Interesting Eighties Vehicles at the 2022 Mecum Indy

Mecum’s annual Indy auction finished on May 21st. In the middle of last year, I gave up trying to chronicle every eighties vehicle sold at any particular auction—there’s often an endless sameness to them. So, I now only write about the cars and trucks that are less seen at auction—and those that sold (a black 1989 Porsche 911 Turbo Cabriolet with 47,000 miles was a no-sale at $180,000). Here are ten that attracted my eye, described in a little more detail than usual.

1988 Buick Reatta, linked from Mecum’s website

[J185] 1988 Buick Reatta coupe. Bright Red with tan leather bucket seats. 3800 165 bhp 3.8 liter/231 ci V6 with fuel injection, a four-speed automatic, and 112,000 miles. $4,000 hammer price for this first-year Reatta—one of the more interesting domestic cars of the eighties. Why do I have no Reatta-specific blog entry?

1989 Cadillac Fleetwood interior, linked from Mecum’s website

[K17] 1989 Cadillac Fleetwood Coupe. White with a white formal cabriolet top and red Dual-Comfort split front leather seats. HT 155 bhp 4.5 liter/273 ci V8 with fuel injection, a four-speed automatic, and 59,000 miles. $12,000 for this big front-wheel-drive Cadillac that someone kind of saved.

1982 AMC Spirit, linked from Mecum’s website

[K142] 1982 AMC Spirit DL Liftback. Olympic White with brown Deluxe Grain vinyl reclining front bucket seats. 110 bhp 4.2 liter/258 ci inline six with a two-barrel carburetor, a three-speed automatic, and 16,000 miles. You see a reasonable number of Eagles of the same era at auction, but not many Spirits. $17,000

1980 Lincoln Versailles, linked from Mecum’s website

[L69] 1980 Lincoln Versailles sedan. Medium Turquoise Metallic with a coach vinyl roof and turquoise leather Twin Comfort Lounge front seats. Windsor 132 bhp 4.9 liter/302 ci V8 with a two-barrel carburetor, a three-speed automatic, and 9,900 miles. $20,000 for this final-year example of Lincoln’s putative Cadillac Seville competitor.

1989 Dodge D250, linked from Mecum’s website

[L112] 1989 Dodge D250 pickup truck. Platinum Silver Metallic/Exotic Red two-tone with an unidentified red interior (the base interior included a vinyl bench seat). LA 145 bhp 5.2 liter/318 ci V8 with fuel injection, a three-speed automatic, and 49,000 miles. $14,500 for an eighties pickup truck that isn’t a Chevy or a Ford.

1983 Chevrolet Caprice Classic, linked from Mecum’s website

[G172] 1983 Chevrolet Caprice Classic sedan. Dark Blue Metallic with a dark blue cloth 50/50 split front bench seat. LG4 150 bhp 5.0 liter/305 ci v8 with a four-barrel carburetor, a four-speed automatic, and 74,000 miles. $8,000 for this rather clean looking (no vinyl roof!) Caprice.

1984 Subaru BRAT, linked from Mecum’s website

[W68] 1984 Subaru BRAT GL pickup truck. Lightning Silver with a stripe and vinyl and cloth front bucket seats (and, of course, those rear-facing vinyl seats in the bed). EA-81 73 bhp 1.8 liter/109 ci flat four with a carburetor, a four-speed manual, and 101,000 miles. $30,000 indicates that at least two bidders didn’t find the mileage that discouraging.

1988 Chevrolet Cavalier Z24, linked from Mecum’s website

[F89] 1988 Chevrolet Cavalier Z24 convertible. Red with a black convertible top and black/gray cloth front bucket seats. LB6 125 bhp 2.8 liter/173 ci V6 with fuel injection, a three-speed automatic, and 12,000 miles. $19,000 for this loaded J-car lacking only a five-speed manual.

1987 Ford Escort GT, linked from Mecum’s website

[F200] 1987 Ford Escort GT hatchback coupe. Medium Red Metallic with medium gray cloth front bucket seats. H.O. 115 bhp 1.9 liter/113 ci inline four with fuel injection, a five-speed manual, and unstated mileage. $6,000 buys what has to be one of the nicest 1987 Escort GT examples that remain.

1988 Lamborghini Countach, linked from Mecum’s website

[S213] 1988 Lamborghini Countach LP5000 Quattrovalvole coupe. Black with black leather bucket seats. 420 bhp 5.2 liter/316 ci V12 with fuel injection, a five-speed manual, and 10,000 miles. $545,000 is almost #1/Concours money, according to Hagerty’s Valuation Tools. Remember when you could buy a really nice LP5000 for under $100,000?

Interesting Eighties Vehicles at the 2022 Barrett-Jackson Palm Beach

Barrett-Jackson‘s Palm Beach auction recently completed. In the middle of 2021, I gave up trying to chronicle every eighties vehicle sold at any particular auction—there’s often an endless sameness to them. So, I now only write about the cars and trucks that are less seen at auction. Below are five sold at Palm Beach that attracted my eye, described and discussed with a little more detail than usual.

1989 Mazda RX7, linked from Barrett-Jackson’s website

[Lot 47] 1989 Mazda RX7 convertible. Noble White with a black convertible top and blue leather front bucket seats. 13B 160 bhp 1.3 liter/80 ci two-rotor engine with a five-speed manual. $15,000 hammer price for this second generation RX7 with undeclared mileage—which makes me assume it’s high. The eternal question; what are the new owner’s intentions for this car?

1982 Checker Marathon, linked from Barrett-Jackson’s website

[82] 1982 Checker Marathon sedan. White with a red vinyl front bench seat. LC3 110 bhp 3.8 liter/229 ci V6 with a two-barrel carburetor, a three-speed automatic transmission, and 374 miles. $19,000 is evidently what it currently costs for a brand new Checker. The funny thing is that a typical movie shoot would want a Checker that is a little more beat up and that is yellow.

1980 International Scout, linked from Barrett-Jackson’s website

[134] 1980 International Harvester Scout II SUV. Copper with a russet plaid front bench seat. IH 148 bhp 5.7 liter/346 ci V8 with a carburetor, a three-speed automatic, and 16,000 miles. According to Hagerty’s valuation tools, the $25,000 paid for this final year Scout was between #4/Fair and #3/Good money. The Scout factory in Fort Wayne, Indiana closed on October 31, 1980.

1983 BMW 320i, linked from Barrett-Jackson’s website

[317] 1983 BMW 320i coupe. Bronzit Beige Metallic with beige front bucket seats. M10B18 101 bhp 1.8 liter/108 ci inline four with fuel injection and a three-speed automatic. You see a lot of eighties 6-series coupes up for auction, along with various examples from the M specialty line. You typically do not see many eighties base 3-series cars. $7,500

1987 Buick Regal, linked from Barrett-Jackson’s website

[342.1] 1987 Buick Regal Limited coupe with T Package. Dark Gray with a dark gray vinyl top and a gray split bench seat. LC2 245 bhp 3.8 liter/231 ci V6 with fuel injection and a turbocharger, a four-speed automatic, and 33,000 miles. $50,000 for the most civilian-looking of Buick’s three different performance versions of the Regal for 1987.

What did you think of this year’s Barrett-Jackson Palm Beach?

