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Anyone who follows the old car hobby knows how expensive classic-era muscle cars have become. It's routine to see six-figure asking prices for prominent/popular models such as Hemi-equipped (and even 440 powered) Mopars - 'Cudas, Challengers, Chargers, Super Bees and GTXs. Even 383 versions of these cars now command primo prices. Big block Chevelles, GTOs, Boss Mustangs, first generation SS Camaros and Z28s are also big bucks rides now - $40k and up

Even the less desirable (for now) models built in the mid-late '70s are bringing as much as $30,000 (and more) vs. $10,000 or less as recently as ten or so years ago.

The irony - blue collar cars that have become rich men's toys - is both remarkable and sad. As recently as the '80s, something like a '69 SS 396 Chevelle was a Hillbilly Special - the kind of car you saw loutish-looking younger guys with mullets and flannel shirts cruising McDonalds on Friday nights in. Primered quarters; Gabriel Hi-Jacker shocks - wrong-size Cragar or Keystone Classic mags - with peeling chrome. No respectable citizen with a college education wanted any part.

Complete Article LINK:


http://www.ericpetersautos.com/home/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=404&Itemid=10685
 

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I can speak to this article just a bit. It is not that auction houses are inflating prices. Parts to rebuild these cars have risen to keep in pace with the price of the same parts used on new assembly line vehicles. In most cases they are more expensive because they are produced in smaller quantities.

I am rebuilding a '71 Chevelle. I already have almost $20,000.00 in it and I have not touched the interior or paint and body. It will easily cost $35,000.00 to complete.

When you upgrade to modern components they way I have, and the way most auto restoration houses would, it gets expensive quick.


Front end work: Includes upgraded 4W disc brake conversion, Hotchkis total vehicle suspension system,


Crate engine and 700R4 transmission upgrade


Magnaflow dual exhaust


Shot under rear with new suspension and rebuilt differential:


I am now reassembling the engine and will get it running before I do anything else. Then it's off to paint and body.

My point: Rebuilding a classic is very expensive. Paying $40K to $50K for a completely restored well done example is a good deal. What you should not do is pay tens of thousands of dollars for one in un-restored original condition. Finding one in that condition is great if you want to restore one, but limit what you pay for it to less than $10,000.
 

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Great Pictures and what a job you have done and still to be done. Of more interest is what your car cost new back in 1971 and that most guys that still lived at home at that time could afford to buy one new. Younger ones that now buy a Nitro could not even think of buying a real HP, really neat ride for less than 4K, and make payments (on-time) working a part-time job! Growing up then almost everyone I knew was driving a new Blue Collar Car. Those were the days and many like myself could modify their engines, powertrain and bodies themselves. Hard to do now. Good luck with your project and keep us informed with updates. All I can say is WOW! Thanks for your Post.
 
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