bangers4ben Blog

23.03.09: Our Calibra at BCA

Time 13 years ago

calibrasellsLIKE most 15 year olds, my Calibra is a bit sluggish, smells funny, makes strange groaning and grunting noises and has developed some unsightly acne (rust)…

But today I’m grieving – as I’ve had to sell it. After covering over 1,500 miles in the coupe, over three days for our Bangers4BEN challenge I became rather attached to it and its charms.

I really loved the shape – it’s a real slick 90’s coupe. And it went well too; 0-60 in around 10 seconds and 130mph top speed isn’t too bad at all.

It was comfortable, quiet and well behaved on the motorway, even if the aftermarket Koni suspension was rather unkind to my coffee.

I enjoyed my mini adventure in this future classic – yes James, you read that right: ‘future classic’ – and I was actually sorry to see it go.

So, to the auction. BCA at Blackbushe is the venue and my heart is racing as we wait to see the old girl roll into the hall. Will it sell? Will it lose money? Will it make it through the hall without cutting out?

We see a whole mixture of metal go under the hammer before it. A Citroen BX, 97 on a P goes for £175, to the extreme of a beautiful Aston Martin DB7 Vantage Volante ’04 go for £31k. It’s an interesting mix.

As bidding finishes on a very nice looking Audi A4 Avant, I can see my Calibra’s up next.

It looks fantastic – the boys at BCA have done a fantastic job in preparing the paintwork and it’s shining with (almost) the sparkle of when it was new.

As James mentioned in his blog when we dropped the car off last week, this isn’t the first time BCA have sold our Vauxhall. It was last sold here 10 years ago for £6,325! I’m hoping for a bit more than the £250 it cost me…

It takes centre stage. I feel like the worried manager of a 90’s boy band as they try to make a come back at Glastonbury – it’s just as out of place.

But hang on, what’s this? People are actually taking some interest. A few are actually closely inspecting the brief description on the screen as they wander around my old friend.

The auctioneer begins proceedings with some very good ‘talking up’ for the aged Vauxhall. After a brief sales pitch, the bidding starts at £100. It rises in £25 increments, £125… £150… £175…

Hang on this is going up quite quickly,  I feel like a contestant on Bargain Hunt! I’m shaking with excitement and it gets down to two bidders.

They fight it out with £10 bids. Then, as quick as it started, a minute later it’s over: All done at £265.

As the hammer cracks I’m overwhelmed with joy! It sold, and for a profit! The car rolls out of the auction hall with a nice deep exhaust note, as I wave farewell.

It was an exciting end to a lengthy and difficult process. Buying a car from retail (eBay) and actually selling it through the trade for a profit must be worth a few extra points in this competition, surely? 

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Check out the video of the sale below…


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James Baggott's avatar

James is the founder and editor-in-chief of Car Dealer Magazine, and CEO of parent company Baize Group. James has been a motoring journalist for more than 20 years writing about cars and the car industry.

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