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found a 78 Pacecar for sale, good investment?



I'm new to this board but not to the corvette. My dad owned a 68 conv 327 and I thought it was the fastest thing in the world. But sadly he had to give it up because of all the money that was going into it. I currently have a 2000 Camaro SS and I'm thinking about selling it to buy a corvette. I don't want a high performance car like the talon and cobra but just a cruiser similar to the Camaro RS. So about a 1/2 year ago I was cruising the highway when I spot a late 70s corvette at a small dealership. When I stopped to check it out I was greeted by the dealer. He mentioned first off that it WAS a real pacecar (I later confirmed it on a carfax report). It was obvious that it was going to take some money to restore her. The front clip was out of alignment and some small cracks in the fiberglass and paint were very visible. The interior could use some freshing up along with some new carpet. It does have the original radio. The L82 350 sounded like it could use a tune-up and the carburetor needed to be adjusted because of the rich smell coming out of the duel exhaust. All in all it was a nice car. I didn't get the chance to drive it but was assured that it gave a nice ride. I liked it a lot but couldn't move on it because I just finished the cobra and paid off the Camaro.

Back to the present........

I was out recently taking one of the few drives in the cobra that I take a year when I crossed paths with that dealership again. I noticed right off that the vette was still there! The dealership was closed so I stopped in to check it out. It had a price of $7800.00 and it looked like it wasn't worked on since the last time I checked it out. The car has 57,000 original miles and mostly needs cosmetic work. My question is this should I offer to buy this car up for $6000.00 CASH and restore her or should I let some other guy buy it. Is it worth the money? I figured about $5000-$8000 on restoring it. I do have a possible buyer for the Camaro so I think I'll be getting about 20000.00 out of the SS to put into this car. Would I get a good return on this car if I need to sell it (which is possible because the driveway looks like a used car lot)? I know that the total # of pacecars built were 6502 so I would think there would be a demand for this car in the classic car market. Please give me your thoughts and ideas.

Newbie here, too. First post...

Check this car out real good. That price seems awfully low for a pace car. Don't buy it to use as your daily driver. As you should know, these old vettes need lots of tlc. Do your research so you know what to look for, or take it to somebody who does. And unless they can document the mileage, it could very well be 157k, not 57k. Be suspicious.

And here's one more tidbit.... shopping for an old vette can be a lot of fun and a great learning experience. There are LOTS of them out there for sale all the time.


There is a great search engine on that site.

There is a world of diff between your Camaro and any old Vette. You want easy, maintenance free driving? Stick with your Camaro. You want to have FUN working on a car all day Saturday to take cruisin on Saturday night? Go for the Vette!

Welcome to the CACC Gentelmen. I'm sure you guys will enjoy it here.:)

Onefasttalon, I have to agree with Tom, that $7,800 seems kind of low for a '78 Pace Car with such low mileage. I paid $7,850 for my RPO '78 in late '99. She was in great shape mechanicly, but needed some TLC with the paint and body.

Like Tom said, if you want a car to tinker with Saturday, go with the Corvette. I wouldnt buy the car as an investemnt though. Sure it's a Pace Car, but there where so many '78 PC's produced that it's going to be a long time (if ever) before the PC is considered collectable. But on the other hand the value of Sharks is going up as people find they are fairly cheap and easy to maintain and repair.

Let us know what you decide to do.

Well, being a mountaineer I'm very handy with cars in general. During my 7th grade year my father bought us a 1980 Camaro RS to restore. As of right now its fully restored except for the rare quad stripe and decal kit that is impossible to find. I think of myself as lucky because my Uncle Dick owns a small auto shop that we spend all our time in. My father, brother and I spend most of our weekends and holidays (including Christmas) working and tweaking with cars therefore the restoration of the car wouldn't be all that difficult. I'll have to post pictures of the pace car in detail so you guys can get an idea of what I'm in for. As for being a daily driver I don't know. I think it would be nice to use as one but I'm also thinking about picking up an S 10 to knock around in. I don't think the SS will be sorely missed because it really is a maintenance hog (those of you that own one may understand what I mean ****) and I also have 2 other HIGH performance cars that the SS just can't match. Thank you for the ideas and replies and i look forward to more. I'll try to get pictures later this weekend.

