13 January 2017

Still kicking yourself over the one that got away? Group therapy begins now

So many cars, so much regret. We were hit by a tidal wave of lament when we asked our Facebook community, “What’s the one car you wish you’d bought when you had the chance?”

You posted photos and sad-faced emoticons and used lots and lots of exclamation points. Tyler Burgess warned, “Don’t even start with me.” Joe Rochira even posted a classified advertisement from 1969 showing a list of long-gone Chevelles. The question so touched a nerve, in fact, that many of you ignored the parameters and admitted to cars you actually owned at one time but wish you had never sold. All of which proves — once again — not only does misery love company, confession is good for the soul. You’re welcome.

Matthew Abela got things started with a common theme: great car, great price, poor timing. In 2001, Matt had an opportunity to purchase a 1968 Plymouth GTX 400 … “white with a red stripe and red interior, automatic transmission, power windows, power steering, power brakes and remote trunk release” — geez, he certainly hung onto the details, didn’t he? Asking price: $10,000. The GTX was a “former drag car, but it was solid and complete (parts like the A/C were in boxes) and not hacked (no roll cage and not tubbed)… I had just gone through a divorce, and $10K might as well have been a million. I remember it like it was yesterday and kick myself every day for not borrowing the cash.”

Chad Miller was also strapped for cash when he lost out on a 1968 Dodge Charger with a 383 engine. The car’s owner had babied it, and when she passed away, “Her son wanted nothing to do with it. It still had the original bubble-wrap plastic on the seats.” Ouch.

Kenneth Smith missed an opportunity to purchase his uncle’s 1968 Shelby GT500 KR for $2,800 in the late 1970s, but up-front cash wasn’t the problem — high insurance premiums for a mid-20s driver killed that deal. Double ouch.

Papa Nedz still beats himself up over the Split-Window 1963 Chevrolet Corvette that he passed on in 1974, the same year he began a 36-year career as an Auto Tech instructor. Papa chose a 1969 ’Vette with a 427/400 engine instead, which is a pretty good consolation prize. “But I kick myself to this day for not buying the ’63.”

Paul Mitchell’s woulda-coulda-shoulda moment came in 2005, when he “had the opportunity to buy an absolutely perfect 1991 Peugeot 505 Turbo Wagon. It was serviced at a former Peugeot dealer, by Peugeot specialists, and traded for a Saab at that very same dealership. It was a one-owner car and had only 55,000 miles. The asking price was only $3,000. I stupidly passed and bought a 1992 Volvo 740 Turbo wagon on the basis it would have been more reliable (it wasn’t) and parts would be easier to get (they weren’t). So I could have had an awesome collector-quality Peugeot that would have been cheaper and easier to maintain, and very likely more reliable, but ended up paying more for a car that turned out to basically be a lemon. I kick myself daily for this enormous lapse in judgment. The Volvo is long gone; meanwhile I’m certain I’d still have the Peugeot.”

Joe Winwood is traumatized by not one but numerous cars that got away, including several C2 Corvettes, a 1969 Chevrolet Camaro and a 1971 Plymouth Barracuda Gran Coupe. “Instead I bought a new ’74 Chevelle,” he wrote. “Meh.”

Bill Smoot also has a seemingly endless list of near misses: “1970 Plymouth Duster 340 four-speed, 1966 Dart wagon with a hi-po 273 four-barrel four-speed, 1968 Barracuda convertible … I can do this all day.”

Mark Mullis’ brother jumped aboard the Ford Mustang bandwagon and bought a new one in 1965, but Mark will never forget what he saw behind the dealership. “There were four or five AC Cobras sitting there. Not sure how much they were, but they were brand new and very cool. Wish I would have bought them all.”

No doubt Mark would have sold at least a couple of those Cobras by now. Jeff Caudle certainly would have. He missed out on a 1974 Jaguar V-12 E-Type — white with red interior — and it still haunts him. The dentist who owned it “could never get it to run right and wanted to get rid of it,” Jeff wrote. Then he admitted, “I probably wouldn’t still have it, but it would have been fun.”

Greg Faust’s biggest classic car regret was not being able to come up with enough cash to purchase a 1965 Chevelle that he saw in Central Point, Oregon, “back around 1988. It was once owned by actor Dan Blocker from the TV show ‘Bonanza.’ I believe it’s in a museum in Florida now. A very rare Chevelle!” Greg’s post caught the eye of Daniel Hale, who remembered Blocker’s car: “Chevelle SS396 No. 1 ... the first one made.” Doug Caldwell joined in the conversation, writing that he thinks the car now resides at Muscle Car City in Punta Gorda, Florida. We’re not sure if that’s the case, but Greg might be on his way to Florida at this very moment.

