I just got an e-mail from the owner: the Peugeot 404 I found and wrote up is for sale. And the asking price ($3500) seems reasonable enough (half of what I was quoted at the time). It’s got 58,210 original miles, has always been garaged, and is in quite decent shape. (Portland craigslist ad here). So why I haven’t I jumped on it first? Time. You’re going to say: “go for it, Paul. Make time; it’s a once in-a-lifetime opportunity to own almost the same car you had in your younger days”! True. But I can’t make more time, something has to give. So here’s the deal: it’s either the 404 or Curbside Classic.
Update: That’s an unfair question. Truth is, I just can’t properly keep up with all my houses and the current fleet. It’s tempting, but what am I going to do with it? No garage space. No time to mess with it. Now if it was a wagon, I’d consider selling my Xbox and using it instead as a daily driver. Still….
Update 2: It sold within hours. It was a good opportunity to get a clean 404. But no regrets; I decided that several of the commentators were right: I’d rather experience a new car sometime in the future rather than re-live one from the past. Thanks for all the good comments.
Grab it Paul dont even think twice, One reason I enjoy a good Hillman Minx was I drove a beater Humber 80 as a teen and it was a bloody good car. Just what makes you think you could stay away from CC having one to drive, it didnt get rid of me
Stay with us Paul
A wonderful car, but … from your writeup last year, it seems you already have plenty of 404 experience under your belt, and when one’s time and years are limited, I think it’s much better to keep experiencing *different* cars and hence, to keep growing.
I myself would love to have my honeymoon car, a Citroen 2CV again; a Audi 100 that isn’t as clapped-out as the one that was my first car would be fun to drive; and, well, I could go on … but if I’d experienced any of those deja vu dreams, they would’ve precluded my Crown Vic wagon and my Miata, both equally distinctive. Better to keep looking forward, I think …
But, if that 404 were a wagon …
Well said, and my sentiments too. Pass.
Then may we suggest a nice, clean, low mile 71 LTD that is not troubled by a noisy throwout bearing? New horizons indeed. 🙂
So tempted!!!!! Not only was this my first car in 1972 (but a 1966, wine red), but I suspect that it is less than a mile away here in SW Portland. I’ve seen it around twice, but have never determined exactly where it lives. UPDATE: I looked at the photos in your first write-up, and it looks more like a SE neighborhood, it may have just been visiting SW. Probably the same car. After all, how many of them can there be in Portland (or anywhere else, for that matter)?
My brother-in-law was right here when I opened the story and told me I should buy it. But, sadly, I actually knew what I’d do even before I started writing this. With three cars already and memories of the difficulty and expense getting parts even in those days, I’ll have to pass. Oh well.
I shot it in Eugene, where the son was going to school.
Sometimes having a classic car is like hitting yourself in the head with a hammer. It feels so good when you stop. I don’t think you will get anyone who thinks you should quit CC for a car. I sure don’t think so.
Take the Pug for a test drive, and if the clutch release bearing doesn’t make any noise, buy it. The Xbox needs a new home.
Stay with CC and buy the damn 404. Get a trailer. Get rid of the Xbox and its clutch problems. You know you want it.
Nah – stay with your F-100. More rewarding.
I’ve had this same conversation with myself, and at this stage in my life (I’m in my Jubilee year), I decided it would be more prudent (gah!) to draw a line and start divesting projects below said line. Attending to my Mom’s effects after she passed a couple years ago helped bring a lot of clarity in that area.
I have, however, been known to scan the interwebs from time to time looking for a survivor ’71 Vega notchback (my first car). I have to keep reminding myself of the dark side of owning that car, despite the potential opportunity to relive some good memories.
As a teaser, I’ll have a CC up soon that tells the story of one of my “below the line” vehicles which I sold just yesterday.
I have seen one for sale on eBay recently Ed.
Found it. That’s one rough car…
It’s the only one I’ve seen in a LONG while.
I’d pass if I was you. Why? Well you have already had a few of these. Life is too short for repeats. If you have a hankering for a classic why not try one you haven’t owned before. Sometimes things are best left as good memories. It is like watching an old TV show you enjoyed as a kid. Often you wonder what the attraction was in the first place.
Similar to what jonnyangel said above, and quite true. When I looked at it closely during the shoot, all its imperfections and shortcomings jumped out at me.
You’ll never see a nice one like that again. Don’t let it go.
