2004 Porsche 911

Thinking back about last weeks 2002 Porsche 911 C4S and the reaction it got, I thought maybe it would be interesting to look at the other end of the 996 range for about the same price. The C2 was literally as basic as you could get with the 996 911 with the narrow body and rear wheel drive. At the time, maybe a bit boring, but now it seems to be a thing to have a basic, rear-wheel drive 911, and I even think Porsche realizes this too with their 911 Carrera T. Sadly, most of the C2s are well-used by now and often are found in disheveled condition. However, this 2004 up for sale California has thankfully be well-preserved. So is it this, or the C4S?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2004 Porsche 911 on eBay

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2019 Porsche Macan

Last week I took a look at a 2017 Porsche 911 finished in Miami Blue that surprisingly wasn’t a paint-to-sample color. Porsche is dipping back into the popular color game as options now, but of course, that comes at a cost. Miami Blue was a $3,140 extra cost over a standard color, but that is much cheaper than paying another $7,000 for a true custom blend. Believe it or not, you can even give some wild colors on the SUVs, which of course brings up to today’s car.

This 2019 Macan is finished in Mamba Green Metallic. This, along with six other colors, was just a $700 extra. You could get Miami Blue, along Chalk and Carmine Red, for a much bigger premium of $3,120, which seems odd since there is physically more paint on a Macan than a 911. The even more interesting thing is that if you really wanted to go paint-to-sample on your Macan, you have to hand over $11,430. Yes, I’d think I’d be sticking with one of those $700 colors.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2019 Porsche Macan on eBay

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Yin and Yang Double Take: 1995 Audi S6

After looking at a very shiny, and very expensive, S6 last month, two more very nice examples have popped up for sale with a few less questions – and a lot less in terms of asking price. What attracted them both to me, besides the more approachable asks, was that they represent opposites in many ways. We have a Pearlescent White Metallic with Black leather 95.5 equipped with Speedline Avus wheels, and a Black over Ecru 95 wearing Fuchs. It’s interesting to see them both appear at the same time – so which represents the better deal? Let’s start with the 95.5 first:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1995.5 Audi S6 on eBay

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1999 Audi A8 4.2 quattro

While low mileage, pristine condition Porsches almost seem cliche, finding an Audi with not much distance covered just doesn’t happen very often. When it does, it seems to inevitably be a model that no one is particularly excited about. That’s unfortunate, because often those models are quite competent performers, indeed. Growing off of the Audi Space Frame Concept from 1993, the A8 was the replacement for the short lived V8 quattro. Although the V8 had only been in production for a few years when the ASF was built, the Type 44 chassis was already quite old so a replacement was fitting. And Audi really outdid itself, with a modern, clean design based around lightweight aluminum technology. Underneath, the initial A8 didn’t offer revolution but instead built on the technology incorporated into the advanced for the time V8 quattro. Over its life, though, the A8 became a world-class leading sedan with steadily increasing technology and power output. For the most part, though, what most people remember are the post 2001 changes; introduction for the U.S. market of the long-wheel base A8L and sporty S8. That’s unfair to the often unloved and seldom seen early models which were very similar and quite competent in their own right. Running across a 1999 A8 is rare enough, but one in good condition? It’s fair to say that this is something you don’t see often:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1999 Audi A8 4.2 quattro on eBay

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1991 Mercedes-Benz 600SEL

Don’t look now, but it seems like the Mercedes-Benz W140 chassis is finally getting its due. Does that mean go out and buy every Craigslist W140 you can find like people do with the 2.3-16v and W124 500Es? No. Please don’t do that. What I’m trying to say is that the very best of the best W140s are finally selling for prices that I would consider “premium”. Just as an example, a 1996 S600 Coupe with 36,000 sold for $32,500 last week and it looked every bit the part of a new car. The sedan is no different either, although the V12 cars and Grand Edition certainly seem to be the most desirable, and rightfully so. Today, I came across a 1991 600SEL up for sale in Germany with just 15,000 miles. Naturally the car perfect, but this one has a little surprise once you open the doors.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1991 Mercedes-Benz 600SEL at Janzen Klassik

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2002 Porsche 911 Carrera 4S

In my opinion, in terms of dollar for dollar value, there is no better Porsche 911 than the 996 Carrera 4S. It has all the looks of the 996 Turbo, but for about half the price. In terms of reliability, as long as you take care of the boogie man IMS bearing, these cars are solid. Inside, you can go as tame or as crazy as you want, as the “special requests” just started to gain traction with the rise of the interior in the early 2000s. Today’s car, a 2002 up for sale in Miami, is just about perfect in terms of the whole package. Arctic Silver over black, full carbon fiber trim, and some H&R lowering springs to get rid of the pesky wheel gap. Sign me up.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2002 Porsche 911 Carrera 4S on eBay

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2001 Audi A4 2.8 quattro

Even though for my the B5 chassis A4 was the beginning of the dilution of the Audi brand, I admit I have always had a soft spot for nice examples. And the first A4 had plenty of things to celebrate. First off, it effectively saved and resurrected the brand in the U.S. from near extinction; consider for a moment Audi sold a total of 18,124 cars in 1995, the same year that the A4 was introduced as a 1996. By 1997, Audi sold 16,333 of just the A4 quattro model alone. As a success, that subsequently meant that there were a plethora of options to be had in the new chassis as production opened up. Soon we had the 1.8T turbo model joining the V6, the V6 was soon revised to have 30 valves, there was a light refresh in ’98 as well and another in ’01, the Avant joined the lineup for ’98, and of course we got a new S4 in 2000.

