If a Nobel Prize existed for the “can’t get more American than this” collector, Eddie Vannoy would undoubtedly be one of the most palpable candidates.
On 29th June, Mecum sold his collection of vehicles, and of these 88 out of 92 were produced on U.S. soil.
The queen of the auction which collected more than 7 million dollars (considering only the cars) was a Dodge Daytona 440/375. This model, designed to win NASCAR competitions, was produced in 1969 with two engine variants: the rarest 427ci (7,000cc displacement), of which 80 were produced and the higher performance 440 ci (7,200 cc), of which 423 examples were produced. This example was sold brand new in Indiana and was immediately equipped with the A36 Performance Axle Pack, which included an 8.75 differential and modified final drive ratio for even more impressive performance. Estimated at $175-$225,000 it changed hands slightly higher than that at $231,000 but it can still be considered a smart buy because recently the average price of this model has been between $250 and $350,000.
Stirred on by Dodge’s success, their rivals over at Plymouth decided to launch the Superbird. Aerodynamics played a massive part in this car’s design. It was one of the first cars to be developed in the wind tunnel and the nose was stretched by as much as 48 cm to increase the chances of victory. In the end, the overall shape of these two cars didn’t differ all that much, indeed, to an inexperienced eye they might look identical. Not to the collector, however, because as many as 1920 examples of this second model were produced and the prices take that into consideration. This 1970 model, which was sold for $203,500 (more than $25,000 less than the other) was placed at the very top of the model’s listing, which on average is between $130,000 and $220,000.
But Eddie Vannoy doesn’t just collect muscle cars from NASCAR, his interests in cars range from a Kenworth fire truck (1 of 5, sold for $209,000) to a 1941 Dodge Power Wagon. Nicknamed “Full Metal Jacket”, it was built to customer specifications using a 3.9-litre Cummins diesel engine withTX35 turbocharger and a TH350 automatic transmission, which many considered one of the best transmissions on the market. These changes, along with the visual ones that included 20” wheels to LEDs on the front bar, allowed her to take home several awards including numerous ISCA Awards and the Goodguy’s Builder Choice Award. She was also featured on the cover of Hot Rod Magazine and Truckin’ as well as being featured in various commercial shoots. Evaluating a custom car is always a risk because the price can vary a lot depending on who’s looking but the sale price of $176,000 seemed correct to me.
Undoubtedly, the vehicle I would have taken home was lot V53. Using the chassis of a 1966 Ford F250, they built an ice cream van with Good Humor livery. Painted white, with black interior and polished steel flooring, it was in exceptional condition. In addition, the 240ci (3.8 litres) 6-cylinder engine and the automatic transmission were recently restored and the freezer for the ice cream was also included in the sale. With the arrival of summer (one of the hottest ever according to meteorologists) who wouldn’t want to go to the garage and enjoy a nice ice popsicle with their friends? The Ford F250 Ice Cream Truck cost $77,000 but eating an ice cream with your childhood friends will forever be priceless.