Some of you aren’t just remorseful about the one that got away, you’re trying to ease the pain by finding a similar car. When Dan Trevino was living in Mexico, he decided not to purchase a 1966 Valiant Acapulco convertible (Plymouth Valiant Signet in U.S.). “Slant-6, four on the floor, factory paint and interior… To this day I can’t find one in decent shape or for a fair price.” The search continues.

“Significant others” have shot down plenty of potential car purchases, as many of you were all-too happy to vent about.

“In the early ’70s, a fellow employee wanted to get rid of his ’57 Thunderbird,” Eugene Wegener wrote. “He said I could have it for $1,100. There was a problem with the electrical system, but it ran OK. My wife said, ‘We don't need another car,’ and we didn't buy it.”

In 1967, Richard Zahnter passed on a 1965 Shelby Cobra 289 “because my girlfriend at the time was tired of riding in my ’57 ’Vette. I don’t have the ’Vette or the girlfriend today. Oh well.”

Don Curran still thinks about the 1979 Pontiac Bandit Trans Am that he was “persuaded” not to buy 20 years ago. “My girlfriend at the time said she would leave me if I got it,” he wrote. “I wish now that I would have gotten the car and let her go.”

In 1990, Andrew Wade could have traded in his 1988 Subaru DL on a 1974 Porsche 911 Carrera RS 2.7. “I owed about $8,000 on the Subaru and he was asking $12,000 for the Porsche. I drove off in the Subaru. Somehow I think I lost.” Somehow we think you’re correct.

Keith Seufert still regrets not buying a 1970 Pontiac GTO Judge in 1993. He had half the money, but his father refused to put up the other half, because “he thought I would kill myself.” Charles Bird wholeheartedly agreed with Keith’s dear ol’ dad. “A buddy of mine had a ’70 Judge. He almost killed me and two other friends one night… We hit the end of a bridge going 113 mph.”

In the midst of all this regret about lost love, Charles chose to put a positive spin on the entire issue and be thankful for the cars that were actually parked in his driveway at one time or another. “Just saying … in my lifetime I’ve owned a two-door 1956 Chevy Bel Air, 1966 Pontiac LeMans, 1967 Cutlass convertible, 1960 MG Midget and 1971 Buick Skylark Custom convertible. Geez.”

Yes, it could be worse. Take Andrew Karayanis, for example. He’s still upset that he passed on a 1989 Yugo. “To this day I regret it!” That’s a joke, right? Andrew?

