Buick Reatta Discuss some comments in the BUICK CLUBS forums; I'd like to make some comments if I may. I'm kind of a lurker right now as I don't have a Reatta, but I have owned over a dozen and ...
I'd like to make some comments if I may. I'm kind of a lurker right now as I don't have a Reatta, but I have owned over a dozen and still looking at some others.<P>My other cars: I own 10 1968-70 AMC AMXs and one 1970 Trans Am Javelin, some of which I bought in the mid 70s. The similarities between the AMX and Reatta are many-2 seat hardtop not fitting the company image, minot change after 2 years, shared components: Reatta-Riv, AMX-Javelin, etc etc. There are many AMXs still around because they are odd enough people save them. The same will be true of Reattas. I have owned 156 different AMXs over the years and have currently some Platinum class award winners. I used to travel New England buying out dealer obsolete parts so I had a huge stockp[ile of parts to fix my AMXs. The problem with reattas is the dealer inventorey are computerized, so there is not a lot of obsolete parts on the shelf. I had a very hard time finding a new fender for a 90 Reatta in 1995! I waited for ever for the prices of AMXs to go up, and now they are-30 years later. And now repro parts are beginning to show up, but boy are they expensive. And NOS (brand new old stock)parts are hitting the ceiling thanks to EBAY-grills for the 70 at $1,000, steering wheels approaching the same price, Legendary just made interior parts-expensive but has some flaws. The worst part is the vendors want to get the stuff made but the molds are long gone. I have seen some of the wrecked cars people are parting out-it's a shame, because every reatta I owned was totalled and I bought them from an insurance auction and fixed them. Some were hit real hard. But if you part them out, there will be less on the road, so less people owning them looking to buy the repro parts if they ever come out. I looked into making fiberglass parts about 4-5 years ago-fenders, hoods, bumpers, valance, etc. There wasn't a market, but I bet there might be now. These wrecks can be fixed! There were less than 2900 Bricklins made (I've owned 4) and you should see all the repro parts made for them-whole body kits, air door systems, etc. People are actually making a living selling and repairing Bricklins and AMXs. One day there will be reatta specialists repairing and selling these cars. There will be plenty-unfortunatly-cars broadsided or rearended that can't be fixed. but some like that white drunk driver Reatta is not as bad as it looks. Strip the sheetmetal nose off of it, have it pulled at a frame shop and hang anopther nose on it. (Anyone have one for sale? What's the going price?)<P>Just my 2 cents worth, but these are awesome cars and I wish they can all be saved.
Re: some comments
Tom: Quite an impressive record; that's a lot of AMXs! Two-seaters do hold a special place in enthusiasts' hearts. I don't know how many AMXs were built, but limited production numbers play a large part in collectability, price and parts availability. I've owned 21 little Thunderbirds, and have witnessed the phenomenon you describe: when fairly new, they're cheap and parts are plentiful; then parts become scare (and expensive), and then off-shore reproduction begins -- and you can almost build a new one from the ground up with repro parts. Ford built only 53,166 little T-Birds in the three years of production. Softtops used to bring $100; I just saw a restored one go for $4000. That's just the top, not the whole car! As far as bringing back totaled Reattas, many states (Califoria and Florida, for two) won't allow them to be retitled and resold once declared dead and gone, unless labeled as such. California requires a big spike be driven through the door/fender jam and the titled is stamped SALVAGE. As I recall, you can't drive one in Florida. It has to be taken out of state (Georgia, usually) for a new title. For one, I'm just as happy that there aren't 400 or so Reattas on the road that have suffered frame damage or other safety-related injuries.<P>Jerry Sellers
Re: some comments
Tom: Are you around Atlanta ? If so think we bought a car trailer from you once.<P>$1000 for an AMX steering wheel ? If there was ever a car that cried out for an aftermarket wheel, that was it, (see <A HREF="http://www.amx-perience.com/1969dash.htm" TARGET=_blank>http://www.amx-perience.com/1969dash.htm</A> <BR>- maybe that is why there are so few stock ones around now.<P>Thought about buying an AMX when came back from SEA but bought a '70 Buick GS instead - beat a lot of surprised Z-28s in autocrosses with that car - suspect another 4-speed with air is one of the few cars I'd trade my judge for.
Re: some comments
Tom, wow am I envious, ten Amx's that's impressive. I have a 68 that I bought new in Seattle and its just as pretty as the day I bought it. That car will go to my son as inheritance along with my 68 Shelby GT500 and 64 GTO, he loves collecting muscle cars. I do love my little pocket-rocket AMX, it still gets attention when I take her out on cruise nights. Nothing like owning 2 seaters, AMX and Reatta, we are a different breed.
C. F. Massie Wichita, Kansas "The Air Capital of the World"
Hawker/Beechcraft - Cessna - LearJet - Boeing89 Red/Tan Reatta (1st owner) 68 Shelby GT500 Conv. (now belongs to No. 1 son) 68 AMX (now belongs to No. 1 son) 64 GTO (1st owner) 67 Sunbeam (2nd owner) 71 Detomaso Pantera (2nd owner) 72 MGB (2nd owner)
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