Interesting Eighties Vehicles at the 2022 Mecum Glendale

Mecum’s annual Glendale auction completed last Saturday. In the middle of 2021, I gave up trying to chronicle every eighties vehicle sold at any particular auction—there’s often an endless sameness to them. So, I now only write about the cars and trucks that are less seen at auction—and those that sold (a red 1984 Ferrari 512 BBi coupe with 13,000 miles was a no-sale at $225,000). Here are five that attracted my eye, described in a little more detail than usual.

1987 Ford LTD Crown Victoria, linked from Mecum’s website

[Lot W111] 1987 Ford LTD Crown Victoria sedan. Oxford White with Luxury rear half vinyl roof and a midnight blue cloth reclining split bench front seat. Windsor 150 bhp 4.9 liter/302 ci V8 with fuel injection, a four-speed automatic, and 35,000 miles. $9,000 hammer price for a car that once seemed everywhere and has now essentially disappeared.

1989 Mercury Colony Park, linked from Mecum’s website

[W138] 1989 Mercury Colony Park station wagon. Medium Almond with woodgrain with light sandalwood cloth front seats—I can’t tell if this wagon is a GS or an LS, but I do know that I’ve now written about two Panther platform cars in a row. Windsor 150 bhp 4.9 liter/302 ci V8 with fuel injection and a four-speed automatic. $13,500–I wrote about the 1984 LS last year.

1989 Toyota Corolla GT-S, linked from Mecum’s website

[W289] 1989 Toyota Corolla GT-S coupe. Super Red (that’s the actual color name) with gray cloth front bucket seats. 4A-GE 115 bhp 1.6 liter/97 ci inline four with fuel injection, a five-speed manual, and 27,000 miles. $16,000 for the highest performance Corolla available in 1989—and one that stood out from the better-selling front-wheel-drive examples.

1985 Lamborghini Jalpa, linked from Mecum’s website

[T276] 1985 Lamborghini Jalpa P350 GTS coupe. Bianco Polo Park (white) with red leather bucket seats. 250 bhp 3.5 liter/213 ci V8 with four two-barrel carburetors and a five-speed manual. This “entry-level” Lamborghini sold for $90,000 despite having the engine size listed in the docket as 3.0 liters. This Jalpa’s base price when new was about $65,000 and they are rare cars—Lamborghini built a total of 410 over eight years.

1985 Excalibur Series IV, linked from Mecum’s website

[F34.1] 1982 Excalibur Series IV Phaeton. Tan (the actual paint color was not stated) with a light brown convertible top and tan leather seats. 155 bhp 5.0 liter/305 ci Chevrolet V8 (perhaps an LG4?) with a four-barrel carburetor, a three-speed automatic, and 11,000 miles. $32,000 for the most respected (the AACA judges them) of the neo-classics.

Interesting Eighties Vehicles at the 2022 Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale

Barrett-Jackson‘s signature Scottdale auction recently completed. In the middle of 2021, I gave up trying to chronicle every eighties vehicle sold at any particular auction—there’s often an endless sameness to them. So, I now only write about the cars and trucks that are less seen at auction. Below are eight out of the 1,800 or so sold at Scottsdale that attracted my eye, described and discussed with a little more detail than usual.

1983 Chevrolet Camaro Berlinetta,
image linked from Barrett-Jackson’s website

[Lot 113] 1983 Chevrolet Camaro Berlinetta hatchback coupe. White with removable glass roof panels and gray Custom cloth front bucket seats. LG4 150 bhp 5.0 liter/305 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, a five-speed manual, and 12,000 miles. The five-speed is unusual in a V8-equipped Berlinetta, but is correct. I have often stated that you don’t see many Berlinettas at auction. After this particular sale, you may see a few more—if many nice ones remain out there. $25,000 hammer price

1989 Dodge Shelby Dakota,
image linked from Barrett-Jackson’s website

[125] 1989 Dodge Shelby Dakota pickup truck. Bright White with a red vinyl bench seat featuring Shelby charcoal cloth inserts. LA 175 bhp 5.2 liter/318 ci V8 with throttle-body fuel injection paired with a four-speed automatic—and that V8 is crammed in the engine compartment. $17,500 bought this moderately fast but slightly nondescript one-year-only Shelby (I think I prefer the Exotic Red version) with un-stated mileage.

Interior of 1985 Chrysler LeBaron,
image linked from Barrett-Jackson’s website

[151] 1985 Chrysler LeBaron Town & Country convertible. White Crystal with elm/teak woodgrain trim, a white convertible top, and light/medium tan leather front bucket seats. Turbo I 146 bhp 2.2 liter/135 ci inline four with fuel injection and a turbocharger mated to a three-speed automatic. I always liked the seats in the Mark Cross package that was optional for these convertibles—and this example has them. $12,000

1985 Isuzu Impulse, image linked from Barrett-Jackson’s website

[305] 1985 Isuzu Impulse hatchback coupe. Light Topaz Metallic with tan cloth front bucket seats—I’d prefer Claret Red or Slash Black, but the color is correct and certainly of its age. G200Z 90 bhp 1.9 liter/119 ci inline four with throttle-body fuel injection, a four-speed automatic, and 22,000 miles. With its Giorgetto Giugiaro “Ace of Clubs” styling, the Impulse can be thought of as the nicest Chevette ever made—it shared the same global T-platform. An eternal and obvious question: if you’ve been looking for an Impulse, where will you find another one? $8,500

1981 AMC Concord DL,
image linked from Barrett-Jackson’s website

[314] 1981 AMC Concord DL station wagon. Cameo Tan with woodgrain side panels with beige Deluxe Grain vinyl front individual reclining seats. 110 bhp 4.2 liter/258 ci inline six with a two-barrel carburetor paired with a three-speed automatic. You see the related and concurrent four-wheel-drive Eagles with some degree of regularity, but a Concord is rare, rare, rare. At $8,000, what are the buyer’s intentions for this car?

1985 Cadillac Seville Commemorative Edition,
image linked from Barrett-Jackson’s website

[315] 1985 Cadillac Seville Commemorative Edition sedan. Cotillion White with a vinyl top delete and white Dual Comfort tufted leather 50/45 front seats. HT-4100 135 bhp 4.1 liter/249 ci V8 with throttle-body fuel injection, a four-speed automatic, and 42,000 miles. Commemorative Editions were available in either Cotillion White (like this example) or Commodore Blue, and they all came loaded. 1985 was the final year for the polarizing second-generation Seville—the following generation would merely be bland. $20,000

1985 Toyota Celica GT-S,
image linked from Barrett-Jackson’s website

[385] 1985 Toyota Celica GT-S convertible. White with a black Cambria cloth convertible top and gray cloth front bucket seats. 22R-E 116 bhp 2.4 liter/144 ci inline four with fuel injection, a four-speed automatic, and 4,500 miles. 1985 was the final year for the rear-wheel-drive Celicas. I believe I miss every Celica generation—Toyota was a different company in those days. $25,000

1987 Ferrari 328 GTS, image linked from Barrett-Jackson’s website

[1007] 1987 Ferrari 328 GTS coupe. Rosso Corsa with tan leather bucket seats—this is the clichéd color combination, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t look good. Tipo F105CB 260 bhp 3.2 liter/195 ci V8 with fuel injection and four valves per cylinder paired with a five-speed manual. Hagerty believes that a rising Ferrari tide is lifting all boats of eighties and newer cars. That evidently includes this 328 that is about 2,000 miles post-restoration. $150,000

What did you think of this year’s Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale?