43 Reader Comments

  • 1
    Royal E Trent Sr Southern Ore January 17, 2017 at 00:08
    The ones that got away and the one that came back , I have been a hot rod Junkie my whole life well ever since I was 14 and took a ride In a 71 440 six pac cuda with a future OSP officerat the wheel that car Exploded in power and I told myself I gotta get one of these...someday well i am still hoping that will come as I came of age to drive I looked to spend my cash hard earned from pumping gas at the local truck stopand lighting smudge pots in orchards to buy my dream car my choices were #1 a 70 plymouth cuda AAR all original 43,000 miles 2500 bucks couldnt sell my dad on the fact that if I only drove the car on the 2 bbls It would get great mileage that didnt work on to the next car 1971 Z28 Camaro Motion Baldwin car Black/gold stripes LS6 454 4.10 axle M22 4spdDad and I test drove it ,,Holy mother of jesus was it fast!!to fast dad said i would get myself killed in it no go on that I thought to myself I gotta stop bringing dad along on just take the bank with a couple of weeks later I ran into a welder fellow while out on the prowl for a ride and he said hey you remember that old camaro I had in my garage? I sell you that one thinking back I had remembered that car he had just changed the engine in it to a smaller one cause at 42000 miles it started to smoke and decided to put a smaller engine in it , thats the words I needed to tell dad low performance great fuel economy just what dad wanted to hear the car was up in portland ore but the original engine was in medford Perfect!! after pitching the sale to dad I got the go ahead and 2500 in cash and a bus ticket in hand off I went I arrived in portland 7pm that night made my way by cab to where the car was located the seller gave me the run don on the motor he said he picked up a couple mile to the gallon by installing [This was 1979 by the way] told me i could pick up the OEM motor and all the A/C parts to it he had removed the engine size emblems of the front fenders [which said 427] and Off I went back hm The Mileage Engine as he called it was a 4 bolt 350 LT1 Fresh bore balanced Crane Turbo heads 780 holley headers and the wrappings around it was all chevy a 1969 Camaro RS/SS 427 car Yes I said 427 that was the original motor I had yet to pick up it was a 380hp version special ordered dealer promotional car almost every available option Custom deluxe interior Black/white houndstooth PW/PS [quick ratio] console/gauges fold down rear seat traction dispenser and cowl hood the car was burgendy metallic w/back strips black vinyltop I loved that car and hated to see it go aas I had to sell it and my other rides to pay back my college education I never saw the 2 brithers that bought it But I did keep the engine as Dreams I might one day be owning that same car again ,,, Im glad I did !! 25 yrs later I happened to be talking with a gentleman that noticed my 72 Z28 I had just finished building sitting at my gas station he said he had an old camaro and started to tell me about it I asked him where he got it He said I bought it from this old man in ashland I pointed to my father who was doing my books at the counter and said did he look like that old man? A deal was soon struck and I know have the car car in my shop at home sitting on my chassis dyno finishing up the complete resto now donrt hate me for this but when I was up in anchorage alaska I had just rented a building and the owner said there is a couple old junk cars in the back lot covered with snow where we plowed in just haul them off to scrap when it thaws ok I said well spring came and as we were cleaning up our tow truck driver had pulled out the last car and was heade to the smasher he mention it looked like some old race car being the owner a a performance shop I had to look and there was a complete original 69 cuda drag pac car with a 426 hemi DONT TOW THAT !! I got the car running and put it in the nickle and guy came by heard it run the 7500 went in my pocket and off the car went ,,,,I wonder what ever happened to it he only wanted the motor but I made him take the whole car I think it got scrapped maybe not it might still be sitting behind some shop in alaska somewhere if you want to hear some about the ones that got away I forgot to mention the 63 plymouth golden commando with 2 superchargers ram inducted thru the headlamps stroked 426 wedge cross ram 3800 mile rumored to be 1 of 3 built by Granatelli racing and ran 191 on the salt flats it finally sold for 2500 bucks If I only knew then what I knew now,,,, I never should have let them go !! hope you liked this The Dyno Guy
  • 2
    Feex Florida January 18, 2017 at 16:33
    Dyno Guy, great story but try some punctuation now and then!! HA! Mine was a Blue 1970 Boss 429 Mustang for $9500 in Mesa, AZ in 1979. $9500 for an Airman might as well have been a million!
  • 3
    Dan Kennedy Oxford,CT January 18, 2017 at 16:57
