Journal: What's One Car You Regret Not Buying?

What’s One Car You Regret Not Buying?

Avatar By Yoav Gilad
January 15, 2014
24 comments

For me it’s simple — a 1955 Chrysler New Yorker. It was 1998 and the car sat in a local driveway for months. Every weekend, the elderly owner would fire it up and let it run for a few minutes, never shifting the transmission from ‘P’. Once in a while, I’d see someone test driving it around the neighborhood. When I finally spoke to the owner, he told me that he had bought it new in Baltimore, Maryland. It had about 80,000 miles on the odo.

I took it around the block a few times with him in the passenger seat, it flowed like clean, new oil. I remember thinking that the man looked as though he might start crying at any moment, it was so obvious he didn’t want to part with it. The Chrysler was black with a white stripe and came equipped with the vaunted FirePower 331 engine. Sure it only had 180 horsepower, but it felt like it would cruise comfortably all day. The old man only wanted $2,500 for it. He said something like, “It’s more important it be taken care of,” but I already had two cars at the time and only room for one. Sadly, I decided not to buy it.

About a month after I drove the New Yorker, it disappeared. Maybe a year after that the old man passed away. Today, it’s certainly not worth as much as a convertible Hemi Mopar or a Mercedes 300SL, but knowing how much that car meant to the man, how well loved and cared for it had been, makes me lament not purchasing it. I hope that car is still so appreciated today.

What about you? Is there one car that you wish you’d have bought, but didn’t?

Image Source: uniquecarsandparts.com.au

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motonerd14
motonerd14

Back in summer of 2007 I came across a cherry 1982 Alfasud Sprint for sale. It was RHD (in the U.S.) and had tons of spares and documentation. I was ready to click the buy button on the ebay ad but found it would be difficult to get parts for it, and I also didn’t have any real space to keep it.

Been looking for another one ever since. Seems most of them have disintegrated into the sands of time, sadly…

Scott Smith
Scott Smith

When I was 18, and after crashing the family 2nd car (’75 Vega) into a tree, I told my Dad I realized how badly I messed and was ready to take on the responsiblity of buying my own car (rather than drive a Dad-funded family car). I found a 1965 Chevy Chevelle convertible for $750 that I desperately wanted. Dad said no way, I would just be throwing my money away buying someone else’s problems. Really, it would have been worth $750 even if it only lasted one summer! Then, many years later, the time came to buy my first… Read more »

Pete Brissing
Pete Brissing

A very early first gen. 56 or 57 black Karmann Ghia was offered to my wife and I for free by her aging aunt who had owned it since new and could no longer drive. We had no garage and knew nothing about vehicle transport so we declined. It was given to one of the other nieces’ teenaged kids who totaled it almost immediately.

CJ David
CJ David

There’s two for me. One was a 62 Lincoln Continental that an older gentleman was selling. Sat for many months in his front lawn with a 2000 price tag, he said it needed a water pump. My dad saw the small rust bubbles on the front fenders and said no. The second was a damn near perfect 92 VW Coraddo SLC VR6. Kid was selling it simply because he couldn’t fit his hockey gear in it and wanted a Jeep. He only wanted 2500 for it. My dad again said no. I still think about that one.

Nikola Velkovski
Nikola Velkovski

When I was 18 i lived in tower block in Sofia, and next to it there was a BMW 2002 abandoned. It had flared wheel arches and round tail lights… Last year there was also an immaculate Alfa 155 1.8 twin spark for sale in bulgarian web site for used cars. It was going for about 1000 $ and I was just a 100 short 🙁 Couple of mounths later bought same model from a friend for a bit more in worse condition. Little consolation was the fact mine was with the “wide body” facelift…

Nikola Velkovski
Nikola Velkovski

This is the car in question it is on sale again, maybe i’ll try to swap them with mine 🙂

Art Harvey
Art Harvey

The perfectly intact white-over-blue Series II 7-litre Iso Grifo with original Campagnolo rims I found in a salvage yard in New Hampshire back around 1987-88. I was in college at the time, traveling to visit family, about 3 hours away from home. I slammed on the brakes when I saw it – knew instantly what it was. Checked it out through the chain link fence, knocked on the door but nobody home. Got home and tried convincing my Dad to front me the money and store it in his garage until I graduated. No dice, no Iso Grifo for me.

ronaldo eduardo
ronaldo eduardo

I really regret not buying a Farus ML 929 in pretty good shape for something like 2000 dolars… i’ve already had a farus that time, but it needed severe restoration that never happened.
But after all it was good, because i didnt have counscience at the time of that preciosity, and i was very young and didnt have the preservation felling with me yet. I wanted to modify just everything.
Thank god it wasnt fallen in my hands that time, but it was the best oportunnity that came to me and i lost.

Antony Ingram
Antony Ingram

There’s no specific car I regret not buying, but I do regret not thinking earlier to buy something like a 105-series Alfa Romeo GT or a Datsun 240Z, before prices started climbing here in the UK. A decade ago you could find either in the £5k-6k range; now, you’re lucky to get an example of either for double that.

