Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Prewar Studebaker Prices nosediving!

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • jclary
    replied
    Somewhere, in one of my clutter...ugh...stash of treasures...is a 1948 N.A.D.A. book. (Red cover) I was amazed at the low values of what we would now consider exotic collector cars. I would have to dig it up to confirm, but it seems that after WWII, the post war economy, renewed optimism following victory, pent-up desire for all things "New," like electric record players, musical instruments, televisions, appliances, and especially cars. Folks couldn't abandon the "old" fast enough. Here, in the south, especially rural areas, few had even a concept of a "land fill." Seems like behind every home, or off in nearby woods, there was a gully, trench, or edge of a field, where folks dumped their trash.

    As a child born in 1944, I recall almost every trek I made through the woods, finding these dumps full of old hand crank Victrola players, wringer washing machines, pump organs, cabinet radios, and even pre-war cars. I may be wrong, but it seems that the most elaborate, exotic, and best built cars, like Cadillac, Packard, Pierce-Arrow, suffered the worst in resale respect. To think of today...what would be a "Picker's" dream of vintage antiques. Even into the 1960's these trash piles were common.

    These old used car price guides reflect the public mood of their day. Too bad I didn't have the vision to pick through and put aside some of the stuff I stumbled across. My best friend's dad, a hard scrabble entrepreneur, bought a few junk yards in the late '50's and early '60's. Just because I always enjoyed being around old cars, I would go help out in dismantling the cars. It was a mischievous young boy's dream. I got to use things like a cutting torch, wrenches, hammers, and drive a tractor, as we dismantled the cars for scrap. Gee...I didn't even have enough grasp of the future to save some of those cool radiator mascots we so stupidly hammered off as we tore through the junk yard.

    All that teenage energy unleashed to break windshields, blow up gas tanks, and burn countless piles of starters, generators, and wiring harnesses to salvage the copper. It might have helped my friend's dad pay bills and feed the family, but, in hindsight,...oh well...sigh

    Leave a comment:


  • 56H-Y6
    replied
    Hi Bob

    Thanks for the Pierce-Arrow pages, amazing how much even the April 1934-introduced, lowest-priced 836A depreciated by February-March 1936 to 45% of their factory price. Conspicuously heartbreaking are values assigned to the extensive listing of 1932-1933 LeBaron Salon or Brunn custom-bodied models, represented here in the 1933 Model 1247 listing. Most likely NADA calculated that any of those now highly-desirable cars showing up on the used car market would be lumped together with prices approximately of the factory-bodied seven passenger sedan and limousines i.e. dirt cheap, only fit for livery/commercial use. Magnificent cars available for the same prices of new 1936 medium-priced models such as Studebaker President, Buick Special & Century, Chrysler Deluxe Airstream Eight or Nash Ambassador.

    Steve

    Leave a comment:


  • BobPalma
    replied
    Originally posted by 56H-Y6 View Post
    Hi Bob

    Thanks for the look at Marmon, given that only 390 Marmon Sixteens were built, their low value by WWII and their high aluminum content, its a wonder any are still extant.

    If its not too much trouble, how did the '32-'34 Pierce-Arrows fare? Steve
    WOW! On the Marmons; I didn't realize so few were built. And right-o on their size and aluminum content; I'll bet half of those extant were simply never "discovered" during the scrap drives or they'd be gone, too.

    Here's a couple appropriate pages from the Pierce-Arrow section:



    BP

    Leave a comment:


  • 56H-Y6
    replied
    Hi Bob

    Thanks for the look at Marmon, given that only 390 Marmon Sixteens were built, their low value by WWII and their high aluminum content, its a wonder any are still extant.

    If its not too much trouble, how did the '32-'34 Pierce-Arrows fare?

    Steve

    Leave a comment:


  • unclemiltie
    replied
    The above value of 1936 and prior cars implies that 1964 models would be worth only pennies. I will be glad to break open my piggy bank and use the pennies to buy your fleet of 1964 models.

    Leave a comment:


  • BobPalma
    replied
    Originally posted by 56H-Y6 View Post
    Hi Bob

    How about a look at the Marmon pages, see what a Sixteen a few years old would cost .......better be setting down! Steve
    Steve, all the Marmons aren't on one page, or even on a spread of two pages. But all the Marmon 16s in this book can be seen on Pages 66 and 67:



    'Looks like the early 1936 retail price of a 3-year-old "16" coupe is about 20% of its original MSRP! Yikes! BP

    Leave a comment:


  • 56H-Y6
    replied
    Hi Bob

    How about a look at the Marmon pages, see what a Sixteen a few years old would cost .......better be setting down!