    My first job after getting out of the Army in1969 was working at a Chrysler Plymouth dealer. In early 1970, we received a Hemi orange, four speed Hemi Superbird. It sat and sat, we couldn't sell it. One of the techs even took it to a local drag strip, still no sale. You have got to remember, these cars are really silly looking. We finally sold it to another dealer for four grand. Bought then and put away, it could be worth a million today. Oh, to have a crystal ball in the car business.
  • 4
    Andy Hughes Dallas, TX January 18, 2017 at 16:58
    In 1980 I was 16 years old, living in Pittsford, NY and I spotted a 1968 GT 500 KR, convertible, 4 speed, 2x dual carbs, maroon'ish / purple paint, tan interior, black top, sitting in a corn field. I had about $3000 saved up. I managed to get a hold of the guy who's farm the Shelby was on. I offered him my $3k and told me "No way. That car is worth $6k to $7k the was it's sitting now." I didn't have the money so I asked that guy to at least pull the Shelby in to his barn. 2 years later I moved away from NY. I never knew what eventually happened to the Shelby. Sad...
  • 5
    Ron Los Angeles January 18, 2017 at 18:00
    Huge mistake. in 1962 I passed on a 1958 Bonneville, full injected, 2 front bucket seat, 2 rear 'faux' bucket seats, air suspension, radio button on the floor. White with the wide green 'arrow'. I forget the price but at any price it turned out to be super rare steal.
  • 6
    Will Irby Madison, MS January 18, 2017 at 18:01
    I don't have enough time or memory to list all of the ones that got away, but probably the most memorable was the 427 AC Cobra I looked at in 1971 (or was it '72?) Notice the wording "looked at"; the $7,000 price at a local dealer was more than this high school student could come up with on a paper route budget.
  • 7
    Don Rowe NJ January 18, 2017 at 18:20
    Around 1985 a friend had a triple black 71 Hemi Cuda convertible that he was thinking about selling. When I asked him how much he wanted he said 10k. "That's about twice the price when they were new", I replied. "That's what they're going for these day", he responded. I thought he was crazy. Now look who's kicking himself. He also had a 66 Hemi Charger in decent shape that he let go for $500.
  • 8
    Steve Haygood central Georgia January 18, 2017 at 19:56
    I had a 72 240Z and a 74 260Z... let them both get away, but the one that hurts the most was 1976 Olds Cutlass Supreme Brougham...with the 455 engine and factory T Tops, it had every option available. It was the car dealer's son's demo. Full white vinyl top with royal dark blue metallic.. As best I can tell, the 76 with 455 engine and T tops was probably less than 20 made example. The last thing I knew of it, it was sold in the rural county I now live in. I keep an eye open, but most likely it died a death around a tree or clunkers for cash. If I could only find the vin so i could put the thought to rest of seeing it again
  • 9
    Bill Vellner Redford, MI January 18, 2017 at 20:30
    Passed on a 1956 Lincoln Continental in 1968, Looked at a Mercedes Gullwing coupe in 1970, and in 1973 almost bought a 1965 Corvette convertible with fuel injection, knock-off wheels and factory side pipes for $2,000, but bought a VW Fastback instead.
  • 10
    Leigh Calgary January 18, 2017 at 20:40
    For me it was the nicely restored original 1965 289 Cobra for $39,000.
  • 11
    Vince Chicago January 18, 2017 at 20:58
    1989 YUGO?
  • 12
    Denis L. Rochester, NY January 18, 2017 at 21:32
    Very interesting stories but mine is a little different, My car is now a show car, a 1967 327ci Camaro coupe in Madera Maroon with a gold interior that I purchased new in Sept. 1967. I was a 20 year old airman on my way to south east asia for a years duty. My wife and I had been married six months, now we are preparing to celebrate our 50th Anniversary. My wife has encouraged the mutual love affair we have with this beautiful, piece of our youth. I wish I had 1 dollar for everyone who when hearing we've owned this car for 50 years say they had one and wish they had kept it. And my reply is I DID.
  • 13
    George Bursch VA January 18, 2017 at 21:42
    For me its not about the one I wish I had purchased , but the one I sold. I ordered a 1970 Hemi Cuda black on black with a torkflight auto. I sold it in 73, with 5k miles on it. Got married and bought a house.
  • 14
    Archie1954 Vancouver January 18, 2017 at 22:29
    I saw a 1961 Chrysler Newport convertible, metallic purple exterior with white upholstery, completely restored inside and out for $35,000. I passed it by. It was recently for sale again in LA for $120,000.
  • 15
    Mike Pineville, La January 19, 2017 at 15:25
    On leave from the Navy in 1968, found a 1965 Mustang GT fastback. Red with white stripes, A code, 4 speed. The most beautiful car I'd ever seen. Bought it for $1472 . Started racing motocross and needed a van. Sold the Mustang to my brother for $750. Nineteen years ago I bought a 1970 Shelby GT350 and still have it today. I don.t think I'm going to make the same mistake twice!
