Eighties Vehicles at the 2020 Mecum Summer Special

Mecum’s “Summer Special” auction in Kissimmee provided some interesting fodder for commentary. It’s important to remember that Mecum auctions are not “no reserve” auctions—a red 1986 DeTomaso Pantara GT5-S coupe with black bucket seats and 7,300 miles was a no-sale bid up to $120,000. I’ll concentrate on the at least reasonably stock 1980s vehicles that sold and add some of my opinions. Eighties vehicles were about 9% of the 461 vehicle lots sold in this auction.

Thursday, August 27th:

  • 1989 Black Chevrolet Camaro IROC-Z hatchback coupe with red leather bucket seats, an L98 240 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 58,000 miles—$14,000 hammer price
  • 1982 Silver Beige Chevrolet Corvette Collector Edition hatchback coupe with silver beige leather bucket seats, an L83 Cross-Fire 200 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with throttle body fuel injection, an automatic, and 44,000 miles—$9,000
  • 1984 Black Chevrolet El Camino custom (engine) pickup with the SS Choo Choo Customs package, a red cloth bench seat, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$10,000
  • 1981 Beige Jeep Wrangler custom (engine) SUV with tan bucket seats, a 5.9 liter/360 ci V8, an automatic, and 86,000 miles—$11,500
  • 1987 Black Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme 442 coupe with tan seats, a 170 bhp 5.0 liter/307 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, an automatic, and 77,000 miles—$9,000
  • 1987 red/white two-tone GMC 1500 custom (engine, suspension) pickup truck with a tan interior, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$18,000
  • 1988 white Chevrolet custom (body) pickup truck with a gray bench seat, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$7,000
  • 1982 Light Gray Buick Electra Limited sedan with a dark blue vinyl top, blue velour seats, a 140 bhp 5.0 liter/307 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, an automatic, and 8,000 miles—$9,500. Who saves these cars?
  • 1986 bronze/tan two-tone Dodge Ramcharger Royale SE SUV with tan bucket seats, a 150 bhp 5.2 liter/318 ci V8 with a two-barrel carburetor, an automatic, and 71,000 miles—at $15,500, the first vehicle in this auction to meet my criteria for serious 1980s collectability of original cars or trucks: selling for equal to or above its original base list price. I’ll mark these vehicles in bold green.
  • 1986 silver/gray two-tone Mercury Grand Marquis sedan with silver seats, a Windsor 150 bhp 4.9 liter/302 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 19,000 miles—$9,750
  • 1981 Cotillion White Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham sedan with red Heather knit seats, the L62 6.0 liter/368 ci V8-6-4 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 44,000 miles—$4,500
  • 1987 white/blue two-tone Dodge Ramcharger SUV with blue bucket seats, a 145 bhp 5.2 liter/318 ci V8 with a two-barrel carburetor, and an automatic—$8,500. Two Ramchargers on the same day?
  • 1987 Scarlet Red Ford Mustang convertible with a black top, medium gray bucket seats, a Windsor 225 bhp 4.9 liter/302 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 26,000 miles—$10,500
  • 1986 black with woodgrain AMC Eagle Limited station wagon with a tan interior, a 110 bhp 4.2 liter/258 ci inline six, an automatic, and 69,000 miles—$17,000
1986 AMC Eagle, photo courtesy of Mecum
  • 1987 yellow Jeep Wrangler custom (engine) SUV with black bucket seats, an unknown V8, an automatic, and a salvage title—$8,000
  • 1986 white Mercedes-Benz 560SL convertible with burgundy leather bucket seats, a 227 bhp 5.5 liter/338 ci V8 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$12,000 for this unusual (for a Mercedes) color combination.
  • 1983 blue Jeep CJ-7 custom (paint, suspension, transmission) SUV with black bucket seats, an unknown engine, and an automatic—$12,000
  • 1989 Midnight Black Lincoln Town Car sedan with a midnight black carriage top, currant red 50/50 seats, a Windsor 150 bhp 4.9 liter/302 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 4,000 miles—$24,000 is almost (but not quite) what a 1989 Town Car originally went for.
  • 1986 burgundy Chevrolet Corvette custom (just about everything) hatchback coupe with a saddle bucket seats, an unknown V8, a four-speed manual, and 4,000 miles—$14,000
  • 1989 Dark Blue Metallic Chevrolet Corvette convertible with a saddle top, saddle leather bucket seats, an L98 240 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$4,500
  • 1989 blue Cadillac Brougham limousine with blue cloth seats, a 140 bhp 5.0 liter/307 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, an automatic, and 27,000 miles—an ouch! at $1,750

Friday, August 28th:

  • 1982 Silver Beige Chevrolet Corvette Collector Edition hatchback coupe with silver beige leather bucket seats, an L83 Cross-Fire 200 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with throttle body fuel injection, an automatic, and 68,000 miles—$11,500
  • 1981 merlot Chevrolet custom (interior, wheels/tires) pickup truck with a gray bench seat, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$18,000
  • 1987 burgundy/white two-tone Dodge Ramcharger SUV with burgundy cloth bucket seats, a 145 bhp 5.2 liter/318 ci V8 with a two-barrel carburetor, and an automatic—$8,000
  • 1985 brown/tan two-tone Chevrolet C10 Silverado pickup truck with a tan cloth bench seat, a 160 bhp 5.0 liter/305 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, an automatic, and 79,000 miles—$9,000
  • 1984 Silver/Black two-tone Nissan/Datsun 300ZX 50th Anniversary Edition hatchback coupe with black bucket seats, a VG30ET 200 bhp 3.0 liter/181 ci V6 with fuel injection and a turbocharger, and a five-speed manual, and 80,000 miles—$11,000
  • 1986 yellow Toyota pickup truck with tan cloth seats, a 22R-E 105 bhp 2.4 liter/144 ci inline four with fuel injection, an automatic, and 84,000 miles—$14,000
1986 Toyota pickup truck, photo courtesy of Mecum
  • 1987 Black/Silver two-tone Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme 442 coupe with gray cloth bucket seats, a 170 bhp 5.0 liter/307 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, an automatic, and 11,000 miles—$29,000
  • 1989 Scarlet Red Ford Mustang GT convertible with a white top, white leather bucket seats, a Windsor 225 bhp 4.9 liter/302 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 7,000 miles—$29,000
  • 1987 red Chevrolet Corvette custom (exterior, wheels/tires) convertible with a white top, black leather bucket seats, an L98 240 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 63,000 miles—$15,000
  • 1981 maroon Chevrolet Camaro Z28 coupe with tan cloth bucket seats, a 150 bhp 5.0 liter/305 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, a four-speed manual, and 28,000 miles—$25,000
  • 1987 Scarlet Red Ford Mustang ASC/McLaren convertible with gray bucket seats, a 225 bhp 4.9 liter/302 ci V8 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$13,000
  • 1980 Blue Green Metallic Mercedes-Benz 450SL convertible with a black soft top, tan leather seats, a 160 bhp 4.5 liter/276 ci V8 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$27,000
  • 1984 black/silver two-tone Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck with a gray cloth bench seat, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$28,000 for this truck, restored in reasonably stock fashion.
  • 1981 black Toyota SR5 Hilux pickup truck with tan cloth seats, a 22R 97 bhp 2.4 liter/144 ci inline four with a carburetor, and a five-speed manual—$20,000
  • 1984 white Johnson Phantom coupe with tan leather bucket seats, a 190 bhp 5.0 liter/305 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, and an automatic—$11,000 for this Camaro-based “neo-classic.”
  • 1980 blue Toyota FJ-40 Land Cruiser SUV with gray seats, a 2F 4.2 liter inline six, and a five-speed manual—$34,000
  • 1989 blue Cadillac Brougham limousine with blue cloth seats, a 140 bhp 5.0 liter/307 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, an automatic, and 27,000 miles—a Thursday sale gets resold on Friday for $2,000, $250 more than a day before.

Saturday, August 29th:

  • 1984 Black Chevrolet Corvette hatchback coupe with graphite leather bucket seats, an L83 Cross-Fire 205 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with throttle body fuel injection, the Doug Nash 4+3, and 1,400 miles—$17,000. This amount is almost #1/Concours condition money, according to Hagerty’s valuation tools.
  • 1985 orange Cadillac Fleetwood very custom (just about anything) coupe with orange vinyl seats, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$23,000
  • 1986 Guards Red Porsche 944 Turbo hatchback coupe with black leather bucket seats, a 220 bhp 2.5 liter/151 ci inline four with fuel injection and a turbocharger, and a five-speed manual—$27,000
  • 1989 Bright Red Jeep Grand Wagoneer custom (engine) SUV with light tan bucket seats, a Hemi 707 bhp 6.2 liter V8 with fuel injection and a supercharger, an automatic, and 52,000 miles—$115,000
  • 1987 red BMW M6 coupe with white leather bucket seats, an S38 256 bhp 3.5 liter/211 ci inline six with fuel injection, a five-speed manual, and 53,000 miles—$59,000 made this handsome car the highest sale of a stock eighties vehicle at this auction.
1986 BMW M6, photo courtesy of Mecum
  • 1980 Bright Red Toyota FJ-45 Land Cruiser custom (just about everything) SUV with gray/tan bucket seats, a 2F 4.2 liter inline six, and a five-speed manual—$71,000

This particular auction contained the usual suspects (Chevy trucks, Corvettes, Mercedes SLs, Mustangs, Toyota FJs) but also some rarely seen cars—the AMC Eagle, Buick Electra, and Mercury Grand Marquis stood out to me. Of course, there were also those three Ramchargers. What do you think?

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