Eighties Vehicles at the 2018 Mecum Monterey

Mecum’s three-day auction in Monterey included 22 vehicles from the 1980s—7% of the 317 cars and trucks that sold. As always, I’ll concentrate on the vehicles that actually sold (remember that this is not a no reserve auction—a guards red 1989 Porsche 911 Speedster with tan leather seats and 22,000 miles was a no sale bid up to $130,000) and add some of my opinions.

Thursday, August 23rd:

  • 1985 champagne Mercedes-Benz 380SE sedan with brown seats, a 155 bhp 3.8 liter/234 ci V8 with Bosch Jetronic fuel injection, an automatic, and 62,000 miles—$4,000 hammer price marks the usual ignominious beginning for eighties vehicles we see at most auctions.
  • 1989 red Jaguar XJ-S convertible with a black top, black leather seats, an HE 262 bhp 5.3 liter/326 ci V12 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 26,000 miles—$6,500 for one of the first full XJ-S convertibles.
  • 1981 silver Alfa Romeo Spider custom (engine) convertible with a black top, black leather seats, a 2.0 liter/120 ci inline four with dual Weber carburetors, a five-speed manual, and 58,000 miles—$4,000
  • 1989 black Mercedes-Benz 560SL convertible with a black convertible top, black leather seats, a 227 bhp 5.5 liter/338 ci V8 with Bosch KE-Jetronic fuel injection, an automatic, and 24,000 miles—$38,000
  • 1981 stainless steel DeLorean DMC-12 coupe with a gray interior, a ZMJ-159 130 bhp 2.8 liter/174 ci V6 with Bosch K-Jetronic fuel injection, a five-speed manual, and 22,000 miles—$17,500
  • 1981 maroon Datsun 280ZX hatchback coupe with red cloth seats, an L28 145 bhp 2.8 liter/168 ci inline six with Bosch L-Jetronic fuel injection, a five-speed manual, and 75,000 miles—at $14,000, the first vehicle in this auction to meet my criteria for serious collectability of 1980s cars or trucks in stock condition: selling for equal to or above its original base list price. I’ll mark these vehicles in bold green.
1981 Datsun 280ZX, linked from Mecum’s website
  • 1989 green Nissan Pao convertible with gray cloth seats, a MA10S 51 bhp 1.0 liter/61 ci inline four, a five-speed manual, and 67,000 miles—$15,000
  • 1988 black Porsche 924 S Special Edition hatchback coupe with gray cloth seats, a 160 bhp 2.5 liter/151 ci inline four with fuel injection, a five-speed manual, and 58,000 miles—$10,000
  • 1983 white Porsche 928 S hatchback coupe with blue leather seats, a 234 bhp 4.5 liter/285 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 86,000 miles—$6,500

Friday, August 24th:

  • 1985 red Alpha Romeo Spider Graduate Edition convertible with a black top, black seats, a 115 bhp 2.0 liter/120 ci four with Bosch L-Jetronic fuel injection, a five-speed manual, and 20,000 miles—$18,000
  • 1981 brown Toyota Land Cruiser FJ-40 SUV with gray seats, a 2F 135 bhp 4.2 liter/258 ci inline six, a four-speed manual, and 23,000 miles—$40,000
  • 1987 white Toyota Land Cruiser FJ-60 SUV with gray seats, a 2F 4.2 liter/258 ci inline six with a carburetor, a four-speed manual, and a “surprisingly low” 148,000 miles—$31,000
  • 1987 silver Porsche 959 Komfort coupe with burgundy leather seats, a 444 bhp 2.8 liter/174 ci flat six with twin turbochargers and Bosch Motronic fuel injection, a six-speed manual, and 3,700 miles—$425,000 for this car whose front end was heavily damaged in a trailer accident.
Damaged 1987 Porsche 959, linked from Mecum’s website.
  • 1989 black Land Rover Defender 110 SUV with black seats, a 2.5 liter/152 ci diesel inline four with a turbocharger, and a five-speed manual—$45,000
  • 1981 tan Toyota Land Cruiser FJ-40 custom (engine, brakes) SUV with tan seats, a five-speed manual, and 23,000 miles—$30,000
  • 1988 red Ferrari 328 GTS coupe with tan leather seats, an F105B 260 bhp 3.2 liter/215 ci V8 with Bosch K-Jetronic fuel injection, a five-speed manual, and 35,000 miles—$55,000 is #3/Good money, according to Hagerty’s valuation tools.
  • 1986 white Toyota Land Cruiser FJ-45 pickup truck with gray vinyl seats, a 2F 135 bhp 4.2 liter/258 ci inline six, and a four-speed manual—$48,000
  • 1981 bright yellow Porsche 911 SC Targa custom (body) coupe with black seats, a 180 bhp 3.0 liter/183 ci flat six with fuel injection, and a five-speed manual—$15,000

Saturday, August 25th:

  • 1982 red Toyota Land Cruiser FJ-40 SUV with black seats, a 2F 135 bhp 4.2 liter/258 ci inline six, a four-speed manual, and 48,000 miles—$40,000
  • 1985 white Buick Riviera convertible with red leather seats, an LD5 200 bhp 3.8 liter/231 ci V6 with turbocharger and fuel injection, and an automatic—$20,000 for this rare car, one of 49 Riviera convertibles built with the turbocharged engine in 1985.
  • 1989 green, gold, and white Porsche 962 Miller High Life race car with a twin-turbocharged flat six—at $2,000,000, this multiple race-winning car finally sells after at least two previous attempts.
1989 Porsche 962 race car, linked from Mecum’s website
  • 1985 red Modena GT Spyder California convertible with tan seats, a 5.0 liter V8 with four Weber carburetors, a five-speed manual, and 1,500 miles—$370,000 for one of the three faux Ferraris featured in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off

Porsches of all types and Toyota FJ SUVs were strong at this auction, with Alfa-Romeos, Mercedes-Benzes, and Nissan/Datsuns also present. What do you think of the results?

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