  • 16
    Garrell Patterson Tallapoosa, Georgia January 19, 2017 at 04:17
    Grew up on a farm and never had the opportunity to go to college but grew up expecting to be dedicated and work hard and had a very successful career. I have been a Gearhead and HotRoder since I was fourteen years old and was blessed to have owned what I called between 40 and 50 Significant mostly no predominantly Chevrolets and maybe more than that in Trading cars. Very very few had car payments and most if not new were 2 to 7 year old cars in an area where there was no malls, shopping centers or any other reason to drive lots of miles.'Probably bought 20+ new cars and trucks for my Wife and myself not included in the significant list that averaged maybe 3000 miles per year. Highlights of the Significant List: 1963 Fuel Injected, 4-Spd Split Window Coupe 1962 340 HP 4-Speed Corvette Convertible 1967 390 HP Black with white interior and factory side exhaust Two 1969 Cameron Z/28's, one Hugger Orange and one red w/black vinyl roof Red 400 HP I Think, 409'CI Impala Sport Coupe that Intraded to Chevy Dealer for a 1993 Silverado Indy Pace Truck Got To Add A Few More Bought a new Rust Orange color with darker same color 1970 Dodge Challenger RT Magnum Gorgeous, mint both tops, 1959 100-6 Red Austin Healy. Present cars: Red W/Black Vinyl Roof show car Quality Chevelle everything custom from aluminum radiator, Custom 3000 Stall Converter, with custom built, beefed up Turbo 400 to a Moser 9" Ford arearend to support a 530 HP Red W/Black Vinyl Roof. Black W/Black Interior 1998 Corvette making 400 RWHP with just bolt ons. 23,XXX miles. Think that is my 12th Corvette and I have had 6 Z/28'S. Hard to stop but there has to be a place but I think my favorite car that I wish I had back in the as new condition as when I sold it. Red/With Black Vinyl Roof, 4-Speed, Factory 411 Rear End 1967 SS Impala 427 W/ no power anything but it had disc. brakes at least up front. 10-12 assorted HotRod 55,56 and 57 Chevies 2 dr. sedans and hardtops.
  • 17
    Ron NorCal January 19, 2017 at 16:35
    Lost out, didn't get my **** together to go down to SoCal due to weather concerns to buy a '57 Chevy Nomad Resto-Mod. I always wanted another Nomad after selling a '56 many years ago. :-(
  • 18
    Harper Jones Nacogdoches Texas January 19, 2017 at 06:48
    My first car, 65 Impala SS 327, Muncie 4 speed with 411 gears. Got in the spring of 69 which was my senior year in HS. In the summer after graduation a HS buddy and I put in a bit hotter cam, solid lifters and a 780 Holley. It ran pretty good for a full size car. Had to have a engine rebuilt a few years later and I pretty much let it go for nothing. If I only knew :-(
  • 19
    Brugeo Austin TX January 19, 2017 at 08:04
    It's not just about the cars I could have had, such as the 1968 Shelby GT 500 convertible I saw in the service department at the Ford dealership where I was working during the height of the second gas crisis in 1979 with a "For Sale $6500" sign on it...it's the cars I had and let go too early. 1970 Boss 302 (sold in 1978 for $800), 1973 El Camino SS 454 4-speed/4-barrel (employee blew it up), 1969 Jaguar E-Type Mk. II OTS (bought in 2000 for $17,500, sold the following year for $19,000, thought I did well on it), 1987 BMW 635 CSi...I could keep going. Still have a bucket list a mile long.
  • 20
    Dave New Mexico January 19, 2017 at 20:24
    I passed on a bank repo 300SL roadster for $5000 in 1974. I had bought my 190SL the week before so it might as well have been $50K. The good news is I still have the 190SL.
  • 21
    Craig Bushey California January 19, 2017 at 09:28
    '68 Roadrunner that I traded in for a new '73 GMC truck, which we still own today. In the middle of the gas "crisis," no one would buy it and the dealer gave me $500 trade in. Later on, a '69 Camaro RS SS that was mint.....idiot.....
  • 22
    Douglas Johnson Minnesota January 19, 2017 at 09:46
    I've had the opportunity to buy several cars that got away. In 69 I had the opportunity to buy a 55 Corvette for $800 plus a $200 mechanic's loan. My dad talked me out of the buy. He stated "it's an old car" You don't want it. Instead I ended up with a 68 roadrunner. I also missed out on buying Jeno Paulucci 1953 Rolls Royce Silver Wraith for $18,000 in 74. At the time I was attending the University of Minnesota and only making $2.50/hr. Even though I had saved up a substantial down payment, no one would lend me the money for the balance, MFL
  • 23
    Mike Burgess Kansas January 19, 2017 at 10:08
    1979- senior in high school- a 1969 Charger Daytona. Sideswiped down one side. $5000.00. Might as well have been a million$$$. 1984-1969 Z-28 sitting at a Podunk car lot. Hugger orange, correct DZ engine. The real deal. $6000.00. What?!? That car will NEVER be worth that much! Guy's dreaming! Memory can really be a curse, can't it?
