Today’s Nice Price or No Dice Prowler might be more show than go, but most of the time, that’s all it needs to be. Let’s see if this wild-looking retro-roadster has a price to take that show on the road.
There’s a fine line between a vehicle being someone else’s project and being simply well maintained and updated. The 1994 Mercedes-Benz S 500 coupe we looked at yesterday fell into the latter category, even if it apparently still had more work yet to be done. The seller noted these “imperfections” and called them out as the reason for the car’s relatively low (at least according to comparison with the Hagerty Guide) $8,499 price. Most of you agreed with that assessment, sending the big Benz off with a solid 68 percent Nice Price win. That, of course, was very big of you.
In comparison to yesterday’s Benz, today’s 2001 Plymouth Prowler isn’t what you’d call a particularly big car. It does, however, manage to pack an excess of retro-inspired style into its relatively compact dimensions.
Chrysler introduced the Prowler show car in 1993 and brought the car to market a short four years later as a ’97 model. Built on an aluminum frame that was assembled with both fasteners and glues, the car served as a testbed for such cutting-edge assembly techniques.
Only one drivetrain was offered in the Prowler, a SOHC 3.5 liter V6 up front, mated to a four-speed automatic that was mounted in the back for a nearly 50/50 weight distribution. This drivetrain managed only 214 horsepower at the crank in the early cars, but this being a factory-updated ’01 model, it has a more respectable 253 ponies.
Unlike Chrysler’s other supermodel-turned street rat of the time, the Viper, the Prowler offered almost all the amenities one might expect from a modern car. That means a full top and electric door windows along with remote locks, ABS, and A/C that works. Total production for the Prowler came in at shy of 12,000 cars over the course of its five-year model run.
We get very little description in the ad as to this Prowler’s history, its current condition, or its future prospects. A quick VIN search doesn’t turn up anything much either so we’ll have to lean into that very brief ad description which states:
exotic car, 64700miles, air conditioning, runs well, motro v6 3.5 factory paint, no trade in 2001.
See? Pretty basic, right? I guess it’s enough since it does give us the mileage (64,700), a succinct overview of its condition (runs well) and that it has factory paint. The Craigslist listing also confirms that the car has a clean title, something we already decided earlier this week is an important factor when buying a car.
Per the pictures, the Prowler looks to be in decent shape. The silver paint seems to shine and the car still wears its factory alloys (17-inch front and 20-inch rear), as well as a serviceable convertible top. It even still has its comically shaped front bumpers still in place. Those are often removed by owners who prefer the riskier but smoother look of a bumper-less car.
The only really odd thing here is the aftermarket grille that sits prominently between those two bumpers. That has vertical slats segmented into two sections and adds a lot of chrome to the otherwise unadorned car. Hopefully, the factory vents come with the car for those not smitten with the modified style.
Overall, that style is still pretty outlandish even today. There has been no other production model from any major manufacturer that has been quite as audacious then or since. And I’m including that goofy new BMW 7-Series in that statement. Still, the Prowler never made quite the name for itself as did the Viper, and today one of those two models is climbing in value while the other seems to be fairly stagnant. Guess which is which.
That’s not to say that the Prowler won’t take off sometime soon and that actually might make the model a good investment right now, getting in on the ground floor as they say. This one costs $24,400 which is an odd amount to ask but is also on the low end for these models. The question for you is whether it’s low enough.
What do you think, is this fancy Plymouth worth $24,400 based only on its pictures and vague description? Or, is there just too much mystery in this Prowler to ask even that much for it?
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