The Renault 11 was a small family car built by the French automaker for several years (1981-1988). Styling was by French designer Robert Opron (Simca 1100, Citroen DS restyle, SM, GS, CX, Renault Alpine, Fuego, and Alfa Romeo SZ) but mechanical bits were sketchy metal things shared with the Renault Alliance and Encore. The end result is a car that looks amazing while sitting on the side of the road. Is that such a bad thing? Find this 1985 Renault 11 Turbo offered for $6,900 in Longwood, FL via craigslist. Tip from David.
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Toyota started using the Century name way back in 1967 on a V8 powered luxury liner that was based on the Crown Eight. The same basic design continued in production through 1997..yes…a staggering 30 year production run. Imagine if you could buy the same Tesla Model S that you see in the showroom today in 2042…actually, that is looking like a good probability. But nobody wants a used electric car, so save your money and buy this 1992 Toyota Century offered for $13,500 in Gaithersburg, MD via craigslist.
This next car comes as a tip from Cory who writes; One of the odder volvo 240 swap cars I have seen- BMW engine and volvo s60 dash. In my opinion, the car is close to being actually good, but some very odd details (steering wheels is horrid) keep it in the mongrel category. Never seen or heard of anyone swapping in a poorly fitted dash into one of these. Find this 1990 Volvo 240 Sedan with BMW inline-6 swap offered for $1250 in Suffield, CT via facebash markingbaste.
Tipper Rock On sent in a nice 11th generation Eldorado for $15k so that we could continue collecting our set of Eldos (’98 here, ’67 here) , but that is expensive and I wanted something closer to…I dunno…$3k. So I found a 10th generation Eldorado, which is only a few years older, but looks way ancient because of the non-painted/integrated bumpers and wire wheel covers. But, the price is right and the paint is a sweet shade of pan fried livermush or scrapple. I love it! Find this 1985 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz offered for $2,999 in Duluth, MN via craigslist.
This next car isn’t the perfect little old lady driven classic in mint condition that you dream about…and it does have some rust and dings and missing trim. It also has the remains of an RV towing mount, which means it probably logged some miles being towed through who-knows-what kind of environment. That is probably why, despite wearing vintage 1981 Cali Sunset plates, it has some significant surface rust. However, you don’t find driver condition Civics with manual gearboxes just sitting around at this price…so I give it a cautious one thumb up. Find this 1981 Honda Civic 1500GL offered for $4000 in Palmdale, CA via craigslist.
The guys over at Hagerty have it correct when they say that the Chevy Monza was born at just the wrong time. The Monza was released in 1975 as a rear-drive renaissance for compact American compact sports coupes, and while it sold in decent numbers (over 800k from 1975-1980) it was released at the height […]
This next car is something else. It has that sweet 64 Buick Skylark hardtop shape that is undeniably sexy, and a built 327 V8 with a huge gas spewing carburetor, built powerglide 2-speed tranny, and the worlds smallest gas tank. I challenge you to find a car that would require more trips to the gas station than this car on a trip from LA to Vegas. But my kids need to go pee every 35 seconds whenever we are on a road trip, so perhaps this would work okay. I wonder if you could zip-tie a car seat to a roll cage… Find this 1964 Buick Skylark offered for $9,500 in Santa Rosa, CA via craigslist.
It’s brown. It’s a wagon. It has a carburetor fed inline-6 mated to a slushbox automatic and it probably smells of old cheese vinyl. Yes, this is the perfect car for a family who doesn’t want to drive yet another stupid crossover/crossunder from the product planners at the mainstream automakers. Just be sure that everybody wears shoes that can be used to push a car if necessary. Find this 1977 Dodge Aspen Wagon offered for $10,500 in Westhampton Beach, NY via craigslist. Tip from Cory.
The Mazda MX-5 Miata isn’t a car for everybody. If you are too large or if your family is too large, fuggedaboutit– you’re not gonna fit. But for all the people who want a convertible with a driving experience that is sublime, you need to at least consider a Miata. Obviously, the latest generation (ND) has the best combination of styling, performance, etc…but if you want the best bang for your buck — look to the NB generation Mazdaspeed MX-5. It was a limited production version that added a small turbocharger, Bilstein shocks, and a limited slip diff to 5428 versions equipped with the 6-speed manual for the 2004-2005 model years. Expect them to be collectible in the future, but for now, they are affordable. Find this 2005 Mazda MX-5 MazdaSpeed offered for $7,800 in Temple City, CA via craigslist.
When I first glanced at the photos for this next car I thought it was a toy — a scale model of a car. But then I read that it was an actual car with a 360 cubic inch 2-stroke engine…which means it is a toy, just a toy for grown ups. But the oddest thing in the entire listing is the fact that this isn’t a recent import, but it was sold new in the USA back in the day. Find this 1972 Suzuki LJ20 Jimny offered for $9,500 in Southern California or the Pacific Northwest via craigslist.