It’s no secret that classic collector cars can be worth a bundle of money, and that fact was on full display during the 2016 Mecum Portland Auction. The Rose City recently played host to the legendary Mecum auction for the first time ever, sporting a collection of 600 of the finest vehicles in the Pacific Northwest.
1965 Shelby GT350 Fastback
A rock-solid classic with well-documented ownership and factory-matched numbers, this beautiful 1965 Shelby GT350 Fastback was one of the crown jewels of the inaugural Mecum Portland Auction. Garage kept and meticulously maintained by the same owner for nearly four decades, this GT350 fetched a tidy $305,000, making it the auction’s top-priced seller. It features the iconic Wimbledon White body with Guardsman Blue rocker and LeMans top stripes, Goodyear Eagle GT radial tires and rare original Cragar two-piece magnum wheels. An immaculately rebuilt undercarriage completes the exterior build.
Under the hood, this Shelby GT350 Fastback is every bit as special. A fully original drivetrain joins a serial-matched 4.7-liter 289 Hi-Po V8 engine mated to the venerable Borg-Warner T10 four-speed transmission. Completing the effect are a rare small-letter four-barrel intake and 715 CFM center-pivot float Holley carburetors, along with the unique one-inch Monte Carlo bar, which provides added stability during high-stress cornering. The largely original interior is also impressive, with authentic Ray Brown seat belts, a stock package shelf and original shifter, tachometer and horn switch. Considering the rarity and outstanding condition of this high-performance beauty, its hefty price tag should come as no surprise.
1969 Ford Boss 429 Mustang Fastback
The 1969 Ford Boss 429 Mustang Fastback came by its name honestly, ranking among the most powerful cars ever to roll out of the factories in Detroit. Originating at the famed Kar Kraft facility in Brighton, Michigan, the Boss 429 Mustang was a larger-than-life muscle car packed with an engine so large that it required a modified Cobra Jet Mustang body just to fit properly. This particular model is a faithful representation with meticulous documentation including an original sales location and a full Marti Report. As one of just 859 Boss 429s made during 1969, it’s no wonder this outstanding car fetched $240,000 at auction.
This Boss 429 was fully rotisserie restored in 2011 and finished with its original Wimbledon White paint and deluxe black interior, along with Goodyear F60-15 Polyglas tires and Magnum 500 chrome wheels. The original, number-matched 429 V8 engine is fitted with a massive Holley 735 CFM four-barrel carburetor and original high-rise intake manifold. The interior is complete with original functioning AM radio and authentic Hurst shifter. It’s not often that nearly a quarter of a million dollars for a vehicle could be considered a bargain, but this may be just such an occasion.
1970 Plymouth Hemi Cuda
For muscle car enthusiasts, it doesn’t get much better than the legendary 1970 Plymouth Hemi Cuda. Featuring iconic styling, a seemingly endless assortment of available options and a brawny 426 Hemi engine that is equally at home on the street or on the strip, the Hemi Cuda is one of the most beloved muscle cars ever produced. With that in mind, it’s not hard to see why this carefully restored 1970 Plymouth Hemi Cuda raked in $190,000 once the final bid was placed.
This stunning Cuda recently underwent a full restoration, bringing it back to a perfect match with its original trim tag. Fully number matched, this Cuda is painted the original Ice Blue Metallic with black side stripe details. It’s just one of 368 to mate the 426/425 horsepower engine with the three-speed A727 Torqueflite automatic transmission, and it features the sought-after Shaker hood with J45 hood pins, chrome racing mirrors and authentic chrome accents. In fact, this beauty even earned the attention of Mopar Enthusiast, which featured it in the pages of its magazine.
1967 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible
Featuring an unforgettable design that incorporated long, angled lines and a unique “stinger” stripe and hood scoop, a legendary reputation and a powerful selection of big-block engines, the Chevy Corvette Stingray is one of the most beloved Corvettes ever rolled off a production line. Five years of development and tweaking made the 1967 model year – the final year in the Corvette’s second generation – arguably the finest ever produced at the time. This particular example, a beautifully restored and extraordinarily well-documented 1967 Chevy Corvette Convertible, is no doubt worth every penny of the $160,000 it ultimately commanded.
It begins with the spotless finish, done in the eye-catching original Marlboro Maroon paint and complete with high-contrast hood “stinger” accent, which is matched with period-correct Mopar Rallye wheels and red-line tires. Along with a fully authentic drivetrain, this Corvette features a Muncie M21 four-speed transmission receiving power from a robust L71 427/435 horsepower engine with the Tri-Power Holley triple two-barrel carburetor setup. Further enhancing its appeal is a tremendous amount of documentation, which includes a full owner history, a shipping report from the National Corvette Restorers Society and complete documentation of the restoration process.
1968 Chevrolet COPO Nova SS
Few muscle cars on the auction block can match the backstory of the legendary 1968 Chevy COPO 9738 Nova Super Sport. Originally ordered by Fred Gibb through Chevrolet’s Central Office Production Order (COPO) program, COPO 9738 combined the heavy-duty Turbo Hydra-Matic 400 transmission with the base Nova SS package featuring the stout L78. Just 50 were produced in order to meet the NHRA’s minimum production standards. As if being among those 50 weren’t exclusive enough, this particular example – numbered four of 50 – is one of just ten that arrived with Tripoli Turquoise paint.
With an extraordinary story comes an extraordinary burden of proof, and this Nova SS does not want for documentation. In addition to a signed vehicle history letter from the original owner, this car also includes extensive ownership records and past titles, authentic pre-delivery sheet and more. It’s also been featured in numerous magazines and other media outlets. Best of all, it’s packing the legendary L88 427 powerplant under the hood along with aftermarket headers, improved suspension and other performance tweaks. For muscle car enthusiasts, it simply doesn’t get much better than this. With a $145,000 final sale price, there’s no question this beautiful Nova SS was the buy of a lifetime.
The bids were flying fast and furious, ultimately totaling $8,999,925 in combined vehicle sales by the time the expo wrapped up. These five stunning cars netted the highest price once bidding concluded, proving that classic cars can indeed be a wise investment.
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