolet Caprice 427/385 

Hagerty Price Guide: $13,300 - $30,800

Starting in 1966, the Caprice eclipsed the Impala as Chevrolet’s top tier model. Only the Corvette cost more. While the Caprice was less aimed at the performance market, potent powerplants could still be had. This particular example came equipped with a 427 big block, center console shifter, gauge pack, air conditioning and power everything. It’s a true luxury muscle car. While a Caprice of this vintage isn’t easy to come by, this presents more value for the horsepower than a far more expensive Impala SS. If you don’t really care about having that SS badge on your car, then this is the car to look for.

1969 Dodge Charger Daytona 426/425

Hagerty Price Guide:  $242,000 - $425,000

It is pretty safe to say that that one of the biggest questions waiting to be answered in Houston is what will the Daytona go for? After an exceptionally low mile example sold for nearly $1M at Kissimmee, we’re all wondering if the Daytona is making a comeback. Since the muscle car market crash in 2007, Daytonas have been holding steady at nearly half the price they were selling at 8 years ago. Keeping in mind that the Kissimmee Daytona was probably the best example to come to market in many years, we will be watching closely to see how this one performs.

1991 Acura NSX 

Hagerty Price Guide: $20,000 - $52,300

As Japanese cars continue a steady march upward in value, it is hard to ignore a car as important as the NSX. This was the first real venture into a high-end performance sports car for Honda/Acura. With development aided by legendary F1 driver Ayrton Senna, the NSX sought to achieve the perfect balance of usable power and handling in order to compete in Ferrari and Lamborghini’s world. Today these cars remain a fantastic deal when compared to the Italian competition, but they are beginning to march upward in price as Gen-Xers ease into the market. Don’t expect to see NSX prices lingering where they are down the road.

1956 Chevrolet Series 3100 Cameo Pickup 265/155 

Hagerty Price Guide: $12,000 - $52,000

If you wanted a stylish pickup in 1956, the Chevrolet Cameo was the truck for you. With stylish fiberglass bed sides with red bed and cab accents, this truck was almost more of a car than anything. Considering that the Cameo was less commonly found being used hard on the farm in the 50s, it isn’t so surprising that even though only a handful were made, they keep popping up on a regular basis. Today, the Cameo remains one of the most sought after Chevy trucks of the 50s and with a 265 V8 under the hood, it doesn’t get much better than this one here.

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