Interesting Eighties Vehicles at the 2022 Mecum Kissimmee

Mecum’s huge Kissimmee auction recently completed. In the middle of 2021, I gave up trying to chronicle every eighties vehicle sold at any particular auction—there’s often an endless sameness to them. So, I now only write about the cars and trucks that are less seen at auction—and those that sold (a black 1982 Mercedes-Benz SL race car was a no-sale at $200,000). Here are ten that attracted my eye, described in a little more detail than usual.

1983 Lincoln Mark VI Bill Blass Edition, linked from Mecum’s website

[Lot E140] 1983 Lincoln Mark VI Bill Blass Edition coupe. Light French Vanilla/Midnight Black two-tone with black cambria carriage roof and leather/cloth french vanilla Twin Comfort Lounge front seats. Windsor 130 bhp 4.9 liter/302 ci V8 with throttle-body fuel injection, a four-speed automatic, and 16,000 miles. A $22,500 hammer price shows that even these remarkably unsuccessful cars now have a following.

1985 Dodge Shelby Charger interior, linked from Mecum’s website

[E142] 1985 Dodge Shelby Charger hatchback coupe. Santa Fe Blue Metallic with silver stripe with blue/silver cloth front bucket seats. Turbo I 146 bhp 2.2 liter/135 ci inline four with fuel injection and a turbocharger paired with a five-speed manual, with the turbo being in its first year for the Shelby Charger. With unstated mileage, this good-looking example went for $12,000—I likely should write a blog post soon about these interesting cars.

1989 Buick Regal, linked from Mecum’s website

[E222] 1989 Buick Regal Custom coupe. Sparkling Black Metallic with red notchback cloth front bench seat. LH0 140 bhp 3.1 liter/191 ci V6 with fuel injection, a four-speed automatic, and 54,000 miles. Sometimes the first few days of Mecum Kissimmee look like a used car sale, but I do wonder how many 1989 Regals remain in this kind of shape—and how many will likely be saved. At $4,000, the eternal question—what are the new owner’s intentions for this car?

1985 AMC Eagle, linked from Mecum’s website

[J51] 1985 AMC Eagle station wagon. Autumn Brown Metallic (I believe) with honey Highland Check individual front seats. 115 bhp 4.2 liter/258 ci inline six with a two-barrel carburetor, a three-speed automatic, and 67,000 miles. Someone paid $9,000 for a well-preserved later example of this segment-creating wagon.

1988 Cadillac Coupe de Ville, linked from Mecum’s website

[J235] 1988 Cadillac Coupe de Ville. Copper Beige with a dark brown full cabriolet roof top and tan Dual Comfort leather front seats. 155 bhp 4.5 liter/274 ci V8 with fuel injection, a four-speed automatic, and 29,000 miles. You see far more eighties Eldorados and Allantes at auction than Coupe de Villes. $8,000

1984 Mercedes-Benz 300 CD, linked from Mecum’s website

[J286] 1984 Mercedes-Benz 300 CD coupe. Signal Red with blue leather front bucket seats. OM617 3.0 liter/183 ci diesel inline five with fuel injection and a four-speed automatic. Coupes are the least seen of the three W123 models Mercedes sold in the United States—though I saw a 1985 version at a local supermarket a few years ago. $6,000

1985 Pontiac Parisienne, linked from Mecum’s website

[K146.1] 1985 Pontiac Parisienne Brougham sedan. Black with a black vinyl top and a tan velour 55/45 split front seat. LG4 165 bhp 5.0 liter/305 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, a four-speed automatic, and 5,900 miles. $26,000 bought a nice example of Pontiac’s badge-engineered version (dig those taillights!) of Chevrolet’s Caprice Classic.

1980 Pontiac Firebird Esprit Yellow Bird, linked from Mecum’s website

[L116] 1980 Pontiac Firebird Esprit Yellow Bird coupe. Yellow Bird Yellow (natch!) over yellow accent with camel tan Hobnail Cloth front bucket seats. LD5 115 bhp 3.8 liter/231 ci V6 with a two-barrel carburetor paired with a three-speed automatic. Trans Ams are all over the place at most auctions, but Esprits are now rarely seen—and this final “color bird” is even rarer. $15,000

1985 Cadillac Eldorado Touring Coupe, courtesy of Mecum

[G115] 1985 Cadillac Eldorado Touring Coupe. Bordeaux Red with sandlewood leather front bucket seats. HT-4100 135 bhp 4.1 liter/249 ci V8 with throttle-body fuel injection mated to a four-speed automatic. Eighties Eldorados aren’t uncommon at auction, but Eldorado Touring Coupes sure are—and Bordeaux Red is a stunning (and rare) color. $18,000

1985 Ford Thunderbird, linked from Mecum’s website

[W144.1] 1985 Ford Thunderbird coupe. Black with Oxford Gray cloth front bucket seats. Windsor 140 bhp 4.9 liter/302 ci V8 with fuel injection, a four-speed automatic, and 6,200 miles. You sometimes see both Turbo Coupes of this generation and the later Super Coupes for sale, but you don’t see many of these base coupes anymore—especially with such low miles. $16,000

Interesting Eighties Vehicles at the 2021 Mecum Orlando

I’ve given up trying to chronicle every eighties vehicle sold at any particular auction—there’s often an endless sameness to them. So, we’re going to only write about the cars and trucks that are less seen at auction—and those that sold (a Venetian Blue Porsche 911 Cabriolet with a blue top and coupe with blue leather bucket seats was a no sale at $45,000). Here are ten at the 2021 Mecum Orlando that attracted my eye, described in more detail than usual.

1987 Ford Thunderbird Turbo Coupe, linked from Mecum’s website

[Lot W67] 1987 Ford Thunderbird Turbo Coupe. Medium Canyon Red with scarlet cloth front bucket seats. Lima 190 bhp 2.3 liter/140 ci inline four with fuel injection and a turbocharger mated to a five-speed manual. $9,000 hammer price for this somewhat faded example of the expensively facelifted ninth-generation ‘bird.

1985 Ford Bronco II, linked from Mecum’s website

[W149] 1985 Ford Bronco II SUV. Light Regatta Blue/Wimbledon White two-tone with regatta blue cloth front bucket seats. Cologne 115 bhp 2.8 liter/170 ci V6 with a two-barrel carburetor paired with a five-speed manual. $15,000 is a lot for a Bronco II, but the rising Bronco tide seems to be lifting all boats.

1988 Mazda RX7, linked from Mecum’s website

[T81] 1988 Mazda RX7 convertible. Sunrise Red with a black top and gray cloth front bucket seats. 13B 146 bhp 1.3 liter/80 ci twin-rotor with fuel injection paired with a five-speed manual. Second-generation RX7’s are rare at auction—at least in the US. At $10,000, what would you do with this non-Turbo car with unstated mileage?

1986 Lincoln Town Car, linked from Mecum’s website

[T134] 1986 Lincoln Town Car Cartier Edition sedan. Crystal Clearcoat Metallic with a Dove Gray vinyl top and oxford gray leather seats with cloth inserts. Windsor 150 bhp 4.9 liter/302 ci V8 with fuel injection, a four-speed automatic, and 22,000 miles. $16,500. I now like these cars—especially the special editions—much more than I did when they were new. In 1986, the Cartier Edition cost about 22% more than the base Town Car.

