It was just a short list of auction prices realized in the June 22, 2017 issue of Old Cars Weekly. It gave the results of the bidding action on the 16 cars sold at VanDerBrink Auctions’ Second Alan Egelseer Collection auction, which took place on May 6.
Now, 16 old-car sales do not make a market trend, but they may reflect one, as was the case here. What else can you say when a restored 1941 Ford V-8 Super Deluxe convertible sells for all of $20,500, while the 1951 Nash “Lois Lane” Lanndau Convertible next to it nets $25,500.
But the “insane” price paid for the Nash wasn’t an error or anything like that. In fact, the auction company said the fellow lived in Maine and was bidding by telephone. He was obviously very interested in having just that Nash.
Thanks to strong sales of Ramblers, during 1951, Nash wound up making 6.9 percent of all convertibles produced in the United States. One of these cars was used in the “Superman” television show and was the car of choice for the character of female reporter Lois Lane (Superman’s girlfriend of sorts).
All Nash models used in-line six-cylinder engines. An L-head motor was used in Rambler models. The Rambler six had a 3-1/8 x 3-3/4-inch bore and stroke for 172.6 cid. With a one-barrel Carter carburetor and 7.25:1 compression ratio, it was rated for 82 hp at 3800 rpm.
In 1958, the “Little Nash Rambler” became an official icon of the ‘50s when it was memorialized in the tune “Beep, Beep” recorded by a group known as The Playmates. This platter made the top 40 Billboard charts on June 9, 1958. It stayed there for 12 weeks and rose as high as number 4. The song made “Rambler” a household word in America.
Now, its iconic looks are turning into iconic value. Not only did it beat out the Ford, it brought $8,000 more than a 1955 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz convertible with 30,000 original miles and nearly three times as much as a 1955 Hudson Hollywood hardtop with Twin-H power.