Hooniverse Asks: What Car or Truck Do You Most Lament Having Missed the Boat on?

Le Car
If you missed The Force Awakens when it was in the theaters you’ll still have a chance to catch it when it’s released on DVD, or VOD. Or perhaps, you’ll see it when it hits one of the cable stations a bit more down the road. That’s the thing about movies, once they’re out you can almost always find somewhere to watch them. The same thing can’t be said about cars.
I tend to notice interesting cars on the road. I also spend an inordinate amount of time cruising the junkyards. One thing that has become clear to me is that most car models have a finite lifespan. First you see a lot of them on the road, then a wave of them in the junk yards which ebbs until eventually you just don’t see them anywhere at all any more.
Did you ever want to own a Renault Fuego? Come on, there’s no shame in that. What is a shame is that you are unlikely to find one around that’s drivable, and you’re less likely to find parts in the yards to keep it so. Yep, you missed the age of Fuego. Okay, so maybe it wasn’t a French sports coupe that came and went before your eyes but something else that you’re now sorry not to have taken action on. If that’s the case, what is that car or truck that you most lament having missed?
Image: VWVortex

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  1. tonyola Avatar

    I kind of regret that I was too young to ever get the chance to drive Dad’s black 1963 Lincoln Continental. My brothers and I called it his Mafia car.

  2. Alff Avatar

    Of cars that are no longer around, none. There’s a reason they’re gone. I do wish I’d bought a Dino when they could be had for $40K, and an Alfa stepnose when they could be had for pennies.

  3. Nizlehop Avatar

    This may sound stupid, but I wish I would have bought a new Pontiac G8 GT when they were on closeout for <$23k in the Chicago area as Pontiac was headed for the shredder. They seem to sell for around that much with relatively high mileage and questionable mods at this point.

    1. JayP Avatar

      The GTs never came down to that price around here… I was waiting to jump on a 6 speed GT.

      1. smalleyxb122 Avatar

        The GT was never offered with the 6-speed. To get the manual, you had to step all the way up to the GXP.

        1. JayP Avatar

          That’s right. My Pontiac knowledge is fading away…

          1. Tanshanomi Avatar

            I confuse the GXP and GT, too. I’ll see a G6 GT on the street and say, “Hey wow it’s a…oh, wait. No, nevermind…”

          2. pj134 Avatar

            The G6 GXP wasn’t much either… You did just remind me of the G6 hardtop vert though. I’m sure that continued to work flawlessly all through the cars natural life.

          3. JayP Avatar

            We spotted TWO of these things on our trip to Tulsa last weekend.

          4. Ahnuc Onun Avatar
            Ahnuc Onun

            The Ex-GF has had a G6 GT Convertible for the last 7 years. Let’s just say getting the extended warranty was POINTLESS as it didn’t cover the cost to replace the massive (and expensive) battery needed to operate the power top, nor did it cover the power top or any of it’s components, nor did it cover trim pieces (and every single piece of plastic in this car is made of lowest grade crap GM could find). The extended warranty did get a good workout replacing ball joints, cv-joints, and suspension bushings.

          5. Nizlehop Avatar

            Whoa whoa whoa, I’m not about to lament the passing of the G6 in which I fail to see any redeeming qualities regardless of trim. I’m talking about the 6.0l v8 rwd G8, the demise of which I blame at least partially on the mediocrity of cars like the G6.

          6. Tanshanomi Avatar

            I am not praising the G6 either! I was just noting that I am always on the lookout for G8s, and the G6 badging is similar enough that I sometimes notice that before I notice that it’s on a completely different car.

    2. njhoon Avatar

      I’m in the same boat. I came within 1K of where I would have pulled the trigger on the deal and I kick myself for not pushing the dealer harder.

    3. neight428 Avatar

      We can all add the Chevrolet SS to that list too, I think they are dead after the 2015 MY too. If the G8 still existed or the SS was offered in equivalent trim to a Camaro, I’d be driving one now.