  • 24
    ferd the cloud January 19, 2017 at 10:37
    Shouldn’t cry over spilled milk, but here I go anyway. I missed out on a package deal of Pontiac muscle. A guy had been collecting derelict ‘60s and ‘70s GTOs and such, but lost the lease on his warehouse. He had forty or fifty cars, along with tons of good parts (like six tri-power setups all lined up on a shelf). Everything needed work, and some cars were only good for parts, but there was a ton of potential. First he offered me three 1967 GTOs (hard tops) with a bunch of spare parts, for $2000. One could have affordably been restored to show quality, one would have made a good driver, and the third was only good for parts. Then he offered to throw in a 1966 GTO post model (again, needing work but good driver potential - and it had a tri-power) for $600 more. I told him I was most interested in his 1968 GTO Ram Air III convertible (again, needing work but very restorable) and he eventually offered to include it in the deal for $7500 cash total - but I had to take it all. Unfortunately I couldn’t come up with the cash or permission from the better half or the space to store it all. I might have also gotten a couple of toasty 1964 GTO convertibles, but… Several years later I ran into him again at a big auto show / flea market and he told me he'd lost most of that stuff. He’d stashed some of it on the properties of various “friends” who later disappeared, and a bunch disappeared when the City tore down that warehouse and built a new jail. Oh well, today I could probably swing the cash and storage (though maybe not the wife’s permission, lol) and I know where some other interesting projects lie… need to get on that!
  • 25
    Dean Burnett Warren, MI January 19, 2017 at 11:00
    Coming in at the "end" of the golden muscle car era, I missed out on several "buys" as I wasn't old enough to purchase one myself and my parents simply wouldn't sign for anything that somebody's Grandmother wouldn't drive. But I beat em' in the end - purchasing a 1972 Nova SS that I still own today. 350 V8, 4BBL Carb, 4 Speed manual, positraction axel, white letter tires, it made my dream come true. It's not exceptionally fast, but it's the whole package. Who knows? If things work out, perhaps I'll find that "Marina Blue with White Stripes Z28" one day.
  • 26
    Bob Sechler Wheat Ridge Colorado January 19, 2017 at 11:25
    I had a brand spanking new 69 dark green Z/28 in my sights for 3,900.00. I had $3k but my dad wouldn't loan me the extra $900.00. I tried to trade in my 55 two door post with a 302 (bored out 283) and 4.56 gears. Dealer said no dice. Sold the 55 for $1,000.00 and built a Corv-8 with a 327. Got married and sold it for $1,800.00 to buy a Cavalier station Wagon for the wife and kids. Shame, shame, Shame.
  • 27
    Gene Hawley Kansas January 19, 2017 at 11:28
    Bought my 64 Corvette because the girl I was dating said they had more class than the Chevelle I had at the time. So in 1973 I bought it for$1,100 dollars, all original with both tops. Still have it, at least I found one bargain in 1973. The car has been faithful.
  • 28
    Scott Swinamer Binghamton, NY January 19, 2017 at 23:33
    I looked a 1967 Pontiac GTO in the spring of 1986. It was a four-speed car with damage to the front corner, and included the fender, headlight bezel, and bumper to repair it. It had some bodywork and patina. The asking price in the local newspaper was $1200! When I got there, the kid said if he didn't sell it that day he would not be able to go to spring break... the price now? $900! I apparently though it was too much! ARGH!
  • 29
    Mike K SE MI January 19, 2017 at 12:01
    30 years ago I looked at a '69 Hemi Roadrunner, 21k original miles. It had been a drag car most of it's life but there was no roll bar. It needed a long block (original motor had been blown up and seller was keeping the replacement for his '65 Belvedere race car), had been painted and the front wheel wells were trimmed for tall tires, but otherwise the car was complete, original and very clean.The seller was asking $3300. I told him "I'll let you know tonight." When I called 2 hours later to say I wanted it, someone else had already bought it.
  • 30
    Bill Schardt Walnut Creek, CA January 19, 2017 at 00:22
    Sold my 1966 SS396 Chevelle SS in 1976 as gas just reached 60 cents a gallon...and got a VW bug. Was thrilled (at the time) that I got $875 for it. Not a day goes by when I don't think about that car.
  • 31
    Carl Becker Houston, TX January 19, 2017 at 12:23
