Author Topic: Allante collectibility??  (Read 4253 times)

Offline Roger Zimmermann

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Re: Allante collectibility??
« Reply #20 on: November 28, 2012, 08:17:54 AM »
Yes. It was mainly a manual top with a lever on the side to unlock it and an electric catch the close the rear, when you were lucky. Later, the front was also "electrified" but the whole thing was still a stupid construction. At the same time, Camaros and Firebirds had an motorized top.
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Offline Guidematic

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Re: Allante collectibility??
« Reply #21 on: November 28, 2012, 09:25:45 AM »

 The convertible top really was a problem with these cars. They changed it almost every year as well, making specific parts even harder to find these days. In particular the seals were prone to leaking on the earlier models. That was an ongoing problem, they always seemed to be in the shop for waterleaks.

 As far as the car being a bit of a commercial flop, that does not affect collectibility one bit. As a matter of fact, it can enhance it, particularly if the car becomes collectible for other reasons. Certainly 1969 Chevy II's with the 4-cylinder engine are not collectible because they made but a handful of them.

 As I said earlier, the Allante possesses all the elements that will make it a collectible. But it still remains anyone's guess as to when values take off and to what heights they will go to.

 Mike
1970 Fleetwood Brougham 68169
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Offline ericdev

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Re: Allante collectibility??
« Reply #22 on: November 28, 2012, 09:39:57 AM »



Name ANY car that is a two seater convertible, especially built by a high end carmaker that isn't worth money...

Allante's, long-term, are smart investments, in my opinion.



I don't want this to get into a debate about the virtues/disadvantages, collectibility/non-collectibility of Allante'. However here are a few of my own thoughts and points regarding future long-range Allante' collectibility.

Everything is worth some money. However, if you'd like an example of a two-seater, built by a luxury car manufacturer that has not fared well as a collector car for appreciation, I submit the 1972-1989 Mercedes SL series. For many years long after production ceased, this model enjoyed tremendous value retention or appreciation however, their marketplace performance had been rather lackluster over the last decade or more. I personally know a half dozen people who bought these things who lost their shirt on them, to say nothing of the exhorbitant maintenence costs ownership entailed.

Secondly, the Allante' was never particularly successful, much less lusted-after when new. Resale/trade-in value was so dreadful that GM took the unprecedented step of subsidizing trade-in values by kicking in an extra $10,000 to GM dealers trading in an Allante' just to prop up Allantes' image. Compared with the competition of the day, there were a host of cars that a serious car enthusiast would've far rather had at Allante's price. BMW M Series and offerings from Porsche and Mercedes come to mind. GM had completely missed the target. 

Thirdly, Allante' styling had always been consider bland, "a high-dollar car that looks as though it had been designed by a committee..." were the words of more than one critic. Personally I always thought the car looked like a Celebrity when viewed directly from the front. Not exactly a comparison one spending mega-bucks on a supercar likes to be made.

Fourth, the Allante' is FWD. This is a major problem as serious high performance cars are never designed in that configuration for a multitude of reasons. FWD is widely regarded as a compromise design among automotive experts and this further hampered Allante's image as a viable competitor in the high-end market while further underscoring the philosophy behind the entire machine- and that was one of engineering compromise. Furthermore, FWD linked the Allante' with far more pedestrian offerings. Again, a major detriment to Allante's image as a prestige machine. 

Sixth, many Allantes had been collected an mothballed as new cars, ala 1976 Eldorado convertible. Therefore, there's no shortage of quality examples to satisfy marketplace demand. This is not going to be helpful to long term appreciation. This is almost never the case with cars that have become highly desirable and sought-after.

Finally, consider the 59-60 Eldorado Brougham. Here's a car that had been built in truly limited quantity, without any thought of being put away since new without being driven. It was a far more expensive car than the Allante' in inflation-adjusted dollars and yet it's not a particularly valuable car compared to the far more common (by a factor of 4x) of the 57-58. The 57-58 Eldo Brougham was distinctive; the 59-60 was not. Clearly, distinction plays a major role in future collectibility, and the Allante is hardly distinctive. While many foreign car offerings arguably lack distinction themselves, they did excel in terms of performance.

Yes, the Allante is a roadster, however that in itself is not enough to compensate for the areas in which it lacks, vis-a-vis its contempories. Had the Allante' been built in 1965, just as it is, it would be a completely different story. One of the primary factors of long range collectibility/desirability is derived from how a car stacked up against the competition of the day. As one analyst said it, "What new car of its time would a young man buy if money were no object?" I suspect very few young men would have chosen an Allante' in 1987-1993.

That said, none of this is meant in any way to denigrate Allante', nor cause offence to any Alllante' owner nor any of its partisans and it undoubtedly has some fine attributes. It is simply to put into perspective some of the questions regarding potential long-term Allante collectibility, within the context of historical criteria in regards to long-term desirability- from one market observer of many years.

What the future will hold for Allante' is anybody's guess but based on the above, I just don't see it happening for many decades, if at all.