  4. engineerd Avatar

    They’re still around, but the Ford Cortina, and especially the LoCort, is becoming a rare and expensive bird. Rusted out LoCorts with an inoperable engine in place are still going for 5 digits. And that engine? It’ll cost another 5 digits to get it running.
    But maybe someday…

    1. outback_ute Avatar

      I bought a race car off a guy who was going to spend more than what I paid (most expensive car I’ve bought) to fix it’s replacement Escort twin cam that had just ventilated its engine block.
      Specific car where the boat sailed before I knew it was at the dock was a Falcon XB GT hardtop, one owner low mileage, that sold for $12k and was worth at least double then (early 2000s) and probably $60-70k now.

  5. Sjalabais Avatar

    To me it’s more a period of time than a specific model – you can always dig up a nice Fuego. The “constant surprise” of the car hobby is that there’s always someone taking care of the ugly or feeble ducklings. But what I would have loved to witness, car-wise, is the jet age:
    Not the most interesting cars taken out of context, but I just can’t imagine how it would be like to stroll down a street in hat and suit surrounded by bubbly motors and fins.

    1. spotarama Avatar

      sorry, but no such thing as a nice Fuego, which co-incidentally is French for ‘stuck on the side of the road with an empty wallet’

      1. Sjalabais Avatar

        Haha, should I have said “well taken care of”? Because I’ve seen a couple of them.

  6. GTXcellent Avatar

    I’ve made this comment before – 20+ years ago, you could buy any ’72 and older Chevy truck for less than $5k all day long. They were simply old trucks. I didn’t necessarily miss out, as I bought my 1970 Chevy CST for $125, but that’ll never happen again. Too bad the collector market discovered trucks, because I’d sure like to have another 1965 C-10.

    1. longrooffan Avatar

      IMHO, the collector market discovered trucks, and longroofs as well, as the market for muscle cars of that era skyrocketed through the roof. Interestingly, in general, 4 door sedans, other than maybe a hard top or two, have been unaffected by this market adjustment.

      1. Sjalabais Avatar

        So the logical conclusion would be to stock up on classic sedans now? Better than gold? Sounds reasonable, I’ll take a market cut of 1970. Honestly, it occasionally comes as a shock to me how cheap 70s American iron can be, like this gem:

        Full Size Nostalgia: Unrestored 31K Mile 1976 Chevrolet Impala

        I’d love to spend a vacation crossing the US in one of these, even if I’d be afraid to sit half of that journey on a flatbed…

        1. Vairship Avatar

          What car or truck do I lament missing out on? This one right here (restomodded just right for normal use, and reasonably priced right now at $11500): http://bringatrailer.com/listing/1950-gmc-carryall-100-suburban/

          1. Sjalabais Avatar

            Agreed, that would make a great replacement for our van on safe trafffic days.

    2. Wayne Moyer Avatar
      Wayne Moyer

      Like Longroofan was saying, the classic market has found trucks in a big way. It only happened within the last two years.

  7. Maymar Avatar

    There’s a pretty massive list – I remember the summer I was 12 and had a paper route, perusing the classifieds and realizing I could afford a Merkur XR4Ti. I didn’t have anywhere to put it, but in the late 90s, no one wanted them. Or, going the Fuego route, several years ago, I was driving past a transmission shop, and saw a veritable fleet of Renaults. Fuegos, 18 Sportwagons, even an Alliance GTA or two. I stop and take a look, and the owner wanders out, and immediately lets me know they’re all for sale. I’m sure I could’ve found a Peugeot while I was in high school, for that matter.
    But I think my big regret right now, is that I never bought an OG Saab 900. Saabs are fairly common in the Toronto area, but there’s about a 20 year limit on their life unless you want an overpriced convertible. I should really try and pick one up before my only choice are 9-3 sedans.

  8. Citric Avatar

    There was a Honda Beat for sale nearby, and I didn’t even get the chance to see if I fit in it.

