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The story of Preston Tucker and his ill-fated car of the future was made famous by the 1988 Francis Ford Copolla film, “Tucker, the Man and His Dream”. The movie chronicled the venture to start a new car company in 1948 with a model that was well ahead in safety, design and engineering of what the mainstream auto manufacturers were producing. Some say that Tucker was nothing but a con artist and his company was just a sham to bilk investors. Others maintain that he was a genuine threat to GM and Ford and they used their influence with suppliers and the government to have his operation shut down. All in all, only fifty one total Tuckers were built.

 Up until the movie’s release, Tuckers were looked at as automotive oddities and, despite their rarity, traded in the $10-20,000 range. The film received great publicity and became very popular. As a result, Tucker values climbed steadily over the next couple years, finally eclipsing the $100,000 mark. Appreciation and desirability by collectors grew to the point where a Tucker finally reached the magical million dollar sales figure just about two years ago. A couple more sales in that range over the past two years validated their new value.

 Then, this past Saturday night, the stars aligned over Scottsdale and Barrett-Jackson sold an absolutely perfect, silver-blue Tucker for the astounding sum of nearly three million dollars! It was the most expensive car they sold of the 1300 or so that passed the block last week and it absolutely stole the show. No one saw it coming and now everyone is wondering if this is, all of the sudden, the new value of a Tucker.

 An interesting footnote to this story is that the Glenmoor Gathering will be featuring a Tucker class at this year’s event, which will be held September 14-16. In addition to the several original Tuckers which will be on the showfield, one of the original prop/stunt cars from the movie will also be displayed! This will be a once in a lifetime opportunity to see a group of these very special cars gathered together.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Shelby January 25, 2012 at 1:22 pm

Hmmm…value is truly in the eye of the beholder. The Tucker is a beautiful automobile and I can appreciate its history and uniqueness, but $3 million? I think I could do a lot of good with that kind of money. Looking forward to seeing the Tuckers at the Gathering…will this one be part of the collection?

Steven S. Brooks January 25, 2012 at 1:41 pm

Still too early to tell whether this car will be at the Gathering. It will surely receive an invitation but people who buy cars in this price range fall into two categories: Those who can't wait to show them off and those who have them hermetically sealed in in the secret garage mahals.

A Tucker that will definitely be at the Gathering is one that someone won as a raffle prize in 1949 but couldn't find an insurance company that would cover it. He was only 21, so he sold it to buy a new Pontiac. Like the car, that gentleman is still alive and well and may also be present.

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