Friday, September 13, 2013

Adesa Corvette and Specialty Car Sale is a well-kept Kansas City secret

Here’s one you might not have known about.  Adesa has a huge auction house in Belton, Mo.  Normally, they sell late-model cars for manufacturers and rental companies to dealers.  That’s where a lot of the cars that you see on the used lot of the local new car dealer come from.  But a couple of times a year they have a Corvette and Specialty Car Sale.  It is still only open to dealers, but in this case they have an interesting mix of classic and special interest cars.  It is hard to find information for, because they don’t publish it on their website.  But my dad works out there, however, which is why I can share some of it with you.

This ’82 Camaro Z28 was a pretty good looking old car.  First of all, when was the last time you saw a 1982 anything that was this nice?  And second, these were pretty special.  This generation of Camaro began in 1982, and it was pretty high-tech at the time.  They only made 6,360 of these Indy Pace Car replicas, which was about $900 more than a regular Z28.  That seems like a bargain considering everything they changed.  The paint and graphics are obvious.  The wheels had little red pinstripes.  And the upholstery was completely gone over in silver vinyl and blue cloth.  This looked like a nice, low-mileage car.  I know I would like to have it.

This looks like a rough, old car, but it is kind of interesting.  Although the Bicentennial was in 1976, Chevrolet went full-on patriotic two years earlier with their limited-production Spirit of America line.  They offered this package on Vegas, Novas, and Impalas like this one.  You could get the Impala in white with white seats and either red or blue carpeting, or blue with white seats and vinyl top and blue carpeting.  These truck-style rally wheels were an option.  They also had red and blue stripes all over the outside, which are missing on this one.  The car only showed 32,000 miles, which could be right.  But it had obviously been sitting around somewhere for so long, it was almost a basket case.  I did see them drive it to this spot, so I guess that’s something.

One of the nicest cars was this ’72 Chevelle SS convertible.  I’ve actually seen this one around at car shows before, and it never fails to attract attention.  For me, the color has a lot to do with that.  The yellow and white combination reminds me of a refreshing slice of banana cream pie.  But it also has that big block 400 (technically 402-c.i.) under the hood stripes, and things like wheels, factory air, and bumper guards add to the desirability.  For me personally, an early Chevelle doesn’t get much better.  This was definitely a sharp car.

Here’s a ’54 Chevy Two-Ten four-door sedan that wasn’t exactly spectacular, but it seemed like a straight little car.  I think it had been painted a very long time ago, but the interior looked original, and the whole car presented itself pretty well after almost 60 years of service.  I don’t know what the story is here, but it reminds me of something that someone might have inherited after it sat in a garage for a long time.  It’s a nice car, and it isn’t bad looking, but this style isn’t going to command big money.  Someone will have a decent car that they can take to cruises, use, and enjoy.

Since Corvettes were the featured model, here’s what I think was the best one.  It’s a triple-black ’66 roadster that was offered for sale by Hendrick Chevrolet in Shawnee.  They didn’t get it sold at this auction, but it’ll make someone quite a car eventually.  This one has a 327 small-block with a four speed, factory headrests, a wood steering wheel, and aluminum wheels with gold line tires.  It really stood out among the late-model and/or warmed-over Corvettes that surrounded it.  The only thing that would make it better in my eyes would be factory air conditioning, but I guess you can’t have everything.

Check out all the cars from the Adesa “Week of Wheels” Corvette and Specialty Auction in the slideshow belowOr click this link for a nicer version.


  1. Hi Craig once again my thanks for searching out some cars to high lite. I really enjoyed the old green Chevy. Human frame size seating is so important. The impala looked pretty OK too.
    Steve Burns

  2. Remember seeing a "Spirit Chevrolet" Impala at the old Lester Moore Chevy in Liberty.