    In 1969 as a college student I ordered a new 1970 Olds.Cutlass, 310hp 350, 4 speed, posi, other performance goodies. I had the cash saved from working construction. By the time the car came in, my father had told me he couldn't pay my tuition for the upcoming term. It was either use my money for car or college, I chose college and let the car go (and my $100 deposit!). I followed that car around the city traded to another dealer and finally sold. I was ahead of Oldsmobile, this car had the same drivetrain as the Rallye 350 introduced later, but was dark blue with chrome & other goodies. I've only seen I other in a Mecum auction, but it wasn't the one. Consolation was I later bought a used 1970 Malibu, 350, 4 speed, and I still have it!
  • 32
    Charles Neptune, NJ January 19, 2017 at 00:26
    I could have bought a 1968 GTX, 440 six pack with headers in 1972 for $2,200 which was a lot of money back then. Also could have purchased a 1968 Roadrunner for $1,800. Rather than buy these two cars, bought a 1967 Toyota Land Cruiser instead. Sold that 6 months later and joined the Army. Should have bought either one of the Plymouths.
  • 33
    Wilhelm Brauer Tehachapi, CA January 19, 2017 at 00:29
    In 1975 at age 16 I was taking a boy scouts field trip to "Corvettes Unlimited" in Fresno. They had a yellow 56 Vette for sale for $2200. It had been drag raced and someone had done a lousy job making fender flares from flat stock fiberglass. I asked my dad to let me buy it and he said "You have to be kidding me" and then called me a teenage werewolf. I still think about it 42 years on.
  • 34
    Dan Bruckbauer W. MI. January 19, 2017 at 00:34
    I had the chance to buy a Saturn Yellow '70 GSX Stage 1 four speed back in about 1978 form the original owner...$2000.00, he was my mechanic, and it was in excellent condition. I didn't think that I could afford it, and instead bought a '66 GTO for $1700.00. Then there's that '70 LS6 Chevelle a couple of years later @ 2500.00...oh well.
  • 35
    Carl Miami FL January 19, 2017 at 12:36
    Had several I wished I'd bought. In high school, a friend had a '67 442 his father was letting him use from their dealership. In 1968, his father told him "get one of your friends to buy it" before going off to college. I had the cash to buy it. He brought it over to my house one afternoon when I was gone (he didn't know it) but my dad was there. Being a 'good' salesman, he took my father for a ride and got on it hard. When I got home, my father said "your friend was here with that Oldsmobile, and you are NOT buying it, you'll wrap yourself around a tree!) And it was MY money!
  • 36
    gary Homer Glen, Ill. January 19, 2017 at 12:56
    My first car was a 65 Chevelle Deluxe 300 hardtop I bought in 1970 when I was 16. I pull the worn out 283 and powerglide and installed a 327( that I rebuilt when I was 15) and a 4 speed. I drove the car for thee years including a trip to Daytona in 72. After that I owned many other Chevys ,3-67 Chevelles,2-67 El Caminos,62 Nova convertible,62 63 65 69-427 Impalas plus many others all for less than 300-400 dollars.Finally in 74 I bought my first really nice car a 70 Nova for 800 dollars . The original owner of the Nova had gone to Applegate Chevorlet in Flint Michigan and ordered the car the way he wanted it 350-2bl,3 speed on the floor, a/c,tinted windows,ps,pb,delux cloth benchseat interior,308-10 bolt posi,and more options.After several trips to Daytona, California,Canada I decided to put a Dyers blower on the car . I had a rusted out 69 Camaro SS work car so I took the 350 ,4 speed,and 12 bolt out and put them in the Nova and swaped the Nova drivetrain in the Camaro . In 77 after I built the Nova(my Friday race car) I needed a Saturday night date car so I found a 71 Monte Carlo SS fully loaded pw,pl,tilt wheel,rear bumper pad , much more.This car I drove cross country to Califorina in 79, raced in the NMCA in the late 80 s early 90 s were it ran low 14 s to high 13 s . Then in 83 I bought a 69 Corvette coup 350-350, 4 speed with A/C. I still find time to drive them to local cruise nights and shows. The Nova and Monte Carlo are still all original from when I built them in the late 70 s . The Corvette was painted in 2014 due to a minor accident ( not my fault ) but still has the original drivetrain.
  • 37
    Bruce Blanding, UT January 20, 2017 at 13:22
    I was 15, the year was 1975 and I had just picked up 3 fixer-uppers: a '67 Impala plain-jane convertible, a '47 Plymouth coupe, and a '64 Impala Super Sport convertible for a combined total of $800 and a worn out 30.06 rifle. Unfortunately, I let the $150 lime-green '62 Impala convertible, the $450 '47 Mercury convertible, and the dinged up $60 '54 Chevy convertible get away. If only we had our crystal ball.... The last 3 are all long gone, the '64 SS hung around until 2005 when I needed an infusion of cash, and the '47 Plymouth sits much as it did 41 years ago when I dragged it home. As for the '67 Impala, it is looking forward to its 3rd restoration this summer. It took me through high school and college, 8 kids, and 35 years of marital bliss -- and now we're getting it ready to ride off into the sunset.... (eventually, we're not THAT old yet!)
  • 38
    Becker Florida January 20, 2017 at 10:52
