Automotive German Cars For Sale Ramblings

2021 Stable Update: Total Refresh with Triple Nineteens!

I’m not exactly sure how this happened but we ended up filling all the spaces in the driveway with 2019 model year vehicles.

We started with a replacement for Shana’s X5 in November of 2019:

2019 Toyota Tacoma Limited in Quicksand!

2019 Toyota Tacoma Limited Quicksand

When we added up all the receipts and deprecation on the X5, we were at nearly $400/mo in the 6 years we owned the car. While not a waste, it was to maintain a modern-classic that wasn’t appreciating in resale; in fact quite the opposite despite the pile of receipts to keep it as perfect as we could.

Suddenly our eyes were open to the value of a new car in the same budget range. With the killer lease rates fueled by the extraordinary resale of the most popular car sold in 2019, we acquired the Tacoma Limited for very little. We’ll probably take advantage of the high resale and sell privately when the next generation is announced — and get a new one.

Later during COVID, I sold the 1993 Ducati 750SS:

It ended up with a well known Corvallis Ducati enthusiast and I couldn’t be happier. I owned it for 13 years but I hadn’t really ridden any bikes in the past 5 years. Check out these 750SS SuperSport archived posts for a tribute to this fine motorcycle that provided so many memorable miles.

Getting back in the saddle: 2019 KTM 390 Duke

2019 KTM 390 Duke

Riding less than 500 miles in the past several years has made me rusty. But this sharp and stylish lightweight is just what the doctor ordered. It’s light, punchy, and incredibly easy to enjoy at all speeds under 100mph. It won’t be long before I endeavor to acquire something with adult horsepower and size. In the meantime, this is a super fun toy to enjoy at a whim and inspiring tons of confidence to make up for lost time.

Back in a Volkswagen: 2019 Golf R!

I also sold the Z4M in late spring last year. At the time I had saved up for a long time and figured it was time to get a Porsche or similar limited edition German special. It’s a silly promise to my younger self to acquire the sportscars I never thought I’d obtain. But the COVID market proved to be very spicy with plenty of competition. 48-72hr market-to-sale turnaround times on the cars I was shopping was suddenly commonplace. Several cars slipped through my fingers during this 8 month search and I’ll detail some of the runners up in a future post. It was very frustrating to say the least!

Then after a leisurely and scenic drive on a late fall day (COVID boredom), we followed a blue mk7.5 Golf R heading back into town. It was definitely the facelifted mk7.5, super clean and detailed. Stunning to be honest. It was one of those moments when we were both staring at it and knew it was time to get back into a Volkswagen. Our 9th in fact.

Soon after, this super low mileage Golf R appeared at Audi Wilsonville and I acted as fast I could to get it.

2019 Golf R white

This has ended up being the best choice for us during this challenging time. Values on enthusiast collector cars have increased sharply this past year and competition in the marketplace has been fast and fierce. In the meantime, I’ve been blissfully ignorant of new car offerings the past 5-10 years. While I knew what a Golf R was, I was highly skeptical of the 2.0L Turbo 4 cylinder and hefty entry price. Cue stereotypical revelation: after a short test drive, I was won over almost instantly! This really is a brilliant hot hatch and it’s everyday appeal will be hard to replace after owning two roadsters the better part of the past 10 years.

It took me a while to realize it, but somehow we’ve ended up with three 2019 model year vehicles, and to be honest we couldn’t be more happy – which has been good during these unprecedented times. Having the right ride for every spare moment has been a wonderful escape from reality.


Automotive Classifieds of Interest German Cars For Sale Ramblings

Two 90’s Modern Classic Convertibles for Under $15k: What’s the Worst that Could Happen?

I still haven’t replaced the M Roadster, but as you may have guessed, I’ve been looking at ads almost nonstop since it sold. Our local market within 300-400 miles hasn’t turned up much in that time that I considered a must buy. And when I contemplate long distance spotting’s, not only does the cost of shipping come to mind, but of course the uncertainty and anxiety of buying remotely — without seeing it in person. I know a PPI is usually available by a nearby shop, but another expense to factor in.

Maybe all that this hesitation demonstrates is that I’m not ready to be a committed collector yet. But here are two interesting examples that have popped up for sale (nearby for once), and with asking prices well below my budget for the next enthusiast car in the driveway. Maybe I can be a pretend collector and enthusiast in the meantime as I soak in the details of these two contenders.

$12,500: 1997 Mercedes-Benz 500SL 40th Anniversary Edition for $12,500 with 83k miles

1997 Mercedes-Benz 500SL Anniversary Edition

rare find, 40th Anniversary Edition, 500 made (imported 250 to US), looks new, runs great, crimson metallic ruby red, parchment leathers seats, chestnut wood dash, never wrecked, all options, new soft top and lifts, separate hard top, 81,000 miles, 12,500, garage kept, never driven in winter, excellent maintenance upkeep

Once upon a time, I test drove a 97 500SL Sport in Portland with almost the exact same miles and a mountainous stack of receipts. It was in truly amazing condition inside and out, and I didn’t buy it for the mere $10,500 then asking price because I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to afford to keep it in that shape. It didn’t deserve my ownership. I have regretted making that adult decision for years though. I routinely check the R129 listings around the web and wonder if I should pull the trigger now as they’re just starting to appreciate but still very affordable to attain. Of course these do require a significant amount of maintenance and care to stay in nice condition, but the asking price is barely over $10k to start and already has a new top and hydraulic top cylinders (an expensive and expected cost of doing business with an R129). After owning the W202 C43 AMG of roughly the same period, and enjoying the hell out of it with minimal expense during the two years of ownership, I’m thinking it’s worth budgeting several thousand a year in maintenance and repairs to get one of the best built cars of it’s time.

