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HomeAutoHunterDiego’s AutoHunter Picks

Diego’s AutoHunter Picks

Variety is the spice of life

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Barrett-Jackson’s inaugural New Orleans auction will be happening at the end of the month with a variety of vehicles that should satisfy any automotive tribalist. With that inspiration, this week’s AutoHunter Picks are a variety of cars no matter what camp you choose to reside. Do you reside in more than one?

Then it will be a bonus that you find more than one car to wet your whistle. Which one is your fave?

1967 Camaro SS/RS Pace Car
If you are offering a new sporty car, it never hurts to help promote it by having it chosen as the Indianapolis Pace Car. That was true of the Mustang in 1964 and it was true of the 1967 Camaro. Like the 1971 Challenger that was recently discussed, the 1967 Camaro pace car has been somewhat enigmatic for a model that’s just the opposite. It used to be that 100 were believed to have been built, but over 100 documented vehicles exist, so there goes that theory.

Nonetheless, most Camaro pace cars were equipped with the 350/295 that was standard on the SS, but this one has the L35 396 big-block, which was rated at 325 horsepower. Like all pace cars, the SS package was paired with the RS package, so you get the hidden headlights and all the trim associated with it. TH400 automatic with console, Rally wheels, tilt steering, and woodgrain steering wheel make for a sweet pacer.

1941 Lincoln Continental Coupe
When I was a kid, the 1940-41 Lincoln Continental was one of those landmark classics, but it seems to have fallen out of favor over time while other cars have risen to the top, which does occur at times (witness two-seater Thunderbirds). Nonetheless, the Continental’s stature is beyond reproach, a factory custom in a time when bespoke vehicles were dying out.

This 1941 Lincoln Continental Coupe may disturb a few of you when you discover the 350 small-block transplant — not even a FoMoCo engine! Alas, aside of the shifter, wheels and tires, this Continental looks like the majestic car that it is. If you ever wanted a rich-person’s car yet demand reliability with your vehicles, this Continental would be one to pique your interest.

2004 Dodge Neon SRT-4
If this car was Japanese, would it be more popular? Tons of “kids” love their little four-cylinder racers but, today, few seem to gravitate to this Neon other than Mopar folks. If I recall correctly, the SRT-4 was faster than most budget hot rods in its class. Car and Driver characterized the SRT-4 as “a car that is most like the heavily modified cars of individuals.” Sounds about right.

This Arizona-based 2004 Neon SRT-4 has had only one owner. Though there’s conflicting info online, one resource says production reached 9,206 in ’04, with 2,039 being Bright Silver. Stock horsepower was 230, which was a 15-horse bump from 2003, though this one has more thanks to several mechanical upgrades. Considering its condition and original-owner status, it’s a bet that the seller is an “adult.”

1996 Nissan Cima
If you thought this was an Infiniti for a moment, you wouldn’t be faulted. The story behind the Cima seems to be somewhat convoluted, but here it goes: Japanese regulations often determines the approach of a car’s length and engine size, so that determined the Gloria- and Cedric-based Cima. There were two versions for two different sales channels. By the introduction of a new-gen Cima introduced towards the end of 1996, it became quite similar to the Infiniti Q45 that we ended up having in America.

So, what we have here is a JDM version of the Infiniti with all the charms of a vehicle that wasn’t imported to our shores. Aside of the RHD configuration, the Cima is powered by the familiar 4.1-liter V8 backed by a four-speed automatic. Note the early GPS! If you have a family, this would be a great collectible daily driver because there’s automatic climate control front and rear, plus it can be easily serviced at your local Nissan dealership.

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Diego Rosenberg
Diego Rosenberg
Lead Writer Diego Rosenberg is a native of Wilmington, Delaware and Princeton, New Jersey, giving him plenty of exposure to the charms of Carlisle and Englishtown. Though his first love is Citroen, he fell for muscle cars after being seduced by 1950s finned flyers—in fact, he’s written two books on American muscle. But please don’t think there is a strong American bias because foreign weirdness is never far from his heart. With a penchant for underground music from the 1960-70s, Diego and his family reside in metropolitan Phoenix.

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