Some of the Wackiest and Coolest Sub-$5,000 Cars for Sale Near Detroit Right Now

Even though I’m currently not on the market for a new vehicle, I found myself browsing Facebook Marketplace earlier this week, and my god did I find some weird and awesome stuff near Detroit. Check it out.

We’ll begin with some wacky Jeeps, since Facebook keeps making them pop up on my Marketpace as if to imply that I’m some sort of fan or something. The “Hummer” above, for example, is built on a 1973 Jeep CJ-5 frame, and has an AMC 360 V8 under the hood as well as a three-speed manual.

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Called “sarge” in the listing description, the $1,215 machine apparently “runs great” and has “torque and power for days,” though it burns clutches and needs a starter.

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Next, I found a 1984 AMC Eagle wagon swapped on top of a ’70s Jeep Wagoneer frame, outfitted with the Wagoneer’s powertrain and drivetrain, 35-inch tires, and a very 1950s Buick-esquie grille:

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According to for sale-post’s description, the vehicle was initially planned as a dune-basher (likely for Silver Lake sand dunes in Michigan, two hours from where this thing sits in Saranac).

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The asking price is $2,200, which does seem a bit steep for something that needs brake work, fuel system work, new tires, and—by the look of it—a whole lot more.

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With the weird Jeeps out of the way, let’s look at some genuinely good deals on old American iron. Check out the picture above, which shows what appears to be a fairly solid 1948 Packard Four-Door for only $1,200!

As cool as the exterior and interior are, this Packard’s true pièce de résistance is what’s under the hood. It’s a straight eight, and it apparently runs!

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Heck, I’d pay half of that $1,200 for that running motor alone.

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Also for sale in Michigan is this air ride-equipped 1963 Rambler Classic by American Motors. Originally a Florida car, the owner says it’s fairly solid, with only a bit of bubbling in some spots. Under the hood is an inline-six mated to a three-speed auto.

“Runs, drives great and stops, a good cruiser,” the listing reads, before saying the price is $4,000 firm. Which seems like a decent deal if the car looks close to as good as it does in the photos.

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Possibly the nicest cheap-ish vehicle I found for sale is this old Ford truck, labeled as an F-150 in the listing, though I think it’s actually an F-100, since I don’t think F-150s were a thing in 1972.

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I don’t know much about the truck, other than that it’s an “Arizona truck” in “barn find condition” with no dents. It sure looks good in the photos.

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But as nice as the truck is, five grand is a lot of grand, which is why I nearly called up the seller of the 1966 Mercury Commuter wagon shown above. A grand is all he was asking for the gorgeous, long, V8-equipped hauling machine.

Though it apparently doesn’t run or drive, the seller said it would with a bit of work, and that it needed new brake lines. That’s not optimal, but at $1,000, this seemed like a steal. It’s unsurprising that it already sold.

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Keeping with the “cheap American iron” theme that has permeated Detroit for-sale listings for the past 100 years, Dearborn—the home of Ford Motor Company—is also the home of a light blue 1979 Lincoln Town Car. The seller says it’s been sitting for years, but that it “starts and runs well.”

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More importantly, the car is apparently rust free underneath, though there is some Fe2O3 on the outside of the body. Still, $2,500 for what appears to be a reasonably clean cruiser? Count me in.

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For sale in Byron, Michigan is this 1980 Chevy Camaro, with the seller asking only $2,600 or best offer for the 335 cubic-inch V8, TH350 three speed-equipped mulletmobile.

Apparently it runs and drives “good,” but hesitates a bit, needs floor pans, and a rear bumper. Seems like maybe a bit of a junker, but if I could get it for two G’s, it might make for a great beater.

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These are just a couple of the cheap-but-awesome cars I recently spotted on Facebook Marketplace, and figured I’d share with you all. I really hope one of you Jalops bought that Commuter wagon, and that one of you is currently on your way to snag that straight-eight-equipped Packard. Because I can only resist for so long.

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About the author

David Tracy

Writer, Jalopnik. 1979 Jeep Cherokee Golden Eagle, 1985 Jeep J10, 1948 Willys CJ-2A, 1995 Jeep Cherokee, 1992 Jeep Cherokee auto, 1991 Jeep Cherokee 5spd, 1976 Jeep DJ-5D, totaled 2003 Kia Rio