On the Block
Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale Highs and Lows
There was—as usual—a ton of Chevy activity at the Barrett-Jackson auction in Scottsdale in January. The big deal was the sale of the Ron Pratte Collection, which as a whole (cars and automobilia) sold for a mind-numbing $40.44 million. A ’69 COPO Camaro from the collection went for a stunning $330,000, while a ’69 Yenko Chevelle 427 sold for $275,000. Still, there were values to be had for middle-class customers with cash.
Lot 925, 1968 Camaro RS Custom, Sold $26,400
This F-body was wonderfully restomodded and exceptionally maintained. Originally a 327, four-speed Rally Sport car, it was upgraded to a 350/350hp engine, professionally built and bored 0.030-over. Other upgrades include a Tremec five-speed, 12-bolt Positraction rearend with 3.73 gears, TRW forged pistons and rods, Comp cam, Winters aluminum “snowflake” intake manifold, high-flow heads, Hurst shifter, Centerforce clutch, Hooker headers with dual exhaust, multi-leaf rear springs, correct dash gauges with tic-toc-tac, console with Rally gauges, professionally restored factory original AM radio, Mallory Unilite ignition with MSD spark box, power steering, and power brakes. Other goodies? Correct steel wheels with Goodyear Polyglas rubber and vintage dog dish caps, correct trim tag colors and codes (Matador Red with Rally Sport nose/body stripe and black deluxe interior). This car was well sorted out and we think bought well at $26,400.
Lot 2067, 1962 Impala SS convertible, Sold $220,000
This was an absolutely breathtaking and rare factory 409 convertible that spent the majority of its life in Southern California. With just four owners since new, this car has received a professional restoration with extremely high attention to detail. To say there was no expense spared is an understatement. This was factory-born Tuxedo Black with red upholstery. Adding to the rarity is the original 409/409hp engine with dual-quad carburetion, T10 four-speed transmission, 3.70 Positraction rearend, power steering, power brakes, power top, factory Sun tachometer, AM radio, dual rear antennas, one-piece front and rear bumpers, correct wheels and tires, and spinner wheel covers. Without question, this is museum quality throughout.
Lot 1069, 1969 Camaro COPO 427, Sold $106,700
This real deal, documented COPO sold new at Scuncio Chevrolet in Greenville, Rhode Island, which was known back in the day as a hi-po dealership. Restored back to its factory-original Rally Green color, the interior is also new and finished in its original standard black. Power is by a date-code-correct, freshly rebuilt 427 with correct heads, intake, carburetor, and backed with a four-speed transmission. This COPO Camaro saw race duty from day one and was said to have been very successful throughout its career. Originally ordered new by Adrain Lima and raced under the name “Rat Patrol,” the F-body was later sold to his brother and then to racer Tom Doherty and his partner Anthony Pennine, who were very competitive with it. It was then bought by Jude Hettick of Georgia, who turned it back into a street car. As you see it here, it is said to be street-driven regularly and is very driver friendly. Documentation includes Scuncio Certificate of Authenticity, letter signed by High Performance Manager selling dealer Bob Johnson, who also outlined the car’s history, owner history, pictures when new and pictures throughout its racing career, and NCRS Shipping Data Report showing Scuncio as the selling dealer.
Lot 927, 1955 Bel Air, Sold $28,600
This rotisserie restoration of a very nice ’55 Bel Air went for what we consider very little cash. Did the power front disc brakes and front and rear sway bars added for safety and handling keep the price down? Keeping true to the original look, extra options were added, including front and rear bumper guards, grille guard, right sideview mirror, rocker moldings, and gravel guards. The restoration included an upgraded 265-cid V-8 and an electric fan to cool the radiator. Seems to us you’d have a hard time buying a project and replicating this build for double the sale price.
John Force Funny Car To Wear Camaro Body
It’s hard to type it with a straight face, but John Force’s Funny Car started wearing a Camaro body at the 2015 NHRA Winternationals. Now, we know this is not an exact replica of the fifth-gen F-body, but Force is one of the most colorful characters in all of motorsports, so it should generate a ton of media attention for Chevrolet.
The first 60 starts of his career were behind the wheel of a Chevy. From 1978-’80 he raced a Corvette before switching to a Citation (1981-82), Camaro (1983-84), Corvette (’85), and then a Cavalier (’86). Force won the 1994 NHRA Funny Car championship racing a Lumina to a 50-8 record, with 11 finals, and 10 wins.