    Although the WWII scrap drives claimed countless magnificent cars and it was in service of a good cause, so many were lost well beforehand simply because they became so valueless as used cars when only a few years old. Subsequent owners had neither the resources or the inclination to maintain what were still costly cars to do so. Many large, seven passenger sedan were used in taxi/livery/bus operations or had their bodies modified into trucks for various purposes such as fire truck/crew wagons, even tow trucks.

    Even after WWII, postwar wrecking yards still had thousands of large, Classics turned in for scrap in the headlong rush to get new cars. Ironically, many that were in good condition had been put up in storage during the war awaiting the general availability of new tires and the end of gas rationing again. New and used car dealers had more than they could ever have saved, what a terrible loss that more weren't simply withheld from the market for another decade or two.

    Steve

    Leave a comment:


  • 8E45E
    replied
    Originally posted by BobPalma View Post
    Craig; what a difference!
    It affected the real small independents even MORE as they didn't have any Canadian assembly plants where the required Canadian material & labor would have reduced the prices somewhat. Duty and taxes were horrendous on complete, imported cars at the time, plus shipping from U.S. factories.

    Craig

    Leave a comment:


  • jclary
    replied
    Well...DANG!...How disappointing...too bad this thread was posted around Christmas...it would have been better on April 1st. How cruel to post such a "downer" at this time. Reminds me of my 15th Christmas, when I got my first ever "NEW" bicycle, and I was expecting to be taken to get my DRIVER'S LICENSE. (Back then, you could get your license at 14)

    I know you fortunate folks who own such cars don't want to see their values decline...but it seems that it will be the most likely way I'll ever manage the feat. Of course, if I would suck it up and liquidate some of my other assets, I could get it done. On the other hand, I've also heard that the ensuing divorce could get expensive and messy too!

    Leave a comment:


  • BobPalma
    replied
    WOW, Craig; what a difference! BP

    Leave a comment:


  • 8E45E
    replied
    Originally posted by BobPalma View Post
    Here's the Cord page:

    Then, like now, car prices have always been higher in Canada. Compare the Canadian 1936 list (F.O.B.) prices for comparable Cords.



    Craig

    Leave a comment:


  • BobPalma
    replied
    Originally posted by 8E45E View Post
    It would be interesting to see one from exactly a year earlier when Studebaker was still in receivership, and compare the 1930 prices in this one with the 1929 prices in the 1935 edition. Maybe prices actually went UP when Studebaker was back on the road to financial recovery. Craig
    True, Craig, but this is the only book of this nature I got in a box of old literature I bought at a swap meet years ago. BP

    Leave a comment:


  • BobPalma
    replied
    Originally posted by 56H-Y6 View Post
    Hi Bob

    For really shocking revelations in Depression Era depreciation, check the sections for recently defunct luxury makes such as Stutz, Franklin, Marmon, Peerless, Locomobile, Cord L-29, Stearns-Knight......magnificent cars at give-away prices. Even multi-cylinder models of Cadillac, Packard, Auburn, Lincoln, Pierce-Arrow, etc. still in production, unbelievable now.

    Steve
    For the most part, Steve, if a car wasn't in production in 1935 or thereabouts, it isn't listed in this book. For example, there are no entries for Stutz, Peerless, Locomobile, or Stearns-Knight, among those you cite.

    There are listings for Marmon, Franklin, and Cord. Here's the Cord page:



    Not much there, of course, but it supports your theory, for sure. BP

    Leave a comment:


  • Gunslinger
    replied
    How many of those magnificent cars were sacrificed for WWII scrap drives? A good cause, but still sad. Just something else to hold against Hitler, Mussolini and the Imperial Japanese.

    Leave a comment:


  • 8E45E
    replied
    Originally posted by 56H-Y6 View Post
    For really shocking revelations in Depression Era depreciation, check the sections for recently defunct luxury makes such as Stutz, Franklin, Marmon, Peerless, Locomobile, Cord L-29, Stearns-Knight......magnificent cars at give-away prices.
    It would be interesting to see one from exactly a year earlier when Studebaker was still in receivership, and compare the 1930 prices in this one with the 1929 prices in the 1935 edition. Maybe prices actually went UP when Studebaker was back on the road to financial recovery.

    Craig

    Leave a comment:

Working...
X