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eBay is a somewhat strange place for somewhat unique cars. It is a good channel to create exposure but that's about it. Most price guides do not include eBay since you are not able to verify if the transaction really happpened.

This Daina looked 'off" to me in the pictures but what can you tell from pictures? Nothing much. To me, it seems strange that only one guy bid on a rare car like this that was offered without reserve (Also strange). Even on eBay you would assume more bidding activity on a Daina. I guess we will not know the full story unless we call the guy.

Ed, are you basing your judgement on the bidder on his feedback rating? Buyers remorse on a set of bag pipes? That is funny ...

Hope to see you and the HF again soon. C&C was fun today with Adan and the 1.2 Fulvia and a nice Bizzarrini there. Let's make sure we get the Lancia folks together in Monterey (It seems we will have a convoy from OC: Tony and Cory in the B24 and Flaminia Berlina, me in the Sport).

Mike
 

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Some perspective might be in order?

Regarding eBay and other sales tools:

I think it is important to resist the temptation to place a single event in an overly important context ... particularly when we do not yet know all the details of the event.

A classified ad in a paper, whether local, national or international, is simply a tool. There can be exceptions, but generally an ad is placed by someone who has a genuine desire to part with something ... for whatever reason. Maybe money is needed? Maybe space is needed? Maybe the seller is simply wanting to "move on" for any number of reasons?

If there is not a genuine desire or need to sell, maybe the "seller" wants to determine a value for insurance purposes or to establish a value so as to use the object as collateral for some other purpose? There could be other reasons for placing an ad.

From the start, we have to acknowledge that, simply because an object is advertised, we don't know for sure that someone really wants to sell the object that has been advertised. Only when the object actually sells do we know something about the value of the item ... at that moment ... to the audience that was aware that it was for sale. A sales event that is completed successfully and is reported accurately is a snapshot in time ... but perhaps only for that unique set of circumstances?

An ad on eBay is not dissimilar from a simple classified ad. It is an advertising event, plain and simple. All the same simple and complex possibilities exist as to motivations that have already been listed above. And perhaps more. There is enhanced visibility worldwide when an ad is placed through the medium of any auction, but particularly on eBay. The seller has chosen to place the object "for sale" in front of a larger audience and has chosen to make the "sales" event competitive. Although taking the car to auction makes the sale seem transparent to a worldwide audience these days, the reality may not be as transparent as it seems. Additionally, there are potential buyers and sellers who may not wish to play by the rules of any auction. They may simply decline to "play". And there can be more complex acts (or intent) for which a "sales" event, true or not, might be deemed desirable by a seller or buyer so as to set the stage for some other event that has not yet happened? This is somewhat obtuse, I know, but no matter how creative we might try to be in order to get into the minds of other sellers and buyers, there is the possibility of just not getting it all figured out. And then, sometimes people change their minds and confuse the whole picture!

Although it is tempting to try to figure out the motivations of others, it is probably a needless complication. It is far simpler to sit back and determine what an object is worth to you personally (if you have an interest in it at all) and stick to your perceptions, wants and abilities. If you allow your acts to be motivated by what others are doing ... or seem to be doing ... there is the risk of being unhappy with the outcome.

Not all rare objects are the same, but any time a rare object sells (or does not sell) there is always the chance that it could have done "better" yesterday or tomorrow. Plain and simple!

In this case, the Siata Gran Sport SL*0217 was not absolutely "original". That was clear from the engine and transmission fitted. Other "originality" details might seem to become a bit moot at that point? Any originality issues can be fixed, but it will take time, research and patience to determine what is original for this particular car. Some details will be easy. Some details not so easy. That's just the way it is.

If someone actually bought SL*0217 for the money stated, only time will tell if it was a "bargain" or if it will become a labor of love ... or perhaps a financial loss. Hopefully, there will be some good grins in the meantime? If we really care enough to keep paying attention, we might get to know.

As an aside, I've always considered an auction, whatever kind it is, to be an unlikely way to begin a lifelong love affair with any object. If you already know the object being offered and are already in love with it, then all bets are off. Otherwise, there probably are better ways to meet and get to know the car you think you want ... before you spend money that came from other sacrifices that have either already been made or which will have to be made.

John de Boer
The Italian Car Registry
 

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eBay is a somewhat strange place for somewhat unique cars...
No argument there.

Ed, are you basing your judgement on the bidder on his feedback rating? Buyers remorse on a set of bag pipes? That is funny ...
Less on the bagpipes, more on the Maserati Quattroporte (eBay 300219005860), apparently walking away from a successful bid of $57,900. It's not impossible to verify that an eBay transaction actually took place--just difficult. But 'legitimate' auction sales reports can also be problematic on occasion; results lists are often published online before payment is actually made, and defaults--while less common than on eBay--do occur.

