Rad For Sale Is a New Auction Site That Specializes in ’80s and ’90s Dream Cars
Radwood co-founder Art Cervantes tells us about his new nostalgia-focused auction site
What’s the one thing that connects a $5,000 Geo Metro convertible lowrider with the million-dollar automotive stylings of a Ferrari F40 and Porsche 959? All three of these vehicles were once exhibited side-by-side at a Radwood event in California — and that’s exactly the kind of nostalgia-first curation the brand hopes to bring to its new auction site.
On Monday, Radwood, the increasingly popular traveling car show that’s built a devoted community around ‘80s and ‘90s vehicles, launched Rad For Sale, a new platform for buying and selling those same cars. And just as the events were as much about the extra trappings of the era as the automobiles — sort of like how Parrotheads are only partially in it for the music — the auctions will also include ephemera, from rare skateboards to boomboxes to F1 jackets, alongside the cars and automotive accessories.
Rad For Sale launches in an already hot and increasingly cramped online car-buying space for vintage, collector and otherwise used vehicles. Bring a Trailer has asserted itself as the Mecca, with a lively community in the comments section, but there’s also Cars & Bids, which deals in a similar period (“anything cool and exciting from the 1980s to the 2020s”), as well as the places where people who maybe don’t consider themselves enthusiasts sell, like eBay Motors and Facebook Marketplace.
“We actually were talking to several of the big players in the industry — I’m not going to name names — but we were looking at collaborating with them,” Radwood co-founder and CEO Art Cervantes tells InsideHook. “There were some opportunities there, but at the end of the day we ended up deciding to do it ourselves.”
So what makes Rad For Sale worth checking out? For sellers, Cervantes and his team appear to have scoped out the competition in terms of fees and are either beating them or offering similar terms. For buyers, it’s all about curation and community (comments are open on all the listings, similar to Bring a Trailer). In fact, you don’t even need to be in the market for a new car to add the site to your browser bookmarks.
Case in point: One of Cervantes’s favorite cars available at launch is one you’ve likely never heard of, a Porsche 944 Turbo that raced in Canada during the short-lived ‘80s Porsche Turbo Cup Series. It was built specifically for the track but is supposedly street-legal in many states, and it features a one-off Reebok livery to rival the Apple Porsche 935 for Instagrammability. The other one he’s most excited about is a 1985 Plymouth Colt GTS Turbo, which was a captive import back when Mitsubishis were being rebranded by Plymouth and Dodge.
“It’s this fun little turbocharged four-cylinder, five-speed manual car, and they’re impossible to find now. They just didn’t survive because they were this cheap little hot hatch,” says Cervantes. “Now they’re starting to become sought after, and we just happened to get a hold of one — it’s probably, I’d say, undoubtedly the nicest one in the world right now. I think we can make that statement.”
Of course, the Plymouth Colt is on the opposite end of the price spectrum from the Reebok Porsche, and that’s the point. Everyone is welcome at the ‘80s and ‘90s timewarp that is Rad For Sale, even people who are just window shopping.
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