As you would imagine of someone who posts a poll every weekday, I really dig data, and Nice Price or Crack Pipe gives us lots of data to peruse. Let’s have a look at all the highs and lows over the past year. And, If you’re not careful, you may even learn something before it’s done.
2017 will soon be receding in the rearview, and I for one am glad to see it go. What a garbage year for... well, damn near everything. One bright shining light in all the darkness, however, has been your participation in the daily (with weekends off, I’m not Sisyphus for crying out loud) Nice Price or Crack Pipe contest. You. All. Rock.
You also all vote. In fact, you did so a total of 249 times this year—on cars, trucks, motorcycles, and even a coffin! That’s a lot of yeas and nays.
The tally of all your up and down votes totaled an amazing 1,642,444 Poll Daddy clicks. Your button-clicking fingers must be so ripped right now.
The total dollar amount of this year’s contests was an even more impressive $3,002,412.00. That’s more than I make in... well, ever.
Tell you what, let’s break it all down:
We had a pretty good representation of nations of origin this year. The strongest, with over 34 percent was the good ol’ U.S. of A.. Don’t let it be said that America doesn’t build some interesting and want-worthy rides. You-Ess-Ay! You-Ess-Ay! You-Ess Ay!
Germany came up in second place with a little over 25 percent of the total, and right behind that was Japan with 22 percent. As you might expect, England (4 percent), Italy (4 percent), and Sweden (3.6 percent) also all represented fairly substantially. That makes sense since all three countries have had a long history of selling cars here, even if Italy took a hiatus there for a while.
What’s probably less expected is that we had candidates from countries like Brazil, Czechoslovakia, Russia, Mexico, and even Portugal.
Nice Price or Crack Pipe is the true home of the dreamers, in more ways than one.
The cheapest car we had this year was a 1995 Oldsmobile Silhouette with a bad transmission. That might have had you immediately thinking its only role would be as a cautionary tale at the junkyard, to be passed quickly there while averting your eyes and making the sign of the cross.
There was however, its Star Trek shuttle craft paint scheme (use the Force, Harry!) to be considered. That gave us all pause over its meager $400 asking price.
In the end, it took home an 84 percent Nice Price win since, well you know, four hundred bucks.
The most expensive vehicle we considered? That would be the pulled from storage—barn find?—1970 Porsche 914-6 back in February. It was a super rough but seemingly solid and complete California blue plate car. That led the seller feel justified in asking a dizzying $79,000 for it due to its being one of only 3,300 factory-built six-cylinder cars.
Maybe if it had been two that price would have proven more palatable. Seeing as it was rolling solo, the Porsche went down in a massive 96.5 percent Crack Pipe loss. Back in the barn, alte kuh!
The average of the prices from all our candidates this past year was $12,024. That means... well, absolutely nothing. Still, I thought I’d include it since I could.
Like every year, we had winners and we had losers here. Hell, we had a panoply of them. The most frustrating situation for me is when you all get kind of namby-pamby and the vote ends up being a tie. Don’t do that, people!
That happened six times this year, where a contender either won or lost by less than a single percentage point. I have to tell you, those are nail biters since I have to come up with some pithy denouement of the vehicle as wrap up in the next day’s contest, and that’t really hard to do when you’re not sure whether to break out the sad trombones or the celebratory kazoos.
Usually the contest is, in fact, no contest. The votes most often fall within a sizable sway one way or the other. We’re also not just a bunch of tight-pursed skinflints either, as we don’t always give a no vote on anything more than free. No, you all appreciate a good value, even when it’s more than a few bucks.
The ratio of total Nice Price to Crack Pipes over the course of the year has been a fairly tight 48 percent to 52 percent. I of course, attribute that closeness to my savvy curation of candidates, which is always made with your kind input.
Which were the biggest winners and losers this year? Let’s start with the biggest loser and hope that the TV show of the same name doesn’t sue me for copyright infringement.
The candidate with the highest consensus of Crack Pipe votes was the super stanced and M-imbued 2001 BMW 323ti we offered up back in April. That wild wagon came in Laguna Seca Blue, one of everyone’s favorite Bimmer hues, but its outlandish Pandem bodywork appealed to almost no one. Neither did its equally over the top $32,500 price.
Wrapped together that took the cake with a overwhelming 97.44 percent Crack Pipe vote. I’m pretty sure there were quite a few “nuke it from orbit” and “I just threw up in my mouth a little bit” reactions in the comments on that one as well.
The biggest Nice Price winner also came from Germany, however it was far more sedate, and at $4,900, a hell of a lot cheaper. The 1984 Mercedes 380SL we featured in early June came with that price, and seeing as it showed up right at the start of summer, the two-top two-seater left with a 91.93 percent Nice Price win.
Yes, the lovely MB-Tex seats under the open skies is probably what pushed it over the top, but there’s no denying the the inherent desirability of a classic R107, especially if you’re about to retire in Boca Raton. No other candidate came as close to universal praise as did this one.
I know most of you may think that we go on jags of days or even weeks when nothing seems to be worth its asking, or alternatively that you’re being lobbed softballs. Well, sometimes that’s quite true.
Our longest losing streak took place in late April/early May when we had eight Crack Pipe results in a row. The candidates that comprised the ignominious roster were:
- A stick shift 2002 Audi A6 Avant asking $9,600
- A turbocharged 2013 Subaru BRZ for $20,000
- A 1983 Renault 5 “Le Car” for $4,700 - sorry, you were off on that one
- A 1973 Brazilian VW SP2 asking $38,000
- Dee Snider’s 1999 Shelby Durango at $12,500
- A custom 6-door Humvee kit car with a $24,995 price tag
- A Czech Tatra 613 wanting $37,900
- A 1985 Subaru Brat for which was asked $10,000
The car that brought that streak to a close was a 2004 Saab 9-5 Arc wagon, for which was asked a sensible $2,000 to take over its stewardship.
The wins had almost as long a streak, maxing out at seven at the start of April. That list of happy sellers was made up by the following:
- A $6,000 1971 Lincoln Continental Mark III with leopard skin accoutrements
- A $17,000 1993.5 Lotus Esprit Turbo in black
- A $4,000 1990 Volvo 240 with an SBC under its hood
- A $3,500 1982 Honda CX500 Turbo motorcycle
- An $11,500 1993 Toyota MR2 with mods and evil intent
- A $2,000 1992 Toyota Land Cruiser with a blown head gasket
- A $6,500 1989 BMW 735i SWB with appreciably low miles
That streak was foiled by a biodiesel breathing big Benz that asked only $2,400, but looked sketchy as hell even at that.
Number of votes and comments indicate how much you all might just dig a particular car, but the biggest barometer overall is the number of hits a candidate might get over the course of a day or so.
Most of the NPOCP posts garner hits in the mid-teens to mid-thirties. For that, I am eternally grateful to you all for stopping in, reading my musings, and then making your opinion known in both vote and comments.
The car that really seemed to hit people where they live—either in a good way or bad—was the 2000 Subaru Legacy with a Chevy LS2 V8 under its former pancake house hood. That post hit over 84,000 visits. The weird thing was, the car’s $16,800 price also fell in a 66 percent Crack Pipe loss. That means it wasn’t people streaming in to catch the seller’s phone number off the ad. No, that was just one of the wackiest cars we saw for sale this past year.
Okay, that’s the facts, Jack! Thank you so much for making Nice Price or Crack Pipe a pit stop in your busy rat race. It’s a lot of fun bringing it to you, and I hope you like what I brung.
Happy New Year, y’all!