Hope to see you and the HF again soon. C&C was fun today with Adan and the 1.2 Fulvia and a nice Bizzarrini there. Let's make sure we get the Lancia folks together in Monterey (It seems we will have a convoy from OC: Tony and Cory in the B24 and Flaminia Berlina, me in the Sport).
Mike
Sorry I missed C&C today. We should definitely coordinate the Monterey run, but that's for another thread...

Regarding eBay and other sales tools:
I think it is important to resist the temptation to place a single event in an overly important context ... particularly when we do not yet know all the details of the event.
Always a useful caveat

A classified ad in a paper, whether local, national or international, is simply a tool. There can be exceptions, but generally an ad is placed by someone who has a genuine desire to part with something ... for whatever reason. Maybe money is needed? Maybe space is needed? Maybe the seller is simply wanting to "move on" for any number of reasons? If there is not a genuine desire or need to sell, maybe the "seller" wants to determine a value for insurance purposes or to establish a value so as to use the object as collateral for some other purpose? There could be other reasons for placing an ad.
From the start, we have to acknowledge that, simply because an object is advertised, we don't know for sure that someone really wants to sell the object that has been advertised. Only when the object actually sells do we know something about the value of the item ... at that moment ... to the audience that was aware that it was for sale. A sales event that is completed successfully and is reported accurately is a snapshot in time ... but perhaps only for that unique set of circumstances?
But the same is true at any auction with a reserve; it's not unheard of for a seller to demand an unrealistically high reserve price, on the assumption that the car will never sell, but that the high bid will be a good gauge of the market.

But I think that eBay is actually quite different from a simple classified ad; it probably exists in that swamp somewhere between an ad and a live auction. Having quite a bit of experience at live auctions, though, I'd certainly agree with your assessment that things aren't always as they meet the eye. And, yes, auctions are only ever a snapshot of a single point in time with a unique combination of bidders. As to whether or not they're an ideal way to acquire an object, I'd only say that much depends on the scarcity of that object. Truly scarce objects appear unpredicably; one takes them where one finds them...
 

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Perhaps it was a bit too buried in other text?

In the last paragraph of my posting, "If you already know the object being offered and are already in love with it, then all bets are off. Otherwise ..."
 

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what's love got to do with it?

In the last paragraph of my posting, "If you already know the object being offered and are already in love with it, then all bets are off. Otherwise ..."
I did see it, but I'm not at all sure we're making the same generalization. In any case, wouldn't yours also apply to any sale advertisement? For example, wouldn't you equally say "As an aside, I've always considered a classified ad to be an unlikely way to begin a lifelong love affair with any object"? Is any sale of any sort a likely way to begin a life-long love affair?
 

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I see lots of distinction!

There is risk in any transaction. However ...

In an auction today, you rarely get to meet the owner, If you do, there is a good chance that the owner will have owned the car only since another auction in recent times? Or that the car was picked up simply because the $eller thought that it might do well at auction. Regardless, this means that you don't really get to meet someone who has real knowledge of the car that is on offer. Catalogue descriptions are ... well ... catalogue descriptions. Some are OK and some are from accurate. Many do not tell much about the particular car on offer. There are exceptions, of course, but the world is changing. Some would say it has already changed.

In an auction, it is virtually guaranteed that you will not be allowed to take the car for a test drive. With a classified ad, there is almost the assumption that a test drive will be a part of the procedure ... if it a runner, of course. With an eBay sale, there could be the possibility of spending some time one on one with the car and the owner.

An auction allows a great number of people, many of whom don't know what they really want, to window-shop a large selection of cars and, if they are impulsive, make a purchase that they hope fits when they get it home. They don't get to know if they will be in love until they live with the reality for a while. In short, the courtship is very brief.

If you already know a specific car, and have loved it from afar, then there is a much better chance that it will be easier to overlook some flaws when you get it home. There will be flaws. Maybe minor, maybe quite major.

An auction virtually guarantees that you will see only the beauty that is skin deep. And it will encourage a purchase decision made in an environment that is not conducive to a lot of introspection and reflection. An eBay offering might allow the chance to actually go see the car and have a moment or two to think about what you really want. A classified ad, being generally less alluring, is much less of an assault on the senses and probably will allow a majority of people to make more personal decisions about what they really want. There is time to decide and less spectacle involved.

No matter what, there is always a risk. And that is also part of the allure for some people.
 

