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Ď88 Cabriolet w/G50 valuation help

Hey there, Iím considering purchasing a NorCal-native Ď88 911 Cabriolet with 171k on the odometer from a neighbor. It is not yet officially for sale, but heís getting closer to getting over the emotions of selling a car he loves but seldom drives.

Some details: original Grand Prix White paint over tan leather-optioned interior. Front seats are worn, commensurate with mileage. I believe this car has been garaged for most of its life, based on dashboard and interior/exterior soft-tissue condition. It is equipped with the G50 transmission, and a Ďtop-end rebuildí was done at Valhalla approximately 10k miles ago (with documentation, which I have not seen). Has optional white painted wheels, recent tires, and passes CA SMOG, no problem. Everything works (including A/C), but has aftermarket CD player. I hope to test drive it in the coming weeks. A concern is that is blows a cloud of white smoke on cold startup after sitting for a bit. Runs great except for that (I have only started it in his garage). Iíve never seen this, but some have written that itís common for this engine. THoughts on that?

As Iíve mostly been in the 914 and w123 Mercedes world, the value of these 80ís Carreras eludes me a bit. They seem to be all over the map, depending on where they are listed.

Iím not looking for an investment, just a fun car that has as good a chance of being reliable as any P-Car of the era. My perspective is that the money could sit in my bank account, or I could drive it around for a while. I perform my own work, short of alignments and machining. Selling party would prefer not to deal with an online sale, it seems, and has a number in mind. I would love to get some opinions on this particular carís value, given mileage and true rust-free / unmolested condition, before disclosing his asking price.

Thanks in advance!
-Greg

Old 03-04-2018, 04:59 PM
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I wouldn't worry about the smoke at start up, probably overfilled the oil. The documented top end rebuild is great piece of mind. I would peg this 88 Cab to be valued at around $32-34k give or take.
Old 03-05-2018, 12:22 PM
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I would worry about smoke upon start up. When you take it for a drive, let off the gas after accelerating fairly hard (in 2nd or 3rd?) and keep your eye on the rear view mirror. If there's also smoke, that top end rebuild was/is baloney, or worse.

171K is high. While the car looks nice in the included pix, CABS are the bottom of the barrel price wise, although I personally don't agree with that whole dynamic. Having said that, I think the mid $30's is all the money for a cab with this mileage. These 3.2's are desirable otherwise.

Get yourself a PPI. Smoke anytime worries me.
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Old 03-05-2018, 02:01 PM
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Hey guys, thanks for your input.

A trusted, local Porsche mechanic and friend is familiar with this car, and I will have a chat with him as soon as our schedules align. I will be driving the car next week, and know very well the smoking on decel issues (rebuilding a type 1 vw engine for my '73 Thing now for those very reasons). I'll keep an eye out, for sure.

I'll post a reply after taking the car for a drive. Anything else to look at that is Cab-specific? Re: Body flex / cowl shake; how much is acceptable, assuming there is any at all. When I had my 914, prior to repairing the longitudinals, I could feel the flex by placing my finger on the top of the door gap. Once repaired, said flex was greatly reduced.

Cheers!
-greg
Old 03-08-2018, 07:41 AM
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$30K is fair to both parties............
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Old 03-09-2018, 08:45 PM
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Smoke at start-up isn’t always a problem, especially if the car has been sitting (but blue smoke is bad, as Nick stated).

I would be concerned about the bottom end bearings though.

MattR
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Old 03-10-2018, 04:09 AM
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Cabs get a bad rap. If the car checks out and the engine is good, you could have a great car with a great engine for a fraction of the price of a coupe. Good for you for ignoring the racer boy aversion to them.

I personally like convertibles. These 3.2 CABS could become choice in the years to come. Have you seen the prices of the 356 drop tops? I have a sneaking suspicion that these (3.2's especially) are tremendously undervalued and will prove their worth in the future.
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Old 03-10-2018, 08:44 AM
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