The 4th generation Dodge Monaco was a big malaise era equivalent of striped velour v-neck shirt. This thing reeks of chest carpets and overgrown man-hair held back by a tennis headband (see Bjorn Borg at Wimbledon in 1978 for reference in case you weren’t alive back then or lived under a rock)….and I love it. Find this 1978 Dodge Monaco offered for $9900 in Greenville, SC via craigslist.
Tipper Rock On sent this car in almost a month ago, and I’d mostly forgotten about it until I stumbled onto it in one of my late night peanut butter whiskey fueled search fests — and (this might be the Screwball talking) but I want this thing. Does it have an engine — naw! You can source your own. But it is a Volkaro, which is the Ferrari Dino-ish looking kit car from the twisted mind of some wannabe Bruce Myers. There isn’t much info available on the web when you search for Volkaro (DT’s article shows up 4th in the listings when you put the term “VOLKARO” into duckduckgo, for what it’s worth) but there is probably some guy living in the high desert that can tell you all about the genesis of the Volkaro and who built them and…but he doesn’t have the internet because he is afraid of getting COVID or the CIA in his computer. Anyway…you don’t need to know the history of Volkaro to know that you still should buy this 1966 Volkaro kit car offered for $2500 in Desert Hot Springs, CA via craigslist.
When I saw the model year for this next car, I thought it was a typo. Did BMW really produce their classic Miami-Vice styled E31 8-series all the way through the 1997 model year? Yes. Development started in 1981, production launched in 1989 and BMW pulled the E31 from the US market in 1997 with a total sales figure of 6920 cars (and they continued to sell them in Europe through 1999). Pop up headlights and OB2 isn’t a combination you see very often, but I like it! Find this 1997 BMW 840Ci E31 offered for $15,999 in Hercules, CA via craigslist. Tip from Rock On!
Do you know what is better than a common classic like the Ford Maverick? Yeah, you know, it is the Mercury version of that platform. It comes with all of the same basic mechanical underpinnings, but with a weird badge and name that’ll make everyone think you are some kind of connoisseur of the vintage horseless carriage. Find this 1971 Mercury Comet offered for $11,900 in Orlando, FL via craigslist. Tip from Rock On!
The first generation Maxima was a rear-drive thing badged as the Datsun 810, later Datsun Maxima, and finally Nissan Maxima, but today’s next car is a 2nd generation and front wheel drive…not that there is anything wrong with that. Today’s example is about as nice of an example of a Maxima that you’ll find around town. Find this 1988 Nissan Maxima offered for $5000 near Atlanta, GA via craigslist. Tip from FuelTruck.
The Saab 96 was a classic aero-shaped front-driver from the guys at Svenska Aeroplan Aktiebolaget and SAAB history buffs will tell you that it was technically the third major redesign of their first car, the Saab 92. In typical Saab fashion, the 96 continued in production long after its planned replacement (the 99) was released, in fact the 96 continued in production through 1980. Today’s example is an “original owner” classic that has a few dents/dings but looks okay for the asking price and is equipped with a little V4 engine. Find this 1971 Saab 96 V4 offered for $6000 in San Mateo, CA via craigslist.
Classic car prices have been through the roof in the past few decades…or perhaps inflation has been more aggressive than anyone could have imagined…but any way you look at it, a shiny and good looking mainstream classic will cost you a pretty penny. So if you are financially challenged, or just a tightwad, and you want a classic, you need to dig deep into obscure makes/models and find something like this next thing. Find this 1952 Morris Minor offered for $10,900 in Belchertown, MA via craigslist. Tip from ME.
I have to admit that I’ve had a soft spot for the front-engine water cooled Porsches from the 70s/80s/90s for a while…or maybe that’s a soft spot in my head…I dunno. What I do know is that my head would enjoy the California sunshine when I’m cruising around in one of the prettiest cars ever to come from Stuttgart and of the 2248 convertibles that were imported into North America between 1992 and 1995, this isn’t a bad way to go. Find this 1994 Porsche 968 Cabrio offered for $18500 in Newport, RI via craigslist. Tip from Cory.
From 1957 through 1970 Autobianchi used the Fiat 500 platform to build a cool looking minicar called the Bianchina, which I’ve been told is Italian for “makes the driver look huge.” And the truth is, you don’t need to be Kareem Abdul Jabar to look huge next to a car with a 72 inch wheel base and a 117 inch total length…in fact, Paula Abdul would look like a giant next to this thing. Which is, apparently, the appeal of the microcar, drive something tiny so you feel like a giant, I wonder if I could buy this with my HFSA money and claim it is a form of therapy? Find this 1965 Autobianchi Bianchina offered for $19,500 in Georgetown, TX via craigslist. Tip from FuelTruck.
The Dodge Colt was an imported Mitsubishi Mirage with a Dodge emblem and is either an interesting cheap classic if you never had to rely on one for daily driving use or a total pile of garbage if you needed drive one for many miles a day. The little pony is covered in TURBO stickers, but the “twin-stick” (it is a 4-speed gearbox with a 2-speed transfer case controlled by that dainty lever to the left of the stick) is either a neat trick to entertain your passengers or just something else to break…depending on how you feel about this kinda thing. Find this 1984 Dodge Colt GTS offered for $3950 in Elk Grove, CA via craigslist. Tip from Jason.