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I don't wish to hijack this thread, so this will be my last post here. I certainly do not completely disagree with your generalizations about the various types of sales. I completely agree that auction catalogue descriptions are notoriously unreliable; yesterday, Bonhams sold a car like mine in Monaco, and the catalogue description was complete nonsense from beginning to end--barely a single correct fact in an entire page of text.

However, the distinctions above rely on several assumptions that don't always apply.

You assume that the "classified ad" sale is close enough to actually go see and test drive the car (and not half way around the world). Further, you assume that the owner is both knowledgable about his car and honest enough to be forthcoming about any hidden problems. And, with a one-on-one transaction there can be a lot of emotional investment and psychological pressure--not least of which is the phenomenon known as "I've made this special trip, I've got the cash in my pocket, I've got my buddy/trailer here to get the car home, do I really want to go home emptyhanded?"

You're correct that auctions rarely if ever allow test drives--a major distinction. But many of your other distinctions seem to assume a Barrett-Jackson "I've-got-money burning a hole in my pocket and I'm going to buy something no matter what (hey, look up at the big screen--I'm on TV)" -type auction. Such auction buyers do exist (I've seen them on TV).

But most serious auction buyers do a great deal of homework and examination--everything short of a test drive--before they decide whether or not to go after a car and, if so, how high they're prepared to go in order to get it. They're making purchases of opportunity--not impulse, and they don't make impulsive decisions based only on how shiny the car looks crossing the auction block any more than they throw darts at the classifieds and on that basis decide what interests them.

In short, there are advantages and disadvantages to each type of sale, and understanding the strenghts and weaknesses of each is essential to avoid (or at least reduce the odds of) getting burned. And while I think many of your distinctions are largely true, a lot of them are 'grayer' than you seem to suggest.
 

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about this body

About mr Fyshe's Siata Daina body... Now, I spoke to him this winter and he thought it was Balbo but noone is sure... I just saw these pics of a Vignale Lancia Aurelia.... Extremely similar arnt they.. So it is a Siata Daina Vignale?
 

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Hi, yesterday I saw this car stopping few steps from me and I shot some photos, it's a Siata daina gran sport:
I don't know neither if it's on sale nor who's the owner, it's the first time I see this car.
 

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I was at the Bonhams auction at Goodwood this afternoon. The (now ex-) Fyshe Siata Daina made £66,000 sterling, which means it achieved the lowest estimate when the buyer's premium is added.
 

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Hi,

Can you please tell us where this car is located? From the license plate and the Palm tree it looks like it might be the south of France?

Also, can you tell us the chassis and motor numbers?

It looks quite original and fairly complete, is it for sale?

Peter Zobian
 

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Hi again,

I just noticed the very Alfa like shift lever and boot, so it may not be as original as I first thought. Does it have a later Alfa motor and does the original Siata motor still exist?

Peter Zobian
 

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The car was to be bought last year on the Ebay France under 10,000 euros. Unfortunately I missed the offer. Bought that an Italian.The car had a Simca engine.

Das Auto war letztes Jahr auf dem Ebay Frankreich unter 10 000 Euro zu kaufen. Leider habe ich den Angebot verpasst. Gekauft hat das ein Italiener. Das Auto hat einen Simca Motor gehabt.
 

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Dear John,

I am in process of buying SL 139 in Uruguay, and i have a lot of doubt in do that....
It is a original Farina berlineta body?
Its grille has an original shape?
The body is made of aluminum?
Can i send you some photos to discover this mistery?

Thans a lot in advance.

Luiz Leao

Curitiba - Brazil


Here is a bare-bones listing of the cars that are known to exist. As an introduction, I will acknowledge that I've collected chassis number data on six additional Daina "coupe" that I tend to call "berlinetta" as the technical definition of a "coupe" includes the so-called "notchback" styling feature. I've also gathered some data on one additional cabriolet by chassis number and have many additional anecdotal snippets about dozens of additional cars that are described to varying degrees .... but not yet by chassis number.

It is important to acknowledge that, contrary to what many websites say or imply today, the chassis was not by Fiat but was a custom box-section design that was made by Siata. There is a chance that Siata used an outside supplier for some of the chassis production. The chassis was designed and built to allow the use of a large number of standard Fiat parts including the front cross-member that was bolted into place on both Siata Daina and the "parent" Fiat 1400.

The following cars are known to exist today. Some of the numbers listed are engines that are no longer with the original car and thus the car's original description is unknown. I am sure that there are more cars and engines remaining to be found and identified today.

