By on May 13, 2019

1989 Honda CRX in California wrecking yard, LH rear view - ©2019 Murilee Martin - PaardensexThe is one of my very favorite 1980s cars, hailing from an era when Americans paid well over MSRP and/or waited for months for the privilege of getting a new Honda. Twenty years ago, I owned a few early CRXs (before giving up on the carbureted CVCC examples, which were impossible to get through California’s strict emissions tests due to ), and I often thought of getting a fuel-injected late CRX.

Such cars were expensive back then, but values have plummeted to the point where I now see 1988-1991 CRXs at U-Wrench-type yards. Here’s one in the San Francisco Bay Area. Find Out >

By on May 6, 2019

After since early 2007, I just realized that the newest discarded Mustang I’d documented was . As you’d imagine, Mustangs from the and eras are easy to find in North American wrecking yards, so I resolved to shoot the next interesting one I found… which turned out to be this much-abused ’95 GT I spotted in a Silicon Valley self-service yard. Find Out >

By on April 29, 2019

BMC and then British Leyland churned out and near-identical Austin-Healey Sprites for 20 years, with the final example coming off in 1980. Because project-grade Midgets still clutter garages, driveways, yards, and fields throughout the land and they’re not worth much, the clock runs out for many of them every year.

The next stop, usually, is at a self-service wrecking yard. Here’s a forlorn ’79 I spotted last week in California. Find Out >

By on April 22, 2019

Finding a Malaise Era Cadillac is interesting, especially when at a cylinder-deactivation engine. Those cars don’t make me sad, though.

A nicely customized show-car Cadillac with metalflake paint and pro-applied airbrush work in a junkyard — that makes me sad, even if it did suffer from . I found this once-glorious Cad in a Denver-area yard last summer. Find Out >

By on April 15, 2019

The early-21st century fad for retro-styled cars, including the PT Cruiser, Chevrolet HHR, Mini Cooper, and Fiat 500, got its start with the late-1990s introduction of the (we’re still waiting for a Nissan model made to look like ). Like most people (and especially like most who had ever ), I grew weary of the sight of these allegedly cute cars after a few years, and as a result I’ve been ignoring the many examples I find during .

These cars make up an important piece of our collective automotive history, though, and I resolved that I’d shoot the first one I found on a recent wrecking-yard trip. Here it is, straight from the Denver U-Pull-&-Pay! Find Out >

By on April 8, 2019

After the first-generation Mustang went from to , Ford transferred the name over to an economy car based on . This proved to be a wise move, in light of that took place right around the time the first Mustang IIs began rolling into showrooms, but most of the old Mustang magic was lost during the Pinto-ization process.

Ford created a bunch of flashy trim packages for the car, and I spotted one of the more unusual ones in a Denver self-serve yard a couple of weeks back: the Stallion. Find Out >

By on April 1, 2019

Ordinary family sedans of the 1940s and 1950s look cool and everyone claims to love them, but the sad reality is that hardly anyone with the time, money, space, and skills to restore an old Detroit car bothers with the postwar four-doors. I see 1946-1959 American sedans, mostly in pretty solid condition, with depressing regularity in the big self-service wrecking yards , and this ’52 Mercury in Denver is the latest one. Find Out >

By on March 25, 2019

The is one of the more interesting attempts made by The General to steal back some North American buyers who had defected to European luxury brands. For a while, I’d I found, but more and more kept showing up in big self-service wrecking yards and I stopped paying attention for a while.

Only about 20,000 Reattas were made, but the last 10 years have seen Full Depreciation for these cars. Still, I hadn’t done a Reatta Junkyard Find since 2012, and I spotted this shiny-looking ’90 in a San Francisco Bay Area yard a couple of weeks back, so here we go! Find Out >

By on March 18, 2019

Because my very first car was , I always when I see them in wrecking yards. Sadly, Toyota stopped selling in North America in 1982, which means that I might see one every couple of years these days. Here’s a luxurious, fully loaded 1981 Toyota Corona wagon in a Denver self-service yard. Find Out >

By on March 11, 2019

While I live in Denver, my and ties in the San Francisco Bay Area make me a at the incredibly well-stocked self-service wrecking yards of the region between and . These yards don’t have quite the selection of and that I see in the yards around Denver, but they make up for that shortage by stocking plenty of , , and .

Just last week, I found a half-dozen 240s, a , and a pair of sedans… in a single yard. Here’s the better-preserved of the two 960s. Find Out >

By on March 4, 2019

The were among the last members of the extended to be built, sold from the 1987 through 1994 model years and replaced by the Neon after that. Millions were sold, but these cars are all but forgotten today. Chrysler built a handful of convertible Shadows, perhaps inspired by GM’s feat of selling some , and I’ve found this ’91 in a North Carolina self-service yard. Find Out >

By on February 25, 2019

If you’re a European car manufacturer in the middle 1980s, what do you do when Tercels and Excels and Justys make seem too expensive in North America? If you’re Volkswagen, you call up your Brazilian operation and start building of the , successor to the Type 1 Beetle in the South American market.

Here’s a very early example of the first-year Fox, found in a Denver-area self-service wrecking yard. Find Out >

By on February 18, 2019

Since The General built cars on from the 1982 through 2005 model years, I still see numerous examples of the J during . Most of those are late-production Cavaliers and Sunfires — not so interesting — but today we’ve got a genuine high-performance bearing one of the : TURBO! Find Out >

By on February 11, 2019

The first hit the streets in 1968, shoving aside flimsier trucks based on the and within a few years. While the Hilux (or ) name got a bit of marketing use by Toyota in North America, this truck was known here as, simply, the Truck. I found this well-worn-but-unrusted ’78 in a Denver self-service yard last month. Find Out >

By on February 4, 2019

are so plentiful in U-Wrench-It yards that I don’t even notice them as searching for the elusive Suzuki Equator (no luck there, yet). In fact, none of prior to today’s Junkyard Find have been XJ40s, but we’ve got a one-of-121-built super-rarity here in Denver: a genuine Find Out >

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