1987 Oldsmobile Cutlass 442, linked from Mecum’s website

[F209] 1987 Oldsmobile Cutlass 442 coupe. Burgundy Metallic/Silver Metallic two-tone with maroon cloth front bucket seats. LG8 170 bhp 5.0 liter/307 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor paired with a four-speed automatic. $12,500. The rear-wheel-drive Cutlass was fading away by 1987, with the Calais name already moved to the newer front-wheel-drive car. 1987 was the final year for the rear-wheel-drive 442, whose lineage stretched back to 1964.

1987 Ferrari 328 GTS, linked from Mecum’s website

[F228.1] 1986 Ferrari 328 GTS coupe. Rosso Corsa with tan leather bucket seats. F105B 260 bhp 3.2 liter/195 ci V8 with fuel injection, a five-speed manual, 51,000 miles, and a recent major service. $80,000 is slightly over #2/Excellent money for a 328 GTS, according to Hagerty’s valuation tools.

1983 Jeep J10 Laredo, linked from Mecum’s website

[F261] 1983 Jeep J10 Laredo pickup truck. Olympic White with tan/brown cloth/vinyl front bucket seats. AMC 175 bhp 5.9 liter/360 ci V8 with a two-barrel carburetor and an automatic. $29,500 doesn’t come close to matching the J10 Honcho that sold at this year’s Mecum Indy—but it’s still good money.

1983 DeLorean DMC-12, linked from Mecum’s website

[S86] 1983 DeLorean DMC-12 hatchback coupe. Stainless Steel (of course) with gray leather bucket seats. PRV 130 bhp 2.8 liter/174 ci V6 with fuel injection, a five-speed manual, and 22,000 miles. $50,000 is solid money for a DMC-12.

1987 Porsche 930 Turbo, linked from Mecum’s website

[S93] 1987 Porsche 930 Turbo coupe. Guards Red with champagne leather front bucket seats. 282 bhp 3.3 liter/201 ci flat six with fuel injection and a turbocharger, a four-speed manual, and 46,000 miles. $260,000 for this “factory custom” with many unusual touches created by the first iteration of Porsche’s Sonderwunsch (Special Wishes) program.

1984 Aston Martin Lagonda, linked from Mecum’s website

[S131] 1984 Aston Martin Lagonda Series 2 sedan. Gold with creme leather front bucket seats. 200 bhp 5.3 liter/327 ci V8 with four two-barrel carburetors and a three-speed automatic. $100,000 for this car once owned by Mike Tyson. When I was a teenager, I loved the Lagonda’s exterior design. Now, it seems a little overwrought—and those at-the-time bleeding-edge interior electronics are not easy to keep functioning. Still, you won’t see yourself coming and going.

Eighties Vehicles at the 2021 Mecum Kissimmee, Part One

January’s Mecum auction at Kissimmee always provides some interesting fodder for commentary, if only because it is so large. I’ll concentrate on the at least reasonably stock 1980s vehicles that sold (remember that Mecum auctions are not “no reserve” auctions—a white 1981 Chevrolet Camaro Yenko Turbo Z coupe with black bucket seats and 39,000 miles was a no sale bid up to $70,000) and add some of my opinions. I’m going to separate this auction into two posts—this first covers the eighties 14% of the approximately 680 vehicles sold from Thursday through Sunday.

Thursday, January 7th:

  • 1983 yellow Cadillac Seville sedan with a black carriage roof, ivory leather seats, an HT-4100 135 bhp 4.1 liter/249 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 92,000 miles—$4,500 hammer price.
  • 1986 Light Green Metallic Chevrolet El Camino pickup truck with a light green cloth bench seat, an LG4 150 bhp 5.0 liter/305 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, and an automatic—at $10,500, the first eighties vehicle in this auction meets my criteria for serious collectability of fairly original cars or trucks: selling for equal to or above its original base list price. I’ll mark these vehicles in bold green.
  • 1988 Summit White Chevrolet 1500 Silverado pickup truck with garnet Custom cloth bucket seats, an L05 210 bhp 5.7 liter/305 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 63,000 miles—at $17,000, the highest eighties vehicle sale on Thursday
  • 1987 Bright Red Chevrolet Corvette convertible with a white convertible top, red leather bucket seats, an L98 240 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with fuel injection, and the Doug Nash 4+3—$16,500
  • 1988 black BMW 635Csi coupe with black leather bucket seats, an M30B35 208 bhp 3.4 liter/209 ci inline six with fuel injection, and an automatic—$9,000
  • 1986 Black Chevrolet Camaro Z28 hatchback coupe with gray cloth bucket seats, an LB9 190 bhp engine with fuel injection, an automatic, and 62,000 miles—$5,000
  • 1983 blue Dodge W150 Power Ram pickup truck with a blue cloth bench seat, a 5.2 liter/318 ci V8 with a two-barrel carburetor, an automatic, and 52,000 miles—$8,500
  • 1984 white Pontiac Firebird Trans Am 15th Anniversary Edition hatchback coupe with gray leather/cloth bucket seats, an LG9 HO 190 bhp 5.0 liter/305 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, an automatic, and 83,000 miles—$9,000
  • 1984 Silver/Medium Gray two-tone Chevrolet Corvette hatchback coupe with red leather bucket seats, an L83 Cross-Fire 205 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with throttle body fuel injection, and an automatic—$4,500
  • 1980 Olympic White with woodgrain AMC Eagle Limited station wagon with beige leather seats, a 110 bhp 4.2 liter/258 ci inline six with a two-barrel carburetor, an automatic, and 82,000 miles–$12,000. Is this the nicest one left?
1980 AMC Eagle Limited station wagon, linked from Mecum’s website
  • 1984 Silver/Medium Gray two-tone 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, and an automatic—$6,000
  • 1988 White Pontiac Firebird Trans Am GTA coupe with camel leather bucket seats, a B2L 225 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 83,000 miles—$11,000 for a rare notchback
  • 1987 Midnight Black/Steel Gray two-tone Chevrolet Blazer Silverado SUV with slate gray Custom cloth bucket seats, an L05 210 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$11,500
  • 1984 white Pontiac Fiero Pace Car Edition coupe with red/gray bucket seats, an Iron Duke 92 bhp 2.5 liter/151 ci inline four with throttle-body fuel injection, an automatic, and 27,000 miles—$16,000
  • 1987 Garnet Red Dodge Ramcharger SUV with red cloth bucket seats, a 143 bhp 5.2 liter/318 ci V8 with a two-barrel carburetor, and an automatic—$8,500
  • 1982 silver Chevrolet El Camino custom (engine) pickup truck with blue cloth bucket seats, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$8,000
  • 1988 red Mazda 323 GTX hatchback coupe with a 132 bhp 1.6 liter/97 ci inline four with fuel injection and a turbocharger, a five-speed manual, and 82,000 miles—$6,500 for the most interesting car on day one.
  • 1980 green GMC Caballero custom (powertrain, exterior, wheels/tires) pickup truck with a cloth split seat, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$11,500
  • 1988 tan Chevrolet 1500 pickup truck with an automatic—$3,000
  • 1982 blue Fiat 124 Spider 2000 convertible with gray vinyl bucket seats, a 102 bhp 2.0 liter/122 ci inline four with fuel injection, an automatic, and 57,000 miles—$9,500

Friday, January 8th:

  • 1987 red Chevrolet C10 custom (engine, exterior, suspension, wheels/tires) pickup truck with a gray interior, a Vortec 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$16,000
  • 1989 Cabernet Red Ford Mustang LX 5.0 convertible with a black top, scarlet red cloth bucket seats, a Windsor 225 bhp 4.9 liter/302 ci V8 with fuel injection, and a five-speed—$8,500
  • 1986 burgundy Chevrolet Corvette custom (exterior, engine, interior) hatchback coupe with tan leather seats, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$7,500
  • 1989 White Jeep Wrangler SUV with black bucket seats and an automatic—$5,000
  • 1984 black Cadillac Series 75 Fleetwood limousine with a black interior, a 140 bhp 6.0 liter/368 ci V8 with throttle-body fuel injection, and an automatic—$12,500
  • 1985 Sunrise Red Mazda RX-7 hatchback coupe with gray cloth bucket seats, a 12A 101 bhp 1.1 liter/70 ci two-rotor with a four-barrel carburetor, an automatic, and 80,000 miles—$11,000
  • 1985 silver/gray two-tone Chevrolet C10 custom (powertrain, suspension, wheels/tires) pickup truck with a burgundy cloth bench seat, a 6.3 liter/383 ci V8, and an automatic—$22,500
  • 1981 Red Chevrolet Corvette coupe with red leather seats, an L81 190 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, an automatic, and 53,000 miles—$21,000
  • 1980 beige Toyota Land Cruiser HJ-45 SUV with black bucket seats, an H 3.6 liter/218 ci diesel inline six, and a four-speed manual—$39,000 made this the highest eighties vehicle sale on Friday
1980 Toyota Land Cruiser HJ-45 SUV, linked from Mecum’s website
  • 1986 white Porsche 944 Turbo hatchback coupe with brown leather bucket seats, a 220 bhp 2.5 liter/151 ci inline four with fuel injection and a turbocharger, and a five-speed manual, and 34,000 miles—$24,500
  • 1987 Red Mercedes-Benz 560SL convertible with tan leather seats, an M117 238 bhp 5.5 liter/339 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 84,000 miles—$13,500
  • 1987 Midnight Black/Apple Red two-tone Chevrolet Blazer custom (engine) SUV with red cloth bucket seats, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$11,500
  • 1988 Arctic White Lincoln Town Car with a white vinyl carriage roof, oxford white leather seats, a Windsor 150 bhp 4.9 liter/302 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 8,800 miles—$19,000
  • 1989 Silver Frost Lincoln Town Car with a silver frost vinyl carriage roof, titanium cloth seats, a Windsor 150 bhp 4.9 liter/302 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 19,000 miles—$16,000
  • 1989 red Classic International Brillanté Vendetta convertible with an L98 340 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with fuel injection and an automatic—$18,000 for this Corvette-based Ferrari Testarossa imitator.
  • 1986 medium blue/dark blue two-tone GMC Sierra Classic pickup truck with a blue vinyl bench seat, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$19,000
  • 1986 blue/white two-tone Chevrolet C10 custom (exterior, interior, suspension, wheels/tires) pickup truck with a blue bench seat, an unknown V8, and an automatic—$14,500
  • 1986 blue/white two-tone Chevrolet C10 custom (exterior, suspension, wheels/tires) pickup truck with a blue vinyl bench seat, an unknown V8, and an automatic—$21,000
  • 1984 White Chevrolet Camaro Z28 hatchback coupe with tan vinyl bucket seats, a 5.0 liter/305 ci V8, and an automatic—$5,500
  • 1986 blue/white two-tone Chevrolet Blazer SUV with blue vinyl bucket seats, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$21,000
  • 1988 White Chevrolet Corvette 35th Anniversary Edition hatchback coupe with white leather seats, an L98 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 46,000 miles—$22,000
  • 1986 Dark Red Metallic Chevrolet Corvette convertible with a white top, red leather seats, an L98 235 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 8,200 miles—$20,000
  • 1985 White Chevrolet Corvette hatchback coupe with saddle leather seats, an L98 230 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 8,100 miles—$16,000
  • 1985 White Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS coupe with maroon cloth bucket seats, a B4V 180 bhp 5.0 liter/305 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, an automatic, and 24,000 miles—$16,500
  • 1987 silver Toyota Supra Turbo hatchback coupe with blue cloth bucket seats, a 7M-GE 230 bhp 3.0 liter inline with fuel injection and a turbocharger, and a five-speed manual—$13,000
  • 1984 white Oldsmobile Delta 88 Royale Brougham coupe with burgundy cloth seats, an LV2 5.0 liter/307 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, and an automatic—$8,500

Saturday, January 9th:

  • 1982 White Chevrolet Corvette coupe with dark red cloth bucket seats, an L83 Cross-Fire 200 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with throttle body fuel injection, an automatic, and 13,000 miles—$30,000
  • 1987 red/white two-tone Chevrolet Silverado custom (suspension, wheels/tires) pickup truck with a black custom cloth bench seat, an 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$34,000
  • 1987 white Pontiac Fiero GT coupe with gray cloth bucket seats, a 135 bhp 2.8 liter/173 ci V6 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 27,000 miles—$9,000
  • 1986 white Spartan II coupe with a gray interior, a 3.0 liter V6 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 39,000 miles—$20,000 for this Nissan 300ZX-based neo-classic
  • 1988 Charcoal/Radiant Silver two-tone Dodge Ramcharger LE SUV with red cloth bucket seats, a 145 bhp 5.2 liter/318 ci V8 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$18,500
  • 1988 brown/tan two-tone Chevrolet Suburban SUV with tan cloth bucket seats, an L19 230 bhp 7.4 liter/454 ci v8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 73,000 miles—$17,500
  • 1983 yellow Toyota DLX mild custom pickup truck with gray cloth bucket seats, a 22R 2.4 liter inline four, a five-speed manual, and 101,000 miles—$16,500
  • 1981 maroon Jeep CJ-8 Scrambler custom pickup truck with gray bucket seats, an unknown V8, and an automatic—$20,000
  • 1988 red Sebring convertible with tan bucket seats, a 4.9 liter/302 ci V8, and an automatic—$19,000 for this Austin Healey 3000 replica
  • 1988 White Chevrolet Corvette 35th Anniversary Edition hatchback coupe with white leather seats, an L98 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with fuel injection, the Doug Nash 4+3, and 6,300 miles—$26,000
  • 1988 White Chevrolet Corvette 35th Anniversary Edition hatchback coupe with white leather seats, an L98 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$15,500. A bidder had their choice of these distinctive coupes at this auction.
  • 1980 red/black two-tone Chevrolet El Camino very custom (just about everything) pickup truck with red cloth bucket seats, a 406 ci V8, and an automatic—$13,000
  • 1987 Candy Apple Red GMC Sierra Classic custom (engine, exterior, interior, wheels/tires) pickup truck with silver bucket seats, an LS2 6.2 liter V8, and an automatic—$28,000
  • 1987 white Chevrolet C10 custom (powertrain) pickup truck with a red vinyl bench seat, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$27,000
  • 1987 black Buick Regal T-Type custom (powertrain) coupe with gray cloth bucket seats, a 3.8 liter/231 ci V6 with a turbocharger, and an automatic—$35,000
  • 1985 Burgundy Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS coupe with gray cloth bucket seats, a B4V 180 bhp 5.0 liter/305 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, an automatic, and 10,000 miles—$21,750
  • 1989 Black Ford Mustang ASC/McLaren convertible with a black top, a gray interior, a 225 bhp 4.9 liter/302 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 44,000 miles—$15,500
  • 1986 Shelby GLHS custom hatchback coupe with gray cloth bucket seats, a 2.2 liter/135 ci inline four with a turbocharger, an intercooler, and fuel injection, and a five-speed manual—$18,000
  • 1986 black Nissan 300ZX hatchback coupe with black leather bucket seats, a VG30ET 200 bhp 3.0 liter/181 ci V6 with fuel injection and a turbocharger, a five-speed manual, and 43,000 miles—$31,500 is around $7,000 over #1/Concours money, according to Hagerty’s valuation tools.
  • 1986 red GMC Sierra Classic pickup truck with a gray cloth bench seat, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, an automatic, and 100,000 miles—$23,500
  • 1985 black Ferrari 308 GTS Quattrovalvole coupe with black leather seats, a Quattrovalvole 230 bhp 2.9 liter/179 ci V8 with fuel injection, a five-speed manual, and 69,000 miles—$50,000
  • 1986 Guards Red Porsche 911 Turbo coupe with black leather seats, a 282 bhp 3.3 liter/201 ci flat six with turbocharging and fuel injection, a four-speed manual, and 57,000 miles—$100,000 made this by far the highest eighties vehicle sale on this Saturday.
1986 Porsche 911 Turbo coupe, linked from Mecum’s website
  • 1980 red/white two-tone Plymouth Trail Duster custom (suspension, wheels/tires) SUV with red bucket seats and an automatic—$15,000
  • 1985 silver Chevrolet K10 Silverado very custom (just about everything) pickup truck with a gray cloth bench seat, a Vortec 6.0 liter V8, and an automatic—$38,000
  • 1986 hazel/brown two-tone Rolls-Royce Silver Spur sedan with a cream vinyl top, cream leather bucket seats, a 6.75 liter/412 ci V8, an automatic, and 17,000 miles—$35,000
  • 1987 Black Buick Grand National coupe with black/gray cloth seats, a 245 bhp LC2 3.8 liter/231 ci V6 with turbocharging and fuel injection, an automatic, and 15,000 miles—$34,000
  • 1985 White Buick Riviera coupe with a white Landau top, blue cloth notchback 55/45 seats, a 5.0 liter/307 ci V8, an automatic, and 12,000 miles—$12,500
  • 1985 Cotillion White Cadillac Eldorado coupe with a white vinyl top, blue leather seats, an HT-4100 135 bhp 4.1 liter/249 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 4,100 miles—$23,000
  • 1984 black Oldsmobile 98 Regency coupe with a maroon vinyl top, red cloth seats, an LV2 5.0 liter/307 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, an automatic, and 4,500 miles—$27,000. Who saves these cars?
  • 1989 green Land Rover Defender 90 SUV with brown bucket seats, a 2.5 liter/152 ci diesel inline four, a manual, and 69,000 miles—$60,000
  • 1988 Black BMW M6 coupe with tan leather seats, a S38B35 256 bhp 3.5 liter/211 ci inline six with fuel injection, a five-speed, and 120,000 miles—$27,000
  • 1980 Pollux Orange Toyota Land Cruiser pickup truck with gray seats, a 3.6 liter engine, and a four-speed manual—$40,000
  • 1982 Black Mercedes-Benz 380SL convertible with a brown top, brown bucket seats, a 155 bhp 3.8 liter/234 ci V8 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$11,000
  • 1986 silver Mercedes-Benz 560SEC coupe with gray leather bucket seats, an M117 238 bhp 5.5 liter/339 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 75,000 miles—$19,000

Sunday, January 10th:

  • 1984 crimson Rolls-Royce Silver Spur sedan with camel leather bucket seats, a 6.75 liter/412 ci V8, and an automatic—$9,000
  • 1988 white Rolls-Royce Silver Spur sedan with a white vinyl top, tan leather bucket seats, a 6.75 liter/412 ci V8, an automatic, and 97,000 miles—$9,500
  • 1980 blue Rolls-Royce Silver Wraith II with a blue vinyl top, blue leather bucket seats, a 6.75 liter/412 ci V8, and an automatic—$9,000
  • 1983 silver Rolls-Royce Silver Spirit sedan with tan leather bucket seats, a 6.75 liter/412 ci V8, and an automatic—$9,000
  • 1988 dark blue Lincoln Town Car limousine with a dark green interior, a 4.9 liter/302 ci V8, and an automatic—$11,000
  • 1988 Red Chevrolet Camaro IROC-Z convertible with a black top, gray leather bucket seats, an unknown 5.0 liter/305 ci V8 (could be the L03 170 bhp engine with throttle-body fuel injection or the LB9 195 bhp engine with fuel injection), an automatic, and 29,000 miles—$22,000
  • 1988 Delphin Gray BMW 635Csi coupe with pearl beige leather bucket seats, an M30B35 215 bhp 3.4 liter/209 ci inline six with fuel injection, an automatic, and 54,000 miles—$44,000 for this gray market car.
  • 1989 blue Toyota FJ-70 Land Cruiser SUV with gray bucket seats, a 3F 155 bhp 4.0 liter/241 ci inline six with fuel injection, and a five-speed manual—$22,000
  • 1988 White Chevrolet Corvette convertible with a white convertible top, red leather bucket seats, an L98 240 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 40,000 miles—$17,000
  • 1980 White/Light Blue Metallic two-tone Chevrolet El Camino pickup truck with a blue vinyl bench seat, an unknown V8 (could be the L39 120 bhp 4.4 liter/267 ci with a two-barrel carburetor or the LG9 135 bhp 5.0 liter/305 ci with a four-barrel carburetor), an automatic, and 14,000 miles—$18,000
  • 1983 blue Ford F100 custom (exterior, wheels/tires) pickup truck with blue seats, a 5.8 liter/351 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, and an automatic—$16,000
  • 1989 Twilight Blue Lincoln Town Car sedan with an arctic white carriage top, shadow blue cloth seats, a 150 bhp 4.9 liter/302 ci V8 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$5,000
  • 1984 silver/black two-tone Tiffany coupe with red leather seats, a 4.9 liter/302 ci V8, and an automatic—$15,000 for this Mercury Cougar-based “neo-classic.”
  • 1989 black AM General Humvee SUV with a black interior, an automatic, and 18,000 miles—$20,000
  • 1983 Sable Black Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz coupe with a bushed stainless steel roof cap, a black vinyl top, red leather “tufted multi-button” seats, an HT-4100 135 bhp 4.1 liter/249 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 19,000 miles—$27,000 for this striking Eldorado whose aftermarket continental kit actually doesn’t bother me that much.
1983 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz coupe, linked from Mecum’s website
  • 1988 blue Ford Crown Victoria sedan with a dark blue vinyl top, blue cloth seats, a 4.9 liter/302 ci V8, and an automatic—$3,000
  • 1986 blue Pontiac Firebird Trans Am hatchback coupe with gray cloth bucket seats, a 5.0 liter/305 ci V8, and an automatic—$7,000

Eighties Vehicles at the 2020 Mecum Houston

Mecum’s Dallas auction in December 2020 provided some interesting fodder for commentary. It’s important to remember that Mecum auctions are not “no reserve” auctions—a black 1983 Mercedes-Benz G300 SUV with white bucket seats was a no-sale bid up to $52,000. I’ll concentrate on the at least reasonably stock 1980s vehicles that sold and add some of my opinions. Eighties vehicles were about 11% of the 364 vehicle lots sold in this auction.

