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Condition ratings, Classic top 100.

Subject: Condition ratings, Classic top 100.
From: William Eastman <>
Date: Mon, 16 Dec 1996 09:30:16 -0600
When I was looking for an MGA, I went to the local Barnes and Noble and
snuck a peak at a couple classic car price guides as well as looking at
adds in Hemmings.  These gave me a good idea about general the general
range of MGA prices for drivers- 5,000 to 10,000.  

This, to me, wasn't that big of help since a #2 car is worth near double a
# 3 car.  Amateur restorations are considered #3 cars yet most people wand
#2 money for them.  

So, how do you convince a prospective DPO that, from a market standpoint,
the million hours that he spent stripping and hand sanding the body was
basically worthless since he didn't take the body off and do the
restoration right?   You can't.  The only thing that will change his mind
is failure to sell at the higher price.

When I bought my A, we ended up somewher in the middle.  According to the
books, I paid too much for my car.  On the other hand, I could have bought
a #4 car and brought it up to the condition of my car for the price
differance.  I know the PO had much more into it than what I paid. 
Besides, it was pretty much exactly what I was looking for. 

The way I look at it is this.  If I had bought a lesser car that needed
more work but was fairly priced, I would be working on the car next year,
not driving it.  This way, I can hit the ground running.  I can replace the
worn mechanical bits as I go.

An analogy to this would be finishing the basement of your house.  I am
doing my own while my neighbor hired someone.  Three years later, he has
enjoyed his finished basement for two and a half years while I am still
working on mine.  I have spent less but who got a better value?

On another subject:  The MGA did not make Classic and Sports Car's top 100
list.  I still found the list entertainiing and I still, personally rank
the A above many of the cars that they included.  In my opinion, it is
about the best Fifties sports car for the average Joe to own.  The MGB is a
great car but it really has a differant personality than the Fifties cars
such as the A, TR2, Bugeye, etc.  

Bill Eastman
61 MGA

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