Every year I try to make it to the GM Nationals car show in Carlisle PA. Every year the swap meet seems to get smaller and smaller, and this year was no exception. But, the turnout of cars this year seemed to be as good or better than I can remember from any previous years. One thing that’s hard to grasp is just the sheer quality of the cars at this show. Row after row of cars that could probably win a first place trophy at any regional show. Because there are so many amazing cars, it really isn’t possible to take pictures of them all, so instead I concentrated on the unique (good and bad) as well as making sure to get pics of all of the nice and the not so nice thirdgens. In the past I’ve taken pics of every thirdgen there, but this year I tried to concentrate on those that are nice, and those that aren’t. A lot of the average thirdgens aren’t shown here.

Keep in mind that the pics were either very odd cars, exceptionally nice cars, or exceptionally poor cars. I sound very critical of some of these poor cars, but let’s face it… you don’t bring a knife to a gun fight, and you don’t bring a junk car to a car show. I wouldn’t be nearly as critical of these cars if I saw them on the street, but at a car show, it’s open season!

Here we go!

Inside one of the buildings was an exibit that had some Dale Earnhardt race cars. The Corvette that him and Dale Jr. drove at Daytona was there, along with one of Dale’s 1999 race cars and his 1998 Wrangler car.

Here were some cars of interest in the “For Sale” field.

Here’s a 1988 GTA. This car was near and dear to my heart because it looks a lot like my GTA did when it was stock. This car is a 40k mile car with the L98, tan leather interior, and conventional dashboard. The owner had just sold it prior to my taking these pictures. I believe he sold it for approximately $11-13k. This sounded high for a 40k mile car, but the condition of this car was as nice as any 5,000 mile cars I’ve seen.

This next set is from a 1986 Berlinetta. Though not a terribly popular car, it had a lot of unique features, especially in the interior. Due to the exceptional condition of this car, I took the opportunity to take as many pictures as I could to have a record of the Berlinetta’s very unique features. This car had around 10,000 miles if memory serves me, and the seller was asking a hair under $10,000.

Next are pics of a 30k mile 1985 IROC. I took pics of this car for two reasons. The first is that this was a well optioned car that did not have air conditioning. Though they exist, this is the first time I’ve seen one in person. Second, I wanted pics of such a nice red interior. Red interiors get a bad reputation because when they get worn and dirty, they look nasty. This car is proof that the red interior can look very nice, especially with the silver exterior. This car had very faded paint, but was otherwise in exceptional condition. The seller was asking $6,100 which I felt was fair, and could be a bargain for anybody who can do their own paint work.

This next car was so screwed up that I just had to take pictures of it. This was a 1991 RS Camaro with 162,000 miles and a boat load of other problems that the delusional owner felt was worth his $9500 asking price. This is a beat to hell high mileage RS with terrible paint (the pics don’t really convey how bad it was), early base Camaro bumpers, a Z28 hood and a whipped interior. Needless to say, it was still for sale when I left.

Every year the organizers of the event invite some sort of rare cars or car club to the event. This year it was Stutz. I took pics of a couple of them, this first one being the one and only Stutz hearse.

Packard Hearse This was a 1985 Packard hearse. There was an interesting story behind this in that it was one of the last ambulance hearse combination cars. Years before, this was common to see because the local mortician was usually the town’s EMT as well, so they had a combo car used for both purposes. In the 80s this was not the case anymore, so this one particular mortician/EMT business had a very hard time finding somebody to build them a combo vehicle until they found the Packard company, which modified a Buick. Because the car looks so much like a Stutz, he goes to a lot of the club’s events.

Well, that’s it until next year. I hope you enjoy! Keep your eyes open, because if I get a chance I’ll post pics and commentary from my previous Carlisle trips.