  9. The Real Number_Six Avatar
    The Real Number_Six

    As an industrious teen with multiple paper routes and a part-time job at Canadian Tire, I could have had both a 914 and a DeTomaso Innocenti Turbo in showroom condition for the price of a new Mercury Tracer. I allowed myself to be talked into getting a 1984 Mustang GT350 instead, which I enjoyed. However…a DeTomaso and a Porsche…

  10. 0A5599 Avatar

    Real-deal Hemi Challenger for $8800. Ex-Sam Posey T/A car for $7500, I think.

  11. Tanshanomi Avatar

    A bunch come to mind right away — Subaru XT, an original Saab 99 Turbo (cardinal red with rocker decals, please), Suzuki X-90, a 1st-gen Isuzu Amigo, and of course my own personal “FordTempoFan” car, the otherwise-unloved N12-series Pulsar NX.

      1. Tanshanomi Avatar

        But that one’s rare and famous. It’s Test Car 934, one of four homologation 2-door sedans. But ordinary production 99 Turbo Combi-coupes are still fetching $10K+.

    1. spotarama Avatar

      they was called the Subaru Vortex Turbo and they are an extremely trouser tightening automobile, would still love one but extremely rare nowadays

  12. CraigSu Avatar

    I missed out on the Fuego madness but only by choice. I never liked the Fuego restyle and, in 1982, chose a 1978 Renault R17 Gordini instead.

  13. Wind Advisory Avatar
    Wind Advisory

    in 1999 I was offered a white soft top 1994 Defender 90 with 70K for $18,000.
    At the time Kelly Blue Book said it was worth $12K.
    I never would have lost a dime.

  14. JayP Avatar

    In the late 80’s & early 90’s, the Mk1 Rabbit GTI’s were popping up for a few hundred bucks. Not beaters either but clean, low mileage daily drivers. My brother and I would spot one in the paper and schedule a drive. We never had more than $50 at a time. We did put gas back in the cars after we test drove them.
    I’d love to have one today. Hell, a German built Mk1 would be fun too.

  15. njhoon Avatar

    Besides the G8 mentioned below there are two examples that really sting now. When i was 19 I had the chance to buy a 59 Flattop Caddy, all original with a slipping trans for 2K. The other was a 67 GTX 4 Speed unmolested original for 6K. I also missed a ton of 510’s when they were just used crappy cars.

  16. kogashiwa Avatar

    Could probably have gotten an NSX a few years ago. No hope of that ever again.
    I will have to pick up another MR2 before most are gone and the rest are too expensive.

  17. mr smee Avatar
    mr smee

    More of a Japanese car fan now, but I was a car-crazed kid back when mid-late sixties muscle cars were worth very little and Mopars worth nothing.

  18. Sean McMillan Avatar
    Sean McMillan

    About 5 years ago was trolling CL to find a cheap reliable second vehicle my wife could drive in the budget range of 2k. I kept seeing a 62 Imperial coupe,running, looked to be a solid body,good trim, rough interior, probably needed some minimal work. first for 3k, then for 2500, then for 2250. Not that she would have driven such a beast, but if I’d had a 4k budget…

  19. crank_case Avatar

    Would have been great to have been able to buy one of these when they weren’t rustbuckets http://i184.photobucket.com/albums/x192/gafr21/Superb%20MR2%20Mk1%2070k%20SUNROOF%20Leather/DSC02783.jpg

  20. spotarama Avatar

    i want a beach buggy…they used to be common as muck, not hard to get at all, then some government type decided there needed to be safety rules geoverning such things, design standards, etc etc….
    will never stop wanting one, will have one someday (maybe even with a nice reliable (powerful) subaru motor stuck up its backside
    in fact i’m off to ebay/carsales to have a look at prices right now, i shall be back, crestfallen and depressed later

  21. George McNally Avatar
    George McNally

    I was 17.
    It was 1978
    A 1974 Torino *exactly* like this one.
    Ex cop car with a 460 4 barrel and dual exhaust.. My dad and I took it for a ride and when I punched it……I thought the hood was gonna get sucked into the carb.
    He wisely forbid me buying the car.

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