The Clark Cortez Got Saved, But Went Up In Flames Within An Hour On The Drive Home

Two weeks ago, I put up a post about saving a vintage Clark Cortez motorhome. No one from CC bought it, but the owner also started an ebay auction, which was successful. The buyer wanted to drive it straight home to the East Coast. He did have it checked by a mechanic, but nevertheless shortly after heading out, it caught on fire and was destroyed, as evidenced by this video.

Here’s the full story by Jim, the seller:

Jim the seller back when he bought the Pug


I wanted to thank you for the help and encouragement you provided when I first was faced with how to advertise my ’68 Clark for sale.  None of the people who contacted me from Curbside Classic panned out, but it got the ball rolling.  I sold Pug on eBay for $3500.  Given that there were several areas on the roof that had rusted through, as well as a few areas on the lower body, I thought the price was fair.  It was the new interior plus a new drive train with only 16K miles on it that made the sale.

The buyer decided to drive Pug to the east coast, something I strongly urged him not to do without first taking a some short local trips to test systems as well as to find all the early failures that were sure to take place after 5 or 6 years of outdoor storage with only a roof cover.   He did have a mechanic go over Pug from front to back over 2 to 3 days, a very smart thing to do, but sadly, Pug caught on fire somewhere on Hwy 60 while leaving Los Angeles and she was completely consumed.  I included a short video of what this looked like shortly after the fire started.  My guess is that the gas line in the engine compartment must have started to leak and the electric fuel pump kept spraying gasoline until a fire resulted.  Oh well.  Everyone should learn from this and check those gas lines.  All the flammable spray foam, plastic and wood paneling on board were impossible to stop once it got started.