Thursday, December 3rd:

  • 1984 blue BMW 318i coupe with tan bucket seats, a 101 bhp 1.8 liter/108 ci inline four with fuel injection, an automatic, and 47,000 miles—$4,000 hammer price.
  • 1985 Cotillion White Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz convertible with a white top, red leather “tufted multi-button” seats, an HT-4100 135 bhp 4.1 liter/249 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 57,000 miles—$15,000 is #2/Excellent money, according to Hagerty’s valuation tools.
1985 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz interior, linked from Mecum’s website
  • 1982 blue/white two-tone Ford F100 pickup truck with a blue bench seat, a 133 bhp 4.9 liter/302 ci V8, and an automatic—$6,500
  • 1983 brown Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck with a brown interior, an unknown V8, and an automatic—$9,500
  • 1982 blue Datsun 280ZX Turbo 2+2 hatchback coupe with gray bucket seats, an L28ET 145 bhp 2.8 liter/168 ci inline six with a turbocharger and fuel injection, and an automatic—$10,500
  • 1982 Silver Beige Chevrolet Corvette 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 36,000 miles—$14,500
  • 1982 white Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce convertible with a brown top, brown bucket seats, a 111 bhp 2.0 liter/120 ci inline four with fuel injection, a five-speed manual, and 97,000 miles—$7,500
  • 1985 Shelby GLHS custom (engine, interior) hatchback coupe with gray cloth bucket seats, a 2.2 liter/135 ci inline four with a turbocharger, an intercooler, and fuel injection, a five-speed manual, and 32,000 miles—at $19,500, the highest eighties vehicle sale on Thursday
  • 1989 pearl white Chevrolet 1500 custom (exterior) pickup truck with an unknown V8—$7,000
  • 1984 beige/black two-tone Chevrolet Suburban custom (suspension, wheels/tires) SUV—$5,000
  • 1984 red Toyota Celica hatchback coupe with red cloth bucket seats, a 22R-E 105 bhp 2.4 liter inline four with fuel injection, and an automatic—$14,000
  • 1982 blue Toyota FJ-40 Land Cruiser mild custom SUV with tan seats, a 2F 4.2 liter inline six, and a four-speed manual—$15,000
  • 1986 white Nissan Spartan II coupe with a gray interior, a 3.0 liter V6 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$11,500 for this 300ZX-based neo-classic
  • 1983 sky blue Mercedes-Benz 380SL convertible with blue bucket seats, a 155 bhp 3.8 liter/234 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 92,000 miles—$3,000 for this SL stated to not be in running condition
  • 1985 chocolate Chevrolet C10 custom (just about everything) pickup truck with tan leather bucket seats, a 6.3 liter/383 ci V8, and an automatic—$16,000

Friday, December 4th:

  • 1985 black/silver two-tone Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck with 65,000 miles and little other description—$7,000
  • 1982 Red Chevrolet Corvette coupe with an L83 Cross-Fire 200 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with throttle body fuel injection, an automatic, and 67,000 miles—$7,500
  • 1987 red/white two-tone Chevrolet C10 custom (suspension, wheels/tires) pickup truck with a black cloth bench seat, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 65,000 miles—$23,000
  • 1982 Dark Brown Metallic Datsun 280ZX Turbo hatchback coupe with tan cloth bucket seats, an L28ET 145 bhp 2.8 liter/168 ci inline six with a turbocharger and fuel injection, and a five-speed manual—at $28,000 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.
1982 Datsun 280ZX Turbo, linked from Mecum’s website
  • 1984 white Zimmer Golden Spirit coupe with red leather bucket seats, a Windsor 4.9 liter/302 ci V8 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$21,000
  • 1989 maroon/white two-tone Dodge Ramcharger SUV with red cloth seats, an unknown V8 (could be a 5.2 liter or a 5.9 liter), an automatic, and 57,000 miles—$9,500
  • 1987 blue metallic Chevrolet K10 custom (exterior, engine, wheels/tires) pickup truck with a blue cloth bench seat, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with a carburetor, and an automatic—$18,000
  • 1984 Apple Red Chevrolet C10 pickup truck with a charcoal vinyl bench seat, an LE9 150 bhp 5.0 liter/305 ci V8, and an automatic—$15,000
  • 1983 Rally Red Jeep CJ-7 custom (just about everything) SUV with red bucket seats and a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with a supercharger—at $37,000, the highest eighties vehicle sale on Friday
  • 1980 beige Mercedes-Benz 450SL convertible with a black soft top, brown bucket seats, a 160 bhp 4.5 liter/276 ci V8 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$19,000
  • 1984 black GMC 1500 custom (engine, suspension, wheels/tires) pickup truck with a bench seat, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$19,500
  • 1981 Chevrolet C10 custom (just about everything) pickup truck with blue cloth bucket seats, a 6.0 liter V8 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$22,000
  • 1988 Salmon Silver Metallic BMW 325i convertible with a black top, black leather bucket seats, an M20B25 168 bhp 2.5 liter/152 ci inline four with fuel injection, and an automatic—$7,000.
  • 1983 beige Jeep CJ-7 SUV with tan bucket seats, a manual, and 132,000 miles—$13,000
  • 1985 Apple Red/Frost White two-tone Chevrolet K5 Blazer Silverado SUV with red cloth bucket seats and an automatic—$25,500
  • 1987 Medium Gray Metallic Chevrolet El Camino pickup truck with a gray cloth seat, an LG4 150 bhp 5.0 liter/305 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, an automatic, and 29,000 miles—$9,000
  • 1983 tan Jeep Scrambler custom (just about everything) pickup truck with gray bucket seats, a 5.9 liter V8, and an automatic—$15,500
  • 1986 white Volkswagen custom (exterior, wheels/tires) cabriolet with gray/white bucket seats, a 90 bhp 1.8 liter inline four, a five-speed manual, and 122,000 miles—$4,000

Saturday, December 5th:

  • 1982 Silver Beige Chevrolet Corvette 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 11,000 miles—$24,000 is solid money for a 1982 CE.
  • 1984 Chevrolet C10 custom (engine, suspension, wheels/tires) pickup truck with a 7.4 liter/454 ci V8 and an automatic—$22,000
  • 1986 blue/tan two-tone Chevrolet C10 custom (powertrain, interior, wheels/tires) pickup truck with a gray bench seat, a 6.0 liter V8, and an automatic—$31,000
  • 1987 black Porsche 930 Turbo coupe with brown bucket seats, a 282 bhp 3.3 liter/201 ci flat six with a turbocharger and fuel injection, a four-speed manual, and 28,000 miles—$120,000 for this factory slant nose made it the highest eighties vehicle of this auction
1988 Porsche 930 Turbo, linked from Mecum’s website
  • 1983 Chevrolet C10 custom (engine, suspension, wheels/tires) pickup truck with a cloth bench seat, a 6.3 liter/383 ci V8 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$30,000
  • 1987 red orange Land Rover Defender 90 custom (just about everything) SUV with orange/black leather bucket seats, a 2.5 liter diesel inline four, and a five-speed manual—$41,000

Houston was another Mecum auction in Texas that featured many Chevrolet trucks. This profusion of bowtie trucks meant that Chevrolets were 44% of the eighties vehicles sold. Other prevalent marques were Jeep and Nissan/Datsun. What do you think?

Eighties Vehicles at the 2020 Mecum Dallas

Mecum’s Dallas auction in October 2020 provided some interesting fodder for commentary. It’s important to remember that Mecum auctions are not “no reserve” auctions—a yellow 1982 Toyota FJ-45 Land Cruiser SUV with a black bench seat was a no-sale bid up to $42,500. I’ll concentrate on the at least reasonably stock 1980s vehicles that sold and add some of my opinions. Eighties vehicles were about 7% of the 529 vehicle lots sold in this auction.