Considering that for some time there had only been one way per a year to get the small chassis in quattro form, this relatively dizzying array of chassis configurations meant that there are still quite a few nice ones out there to be had. But unlike other cars that have skyrocketing asking prices, a very clean B5 quattro can still be had for a relative song:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2001 Audi A4 2.8 quattro on eBay

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2017 Porsche 911

The classic blues have been so popular on Porsche 911s, that the company actually wised up and offered as a standard-ish color for the 991 chassis. From a money perspective, it seems like an odd move seeing as they know they’ll get another $7,000 or so if someone orders it for paint to sample, but maybe it was a logistics thing of them selling more cars to begin with if they could sprinkle some of these cars throughout dealer lots around the county. The blue offered on the 991 was actually Miami Blue (not Mexico Blue) that had just a little bit of a teal shade to it if you look at it in certain lighting. Meanwhile, the Mexico Blue that I linked, is a much truer royal blue that you would associate the color of blue with. Now don’t confuse that with Rivera Blue, as that is a little lighter shade of Mexico Blue. Are we having fun yet? This photo explains it best with left to right, Rivera, Miami, then Mexico. Easy.

Naturally people want this color more than a black, white, grey, or silver, so of course Porsche charged more for it. You thought you were getting off that easy? A more standard color like Jet Black Metallic or Agate Grey Metallic is $710, but Miami Blue? $3,140. That bigger price tag just isn’t exclusive to Miami, a color like Lava Orange also carries the same $3,140 premium. So now that the 991 production is done for good, people are dumping their cars to upgrade to the 992 and these special colors are now on the used market. This 2017 C2 up for in, wouldn’t you know, Miami, Florida, just has 3,400 miles on it. I hope the extra money was worth it.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2017 Porsche 911 on eBay

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1990 BMW 850i Euro-spec

Euro cars always hold a special appreciation for me, especially from the 1970s and 1980s. First off, they were much better looking, generally with slimmer bumpers and larger, more clear class lights. There were colors and interiors that we didn’t get in the U.S. as well, helping to set yourself apart. Sometimes there were low-spec engines not imported, but usually the output of the motors that were similar to U.S. cars was higher, giving more performance to enthusiasts. Sometimes that gulf was huge; while usually around 10% higher, a great example is the Quattro which was a full 25% more powerful in Europe than the U.S. restricted version. But as we got towards the late ’80s, the gap inbetween both the looks and performance of the Euro models versus the U.S. models closed steadily. True, in some cases we still didn’t get the full-fat versions of cars like the M3 until the E46 chassis. But for most models, there was a negligible difference. When it came to the BMW E31, in fact, there were almost no differences between the U.S. models and European models; styling was exactly the same, as were the wheels, most of the colors and interiors, and the basic suspension and engine. So, it’s just not nearly as exciting to see a European-spec newer model like this ’91 850i pop up for sale, though it is a bit odd:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1990 BMW 850i Euro-spec on eBay

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2001 Audi S4

In just a few years as the century turned over, Audi went from only one S model with very limited production imported in the C4 S6 to three models. Top of the range was the S8, but it shared its running gear and sonorous V8 in a slightly detuned state with the new C5 S6. For Audi enthusiasts, though, big news came with the launch of the new S4.

It was unrelated to the first S4 because of Audi’s renaming strategy in 1995. That meant that the new S4 was based on the small chassis B5, and U.S. enthusiasts finally got a taste of Audi’s M3 competitor. Performance came in the form of a new 2.7 twin-turbocharged V6 30V and was mated to either a 5-speed Tiptronic transmission like its bigger siblings or a 6-speed manual. Like other B5s, the S4 made use of the 4th generation of quattro technology driving all four wheels. This utilized a Torsen center differential with open front and rear differentials, both of which employed the ABS sensors to electronically ‘lock up’ the slipping wheels when a speed differentiation was detected. Like other S models, some light revisions to the bodywork and more pronounced exhaust were present, along with polished mirrors and 17″ Avus-design wheels. Most notable was the large front bumper cover with 6 gaping grill covers which hid the twin intercoolers for the motor. With 250 horsepower and 258 lb.ft of torque, you had an all-weather 155 mph warrior – and one that could easily be turned up many notches:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2001 Audi S4 on eBay

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