One man's opinion. 

« Last Edit: November 28, 2012, 01:30:21 PM by ericdev »
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Offline ericdev

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Re: Allante collectibility??
« Reply #23 on: November 28, 2012, 10:01:29 AM »
One more thing I'd like to add is a short list of Cadillacs that I feel have not yet reached investment maturity potential:

1967 Eldorado

1980 Seville

1977-1980 Cadillac LeCabriolet (H & E Conversion)
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Offline Guidematic

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Re: Allante collectibility??
« Reply #24 on: November 28, 2012, 10:28:26 AM »

 Logic does not always apply to the collector car market. An example of this is the 55-57 Chevrolet. They were pounded out like cultured bacteria (4.5 million over 3 years), they aren't particularly interesting in mechanical make-up. and they are not regarded as outstanding designs. They didn't exhibit exceptional, or even for the time, average quality. Yet they continue to demand big dollars.

 Another would be the '65 Mustang. Thay made over 700,000 of them, they have very pedestrian mechanicals and aside from being "sporty" they are not particularly good designs.

 The Allante is low production, high end, built by relatively exotic body builder. It has aesthetics that are quite tasteful and understated. However it may languish in the collector market for some time. But it has the potential. That is entirely dependent on the market and how it is perceived. No one can accurately predict it.

 Time will tell.

 Mike
1970 Fleetwood Brougham 68169
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Offline ericdev

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Re: Allante collectibility??
« Reply #25 on: November 28, 2012, 10:41:48 AM »
Tri 5 Chevys and Mustangs were hot when they were new. The vast majority were pounded, used and discarded leaving a relatively small population to satisfy millions who remember them fondly. Completely different dynamic than with Allante having no bearing whatsoever on the cars' mechanical merit. And the cars were decisive commercial successes in their day. The Chevys and to a lesser extent, Mustangs were never intended as high end cars for consumption by a few affluent customers, only to be dreamed of by the rest.

The main reason Allante and 59-60 Eldo Brougham was subcontracted out to Pininfarina was to reduce production costs.

I respectfully disagree, there most decidedly is some logic to future collectibility just as there is to any investment.

As you say, time will tell....
« Last Edit: November 30, 2012, 05:25:15 PM by ericdev »
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Offline Guidematic

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Re: Allante collectibility??
« Reply #26 on: November 28, 2012, 11:16:41 AM »

 Not being of car buying age when the Chevies were built, I can't comment from an first hand obverver's view. However I have spent much time thinking about this very matter.

 Essentially it's the same as what made the '32 Fords so hot, and even the Hondas of today. When they were new, they weren't particularly sigificant. Except that the '55 was such a drastic departure from the '54 and created a completely new image for the brand. However compared to their contemporaries, they weren't particularly interesting.

 As they became used cars, they were cheap, readily available and easily modified. That crated a real following for them. Yes, they were pounded and used up in many cases, used up as everyday transportation, beat to death as race cars and such. However, there was such a huge pool of these cars that it took a very long time before you could even begin to consider them as hard to find.

 I agree Mustangs were the hot ticket when they were new. They were cheap, looked quite sporty and easily modified. They remained the canvas for teenagers and later adults for many years to come. But mechanically they were merely Falcons.

 Mass appeal certainly is a factor in a car becoming a high priced collectible. As it is, not a lot of people even know the Eldorado Brougham even exists, let alone the '59-'60 version.

 But look at the Duesenberg J. Thare were a few more than 500 examples of these cars built. They can command millions. That may be in part because the cars are so well known by the public, which of coarse makes them even more desireable.

 Perhaps the Allante may never get to any real values. It may peak at a point where it is still affordable by folk with smaller bank accounts.

 In 1965, who would have ever thought that any 1959 Cadillac would have been worth anything?

 Mike
1970 Fleetwood Brougham 68169
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1988 Eldorado Biarritz 6EL57
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Offline ericdev

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Re: Allante collectibility??
« Reply #27 on: November 28, 2012, 11:31:43 AM »


 Mass appeal certainly is a factor in a car becoming a high priced collectible. As it is, not a lot of people even know the Eldorado Brougham even exists, let alone the '59-'60 version.


 In 1965, who would have ever thought that any 1959 Cadillac would have been worth anything?

 Mike

How many people even know about the Allante' today let alone 20-30 years from now? I have a few friends in their 30's who never even heard of it. In all honesty, it's very difficult to imagine many 20-30 somethings of today just having to get an Allante' decades from now. Some perhaps, but very few would be my guess.

A Dusenberg represented the outer limits of technological & styling limitations of its day. A zero compromise machine, bumper to bumper. The car was a legend from the second it was built. No matter who you were, what walk of life you came from, everybody knew what a Dusenberg was and what it represented. It's even the origin of the the expression, "It's a Dusey..."  An 18-25 year old would be turning handstands for one in 1930. 

