published Thursday, June 6th, 2013

'55 Chevy could bring $450,000 at Classic Auto Expo (June 7-9)

Multi-colored classic cars line up before being directed to a parking spot.
Multi-colored classic cars line up before being directed to a parking spot.
Photo by Alyson Wright.


What: Choo Choo Classic Auto Expo

When: Friday-Sunday, June 7-9; gates open at 8 a.m.

Where: Chattanooga Auto Auction, 2120 Stein Drive

Admission: $10 per day

Phone: 423-499-0015

If you've always wanted a restored classic car and have at least $30,000 to spend, the first Choo Choo Classic Auto Expo will be the place to be on Saturday.

But the auction is only part of the three-day event, June 7-9, at the 55-acre Chattanooga Auto Auction.

On Friday and Saturday, there will be a car and bike swap meet. On Sunday, there will be an open car and bike show.

The highlight among the 300-plus cars auctioned Saturday, according to Brittany Thigpen of Chattanooga Auto Auction, is likely to be the one-of-a-kind 1955 Chevrolet ZL-55, a two-door hardtop with a pedigreed racing ZL-1 engine.

It's likely to go for up to $450,000, she said.

Owners have the choice of selling their classics at whatever the auction might bring, Thigpen said, or putting a set minimum price on them, where if they do not bring the minimum the owner has set, the owner will take them back home.

The cruise-in on Sunday is expected to draw 200 to 400 cars, she said. There also may be some cars left from Saturday's auction, she said.

Retired NASCAR driver Sterling Marlin will be at Sunday's cruise-in from noon to 4 p.m.

If the $450,000 Chevy is not your cup of tea, among the other options are a 1927 Roadster, a couple of 1930s trucks, a 1938 Ford Woody, a 1940 Chevrolet Business Coupe, a 1949 Mercury, a 1957 red Chevrolet Bel Air convertible, a 1958 pink Cadillac, a 1962 Chevrolet Impala SS (Golden Anniversary edition), three 1960s Mustangs, two 1960s Chevrolet Camaros, a 1969 Chevrolet Chevelle SS, a 1969 Plymouth Hemi Road Runner, a 1970 Oldsmobile Cutlass 442 convertible, a 1976 Mercedes-Benz 450SL, three 1970s Pontiac TransAms, 1986 and 1999 Chevrolet Corvettes and a one-of-a-kind 2005 copper Dodge Viper SRT convertible.

Contact staff writer Clint Cooper at or 423-757-6497. Subscribe to his posts online at

about Clint Cooper...

Clint Cooper is the faith editor and a staff writer for the Times Free Press Life section. He also has been an assistant sports editor and Metro staff writer for the newspaper. Prior to the merger between the Chattanooga Free Press and Chattanooga Times in 1999, he was sports news editor for the Chattanooga Free Press, where he was in charge of the day-to-day content of the section and the section’s design. Before becoming sports ...

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