Day one of the Lambrecht Chevrolet auction...no one could have ever predicted how this event in tiny Pierce, NE, would indeed become known as Carstock, in deference to the most historic rock concert of all times, Woodstock.
But that is exactly what this event has become, drawing people from every state in the union and over a dozen countries and putting values on machines many had simply written off as so much junk. Ah....no! Wrong you are, all of you naysayers who couldn't imagine a small Chevy dealer in northern Nebraska could hold together enough classic iron to drive car enthusiasts completely crazy.
Everyone on Saturday morning, when the auction got started selling parts and accessories from the former dealership, knew something big was going to happen as the day unfolded. $225 for a single Lambrecht Chevrolet yard stick? Really? Then the remainder of the sticks, some bundled, some boxed, were sold in groups for anywhere from $600 to $1,000.
The original 1956 Corvette pedal car, an award Ray Lambrecht received for selling more Chevrolets than a whole bunch of other dealers in the country, landed at $16,000, going to an online bidder in New York. But the crowd wanted to get into the big stuff, the MSO vehicles and they weren't going to leave the crush until those cars went on the block.
First up, the 1958 Cameo pickup, a sweet little 1.3-mile ride with near perfect interior but a dented roof that came from a building collapse. In less than 90 seconds the pickup, which was completely surrounded by the crowd was sold form $140,000 to an on-site bidder who said it was headed to New Hampshire.
Next up was the '58 Apache pickup, a plain jane truck with just 5 miles on the odometer. No one bought it when it was new, but this time around, $80,000 did the trick and it is headed to Washington state, again going to an on-site bidder.
What may have surprised everyone the most was the 1978 Corvette Pace Car, a vehicle which at the time of its release was just over $25,000 MSRP, though many dealers inflated its original price into the $35,000 range. Many of them were purchased and simply parked or drive very rarely. This one never left the dealership and was never titled. $80,000. The crowd was amazed and the plastic trophy will still be residing somewhere in Nebraska said the eventual on site buyer.
Of course there were many more of the low mileage MSO cars to come and the crowd, which had to be moved away from the line of cars several times just so the auction stage could be moved, were egging on the on-site bidders who managed to get their bidder placards into the air as bids shot up very quickly. The 1964 Impala hardtop, 4 miles on the odometer, will be going to California for $75,000. Auctioneer Yvette VanDerBrink asked the buyer if it was going to become a low rider. No one quite heard the answer over the laughter of the crowd.
No big surprises came within the ranks of those special dealer leftover cars with a 1963 Impala hardtop bringing $97,500 from an online bidder and a 1963 Corvair with 17 miles fetching $42,000. Many in the crowd simply couldn't imagine the kinds of "bargains" that were happening in front of them and many commented "this is crazy!" Yup, it sure is.
A gentleman from Australia groused that "these yanks are crazy people! How could anyone pay these prices?" Shortly after he paid $50 for one of the yard sticks a buyer was making available to surrounding takers. "But, hey, I have to buy something," he said, holding the prize above his head.
The auction continues through Saturday, finishing out the 230+ items and vehicles for that day before resuming again on Sunday morning for another round of vehicles. The crowds streamed in from parking areas set up in a five mile radius of the former crop field where 80 acres was cleared and prepared with all the amenities to handle the rock concert-like crowds.
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