3 Porsches among 700 vehicles at rare car auction
Monday, May 15, 2017
Most of us are natural-born pack rats. At some point in our lives we've collected things such as coins, comics, bottles or baseball cards.
It seems that the habit of collecting is an essential human trait. That clearly is the case for Ron Hackenberger, an 80-year-old retired real estate agent from Norwalk, Ohio. He has spent half his life assembling a collection of more than 700 wheeled vehicles — cars (including three Porsches), trucks, motorcycles, tractors, buses, wagons and buggies.
His plan to build a museum for the collection went south with the recession in 2008 and the ensuing real estate market collapse. That setback, coupled with the lack of storage space and his advancing age, prompted Hackenberger to put the collection up for auction. Slated for the weekend of July 14-16, it promises to be the most colossal used car sale in Ohio history.
Hackenberger's fascination with cars began at age 15 when he acquired a 1948 Studebaker — a bullet-nosed beauty that he regarded as an automotive masterpiece. His interest in the innovative designs from Studebaker, America's leading independent carmaker from the early 1900s until its demise in 1966, led Hackenberger to add a 1956 Golden Hawk to his stable, and then a Lark and an Avanti — and so it went.
Hackenberger was hooked. And with the success of his real estate business he was able to buy vehicles as he'd come across them. Studebakers were the mainstay of his growing collection (he now owns 250 of them), but he was always on the lookout for rare and unusual vehicles — as he puts it, "something that you wouldn't see every day."
Ron Hackenberger, an 80-year-old retired real estate agent from Norwalk, Ohio, has spent half his life assembling a collection of more than 700 wheeled vehicles. (Image: VanDerBrink Auctions)
Most of the vehicles set to go on the auction block certainly fit that description. Headline attractions include a Bricklin SV-1 and a DeLorean DMC-12 gullwing coupe. Further showcasing Hackenberger's love for the unusual is a collection of micro cars such as the Crossley, Goggomobil, Isetta, Honda N600, King Midget and an extremely rare Czech Tatra. Other foreign marques in the collection include Citroën, Peugeot, Fiat, MG, Jaguar, Borgward and Porsche.
Hackenberger's three Porsches include a 1967 912 model that has logged only 14,000 miles, a 1981 924 coupe with a scant 34,635 miles and a 1987 924 coupe with 91,427 miles.
Hackenberger has contracted with Minnesota-based VanDerBrink Auctions, owned by vintage car sales specialist Yvette VanDerBrink. She in turn is working with Cleveland's JF Marketing/Auction Services to catalog the vehicles and conduct the auction.
The auction will be held onsite in Norwalk, Ohio, beginning at 9 a.m. on July 14, 15 and 16, and online as well so prospective buyers across the world will have a chance to bid. Everything is to be sold "No Reserve."
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