San Francisco tows away a lot of cars, as anyone who lives there can tell you, and the DPT bureaucracy is Kafkaesque enough that they have anywhere from 100 to 300 unclaimed cars to sell every week at their Wednesday morning auctions at Pier 70. The minimum bid is 200 bucks, and nowadays they even separate the runners from the non-runners (back in the Wild West City Tow era, you had no way of knowing which cars ran and which didn't; after you bought a car, you'd either break out the hot-wiring skills or pay a guy with the world's largest collection of keys to find one that fit your new ride's ignition switch). Now that Auto Return runs the auctions, you can even check out the list of upcoming cars online, and Wednesday's auction has the finest selection of potential 24 Hours of LeMons cars we've ever seen in one place… just in time for teams gearing up for the Arse-Freeze-A-Pa-Looza race in December!
Where to start with this cornucopia of fine racing machinery? The numerous Acura Legends? The third- and fourth-generation Camaros? The Oldsmobile Trofeo? Imagine showing up to race a Trofeo, if you dare! There's a Porsche 944 and a few 80s BMWs and the usual Sentras and Corollas and Accords, but we say forget all that dime-a-dozen stuff. Yes, forget 'em, because this auction boasts such jewels as an '87 Sterling 825SL, the car that combined Honda styling with Rover build quality in one unbeatable package! Or how about a '91 Mazda 929? Big, fast, and rear-wheel-drive, from the marque that dominates LeMons like no other? Why, you've practically got the checkered flag in hand if you get that car! Or maybe an '85 Nissan Pulsar is more your speed, and why wouldn't it be? You're more of a patriotic Detroit Iron type of racer? Hey, they've got Thunderbirds aplenty! Devilles! Bonnevilles! Tauruses and Sables, Crown Vics and Grand Marquises! We can't say which ones will go for less than $500, but my experience at this auction has been that the ugly runners go for the minimum bid or barely above it. [Auto Return (PDF)]