Long before Bring a Trailer, eBay or Craigslist, we were always combing the media channels to find interesting deals to share with those with-in our car circles. AutoTrader, Deals on Wheels and occasionally Pioneer Press locals were the tools of the hunt. Currently Bring a Trailer has emerged as the leader in interesting cars with readers contributing 1000s of cars for sale each today. Of course BaT big premiums for selling/buying keep most as voyeurs.
Well, as very seasoned hunters, we have our little tricks. One happens to be an app we’ve tweaked that will allow us to search EVERYTHING online with specific parameters. Talk about a big time-suck distraction! We usually hunt for realistic buys that appeal to our Fuelfed patina-driver sensibilities. Now keep in mind that the real car hunter still has an eye on every driveway, dealer lot and garage door as he drives about his daily business.
Recently, our little app scooped this gem up out of tiny rural White Pigeon, MI.
The ad reads:
1988 Benz 300 V8. Charcoal w/black leather. 68k miles. Runs, but needs tune-up. $2200 obo.
The smart hunter knows if there’s a phone number, don’t waste time sending a text or email…call!
And call we did. The seller stated it was his father-in-laws pride and joy he imported from Germany back in 1989. It had “special hot-rod enhancements”. When the father-in-law passed in 1998, the car and sailboat went into the grandparents storage barn. Keeping our cards close to the chest, we dare not reveal what the car truly is, but simply ask for the vin and set up a time we can drive (3 hours) to see it.
Due diligence must now ensue. We validated the vin as a 1988 300 that had been imported from Affalterbach, Germany … AMG GmbH! Yes, it was a true ultra rare AMG Hammer as we had hoped! A call to the great AMG engine master John Hadek in Indianapolis gave us great insight on the modified 560 V8 and what rebuild costs might run (just in-case).
Cash in hand (mandatory), we call ahead before we depart. No answer. Two days go by before we finally make contact again. Unfortunately, the car sold to a local kid who will surely kill it unknowing of what a great motoring icon he had scored.
Oh the painful roller-coaster ride that addicts the true car hunter to the chase!