We get a lot of questions about collectible and custom cars and the like. And one of the more common questions we get is “how do I go about pricing it? Either to buy it or to sell it?” So, to answer that question, we’ve come here to Rockville, Maryland to Fleming’s Ultimate Garage, to talk to Tony Fleming.

TONY FLEMING: How are you doing, Pat?

PAT GOSS: Tony, what can you tell us about pricing these cars?

TONY FLEMING: Well that’s a very interesting thing. It’s really the disparity that determines what somebody can buy and what they can’t buy. So, for instance, you could use the NADA book. The NADA book is the yellow book that you’d see at the bank. They have a classic car section, and an exotic car section that could help you determine some things. But what really counts into it is production figures. And color. And level of restoration. So, for instance, we’ve ended up here at this Impala. This is an Impala SS 409, with the dual quad 4 barrels, a 4 speed, a convertible top. So let’s say they built 250,000 regular Impalas that year; of this right here, there might have only been built a half of a percent. This was probably, by the time you’re done adding all of these features to, say, a four door Impala, it was probably twice the price.

PAT GOSS: Right.

TONY FLEMING: Right? So there’s very few of these left. So these are the more desirable car.  And there’re a lot more expensive for things like that. So that’s one of the factors there.

PAT GOSS: So rarity is one of big things.


PAT GOSS: But, the average person isn’t going to know all of this stuff, so what about calling in an expert and having the car appraised?

TONY FLEMING: You know that’s actually a really good idea. So in our case here, we offer things like, when you come in, or online, we offer the market value of every single car that’s here. We also make them kind of turnkey. They’re ready to go today. We offer free enclosed shipping, so that somebody far away from here, can get the car back. Because most people who buy one of these long distance have no idea of how to get it back home. And 75% of somebody who gets something from us here, they never come here. So it’s kind of cool. But you can imagine, at the end of the day we’re really just enthusiasts, we happen to enjoy these cars. We actually buy them just to drive them. And people get in the way sometimes and buy them from us, and take them away. But…that’s ok, we don’t mind. It’s a great office view.

PAT GOSS: Tony, thank you. And if you have a question or comment, drop me a line, right here at MotorWeek.