dillon14

1942 Pontiac

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My friend called me today and said his father was now in a nursing home and he wanted to sell two old cars that his father left him. One was a 1965 Thunderbird. The other was a 1942 Pontiac. Not sure yet what model it is but I will see it tomorrow. My problem is I can find no comparison anywhere to indicate a fair market value. He told me his father said it was rare due to the war starting up and factories changing over to military supplies. He also said it needs paint and has around 30,000 miles on it.I know my way around most classic cars and muscle cars for sure but have no idea on a 1942 Pontiac. Can anyone on this site help me out?

Thanks,

Al in Maine

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It's all going to depend on the body style and the mechanical condition as well of course the chrome (if not a blackout model)  and interior.  I think you would find a 42 Chevy being pretty comparable and easy to find.  Needing paint may be subjective if it still has it's original finish.   I don't think they have alot more value than a 46 Pontiac or Chevy would have.  The 42 is rarer of course but not really any more desirable.  Show us some photos if you can and we could probably give you a ball park.  

Now what about the '65 Tbird?  Coupe or Conv't and what shape is that it? 

Get us some photos when you go to look at them.  We love photos. 

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NADA is a tough one for old cars.  Usually they seem high from what I actually see selling on old cars.  42 Pontiacs almost seemed a little on the low side of what I think they would really sell for.  Then again when you are grading a car on a 1-3 scale that is going to be really hard.  It's hard enough to find anything fit on a 1-6 scale.  I still say post some photos here when you get a chance.  I think we could peg the value closer than a 1-3 chart designed for late model cars.  

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The 42 Pontiac is worth anything from 50 bucks to 25k depending on what the body is and what the condition.

 

And I can't resist mentioning that the NADA guide is worthless for collector cars.

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I just looked up the 5 cars I have sold in the last 15 months or so and the prices on NADA were in the ballpark for all of them. ('30 A 5 window coupe, 70 Bronco, 61 Rampside, 64 Greenbrier, 50 Club Coupe - there was no listing for the 24 Roadster.)

 

I don't understand why this resource is completely dismissed? Do any of you have examples of where it is off and can show the value, condition and good comps that prove it is wrong? 

 

I'm sure there are some that are off, but for the most part, I have found this to be a good starting point. One of many useful tools. Since there is no one way to value a car, any useful tool should not be dismissed. Just like in real estate, the ultimate value is what a willing buyer and a seller who is not under stress agree to.

 

I see a lot of criticism of many tools to value a car, but I wonder how many cars the criticizer has actually sold in the last year? Not 5 years ago, or even 3, but in the LAST year. 

Edited by victorialynn2 (see edit history)

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I know that the '65 Thunderbird was purchased new by a local female librarian who passed it on to a relative when she died. The relative had no interest and the father of my friend bought it but never drove it. He said around 40,000 original miles and the condition will be know tomorrow. I'll post some photos of both.

Al in Maine

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Can anyone tell me where to look on the '42 Pontiac for the VIN number and trim plate? Any other important areas to check?

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Any 42 model four door can be made into a staff car. Although most were Fords Plymouths and Chevies all the brands were used somewhere.

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I've found one of the best valuation tools is Ebay completed successful sales that didn't get relisted.  You can also factor in unsolds to a small degree as to what they were bid to.  As usual you can throw out the one or 2 high ones that didn't meet reserve as there could have been shill bidding against a reserve,  but if the car has not been relisted since on a successful sale then that's a strong one to be factored in.  You can also value some based on several like ones for sale and asking prices.  If the cheapest one you can find of a particular car is 10,000 and most are priced at 15,000,  then yours should be worth atleast what the lowest price one is or real close if it's in exactly the same shape.  To make alot of cars sell,  they have to seem like atleast a little bit of a deal,  especially if they are more common cars like the 65 Tbird.  The 42 maybe not so much depending on what it has to offer.  I know Pontiac cars from the 40's don't seem to have the following of Chevy models from the same time frame. 

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I dismiss the value guides because every single time I have thumbed through one the prices they give are not useful.  For most collector cars (at least the ones I pay any attention to)  subtle variations in options, body style, history and condition so overwhelm the generic 1,2,3,4 rating system as to render any printed number not of any use.   We can talk about appraisers too if you want.  But that would be derailing the thread even more :).

 

I agree with eBay, but the best way to value a car is to post lots of pictures with a detailed description to the marque specific internet forum for that car.  The guys that are in to it (and there are guys in to everything) will know pretty accurately what they are trading for.

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Here are some photos of the 1942 Pontiac. 36,793 miles. Originally owned by a family who had their invalid daughter chauffeured around in it. Current owner purchased it from their estate in the 50's.

 

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Here are some photos of the 1965 Thunderbird. 42,940 miles. Originally purchased and owned by a female librarian. Current owner purchased it from her estate. Very nice and very original and rust free. Interior is very nice. Engine sounds excellent.

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Can anyone on this site decode the VIN and Trim Tag on the 1942 Pontiac? I would appreciate it.

Thanks,

Al in Maine

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For the Pontiac: 

 

Style 42-2511 = 6-cylinder Torpedo (model) two door sedan, 1942 model year

 

I can't quite make out the number on the tag for color but here is a link http://www.earlytimeschapter.org/42colorchart.html

 

P = Pontiac, MI

6 = Six cylinder

 

I would need to look at my reference books for the rest, I will try to do that this weekend.

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1 hour ago, dillon14 said:

Can anyone on this site decode the VIN and Trim Tag on the 1942 Pontiac? I would appreciate it.

 

Sure thing Al, see below.   

VIN

P-Pontiac MI Assembly Plant

6-Six cylinder

KA-Model 25 119" Wheelbase "Torpedo" Series

6152-the 5152nd Model KA built at this plant (numbers started at 1001). 

 

There were a total 24,802 Torpedo Six Model KA built at this plant (of all body styles) and 1942 production only ran for about 5 months, so this means yours was built about 5-6 weeks in, probably approx. early November 1941.  This is consistent with your car having full chrome trim rather than the "blackout" trim famously used after 12-15-41.

 

FISHER BODY

Style # 42-2511-1942 Model 2511 Torpedo Six 2dr Sedan   

Body # 2141-the 2141th Model 2511 body built at the Fisher Pontiac MI Plant

Trim # Can't Read

Paint # 00 (?) if that is code 00 it is Black

 

Total 1942 Pontiac production only 83,555, of those 29,886 were Torpedo Six models.  Nice car, good luck

 

Todd C

POCI1957 Technical Advisor

Edited by poci1957 (see edit history)

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Pontiac is neat.  I'm going to guess 4-5k, but totally a guess as I don't know the market for these at all. 

 

What does NADA say?  The are guessing too  :).

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17 hours ago, dillon14 said:

Thank you for the responses. If there is any interest out there, let me know.

I would suggest that you place your cars in the wanted / for sale section below.  Be sure to include price and location.

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I think Alsancle is probably right or real close on a real selling price for the Pontiac if it isn't rusty underneath.  IF the motor is locked up maybe a bit less. The good selling feature would be that the chrome is so nice.  Most of these I have seen have rusty chrome.  

The "wet" spots on the back seat may be a big concern.  

If it was the Torpedo fastback,  that would probably be worth a couple grand more. 

Edited by auburnseeker (see edit history)

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