LIPSTICK ON A PIG
Avoiding Life’s Lemons
As everyone knows when purchasing a classic car, you are purchasing the end result of the previous owners whose hands it has passed through.
Historical documentation is like looking at a map, if there is no documentation you’re traveling blind. I have seen situations where there can be documents 2 or 3 inches deep, however on closer examination, I have discovered large gaps in history. This can indicate a situation where for many years there had been very diligent ownership, then the owner falls out of love with the car (or dies), or any combination of factors that lead to the abandonment of the car. In other words, you want history but it must be relevant.
I’ve recently come across situations where the history of a vehicle covered large segments of its life but the segment with no history would lead one to the conclusion that claims being made about the car could not be substantiated. In these two cases, extraordinarily low mileage was being claimed, but both owners omitted to get substantiating documentation for the mileage when they purchased the car. Low mileage claims are very seductive but only translate into dollar value when substantiated by the documented provenance.