Thursday, October 15th:

  • 1982 Silver Metallic Chevrolet Corvette coupe with silver gray leather bucket seats, an L83 Cross-Fire 200 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with throttle body fuel injection, an automatic, and 36,000 miles—$12,000 hammer price
  • 1985 silver Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck with a blue interior, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$7,500
  • 1980 red Jeep CJ-7 SUV with tan bucket seats, a 119 bhp 5.0 liter/304 ci V8 with a two-barrel carburetor, and an automatic—at $18,000 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.
  • 1985 yellow Cadillac Eldorado coupe with a yellow vinyl top, tan leather seats, an HT-4100 135 bhp 4.1 liter/249 ci V8 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$6,000
  • 1981 red/white two-tone Ford F150 Explorer pickup truck with a plaid cloth bench seat, a 120 bhp 4.9 liter/300 ci inline six with a carburetor, an automatic, and 51,000 miles—$20,000 for this truck with it’s original “big six.”
1981 Ford F150 Explorer, linked from Mecum’s website
  • 1986 red/white two-tone Dodge Ramcharger Royale SE SUV with red cloth seats, a 150 bhp 5.2 liter/318 ci V8 with a two-barrel carburetor, and an automatic—$10,500
  • 1985 red Chevrolet K10 mild custom pickup truck with a red cloth bench seat, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$38,000
  • 1987 Black Buick Regal Grand National coupe with black/silver cloth bucket seats, an LC2 235 bhp 3.8 liter/231 ci V6 with fuel injection, turbocharger, and intercooler, and an automatic—$27,500
  • 1989 black Ford F150 custom (engine, wheels/tires) pickup truck with gray cloth bucket seats, a Windsor 4.9 liter/302 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 87,000 miles—$10,000
  • 1986 Dark Cordovan Chrysler LeBaron convertible with a tan top, cordovan vinyl bucket seats, an unknown inline four (could be a 2.2 liter or a 2.5 liter), an automatic, and 26,000 miles—$7,000
  • 1989 dark green/beige two-tone Chevrolet Blazer mild custom SUV with beige cloth bucket seats, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, and an automatic—$11,500
  • 1989 white with woodgrain Oldsmobile Custom Cruiser station wagon with a dark sapphire blue 55/45 cloth seat, a 140 bhp 5.0 liter/307 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, an automatic, and 42,000 miles—$9,000

Friday, October 16th:

  • 1980 Carousel Red Pontiac Firebird Trans Am coupe with dark camel cloth bucket seats, a W72 150 bhp 4.9 liter/301 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, and an automatic—$23,000
  • 1986 Light Regatta Blue/Colonial White two-tone Ford F250 XLT mild custom pickup truck with a blue cloth bench seat, a Lima 7.5 liter/460 ci V8, and an automatic—$17,000
  • 1988 Black Ford Mustang convertible with a black top, medium gray cloth bucket seats, a Windsor 225 bhp 4.9 liter/302 ci V8 with fuel injection, a five-speed manual, and 38,000 miles—$14,000
  • 1989 Medium Red Toyota SR5 custom (engine) pickup truck with gray cloth bucket seats, a 3.4 liter V6, and a five-speed manual—$14,500
  • 1987 black Chevrolet Silverado custom (exterior, suspension, wheels/tires) pickup truck with a red interior, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, an automatic, and 87,000 miles—$30,000
  • 1982 yellow Chevrolet Corvette coupe with camel leather bucket seats, an L83 Cross-Fire 200 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with throttle body fuel injection, and an automatic—$13,000
  • 1981 Red Chevrolet Camaro Z28 coupe with red vinyl bucket seats, an LM1 175 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, an automatic, and 36,000 miles—$22,000
1981 Chevrolet Camaro Z28, linked from Mecum’s website
  • 1988 gray Dodge Ramcharger mild custom SUV with red cloth bucket seats, an LA 170 bhp 5.2 liter/318 ci V8 with fuel injection, an automatic, and 38,000 miles—$8,500
  • 1986 red Chevrolet K10 custom (engine, suspension, exterior, interior) pickup truck with a gray cloth bench seat, a 427 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, an automatic, and 27,000 miles—$40,000
  • 1984 Le Mans Blue Chevrolet K10 custom (engine, suspension, exterior, interior) pickup truck with blue cloth seats, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$25,000
  • 1981 orange Jeep CJ-5 custom (just about everything) SUV with black seats, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$15,000
  • 1981 black Jeep CJ-8 Scrambler pickup truck with black bucket seats, a 110 bhp 4.2 liter/258 ci inline six with a two-barrel carburetor, a four-speed manual, and 47,000 miles—$24,000
  • 1984 Light Blue Metallic/Silver two-tone Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck with blue cloth bench seat, a 5.0 liter/305 ci V8, and an automatic—$24,000
  • 1986 Bright Red Chevrolet Corvette convertible with medium gray leather seats, an L98 235 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$18,000 is substantial money for a C4 Corvette convertible without a lot of provenance.
  • 1981 white/black two-tone Chevrolet Blazer SUV with blue cloth bucket seats, a V8, and an automatic—$22,000
  • 1986 red Dodge SLE pickup truck with a red cloth bench seat, a 5.8 liter/360 ci V8, and an automatic—$20,000
  • 1988 Medium Blue Metallic Chevrolet Corvette convertible with a black top, blue leather seats, an L98 240 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with fuel injection, and an automatic—$7,500

Saturday, October 17th:

  • 1980 Black Chevrolet Camaro Z28 coupe with red cloth bucket seats, an LM1 190 bhp 5.7 liter/350 ci V8 with a four-barrel carburetor, a four-speed manual, and 37,000 miles—$22,000
  • 1985 black Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck with a burgundy cloth bench seat, a 5.0 liter/305 ci V8, and an automatic—$13,500
  • 1984 red Chevrolet Silverado custom (body, engine) pickup truck with a gray cloth bench seat, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$28,000
  • 1987 amber/cream two-tone Chevrolet Silverado custom (paint, engine) pickup truck with a tan vinyl bench seat, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$29,000
  • 1985 orange/white two-tone Chevrolet Silverado custom (paint, engine) pickup truck with a chocolate vinyl bench seat, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$30,000
  • 1985 red with flames Chevrolet Silverado custom (just about everything) pickup truck with bucket seats, an LS V8, and an automatic—$40,000
  • 1984 gray/white two-tone Chevrolet Silverado custom (paint, engine, suspension) pickup truck with an olive green bench seat, an LS V8, and an automatic—$40,000
1984 Chevrolet Silverado custom, linked from Mecum’s website.
  • 1984 green/cream two-tone Chevrolet Silverado custom (paint, engine, suspension, interior) pickup truck with a tan bench seat, an LS V8, and an automatic—$43,000
  • 1988 red Chevrolet 2500 custom (paint, engine, suspension, interior) pickup truck with a red bench seat, a 5.7 liter/350 ci V8, and an automatic—$24,000
  • 1980 black Land Rover Defender 110 custom (paint, engine, interior) SUV with black leather bucket seats, a V8, and an automatic—$85,000

This particular auction contained many Chevrolet trucks—most from the Hill’s Hot Rods Square Body Collection. This profusion of bowtie trucks meant that Chevrolets were 55% of the eighties vehicles sold. Other prevalent marques were Ford, Dodge, and Jeep. What do you think?

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?