QOTD: Garage Queen Or Daily Driver?

qotd garage queen or daily driver

I don’t have any particular bias against American cars, but it’s fair to say that I’ve always preferred imports over American muscle, save for one major exception; the GMC Typhoon.

The first model car kit I ever built with my Dad was a GMC Syclone, and as I learned about the cars over the years, my interest has only deepened. Here is a relatively crude package, based on a BOF truck platform, that was one of the fastest accelerating cars at the time, and can still keep pace with a lot of today’s performance cars.

Every so often, I check the internet for Typhoons, then talk myself out of it. I would need to store it in winter, be extra careful not to damage the now-irreplaceable factory cladding and be extra careful with using the twin-turbo AWD drivetrain at every single stoplight.

My most recent Ebay foray led me to the Typhoon you see above. Priced rather optimistically at $99,999 OBO, it has just 9.6 miles on it, making it essentially brand new. I wouldn’t even want it. Every time you drive it, it depreciates incrementally and loses that “preserved in frozen carbonite” mystique that made it so special. Give me a nicely broken-in example, even with 6 figures on the odometer. If it cleans up nicely and everything’s in good working order, that’s fine by me. I know there are others out there who need to have that all-original, delivery miles-and-window-sticker garage queen. But I’m not one of them. Are you?

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4 of 66 comments
  • Nrd515 Nrd515 on Oct 04, 2012

    A friend of mine had a Syclone, it was a lot of fun, especially after it was modded by one of the local GN experts. I was looking to buy a Typhoon, but the money just wasn't there. I see a couple of each of them almost every weekend. A black Syclone pulled up next to me at a light last Sunday. We gave each other thumbs up before the light changed. The one pictured makes me really wish I had stupid money, but I don't, so... I avoid buying "new" guns that have never been cocked, etc, they are always insanely priced, and I don't want to be the guy who does "whatever" the first time. I buy guns I can shoot, and cars I can drive.

  • Ronnie Schreiber Ronnie Schreiber on Oct 04, 2012

    A bit pricey for today's market but give it time. The Syclone and Typhoon will always be collectible. My gut feeling is that they tended to be abused more than Grand National and GNX Buicks, so there are probably very few low mileage examples. Working the big car shows I get a bit of swag and when I have some kind of limited edition Hot Wheels or the like, I'll give it to a kid that's just old enough to know the difference between a toy and a collectible. Then I'll tell the kid that they have the choice of playing with it as a toy, or not opening the blister pack and saving it as a collectible. We can mock people with time capsule trailer queens, but that's just another facet of the hobby. Parked out back behind the DeSotos at the Orphan Car Show were a lot of pickup trucks and covered trailers. Yes, I love seeing cars driven, but the truth is that some cars are indeed historical artifacts and if they're going to be preserved so we can enjoy them, their mileage will necessarily need to be limited. The truth, good or bad, is that if you want to see particular historic cars actually being driven, you're going to have to show up very early for a car show so you can watch them be unloaded from their trailers and driven onto the show field.

  • Daveainchina Daveainchina on Oct 04, 2012

    I've never heard of one with this low of mileage. I'd say this one belongs in a Museum. Drive the rest of them and then fix them and then drive them into the ground again.

  • PrincipalDan PrincipalDan on Oct 04, 2012

    Drive it. Period. I believe that the car actually would want it that way. Better to be used up than die in a garage fire at some douchebag's condo.