The low price on today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe 348TS is offset by some frontend damage and a resultant salvage title. Let’s find out if those opposites can still attract.
In the unfairly derided live-action film adaptation of Popeye, there was a minor character played by the vaunted vaudevillian actor Bill Irwin. The character is introduced as he is attempting to grab his dislodged hat off the ground, but only manages to kick it further out of reach in each attempt. It’s physical comedy at its best.
I bring this up because that’s kind of how I’ve pictured Lotus Cars over the years—one kick away from from success.
Yesterday’s 2005 Lotus Elise proved a success, both in terms of representing what Lotus can do when they’re reaching for that metaphorical hat, and for the pricing acumen of its present owner. That $29,999 asking came up with a solid 60 percent Nice Price win, even in spite of the car’s somewhat take-it-or-leave-it goth pumpkin color scheme.
Speaking of colors, who doesn’t love coloring outside of the lines?
You know, not everybody does. However, for those who might like to live on the dangerous side and let their crayon occasionally stray outside its constraints, have I got a conundrum for you.
Take a gander at this 1992 Ferrari 348TS. Okay, now have a look at its price tag. Yep, we’re in the Armani suit in a Ross clearance bin territory now, friends. Most 348s will run double this asking, but then again, most 348s don’t look like they’ve gone a couple rounds with Mayweather either.
The extremely brief, and punctuation averse ad notes that the car comes with 48,000 miles under its belt and a number of years in a garage awaiting its nose job. The replacement front bumper and new lamp to fix its lazy eye are apparently included in the sale.
Other factors you may notice about the car: it’s got more dirt than the National Inquirer, the targa’s faded like Soulja Boy’s career, and yep, it has a salvage title likely owed to whatever went on up front back in the day.
Now, normally we would avoid a salvage title like it’s a fecal-flinging primate but in the case of a Ferrari—even a V8 edition—you’re likely not going to want to go with your regular green lizard or Aunt Flo anyway. No, for this you’ll probably want to look to one of those independent brokers who side gigs in bail bonds and strip-o-grams.
If that’s the case, then let’s play.
Aside from the gaping maw up front, the car seems to be appreciably complete. The black paint (and dirt) masks most of the 348’s ‘80s schtick design elements and it sits on factory wheels.
The 3.4-litre F119 V8 looks intact under the dust-caked cover, although at this age I wouldn’t recommend even cranking it until the timing belt has been replaced. No point risking bent valves just to hear it run.
The interior is likewise intact, albeit with some weird rivets in the console. It’s also in need of a good vacuuming, de-molding, and a leather massage by a detailer or a Depot Dude® depending on your price range. In fact, I think a good overall detailing would do this car wonders. Sure the nose needs to be banged out and the bumper refitted, but washing off all that caked on garage grunge would at least cheer things up a bit.
What we need to know before that happens however, is whether or not you think somebody should take the plunge and make this Ferrari project their Ferrari project at its current $27,500 price.
Yeah, it needs some work, and yes, there is that title issue, but when you come down to where the rubber meets the driveway (this car’s not ready for it to meet the road yet) you’ll find that you’re getting an open roof, 300-horsepower Ferrari for the cost of a Camry. What do you think, is that crazy? Or, is that crazy like a fox?
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