Article contributed by Steve Burns
This Friday and Saturday March 11 and 12 the crew from Mecum Auctions sets up shop at Bartle Hall in Kansas City, MO. This week’s event marks the first of 2 stops in KC for 2011. Over 2 dozen Corvettes covering 5 of the 6 generations will be up for grabs this weekend as HD Theater provides 8 hours of live event coverage.
Leading the pack of Corvettes this weekend is Lot #S65, a fantastic unrestored 1965 big block roadster. The 43,985 mile red on red car ran the gamut of awards in 1997 at Bloomington Gold taking home Survivor, Gold, and Benchmark honors. The seller claims that this is the only red/red 396 roadster to obtain Benchmark status. In addition it earned a NCRS Top Flight award in 2008. Power is provided by the one-year-only 396CI 425hp motor which is mated to a 4 speed transmission. Just 2,157 people checked option box L78 and plunked down an additional $292 for the rat motor. Other options on the numbers matching vehicle include the matching hard top and AM/FM radio. Documentation includes the original Protect-O-Plate and complete ownership history.
As the market continues its love affair with unrestored originals, we can expect to see several interested parties in this car. The stunning red / red color combo, awards, and documentation will only add to the desirability. Expect a final bid right around 6 figures to take this car home when it crosses the block about 1:30pm on Saturday, March 12th.
Another interesting car is Lot #S169, a 1969 Corvette dragster. The auction listing states that this is Jim Shue’s original “Hell Fire” Corvette and has been in storage for 40 years. Oddly, a Hillborn injected 426 Hemi provides motivation for the car. The seller claims a quarter mile time of 7.14s @ 200mph when running nitro methane fuel. Not too shabby for a hemi powered Corvette! Old racecars continue to be popular in the collector car market. This unrestored California racer should be no different. The mix of originality, raw power, and racing history should yield significant attention when this one is on the block around 5:40pm on Friday, March 11th.
If big blocks and racecars are too for you much then check out Lot #S51, a nicely restored 1966 convertible. The red / black roadster features a white top, 327/300 motor, 4 speed, power steering and white wall tires. The current owner states that it received a no expense spared restoration after it was purchased from the original owner. Judging by the photos in the auction listing this would make for a great cruising car a great show car. It should hit center stage around 1pm on Saturday, March 12th.
As the 2011 auction season continues, we hopefully will continue to see the slow recovery of the collector car market. The majority of the Corvettes being offered this weekend appear to be good driver-type cars so keep your eye for some reasonable prices and good buys. If you can’t make it to KC this weekend be sure to check HD Theater’s live coverage on Friday from 6-10pm and Saturday from 2-6pm eastern time.