Pete Rutledge Posted April 29, 2007 Report Share Posted April 29, 2007 A month or so ago I was in Border's book store looking at the car books (as usual). I spotted "Keith Martin's Guide to Car Collecting." I picked it up and found a Price Guide in it, so I looked for Studebaker. There were only three Studebakers listed: Avanti R1, Avanti R2, and Avanti II. So far, so good, but no 1953 Starliner, and no other Studebakers at all. But the bad news is that the Avantis, all of them, were given a Grade of "C" and an Appreciation Rating of "**"!! I wondered what these ratings meant so I looked for the key. To my horror, here's what a Grade "C" is: "Grade C. Cars that have some inherent interest but had few special or desirable characteristics. Examples: Porche 914, Saab Sonnett II, Triumph TR4." Doesn't sound much like an Avanti to me! And what does an Appreciation Rating of "**" mean? The books says: "** Somewhat overpriced today, or a car that is slightly out of favor. May represent a good buying opportunity if you think the market’s opinion of the car will change." Somewhat overpriced??!!! Needless to say, I left the store without buying the book, as it no longer had any credibility with me. But the idea that the Avanti was Grade "C" and Rated "**" just wouldn't stop bugging me. So when in Borders a few days ago, I looked for the book again and found it (nobody else had bought it, either). I noticed in the front of the book an announcement that invited comments and provided an address. So I copied down all the information I would need to write them a letter. Well, I've written the letter--four pages about why the Avanti is so special and why it is far from overpriced in today's classic car market. I also recommended they add the Starliner/Starlight coupe. I asked them to consider the information I'm providing if and when they revise the book for its second edition. Maybe you'd be interested in what the book says about a Grade "A" car. Here is the definition: "Grade A. Cars that will always have a following and will always bring strong money when they are offered for sale. They embody the attributes of style, performance, historical significance, rarity, and competition history that often typify first-rank collectibles. Examples: Ferrari SWB, Mercedes Benz 300Sc roadster, Alpha Romeo SC2300 Monza." Now that's more like it. That's an Avanti! If you would like to write the author with your opinion (or a "piece of your mind"), their address is: Keith Martin’s Guide to Car Collecting P.O. Box 16130 Portland, OR 97292 I also read Keith Martin's biographical sketch in the book and I'm really surprised that a car guy with an impressive background like his would let this happen. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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