As far as the '59 in 1965- answer to that is: My father! lol! He always said that was going to a hot car one day. (Gotta give the old man his due- he's always a knack for picking winners) He-he. :)
« Last Edit: November 28, 2012, 12:14:43 PM by ericdev »
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Offline Guidematic

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Re: Allante collectibility??
« Reply #28 on: November 28, 2012, 12:14:43 PM »

 Right. How many will know that the Allante even existed. But if there is some spark in the public eye on these cars that may bring the car out again, people may remember. There are a lot of forgotten cars out there that get rediscovered.

 The Duesenberg was perhaps the pinnacle of the classic era. They were fast, every one carried custom coachwork, and they were stunning. There were others too that are much more scarce, more technically intriquing. An example would be the Mrmon V-16, and maybe even some examples of the Cadillac Series 452.

 Indeed it would be nice to have reliable foresight to call future collectibles, particularly those that go to the top of the heap. If I could do that, I'd be a rich man.

 Mike
1970 Fleetwood Brougham 68169
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Offline TJ Hopland

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Re: Allante collectibility??
« Reply #29 on: November 28, 2012, 12:52:06 PM »
How about the Buick Reatta?   

That was the same period and similar in many ways, not actually physically but as to what it was meant to be and where it fit in the lineup.
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Offline Guidematic

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Re: Allante collectibility??
« Reply #30 on: November 28, 2012, 12:57:24 PM »

 The Reatta was an interesting car. Certainly not on the same level as the Allante. But interesting nonetheless. And I think it fringes on one of those forgotten cars today.

 Mike
1970 Fleetwood Brougham 68169
1985 Eldorado Coupe 6EL57
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Offline Walter Youshock

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Re: Allante collectibility??
« Reply #31 on: November 28, 2012, 01:51:31 PM »
The Allante' was a neat car when new.  My college roommates liked them and I still preferred the Brougham, but the Allante' was on my list as well.  For as different as they were then, I prefer the XLR today.
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Offline Guidematic

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Re: Allante collectibility??
« Reply #32 on: November 28, 2012, 01:57:57 PM »

 Yeah, they were pretty cool then. We looked at them from a differant perspective from what we see them today. They were quite advanced in the electronics dept if nothing else. They were the first cars to use multiplexing, something that is very commonplace today.

 Mike
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Offline D.Yaros

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Re: Allante collectibility??
« Reply #33 on: November 29, 2012, 08:59:12 PM »
Is the "gas guzzler" tax, applied to purchases of the Allante still in effect today?

Yes the Allante was quite advanced in terms of electronics.  So advanced that there was not room on the instrument panel for separate right & left turn signal indicators on the dashboard!
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Offline ericdev

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Re: Allante collectibility??
« Reply #34 on: November 30, 2012, 08:35:49 AM »
Gas guzzler taxes only apply when a vehicle is sold new in the US. I doubt it would've applied to Allante' in any case. The tax did apply to the Brougham/Fleetwoods in the '90s I believe.
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Offline 76eldo

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Re: Allante collectibility??
« Reply #35 on: November 30, 2012, 10:31:28 AM »
There was a gas guzzler tax on 93's when new of $1700.00.

See pic below.  it's the window sticker from my 93.

Brian
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Offline ericdev

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Re: Allante collectibility??
« Reply #36 on: November 30, 2012, 10:55:17 AM »
« Last Edit: November 30, 2012, 11:25:13 AM by ericdev »
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Offline 76eldo

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Re: Allante collectibility??
« Reply #37 on: November 30, 2012, 11:58:23 AM »
It may have had to also do with the price of the car.
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Offline ericdev

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Re: Allante collectibility??
« Reply #38 on: November 30, 2012, 12:18:37 PM »
That would be the luxury tax which is a seperate bill. At any rate, a Brougham cost considerably less than Allante' which was assessed the guzzler tax in the '90s. My guess is that the 1993's Allante's MPG rating dipped just below the threshold of what the government deemed a "guzzler". Possible performance enhancing mechanicals exclusive to the model? The '93 Allante' might be the only Northstar car to have been so penalized.

By way of interest, all trucks were exempt from the gas guzzler tax. Large SUVs, (ie: Suburban, Tahoe, Expedition etc) were also classified as "trucks" exempting them from the "guzzler" tax as well.
« Last Edit: November 30, 2012, 01:47:47 PM by ericdev »
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Offline D.Yaros

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Re: Allante collectibility??
« Reply #39 on: December 01, 2012, 09:44:02 AM »
Gas guzzler taxes only apply when a vehicle is sold new in the US. I doubt it would've applied to Allante' in any case. The tax did apply to the Brougham/Fleetwoods in the '90s I believe.
It certainly did apply to Allantes sold new.
Dave Yaros
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You will find me on the web @:
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http://GrayLady.WebNG.com -1955 Coupe Deville site
http://www.freewebs.com/jeandaveyaros  -Saved 62 (Oldsmobile) Web Site
The home of Car Collector Chronicles.  A  monthly GDYNets newsletter focusing on classic car collecting.
http://www.scribd.com/D_Yaros/documents

 



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