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Would you drive your one million dollar hemi car?


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3:03 PM
Dec 13, 2021
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I didn't want to hijack the other thread about having a million dollar inheritance to spend on your dream hemi car asking this follow up on the subject, so I'm starting a new one. If you got your dream hemi car, how much do you think you'd actually drive it? We like to boast we'd drive the wheels off it when there is talk of some trailer queen or museum piece, but it seems pretty rare that anyone with top shelf caliber cars really drive them much, if any. Many of these types of cars are not exactly comfortable and driver friendly cruisers! Think manual steering, drum brakes, stiff clutches, temperamental engines, hot, not to mention worrying about a texting soccer mom or wreckless tuner punk running into you.
This subject has been on my mind recently as there is a '62 Mercedes 300SL I see often at an area cruise. I don't know vintage European cars beyond seeing the multi million prices that cars like gullwings and Ferraris bring at auctions, but wondered what this car I see so often is worth. I was surprised to see its a 7 figure car assuming its real!
I go to many cruises but its rare to see 6 figure cars at any, I can't recall ever seeing another 7 figure one.
1962 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Roadster - W198 Market - CLASSIC.COM

300SL front.JPG

300SL rear.JPG
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It isn't a hemi car, but I do drive the snot out of my Charger 500. It's a CAR, not a museum piece. I'll take it to dinner. WalMart. NAPA. To get parts for my mountain bike. Wherever I need to go, I have no problem driving it.

They're meant to be DRIVEN.

I've worked in the motorcycle industry for a long time. Vehicles HATE to sit. Stuff dries out. Seizes up. Sticks. Leaks. Corrodes. Given the choice between two identical vehicles, in "identical" condition, one with a couple hundred miles on it and one with normal-use miles? I stay away from the hundreds, and go for the one that's driven.

I have one motorcycle right now, bought it last year from a buddy who bought it new. A 1996. Got it last year, with less than 7100 miles on it. I had one like it (they only built a total of 1399 units) until it got totaled in 2018 (I had about 35,000 miles on it at that point), and had been looking to replace it because it's a GREAT machine. But with less than 2k ever built...you take what you can get. This new one, I have seal issues. Gasket issues. Leak issues. Currently have a needle bearing on the mainshaft that keeps walking out the shaft, popping the seal loose and pissing oil all over the drive belt. Still an awesome machine, I still love riding it...but I prefer to RIDE more than I WRENCH, and right now this bike is killing me with teething pains.

Cars do the same thing when they sit too long. For THEIR health, I drive what I have. From my one-owner '91 Daytona turbo to my '72 Satellite wagon to my '70 Charger to my '90 turbo minivan; from my '96 motorcycle to my '06 to my '09...I make sure they ALL get their exercise.
I would sell and buy/build a $100k hemi car and beat the bejesus out of it.
What's the point of having a car you can't won't drive?
I ask myself the same question often! :lol:
My first car I bought as a teen was a Challenger T/A with a stick and manual steering. I can't say it was ever a car I enjoyed putting a ton of miles on, and over the years bought other hobby cars that were much more pleasurable to drive. A cuda 340 with AC, auto and PS I had for a while in college, a Challenger convertible with PS and auto I got in the mid 90s I still have and love to drive, a 09 Challenger R/T stick, and most recently my 78 Magnum. I've dreamed since I was a teen of owning a hemi car, in fact I was actively looking for one for a time in college but wasn't successful. That is why the other thread had me thinking, that if I ever realized my 4 decade dream of owning a rare valuable hemi car, would I love to drive it, or would it become another car like my T/A, the automotive equivalent to a "trophy wife", high maintenance, not very useful, but I still drool every time I look at her!
That’s why I love my R/T clone. Having made only 3 would never have one. But at least this one is a shitload of fun to drive with the 3 pedals.:lol:




Yes, I would drive my $1M hemi car. I don't care if it devalues it by $50,000 because I'm going to get $100,000 of enjoyment out of it. That's a good investment!
because I'm going to get $100,000 of enjoyment out of it
And that's my thing, too. I don't enjoy looking at them and buffing them with a diaper - I enjoy DRIVING (or riding) them. Propulsion, and transportation, are their reason for existence - if you don't do that, you may as well buy a ****-ton of photographs to stick on your wall to look at.
This isn't a $1M Hemi car, but I wouldn't trade it even up for one, after chasing it for over 50 years. On the issue of driving - After spending five decades looking at the photograph, you bet I drive it, now that I own it. Guy who owned it before me only drove it 1000 miles in 28 years, I'm making up for it fast, starting with 250 round trip to Carlisle this summer.
IMG_0101 (2).JPG
Bumper to bumper!

Sort of a coincidence you posted that video. I've seen Tom Lembeck several times at that same cruise I see that Mercedes 300SL I posted pictures of. But when I've seen him, he was displaying a 71' cuda convertible that if I recall was a 383 car, that had the engine replaced by a 440 6 barrel. As I recall, his first cuda that he bought back in the 80s.
He never drove any of the real R or V code ones he has there that I am aware of.
When he displays cars at MCACN he does often drive them to the convention center, though its only about 10 miles from his "cuda lounge" where most of his cars are stored.
I think if I got a high end hemi car, when you'd see me at local cruises most of often I'd still be there with my trusty 383 Challenger convertible or else my Magnum, top down with the vert, T tops off with the Magnum, because that is my favorite way to roll in vintage cars! I suspect the Magnum is more pleasurable to drive even though it's only worth around 2% of that million dollar hemi car we're all dreaming of getting with a windfall.
My friend has some cars that are too nice or too rare to drive. Most of them are V code cars. I build and drive all of my.cars. I have no use for a car that cannot be used and driven during the nice weather. I have enough insurance on them to get back atleast what I have in them.
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