    In high school in 1967, I wanted to buy a new '67 SS396 Chevelle, had most of the money saved from working. Local Chevy dealer had one, 4-speed, bench seat, no options (except posi. & 350hp!) radio & heater delete, poverty caps. I still couldn't quite swing it so salesman said they just got a '67 Malibu trade-in, 327-350, 4-speed, buckets,& loaded w/options, almost no miles. I had the cash to buy it and they wrote it up, but told me they already had another deal from a kid they KNEW wouldn't get financed, so it was as good as mine. Guess what, he got financed! Also had a chance to buy a '67 Impala SS427 4-speed, Royal Plum, MINT in 1985 for $5,000.
  • 39
    Len Boschma Beloit, WI January 20, 2017 at 00:33
    Oh the ones that got away! As a buyer and wholesaler of used cars starting in about 1977, I have had the opportunity to have bought and sold several cars that I wish I would have kept. 2 of the cars that come to memory that I did buy were a pair of trade-ins that I bought from a local Pontiac dealership in June 1977. A 1972 Chevelle SS 402, 4 speed and a 71 Lemans Sport 400. I paid $1650.00 for the pair and still have the canceled check, but wish I still had the cars. That same summer I had bought a 1970 442 455, 4 Speed from a Volkswagen dealer that had taken it in-trade from the original owners on a new Super Beetle convertible. I also bought a 1969 Mustang Mach1 428 SCJ, 4 Speed from that same VW dealership. I resold them both that same summer. The main 2 cars that I remember not buying and should have were later in 1981 and 82. I found a 1965 Corvette 396 with no options, other than the 396, 4 speed and AM/FM radio but it was a Super well cared for all original and low mile, original owner (who was a mechanic at the Chevy dealership where I saw It) car. He wanted what seemed like an unholy amount of money at that time - $8,500.00! The other car that I really wanted for myself, but I just couldn't afford to spend on a toy for myself at the time, was an original owner 1967 Impala SS 427 4 Speed in Royal Plum. An all original car with low miles and had never been driven in rain or snow. I passed due to not being able to come up with the $3,995.00 firm that it took to buy it in 1982.
  • 40
    Roger Huber Belvidere, ILn 1948 January 23, 2017 at 13:02
    In 1948 When I was 16 An old neighbor had a1934 ford convertible he said I could have it for $100. My Dad would not Buy it and the guy down the street bought it for his son and I saw it all the time.
  • 41
    darin l. johnson IL January 23, 2017 at 12:05
    the one that gets away, keeps coming back! i originally bought my 70 rallye 350 in mid 1979 from a buddy of mine. i first saw the car my freshman year(1975)told myself i was going to own it one day. my ex was not very kind to it and set for a couple of years until a kid offered some money for it. amazing what you do when in need. four years later thru the grape vine, heard he wanted to sell it. guess what? got remarried bought an 05 dale sr. monte and an 04 goldwing. and again the car sat. the economy was down the s*&$# and we decided to sell it again. that's another story in itself! 9 years later i was watching tv and got a text from the couple that bought it, wanting to know if i wanted it back. well needless to say it is setting in my garage again and momma says it's not going anywere again. i keep tinkering with it to make a little better until i can have the body back to my expectations. by the way i'm pretty sure i have lost money on it but my baby is back again!!! p.s. in need of a pass. mirror for the mirror itself. thanks
  • 42
    Lawrence Florida February 15, 2017 at 09:10
    1978 came back to US after working overseas for a few years, went to work TDY at Goddard. While there, I went down to Thoroughbred Motors in Alexandria, Va. They had 2 Miuras , both P400S models, one white, the other burnt orange, 19,800 for either. I had just blown most of my stash on rental property and couldn't see dropping that much coin on a car. Would like to have that decision again ! Did pickup a 65 911 twenty odd years ago, had enough sense to keep it.
  • 43
    rich towne FLORIDA May 3, 2017 at 17:38
    My first car, that I bought brand new, a left over, was a 1971 Chevelle SS 454, automatic, white, black vinyl top, no stripes, manual steering, beautiful, especially for a high school student heading into my senior year , one month shy of 17 yrs of age. I saved the money for 3 years by mowing lawns ! List price was $4200 but we got it for $3900 ! My next car was a 1970 1/2 Camaro SS 402/ 375, 4 speed. The next car I bought was a 1970 1/2 Camaro Z28 (ist year LT1)which was stolen from the Post Office parking lot where I worked as a letter carrier on Long Island, NY.. After I recovered from that theft, I bought a 1969 Camaro Z28, rally sport. Miss them all ! Now driving a 2016 Mustang Ecoboost 6 speed manual. Not like the old muscle cars but still alot of fun !

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