Paul, stay right here……..get the chirping XBox fixed. You would be missed greatly and all over a…….Peugeot???
Do what the Father of a friend of mine has done with his survivor 64 1/2 Mustang convertible he has had for a really long time. Drive it in the summer, late spring, and early fall, garage it in late fall, winter, and early spring, and get on with the rest of his life and his job. Paul, trade the xBox for the Pug, and keep CC moving on (and give me some photos to edit).
Also, just use Stephanie’s Subie in the early spring, winter, and late fall.
If you really want it, you will be willing to sacrifice a house or car for it. But if you aren’t then maybe you don’t really want it so much.
If only I could churn 3K to get my personal Holy Grail Car, a 1979 Chevrolet Monza Spyder right now.
I’ll stage an intervention for you. I drove my friend’s V-8, 4-sp Monza a number of times and it was one of the worst experiences of my life.
That is why I’d want mine with a Borg-Warner/Tremec T-5 and a turbocharged Buick 3800/231 V6/3.8L V6 conversion from the iron duke/automatic combo it currently has.
Take a pass.
It’s just a Peugeot.
I owned one of these (exact same color) in (about) 1979.
My tenant (an Englishman) complemented me on my choice of ” a quality European Auto”).(Quite a stretch for an Englishman on a French Car).
The floor was severely rusted. I spent many wasted hours trying to put this “quality” car right.
In the end I wished I hadn’t.
In the end, you., as well, will wish you hadn’t.
Take it for a spin. Do you love it? Can you live with it? Then do it! And if not, well, there’s that nice ride you just had down memory lane.
I gotta nice big yard you can park it in. I’ll even start it up for you now and again. 😀
No!!!!!! Not a Peugeot! No more with the French cars! They tempt you into ownership and then torture you with their endless ways to fail. No, no, no…..
Here’s your next car, Paul, right around the corner. A sweet first-gen 1.8L twin-cam with only 78K miles, and a fresh clutch and timing belt.
“Very reliable and great on gas. Very quick and agile little roadster. I can’t describe what its like to put the top down and cruise out to the coast on a nice evening. Absolutely the most fun on four wheels I’ve ever had!!! All in all it’s an awesome example of one of the greatest cars ever made.”
Pick up the phone, Paul, it’s right there waiting for you.
“Things are in the saddle,
And ride mankind.”
I generally have no use for Transcendentalists, which may get me thrown out of the Bookish Yankee Club, but R. Waldo spit some truth right there.
I’ve been packing up my things as we’re moving one town over in a couple weeks. I’m not a hoarder or a millionaire, but jeez…so many things.
Which is a roundabout way to say don’t do it, Paul.
I thought “No” right away. Am I depressed?
Last year I had the chance to buy a 1972 Matador hardtop, close to home, reasonable price, first one I’d seen since scrapping mine in 1993.
Didn’t do it. Been there, done that and there’s a whole world of interesting machinery our there, there’s not that much need for repeats.
talk a friend or family member into buying it.
PLEASE HELP ME DECIDE THIS WEEKEND—Should I buy it for $3500? No chance for physical inspection as I’m on East Coast. Those who have see or inspected this car for sale, is it a very good to excellent one? What are its flaws? Any rust? Never owned a 404 but I like Peugeot. I will have about $1100 transport charge additional.
It sold within hours.
I’m buyer !. I was just asking for your opinions, “eyes and ears on the ground” since I can’t be physically there as over 3000 miles away, a little scary though the owner seems fantastic! Most importantly, any rust or things you might have known/seen it needs since it has been in your area for so many years. You mentioned flaws and shortcomings from your inspection, I’d just like to know what they are so I can fix and make car as good as possible! Thanks, Paul!
Sorry; that wasn’t clear. I just sent you an e-mail. It’s a pretty darn nice 404. It would be hard to find another one like it.
The rear end is leaking a bit, and it had a scratch/ding on the passenger side door, and the interior isn’t like new, but they seem like honest folks, and if I had decided to buy a 404, I wouldn’t have hesitated.
Joe, what State are you located in? I could possibly help with 404 information, please reply and we can get in touch.
And me, I am always surprised how well and contempory these still are.
Good roadholding, good economics, comfortable and reliable.
The cat loves to sleep in it.
And in Europe parts are everywhere.
It is the car I’ve had for the longest time.
Not purfect but still in its original paint (white) and 1967 Michelin X’es on the rearwheels.
And no rust.