Throughout The Car Industry
Wow: 500+ New & Used Vintage Cars Discovered At Closed Chevy Dealership
In 1996, Lambrecht Chevrolet closed its doors for the very last time. Owners Ray & Mildred Lambrecht had served the residents of Pierce, Nebraska since 1946, and it was finally time to retire. At one time, this small Midwest dealership was one of Chevrolet's highest-volume stores. Ray would give people his best price right off the bat. If the customer wanted to haggle, he'd tell them, “If you can find a better price on this vehicle, then you should go get it.” He treated people the way he wanted to be treated, and that kept customers came back again and again.
During their 50 years in business, the Lambrecht's put countless Americans on the road, and they amassed a collection of over 500 cars in the process. Like an enormous time capsule, Lambrecht Chevrolet Co. is a glimpse into how our country used to be. And now, all those memories are about to cross the auction block.
When Ray Lambrecht returned from the war in 1946, his uncle Ernest offered him a partnership in the family-run dealership. Naturally Ray accepted, and his new bride Mildred began working there as well. After buying out his uncle's interest, the husband & wife team ran Lambrecht Chevrolet Co. for 50 years, aided only by a mechanic, and occasionally, their children. Having come through the Great Depression, the Lambrecht's understood the value of hard work and treating people fairly. They worked six days a week, and always tried to put people in the safest car possible. Ray felt that new cars were safer and more reliable than used cars, so he'd simply park the trade-ins at their farm outside of town.
He didn't try to sell the leftover inventory either. If a new car didn't sell by the next model year, he'd stash it away too—plastic seat protection still in place, hubcaps in the trunk. Ray Lambrecht was all about selling the latest that Chevrolet had to offer. And that seemingly odd way of doing things is about to bring this hard-working couple a huge payday.
Now 95-years-young, Mr. Lambrecht has finally decided to sell his massive collection. Among the 500+ vehicles are a number of brand-new Chevrolets that are still riding on their MSOs (Manufacturer Statement of Origin). There's an ultra-rare 1958 Chevrolet Cameo with just 1.3 miles on the odometer. This truck was rolled into the dealership in 1958, and it's just now seeing the light of day (the plastic seat covers are still in place, and the original floor mats are rolled up behind the seat). There's a '58 Apache 31 pickup with five miles, a 1978 Corvette Indy Pace Car Edition with four miles, a number of 'new' Impala's ranging from a '63 two-door with a 327 to a '78 sedan with a 305. There're un-titled Corvairs (including a Greenbriar van), a Vega, a Chevette (can't imagine why that didn't sell), a '59 Belair with just two miles on a 283, and a horde of unsold 60s-80s C10 pickups. In all, there's nearly 60 Chevrolets that were delivered to Lambrecht Chevrolet, and never sold. Most haven't been started since the day they were parked. But in the right hands, many of these 'new' Chevys could be on the road in no time.
Since Ray didn't like to sell second-hand cars, he's got 50 years worth of trade-ins sitting at the family farm. The list is mind-boggling, so here's a just a peek at his used inventory:
1969 Chevrolet Chevelle SS – 75k miles
1956 Chevrolet Belair Sedan – 40k miles
1956 Chevrolet Belair Sedan – 60k miles
1957 Chevrolet Sedan – 47k miles
Four more 1957 Chevy sedans ranging in miles from low-40s-high-50s.
1974 Chevrolet Monte Carlo – 21k miles
1972 Ford Pinto - lol
1966 Chevy II Coupe – 45k miles
1958 Chevrolet Belair 2DR 34k miles
1950 Mercury Suicide 4DR – 57k miles
1955 Chevrolet Belair 2DR– 29k miles
During the sale, being held September 28-29 by Vanderbrink Auctions, the entire contents of Lambrecht Chevrolet Co. will be sold to the highest bidders. The auction also includes an equally mind-boggling amount of NOS Chevrolet parts, along with signs and sales material. If you're going to be near Pierce, Nebraska at the end of September, you should totally check out this amazing collection.
And the staff at Auto Shopper would like to thank Mr. Lambrecht for doing things, his way.
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