{if you’ve ever contemplated R129 ownership, this video should do the rest…}

$13,500: 1991 Mazda Miata M Edition with 25k miles

Greetings everybody here’s your situation if you had a bad 2020 make up all for it with this 1991 Mazda Miata hardtop convertible with only 25,000 original miles garage kept four-cylinder manual transmission British racing green rare color combination runs and drives like a dream everything functions clean title time capsule piece

NA Miata Hardtop BRG

If you’ve read this self-indulgent post this far, you are likely the kind of person who has driven, or even owned, an NA Miata in the past and longingly appreciated it as one of the most affordable, best executed, and graceful sports cars of it’s time. How many sports cars in this price range can claim that in the past 30 years of ever expanding safety and emission standards?

This particular example isn’t the nicest I’ve seen but it meets the criteria of being local, low miles, and cheap. You can spot comparable or better examples on Bring A Trailer routinely for about the same price, and being what it is, I’d feel a lot more comfortable about a long range purchase if that’s the best we could do.

One more to consider?

No Reserve: 2002 Porsche Boxster S 6-Speed, 113k miles, sold on Bring A Trailer for $10,250

Another obvious contender in this modern classic segment is the 986 Porsche Boxster S, like this one that sold a few weeks ago on BaT. Definitely an easy car to find in the same price range and condition, many even with the hardtop. This example has more miles than I’d usually consider but was well represented and a fair sale price. But if I’m honest, the one time I test drove one I was really underwhelmed. The journals of the time all basic said the same thing because the 996 Porsche 911 of the era was really the one to have with an appropriate 315hp on tap from the start compared to the Boxster’s 240hp. On the other hand, if one comes up in your backyard at a good price, you should check it out and see if you feel the same way.

Closing thoughts

During this world-wide pandemic I’ve been finding it difficult to pull the trigger when I consider I could be taking advantage of someone’s misfortune or the fact that I’m lucky enough to still hold a rewarding career job that affords me such leisurely considerations. But at this price point I tend to allow myself the opportunity to consider one of these on a Thursday night after work. After all, in 2020, what’s the worst that could happen?


Automotive Classifieds of Interest Motorcycles Ramblings

A Quick Trip to Cape Meares on the Ducati and VFR

I had tried earlier this year to sell my Ducati 750SS, but admittedly it’s a slow market and I was asking a premium. Fast-forward to June and the weather has finally turned to summer. Time to take the bike off the market and ride! Paul suggested the following route for this Sunday:

View Larger Map

As you can tell, it’s a good day trip. But especially long if it’s your second ride of the year! My body is tired after this trip, but so worth it. Here are the pics (click for hi-res):

Cape Meares Oregon Coast Motorcycle Trip
Yep, this is what the Oregon Coast looks like when it's 70 degrees and sunny outside!
Cape Meares Oregon Coast Motorcycle Trip
The beautiful Oregon coast
Cape Meares Lighthouse
Cape Meares Lighthouse
Cape Meares Ducati 750 and VFR 750
Cape Meares Ducati 750 and VFR 750
Cape Meares Ducati 750 and VFR 750
Cape Meares Ducati 750 and VFR 750

Thanks for the great ride Paul!


Automotive Motorcycles Ramblings Road Trips

Early Summer Road Trips Photo-Gallery: SBK at Miller and Historics at Sears Point

As usual I’m completely behind on my personal blog, but the last few weeks have been epic! We were very lucky to be able to part sponsor the Veloce Racing team at the Miller Motorsports World SuperBike weekend a couple weeks ago, and then my wonderful wife treated me to a long weekend at Sears Point (it still doesn’t seem natural to call it Infineon) for the Wine Country Classic, which they now call the Historic Car Festival.

Each event deserves, and will receive, it’s own blog entry. But for now I thought I would at least share pictures that have been posted elsewhere with some captions. Stay tuned,


World SuperBike Weekend at Miller Motorsports Park, Salt Lake City, Utah

Our Moto Forza Veloce Racing Aprilia 250 Gallery from Rare SportBikes For Sale:

A giant gallery of the Miller SuperBike 2010 event:

Sonoma Historic Motorsports Festival

And here are a few shots from the recent “1st Annual” (20th Wine Country Classic) Historic Motorsports Festival. As you can tell, I’ve been fooling around with alot of Photoshop and wide-screen-like formatting:


Sonoma Historic Motorsports Festival 2010

Sonoma Historic Motorsports Festival 2010

Sonoma Historic Motorsports Festival 2010

Sonoma Historic Motorsports Festival 2010


More to come!


Ramblings Road Trips

Road Trip to SBK at Miller Motorsports Park

13 hours 20 minutes later, we have arrived in Salt Lake City for the SBK racing at Miller Motorsports Park this weekend. I have to say that this is one of the longest road trips I’ve taken in some time, but the XC70 was a really comfortable and capable car for this journey.

Paul and I are here to enjoy the races as is now an official supporter of the Moto Forza Veloce Racing Aprilia team! Keep an eye on the RSBFS Facebook page for some live blogging and pictures from the pits.

Here are some snapshots from our long day on the road:

Decals applied the night before (new logo coming soon!)


Freaking cold over the pass!


A stop for lunch in the middle of nowhere


Lunch done right on the road


We were treated to beautiful vistas like this all day long


Lame self portrait in progress


Arrival at the hotel! If I was a little dumber I would’ve waited for 9:16 😉


A proper unwinding after a long drive: Pokerstars, Heineken, and deli plate


And ready for tomorrow’s action


The Moto Forza Veloce Racing team heads out early for qualifying tomorrow morning at 8:30 and we’re going to make a serious effort to be there — and hopefully see them positioned in the top 10 in a field of 45 (17/45 today).

Good night all!