Editor’s Note: We love scouring the internet for reasons to spend money we don’t have on cars we daydream about owning, and these are our picks this week. All prices listed are bid amounts at the time of publishing.
More than any other color, green seems to be a standout favorite when it adorns cars of all kinds. You’ll never hear “Oh, wow, that grey is hypnotic,” or “don’t you just love the way the light hits the flat yellow paint?” And not lime green. I’m talking a deep, dark, earthy green. Whether it’s a metallic forest green, a timeless British racing colour, a Sonoma Green, an emerald or a highland hue, green is an understated color that seems classy on nearly every body panel it graces. To further the point, here are five more beautiful examples clad in the correct shade.
1998 Jaguar XK8
Location: Waalwijk, Netherlands
What we like: Despite not having a single alphanumeric designation followed by ‘-Type’ the XK shares the same lineage as the iconic E- and F-Type — you can see it in the grille and body. But nothing fits a Jaguar roadster better than a big V8 up front spinning the wheels in the back and a healthy coat of British Racing Green all over.
From the seller: “This fabulous Jaguar XK8 Cabriolet was delivered in 1998 in Paris, France. Since 1998 the car has had only 2 owners and has driven only 109,000 real kilometers. Recently, this XK8 was provided with new paint in the original colour, Sherwood Green, with original alloy wheels.”
What to look out for: Overheating due a stuck thermostat or broken water pump are among the most serious of problems with the XK8. But, it seems the most common problem is a fragile center armrest cup holder that tends to break.
Expert opinion: “Jaguar’s new V8 delivers excellent thrust right from idle and sophisticated power music from the exhaust. It delivers enough punch to propel these elegant cars from 0 to 60 mph in less than 7 seconds. It takes just over 17 seconds to reach 100 mph, and top speed is electronically limited to 155 mph. That’s pretty brisk for a car in this weight class–3,673 pounds for the coupe, 3.867 for the convertible. Fortunately, the XK8’s stopping power is just as brisk.” — Tony Swan, New Car Test Drive
1964 Morgan Plus 4
Mileage: 9,192 (TMU)
Location: Southport, Connecticut
What we like: Since it is the country’s official motorsport color, it should be no surprise that a Morgan looks more at home in emerald paint than any other hue. This particular Morgan is original. A quick look at the description and you’ll see a previous owner bolted in hotter cams. So not only does this roadster have old school looks (although, to be fair, even new Morgans have old school looks) it gets a modest power pump as well.
From the seller: “This is a cherished, two owner car, the last owner since 1988. It is solid, runs well, has been well maintained and looks great. This car is very original and has benefitted from one repaint in her original British Racing Green.”
What to look out for: Unlike most other British sports cars of the same era, Morgan started using rust proofing but continued to use wooden frames (and still does to this day). So check for rust along the sills (just in case) but take a good look at the rockers, below the doors for signs of rot because the rest of the ash frame is fairly hidden.
Expert opinion: “The fact that these vintage sports cars used mass-market mechanicals, and that they are still being produced in England with traditional methods, means that they enjoy surprisingly good parts availability. Getting parts is easy, and doing the work is easy if you like to work on cars.” — Mark McCourt, Hemmings
1992 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution I GSR
Location: Plano, Texas
What we like: An Evo I is quite the find, having just become legal to import last year. This early-’09s Rally homolagtion special is a raucous turbo AWD machine, so the subtle Sainto Amour Green it’s painted in does you the favor of toning down the car’s whole attitude. It’s a classy shade of green that helps the unassuming little Japanese four-door achieve true sleeper status.
From the seller: “In preparation for sale the seller serviced the car with fresh spark plugs, ignition coils, and an oil change. This Evolution I is offered with copies of the importation documents, a JEVIC mileage certificate, and a clean Texas title.”
What to look out for: Overheating and faulty turbos are the most common culprates of break downs. Keep an eye on blue white smoke coming from the exhaust, indicating there’s oil where it shouldn’t be.
Expert opinion: “The Evo is still sensational to drive with a poise and a fluidity to its handling that would shame a lot of new cars. Narrow tyres (205-section on 15-inch rims) and comparatively soft, long-travel springs might give a lower level of grip than more modern, more overtly sporting cars but the pay-off is what grip there is – and there is more than you’re ever going to need on a public road – is easily probed and utterly progressive when it does let go.” — Carlton Boyce, Carwow
1997 Land Rover Defender 90 NAS
Location: Kirkland, Washington
What we like: Incredibly well taken care of and lightly modified — both with after market and factory options — this NAS edition Defender 90 is barely broken in at 80,000 miles. Sure it costs about the same as a brand-new, full-loaded Jeep Wrangler, but a Defender in classic BRG has miles more character.
From the seller: “The truck was first sold at Land Rover Newport Beach in California and remained in the southern portion of the state until 2008, when it was moved to Spokane, Washington by the fourth owner. The seller is the son of the previous owners and acquired the truck in 2015. He has added approximately 15k miles and recently serviced the truck with new front shocks, tie rod ends, a pitman arm, Panhard rod assembly, an alignment, and new tires.”
What to look out for: As with all older Defenders, inspecting for rust and electrical problems should be a top priority. That said, this Defender has been well maintained and comes with an extensive service record.
Expert opinion: “Land Rover made modest attempts to civilize the Defender 90, of which the tested, two-door 1997 hardtop represents the third generation. The new model has a standard, electronically controlled, four-speed automatic transmission. An improved air conditioner is available, as well as a six-disc CD player. And there’s a new center console with an electronically operated instrument cluster. But there are few other amenities. The front and rear windows are manually operated. The vehicle is noisy as heck. And if you’re looking for a soft ride, you’ll definitely have to look elsewhere. The Defender 90 IS a truck.” — Warren Brown, Washington Post
1969 Mercedes-Benz 280SL
Location: Houston, Texas
What we like: SLs of this vintage and quality are a collector’s dream and it’s easy to see why. Although the repaint was done in 1991, it it remains the original Moss Green, has a numbers-matching 2.8-liter inline-six engine and four-speed transmission. What’s more, the 65,785 miles are believed to be original.
From the seller: “This 1969 Mercedes-Benz 280SL was picked up new through the European delivery program before moving to the Houston, Texas area. It remained with the original owner until late 1979 and was kept local by the second owner through 1996. The third owner retained possession until the car was acquired in late 2017 by the seller, who is a W113 (Pagoda) Mercedes-Benz specialist. Finished in Moosgrün Metallic over Parchment MB-Tex, this W113 wears an older repaint and is equipped with both a color-matched Pagoda hardtop and a black soft top.”
What to look out for: Rust on the floor pans and trunk are common problem areas, but you should also check for leaks from the steering, oil and cooling systems.
Expert opinion: “The 280SL simply enamours. Driving one in today’s age makes you wonder where car makers went wrong. It’s a sweetheart; an evocative throwback to simpler times, but with air-conditioning.” — Sam Charlwood, Motoring.com.au