I know relatively little about the value and collectability of 1950s Benzes, but something tells me this particular car has to be near the bottom of that scale. Maybe it really is as solid as the seller says, but nothing says “great restoration candidate” like a car that literally has moss growing on it, is hub-deep in mud, and has a ratchet strap holding the front clip together. Maybe German steel is thicker than it looks, and maybe that is just surface rust covering nearly every square inch. But years (decades?) of sitting in that moist, mossy spot will not have been kind to the greasy side of that car, and I can’t imagine sourcing all the various bits of nearly sixty-year-old trim will be much of a treat either. But hey, it’s got an Ohio title!
Monthly Archives: March 2014
While I could entertain the idea that an early first-gen Vega would make a fun project, by the time the 70’s ended, the Vega/Monza platform had had all the style and fun ripped from it. From the header panel back, you can still see a fun little hatchback with a relatively pretty fastback profile, but that schnoz (which still isn’t big enough to completely hide the 5 MPH bumper) totally kills the car. I know I’ve heard people say that there’s nothing that box flares can’t make cool, but I think we’ve found the exception – they certainly don’t hurt, but it’s still a couple miles away from cool.
It does have a four-speed and a V8, and it’s just on this side of the arbitrary “cheap enough that you could entertain it” line, and I guess if you grew up in the era and somehow had fond memories of the cars or the IMSA race series you would be snapping this up. But I’d be so afraid of whatever rabid fanbase the “25-30 still running” cars have that I don’t think I could enjoy owning it. Not to mention, I don’t have a thick enough gold chain or a satin jacket to wear while driving it.
Yeah, yeah, it’s a four-door, and a six-cylinder, and the three-speed is likely on-the-tree. I don’t care, because for about three grand you could have (with my usual caveat – if it’s not rusty) an extremely cool and very durable cruiser. Sounds like the seller has done the important stuff like making sure it starts and stops, so theoretically all you would need to do is keep it in tune and resist any urges to paint it flat black with red wheels. I personally like the two-tone brown, and I just hope that the cut springs don’t make the ride too harsh. BCAS approved!
I’m breaking a few of my unwritten rules here – first, I’m posting about a car that is not in my vicinity, and second, I’m more interested in the – ahem – portly fellow in the photos. He is in every one of the photos, and I have yet to determine the particular social demographic that would be enticed to inquire about an overpriced, rusty, 40-year-old convertible by his presence in the ad. Far be it from me to comment on anyone’s physique, but his belly is actually quite impressive. It’s like he’s smuggling a beach ball in there. I really can’t stop looking at it. I’m hypnotized by it. In fact, the longer I stare, the more I start to think that $19k isn’t so bad for this car. I mean, it’s supposedly a real 442, and it is a convertible. It wouldn’t take much to fix the holes in the trunk and do some body work, and then my new friend and I could cruise down the sun-soaked Michigan roads while listening to… wait! That’s the angle! By distracting me with that mesmerizing solar plexus, I was suddenly much more amenable to buying this hunk of iron oxide. Wow, really dodged a bullet there. Look below at your own risk.