Eighties Vehicles at the 2018 Mecum Las Vegas

Mecum’s three-day November auction in Las Vegas provided some fodder for commentary. I’ll concentrate on the at least reasonably stock 1980s cars (and a few trucks) that sold (remember that Mecum auctions are not no reserve auctions—a white 1989 Porsche 911 Speedster with tan leather seats and 31,000 miles was a no sale bid up to $150,000) and add some of my opinions. Eighties vehicles were about 5% of the 577 vehicle lots sold in this auction.

Thursday, November 15th:

  • 1981 silver Mercedes-Benz 380SL convertible with blue seats, a 155 bhp 3.8 liter/234 ci V8 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$9,000 hammer price.
  • 1984 silver Porsche 944 hatchback coupe with black seats, a 150 bhp 2.5 liter/151 ci inline four with Bosch fuel injection, and a five-speed manual—$5,000
  • 1989 green Jaguar XJ-S convertible with a black top, saddle leather seats, an HE 262 bhp 5.3 liter/326 ci V12 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 18,000 miles—$13,000
  • 1985 bluish green Mercedes-Benz 380SL convertible with a tan convertible top and a hard top, tan seats, a 155 bhp 3.8 liter/234 ci V8 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$10,000
  • 1981 black Chevrolet Camaro custom (paint, exhaust, wheels/tires) coupe with black seats, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and a four-speed manual—$10,000
  • 1989 red Ford Mustang GT convertible with a white top, red cloth seats, a 220 bhp 4.9 liter/302 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 9,100 miles—$13,000
  • 1982 black Chevrolet K20 Silverado custom (engine, suspension, paint, interior) pickup truck with a blue cloth split bench seat, a 7.4 liter/454 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, and an automatic—$18,500
  • 1989 white Chevrolet Camaro IROC-Z hatchback coupe with gray custom cloth seats, a 230 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 44,000 miles—$10,000
  • 1988 maroon Toyota Celica ST coupe with red cloth seats, a 2S-ELC 2.0 liter/119 ci inline four with fuel injection, an automatic, and 40,000 miles—$6,250 for this generation of Celica rarely seen at auction.
1988 Toyota Celica ST, linked from Mecum’s website.
  • 1980 black Chevrolet Corvette coupe with black leather seats, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with Rochester Quadrajet four-barrel carburetor, and an automatic—$7,000
  • 1982 lime green Chevrolet C10 custom (engine, suspension, paint) pickup truck with a black vinyl bench seat, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$6,000
  • 1989 red Chevrolet Corvette hatchback coupe with tan leather seats, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 89,000 miles—$3,000
  • 1987 silver Chevrolet Corvette custom (exterior, interior) hatchback coupe with black leather seats, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$5,000

Friday, December 16th:

  • 1989 maroon Chrysler TC by Maserati convertible with a hard top, tan leather seats, a Turbo II 160 bhp 2.2 liter/134 ci inline four with turbocharger and fuel injection, an automatic, and 9,700 miles—$8,500
  • 1989 red Lotus Esprit Turbo SE coupe with tan leather seats, a 264 bhp 2.2 liter/134 ci inline four with turbocharger and fuel injection, and a five-speed manual—$27,000
1989 Lotus Esprit Turbo SE, linked from Mecum’s website.
  • 1986 white Spartan II coupe with a gray leather seats, a VG30 160 bhp 3.0 liter/181 ci V6 with fuel injection, and an automatic transmission—$21,000 for this “neo-classic” based on a Datsun/Nissan 300ZX chassis.
  • 1989 blue Porsche 928 S4 hatchback coupe with tan leather seats, a 320 bhp 5.0 liter/302 ci V8 with Bosch fuel injection, an automatic, and 61,000 miles—$19,000
  • 1986 silver/maroon Chevrolet C30 custom (suspension, exterior, interior) pickup truck with maroon cloth seats, a Cummins 12V diesel inline six, and an automatic—$16,000
  • 1981 red Toyota Land Cruiser SUV with gray vinyl seats, a 2F 135 bhp 4.2 liter/258 ci inline six with a carburetor, and a four-speed manual—at $45,000, the first vehicle in this auction to meet my criteria for serious 1980s collectability of mostly or entirely original cars or trucks: selling for equal to or above its original base list price. I’ll mark these vehicles in bold green.
  • 1987 black Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS Aerocoupe custom (just about everything) with a tan interior, an LS2 6.0 liter/364 ci V8 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$14,000
  • 1981 brown Pontiac Firebird Trans Am Turbo coupe with camel tan seats, a 200 bhp 4.9 liter/301 ci V8 with a turbocharger and a four-barrel carburetor, and an automatic—$8,000

Saturday, November 17th:

  • 1989 black Land Rover Defender 90 custom (interior, wheels/tires) SUV with black seats, a 2.5 liter/152 ci diesel inline four with a turbocharger, and a five-speed manual—$22,000
  • 1986 black Chevrolet Corvette hatchback coupe with red leather seats, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 63,000 miles—$7,000
  • 1982 red Porsche 911 SC Targa coupe with tan leather seats, a 180 bhp 3.0 liter/183 ci flat six with fuel injection, and a five-speed manual—$35,500
1982 Porsche 911 SC Targa, linked from Mecum’s website.
  • 1980 white Chevrolet Corvette Duntov Turbo convertible with red velour seats, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with a turbocharger, an automatic, and 15,000 miles—$28,000 for this rare car.
  • 1980 gray Chevrolet Corvette custom (just about everything) coupe with blue leather seats, a 535 bhp V8 with a Paxton supercharger and Edelbrock fuel injection, and an automatic—$17,000
  • 1983 black/silver two-tone Oldsmobile Cutlass Calais Hurst/Olds 15th Anniversary coupe with maple red seats, a 180 bhp 5.0 liter/307 ci V8 with a Rochester 4MV Quadrajet four-barrel carburetor, an automatic attached to that famous lightning rod shifter, and 37,000 miles—$16,000

Among eighties vehicles, Chevrolets dominated this auction, with 42% of the sold lots from that decade. Porsche, Mercedes-Benz, and Toyota also had notable representation. What do you think of these results?

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