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*SOLD* Don't tell that guy in the other thread who is worried about how much I'm making when I sell a car, but I bought this Corvette recently from a little estate auction that a friend found in another state. He gave me the details and I bid online but I wasn't going to go crazy. It was pretty badly misrepresented but it was cheap enough that I was willing to take a chance. And it is the one time in my life that I was pleasantly surprised by an auction car. The misrepresentation was that it was a replacement engine, so I bid accordingly. It does have factory A/C and red/red is a great combination so I figured I didn't have much to lose. Once it showed up at my shop I was able to go over it more carefully. Yeah, it's totally numbers-matching. Engine, transmission, rear end, carburetor, alternator, all of it checks out. It is a color change from yellow/black, but I can't really complain about that. It was a friggin' mess after sitting in a garage for a few years, but we got it cleaned up, serviced, and well, there's a REALLY good Corvette underneath. 

 

The repaint was quite well done, with no traces of the original Sunfire Yellow anywhere on the body. Michael was able to restore a beautiful gloss to the finish and there are no signs of fiberglass distress underneath. It's not show quality, but it's awfully good. Doors close nicely, headlight doors fit properly, and while the bonding strips are no longer visible, it isn't "too perfect" which Corvette fans like. Good chrome bumpers and emblems, too. It's a nice car.

 

The red interior is obviously replacement and also well done. Since it's a color change, just about everything inside is newer and there's a rather long list of options: factory A/C, power windows, woodgrain wheel, and the PowerGlide automatic transmission, plus power steering and brakes underneath. Everything works, including the gauges, clock, and aftermarket AM/FM/cassette radio in the lower dash. I just noticed looking at the photos that the courtesy light on the driver's side isn't working, but we'll have that fixed tomorrow. Nice carpets, clean headliner, and good weather seals round it out.


The engine is the original, numbers-matching 327 cubic inch V8. It is the base version, so that means 300 horsepower, but since when is 300 horsepower inadequate? I don't know anything about what's in the engine or if it was rebuilt, but given the quality of the rest of the car it wouldn't be a mistake to assume that it was. On the other hand, it shows 67,118 miles and I'd be inclined to believe that's an authentic reading so maybe not. Either way, it starts easily, idles pretty well (and better once it's warm), and pulls with vigor. The PowerGlide isn't the handicap you think it is, although it does feel kind of weird holding on to 1st gear as long as it does. Meh. PowerGlides weren't stamped with VIN derivatives, but it does have a reasonable September 2, 1965 date code for this VERY early production 1966 Corvette (the 671st 1966 Corvette built), which was also built in September 1965. The same goes for the 3.36-geared rear end, which has a September 8, 1965 assembly date. I don't believe the body was ever off the frame, so it's not detailed underneath, but the birdcage is solid and the frame areas ahead of the rear wheels are completely solid, so this car didn't spend any time in the snow or salt. There's also a brand new exhaust system and somewhat recent shocks. We just installed new 215/70/15 whitewall radials for a correct look (boy was it hard to do it that way instead of blackwalls or redlines, but whitewalls are the right choice). 

 

No documentation, but I don't have any serious concerns about this car's pedigree. Loaded with options, great colors, nice condition, ready to enjoy on the road, not the show field. And at $49,900 it's a bit of a bargain for a matching-numbers mid-year Corvette, especially one that's loaded with options. Just don't ask me how much I paid if you're the sort of guy who worries about my margins. Thanks for looking!

 

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Edited by Matt Harwood (see edit history)
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25 minutes ago, alsancle said:

Nice car Matt!   Since I'm a capitalist I'm ok with you making some money.   But I'm mildly concerned you might think you can do this more than once and not get screwed.

 

This is a unicorn, I know that. I've been screwed plenty of times by cars I've bought, cars that have been consigned, and cars that I already own. This kind of windfall won't happen again. This one was just a fluke because it was a small estate sale with no other collector cars and it was a domestic auction company selling it, not a car auction or even a farm auction. Almost no advertising beyond an ad in the local paper and Craig's List. They just sell the furniture out of dead peoples' houses. It just happened that the deceased was a friend's uncle-in-law or something (a relative on his wife's side) and he gave me a heads up that there was an "old Corvette" in the estate and they were going to auction it. The auction rep I spoke with knew NOTHING about Corvettes but told me that they "had an expert look it over and he told us it was an older restoration in the wrong colors with a replacement engine." So that affected my bidding, along with the fact that it was an automatic and that it had been sitting an unknown period of time. I entered my max bid two weeks before the auction and let it ride. I got a call the day after the auction saying that I'd won the car and that I had 48 hours to collect it. So I sent one of our usual transport guys to drag it back.

 

I don't know what kind of "expert" they had looking at the car, because the engine numbers were easy to find and not at all obscured other than by paint and the A/C compressor bracket. I had to wipe the paint off to see them but it didn't take any special digging. He obviously didn't do that and just phoned it in or wasn't the expert he claimed to be. Either way, I'm thrilled it turned out to be matching-numbers. That's an extra 20-30% right there even if I had done nothing else to the car.

 

This is also another good opportunity to tell you guys to get your affairs in order if you don't want this happening to your beloved collector cars. Nobody wanted the Corvette, it sat rotting for a few years after he died because nobody knew what to do, and the people selling it knew nothing about it so it sold for pennies on the dollar. Get your house in order before it's too late!

 

Anyway, I savored the experience two months ago when the car arrived, flat tires, dirt, and all--I know this won't happen again in my lifetime.

 

 

Edited by Matt Harwood (see edit history)
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I would love a coupe from that era, and I love the hub caps. I also am a fan of the automatic transmissions from that era. Automatics get a bad rap, but it is a very smooth transmission, and does not affect a fun driving experience one bit. In fact, it may enhance the experience.

I'm not a fan of red, tho. 😶

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  • Matt Harwood changed the title to 1966 Corvette *SOLD*

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