Zac Baze
Zac Baze

For me, it was a Datsun 510 with a VQ35 from a 350z. On three different occasions. The first time I was in heavy negotiations with the owner when I got cold feet about the amount of wiring that still needed to be cleaned up on the car and I currently had a KA 510 with it’s own flood of wiring issues. The second time it was posted by the next owner but he changed his mind on selling it and I didn’t really have the funds on hand. The third time however, the car had been in a minor… Read more »

Kyle Kufahl
Kyle Kufahl

At a swap meet about 10 years ago I had a chance to buy about as close to my dream muscle car as I could get for a reasonable price. There was a light blue 1969 Plymouth Road Runner 440 4-speed for sale sitting there waiting for a buyer. It was in solid condition and had like no options other than that 440 Magnum, 4-speed and limited slip. It was no 1970 Road Runner 440+6 A12 but it was close enough for then 17 year old me. I could have afforded the seller’s asking price but had no place to… Read more »

aircooled1
aircooled1

I had the money and wife’s permission for a 356 before the price bubble started. But, it was across the country and I had no experience with shipping cars so I was afraid to pull the trigger. Man, do I regret that one…..

Rey Sabado
Rey Sabado

In the 80’s, I had a chance to purchase a yellow Dino Ferrari from a Arab exchange student returning to his country $15k and later a split window Vette for $17k. No means, and no place… I think about these opportunities to this day.

Tom Hetrick
Tom Hetrick

1968 road runner. sat across the street for $800. my dad said i would kill myself, and the only car i could afford was a free one. several months later i brought home a barracuda for free! got it running and sold it for $50! not my best business deal ever.

drooartz
drooartz

There was a car on the edges of my awareness for all the years I was growing up. Belonged to an old family friend (and eventual second husband of my grandmother). Car in questions was a ’53 (I think) MG TD. British racing green. Later found out it was all original, never restored. Had belonged to a college roommate of my aunt’s. The family friend bought it from her in the late 1960s and kept it for decades. In the mid 1990s he and my grandmother were doing some necessary downsizing, needing to free up space and resources. I was… Read more »

ACFowles
ACFowles

So many! Just so many! But here are couple of not very exotic examples:

When I was about 16 or so my brother and I spotted an Amphicar for sale in the local rag – dirt cheap. We didn’t buy it as we didn’t have the room to keep it (or permission from ‘She who must be obeyed’).
Some years later, when I was around 22, I spotted a 20-year old Triumph Herald in perfect condition, around 200miles on the clock in a scrap yard. Again dirt cheap and again I didn’t buy it.

Oh well!

Jono51
Jono51

You bet. A long time ago when I was still in my teens I had a chance to buy an early 50s Morgan Plus 4, the one with the flat radiator. It was really cheap – trouble was it was a kit of parts distributed widely around all corners of a garage and who knew what was missing. I decided I didn’t have the skills or the cash to put it back together, but that was very short sighted of me considering the amount of time and money I later put into cars that would never be worth half as… Read more »

Eric Ewert
Eric Ewert

Not taking the e28 M5 for 3000$ in drive able condition was rather foolish. This was a year ago, simply didn’t have a place to put it being 18 years old and living in the suburbs.

Brett Evans
Brett Evans

Got a couple. One was a 1967 Beetle Cabriolet that was rusted to hell but the man was literally giving it away. I don’t know why I didn’t take it off his hands and drive the wheels off of it. Another was a 1949 Plymouth Special Deluxe that I drove a few years ago. It was cheap and it had like, four moving parts so it would have been a fun, easy car for me to keep on the road. Plus, it looked good enough and it had a really fun column-shift transmission and [i]literally[/i] the smoothest-sounding straight six I’ve… Read more »

Charles R Johnston
Charles R Johnston

Brand New 1966 XKE white Roadster. put a 50.00 deposit on a Sat in March 1966 for a NEW Jag and came home and on Monday went to the office and was told they were closing the office…….duh Rod I just Bought a brand new XKE ……. 21 and not real up on what was going on at the office….. got my money back and 3 months later bought a 66 MG Midget….fun but no XKE.

Matthew Lange
Matthew Lange

Not long after I was born my Dad owned an Aston Martin DBS, and took it back to the factory for a service. Also there was a DB4GT Zagato there and Dad was asked it he was interested in buying it the asking price was around £4,000 (about the same as a new E Type I believe). Dad passed as he really looking for a Ferrari Daytona and not a ten year old Aston. That Zagato is worth a fair bit these days!

Dustin Rittle
Dustin Rittle

That is a very good question. My answer would have to be the time i was offered to buy my uncle’s 1969 AMC AMX. When i was younger i would cruise with him in that car and i loved every minute of it. It was cool taking it to car shows because most people didnt know what it was and you didnt see another one there. It was basically a stock car but it made a great sound and would boogie once you got the pedal down plus it was one of the first cars i got to be in… Read more »

Josh Clason
Josh Clason

A BMW E30 M3 that I looked at about five years ago. At the time I thought it was priced about $500 too high and now I regret not buying it since the equivalent of the one I looked at is now double the price.

mattdogg02
mattdogg02

This would be mine as well… got interested in them about 6 years ago, and had to use money on a new house. My current car I think I’m going to regret not getting will be a 93 Cobra… they are right at the edge of what I could afford as a luxury, and have a feeling their prices are going to spike (which some low mileage ones already are).