"The Cowboy"

**** try [url]www.ls1.com[/URL] ****
Dearest Onefasttalon,

Just wanted to add my 2 cents in! I agree greatly with Toms77 and twiget. I have a 78, 25th anniversary which I bought in Florida this last March. She sat in a florida shopping center for 2 years undriven. But the previous owner put $14,000 worth of work into her. Including new transmission, new a/c, new brakes, new GORGEOUS $5,000 paint job, new tires, just to name a few.Thank goodness he did all the big stuff, because let me tell ya....I"m dealing with all the little stuff. I found out that even though my hood says "L-82", it certainly is not. Not even a corvette engine.....I have a chevy 350 ci. That's all I know. It's been difficult for me to track down a vehicle history report on my vette, I have no idea what kind of history she has. It's alot of fun though, a mystery, and learning about her is truely wonderful. And eventually what I want to do, is fix her up and get a 78 pace car. As I speak, she's in the garage getting the rear suspension worked on, she's been there for 5 days and trust me...it's KILLING ME to not have her right now. Even though I get to pick her up tonite, it's been a long day already. So.....like everyone else said, old vettes need ALOT of TLC, unless you buy one that's completely restored, like my brother just did. He bought a '69, 427, 400 tri-power, side pipes, lemans blue. Wonderful! I wish you luck in your decision with corvette buying, it's definately a great experience if you have the time and patience and money to do it. You'll love it!!!
Well..... being the new owner of Pace Car # 6060 of 6502, I looked long and hard before I made the decision.

Personally speaking, I wanted a "shark" and fell into this deal. I don't think the Limited Edition Pace car ever really lived up to everyones expectations as far as collectability, but one must admit, they are sharp, and I can tell you, they are head turners in traffic! Out of the 6500 made, I've seen several that had VERY low miles, and one with just 4 miles on it! These type cars probably drive like &%^%, but they were purchased, and stored for investment purposes only. They are beautiful rides, but I bought mine to drive! The NADA value right now ranges anywhere from 8K, to about 30K depending on condition...

I'd say check it out good if it appeals to you, do as much research as you can, then make YOUR call.

RE 78 PC

If your looking for an investment that one is not it, there are plenty of PC that have lower miles than that. Your going to put allot more into it than you are going to get out of it. did you check out the check list for buying a corvette, it is very helpfull. Don't buy a vette for an investment unless you have a big bank account and a big garage to store it in, buy a vette to enjoy it. Buy what appeals to you and drive it.
Just my 2cents.
enjoy it

For the amounts of money I've put into 78...you know I'm gonna drive her as much as my heart desires (and I look for any opportunity!.."Hey, we're almost out of milk!" While driving her, I enjoy every dollar I've ever spent on her!
I agree with most everybody else. Unless you plan on keeping it 20 yrs.,it's probably not the best return on your money.Pace car decals could be purchased at any dealership.Obviously if the history is documented,that helps.If it's a 4 speed, even better. Look at the pedals if you're unsure of the miles. Do they look to have the appropriate amount of wear? If they're new, beware! If you just want a driver, that's as good as any. Price sounds about right for the condition. Hope this helps.
Factors to consider in making your decision:

1. It's not rare or unique, so it's unlikely to increase in value.
2. It'll be a money pit - fixing cosmetics is FAR more costly than mechanicals.
3. It probably needs FAR more work than a cursory look indicates.
4. You'll never get your money out of it.
5. There's a reason it's been sitting there unsold for six months or more.
6. NEVER buy a Corvette "as an investment"; people bought those Pace Cars new, put them in a cocoon thinking they'd be worth a fortune, and even those "cocoon cars" with plastic still on the sill plates are lucky to bring their original sticker price (after sitting for 26 years). "Old" does not necessarily equate to "rare" or "valuable".

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