As the nicer weather returns and people start getting their rides out of hibernation, some will decide to move on to another project and sell off the one (or ones) they currently have. This can be a good time to strike a bargain if you’re in the market, but you still have to be careful.
You can expect to pay a premium in the Spring, particularly for something that is ready to go without much work, but there are also some credible deals out there, if you’re prepared to search carefully and be patient.
If there were ever a time machine, the present example might qualify as a bona fide example. The Pontiac Chieftain was introduced in 1949 and built through 1951 before being restyled. As one of the first “new” post-WWII designs, it was significantly sportier and stylish than other Pontiacs, which in reality were little more than updated designs from 1942.
Several body styles were available, including the two-door fastback shown here. Two straight-six and straight-eight engines were available, with the only differences being compression ratio and a three horsepower bump in power output. This car has undergone a moderate top chop, certainly enough to be immediately noticeable but not enough to render it impractical.
That and the flamed paint job certainly make the car stand out, which is something the seller confirms, “Everywhere I take people come out the check it out. Normally response is about five ‘Wows’ and ‘This car is Bad Ass’,” he says in the listing. During its ten day auction, the car failed to reach its reserve bid and may be relisted in the future.
With its original running gear, this would be a fun car to have for cruise-ins and rides around town. The car’s condition is fair for its age and reflects the need for ongoing maintenance in cars of this ilk. You could pick this one up and probably run it for a season before starting on more ambitious plans.
If interested, you can still contact the San Jose, CA, area seller through the eBay listing.