SL*0102* cabriolet Stabilimenti Farina
SL*0121* berlinetta Stabilimenti Farina
SL*0139* berlinetta Stabilimenti Farina
SL*0158* cabriolet Stabilimenti Farina
SL*0168* cabriolet Stabilimenti Farina
SL*0181* berlinetta Stabilimenti Farina
SL*0188* berlinetta Stabilimenti Farina
SL*0190* berlinetta Stabilimenti Farina
SL*0194* cabriolet Stabilimenti Farina
SL*0198* berlinetta Stabilimenti Farina
SL*0201*S berlinetta fuoriserie (perhaps Vignale?)
SL*0202* cabriolet Stabilimenti Farina
SL*0204* berlinetta Stabilimenti Farina

Then, production seems to shift to the Daina spider "Gran Sport", but it is possible that there was some overlap that is not yet revealed by the cars we know today ... or the data collected thus far. The first "Gran Sport" had a platform chassis rather similar to the late Daina cars in that the engine sat directly above the front cross-member holding the Fiat suspension in place.

SL*0208 spider Gran Sport
SL*0209 (engine only)
SL*0210 spider Gran Sport
SL*0211 spider Gran Sport
SL*0212 spider Gran Sport
SL*0214 spider Gran Sport
SL*0215 (engine only)
SL*0216 spider Gran Sport
SL*0217 spider Gran Sport
SL*0221 (engine only) ... may have been only an engine and no chassis?

After this point, there was a design change to the chassis, the most notable characteristic being that the engine was moved to rear a bit in order to help "balance" and handling characteristics. These cars were marked with a "B" suffix to the chassis number and later a "C" suffix whose meaning is yet to be revealed.

To be continued ...

John de Boer
The Italian Car Registry
 

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Siata SL*0139 in Uruguay

Dear Luiz,

This is certainly an interesting car and it seems the sellers or prior owners have already done a considerable amount of work to bring it back to its current level of completeness and originality. There is a lot of work remaining, however! Particularly to the nose and other parts of the body. It is not a bad starting point for someone who really wants one of these cars. They are not easy to find. The wheels clearly need to be changed! But that is probably just the beginning. I know nothing about this car's interior or instruments, for example.

Although I would certainly welcome more, I have about a dozen photos that have been shared by various individuals. The most informative photos that may help you to understand that particular car were posted by "montecarlo" on another thread here on the AlfaBB. Look up "Stabilimenti Farina" and then choose the thread that has to do with Fiat 1500. In posting #48 there are some black & white photos of the car as it was originally delivered and used. You will also read that the engine was changed for a time, along with the rear axle and other parts. And the body was modified quite a lot at some time. It would be nice to learn when and by whom.

It is clear from the photos I have seen that there is now a Fiat 1400 type engine and gearbox with the car and a Fiat 1400 rear end was refitted. But I do not know if these are the original parts refitted to the car or if they have been acquired from other sources. The original engine would have been numbered (right front, just below the cylinder head) to match the chassis. Many have been changed so having a non-original engine will not be seen as anything unusual in collector car circles. The engine in one photo I have seen makes it appear as if it may have a correct 2-carburetor configuration but I cannot see the manifold or any real carburetor details. And, although there is no drive for the tachometer at the front of the engine, as would certainly be normal for a Gran Sport in most cases, I see that there is a small cover plate for the opening where one might have been fitted. But, I don't know if this car had a tachometer fitted originally. The engines are a bit prone to freeze damage, so a careful inspection may be in order? It would be nice for a prospective purchaser to know why and when the original engine was removed, whether or not this engine is original to the car.

If the gearbox is Siata-modified, there may be clues to the ratios fitted to be found stamped on top of the alloy tail housing. You might find something like "20 26" for example but there are other possibilities. Unfortunately, it does NOT appear to have the Siata 5-speed modifications.

There is a photo of what may be the original nose grille for the car but I don't know if it is with the car or not. If so, it will save a lot of trouble during the restoration as it will help with establishing the nose shape accurately. I would like very much to learn the four-digit Stabilimenti Farina body number for this car and it very likely appears on parts of the grille.

These are delightful cars if you enjoy driving cars with good road manners. The performance from the engine can be somewhat disappointing, however. They can seem a bit unexciting to drive but part of that impression comes from the fact that the chassis is so very good. There is simply not enough horsepower available to make the chassis have to work very hard. It will be a pleasant and comfortable "tour" car, but not very satisfying on the track without doing a lot of work ... at which point it becomes less of a Siata.

If you do acquire the car and decide to do a restoration to the nose, I can supply some information and photos that will be of use to you. There are others who will help as well.

Best of luck and .... enjoy!

John de Boer
 
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