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Thinking about getting a CMC Gazelle (Mercedes replica kit car) #5449154 06/08/20 04:49 PM
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Hal9000 Offline OP
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I am thinking about picking up a CMC Gazelle kit car, it's a supposed to be a replica of sorts of a 1929 Mercedes. And, while it may not look much like that, perhaps it is cool in its own right? Or not?
Normally these were air-cooled VW or Pinto powered. However, part of what appeals to me about this one is that it's sporting a Toyota 20R engine (as used in 1970s trucks). It's also also a 5 speed manual (no idea what from). Given it's light weight, it scoots right along.

The seating position is a bit unusual, as one is very low to the ground, but didn't seem terrible to me, and I'd work on some adjustments, maybe a better seat. It needs some minor tuning up, but overall seems a solid runner. I'll have to jump through a few hoops to get it registered, but I am not worried about doing that, as I have dealt with other involved situations before.

So, just based on the merits, or lack thereof, of the car itself, what are your thoughts? Cool? Not so cool? Any one here here ever own one?

00w0w_fhrOXFYcPRp_0fu0bC_600x450.jpg00b0b_7ccs5nrOBWW_0fu0bC_600x450.jpg00707_evCh3lb6AH0_0CI0t2_600x450.jpg
Last edited by Hal9000; 06/08/20 04:54 PM.
Re: Thinking about getting a CMC Gazelle (Mercedes replica kit car) [Re: Hal9000] #5449163 06/08/20 05:21 PM
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LazyDog Offline
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Nice car, if you like it and can afford it why not.

Re: Thinking about getting a CMC Gazelle (Mercedes replica kit car) [Re: Hal9000] #5449191 06/08/20 06:12 PM
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wings&wheels Offline
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If you like the car than go for it. Obviously it meets no modern...heck even old safety standards and is low. But you know that and life is to short to drive boring cars....

As for merits, it is a kit car and my main concern (other than anything typical to a used car of that vintage) is the build quality. Kit cars can be wonderful or a basket of the prior owners brain storms and short cuts that you get to enjoy.

Here are some random thoughts, and only a drop in the bucket, but you get the idea:

Wiring
how good are the terminations? crimps?
strain relief
abrasion protection where it runs through any bulkheads or over components
fuses; enough? right ratings protecting the right circuits?
appropriate wire sizes?

Fasteners
correct grade for the application?
Proper use of washers, etc.

Hoses
good routing
abrasion protection
proper hoses (not heater hoses for fuel...seen that)

On and on.... Maybe try and get the build manual for the car as a reference.

I like the Toyota powerplant vs VW.

Good luck and have fun!


'05 Lotus Elise S/C
'85 Land Rover 90 diesel
'74 Triumph TR6
'74 BMW 2002
'72 Land Rover Series III 88"
'99 Porsche 996
'01 Porsche Boxster S (mostly Wife's...)
'19 VW Golf R (Wife's)
Piper Pa28-236


Re: Thinking about getting a CMC Gazelle (Mercedes replica kit car) [Re: Hal9000] #5449237 06/08/20 07:31 PM
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sloinker Offline
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Meh...not my taste.

Re: Thinking about getting a CMC Gazelle (Mercedes replica kit car) [Re: Hal9000] #5449238 06/08/20 07:36 PM
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eljefino Offline
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See if you can get a parts sheet so you know the clutch, brakes, ball joints, etc. Be nice if it were all 1980 era toyota truck.

Don't pay too much-- these are novelty items and hard to sell.

Where will you park it off season? Will that convertible top take a snow load?

Re: Thinking about getting a CMC Gazelle (Mercedes replica kit car) [Re: eljefino] #5449305 06/08/20 08:50 PM
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SteveG4 Offline
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Originally Posted by eljefino
See if you can get a parts sheet so you know the clutch, brakes, ball joints, etc. Be nice if it were all 1980 era toyota truck.

Don't pay too much-- these are novelty items and hard to sell.

Where will you park it off season? Will that convertible top take a snow load?

He's in Florida, I believe, not Maine, Alaska or Wisconsin. smile


Somewhere between Alaska and Wisconsin...
2006 4WD Silverado LT Crew Cab & 2013 AWD Equinox
Re: Thinking about getting a CMC Gazelle (Mercedes replica kit car) [Re: Hal9000] #5449318 06/08/20 09:04 PM
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01rangerxl Offline
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It's worth what it's worth to you. Something like a Mustang or F-body would probably be easier to resell, easier to find parts for, etc. If you really like the look and can deal with kit car quality and quirks, then maybe it could be a decent toy. Asking if it's cool is probably the wrong question...it's not (eccentric is probably more like it). But if you like it and can deal with something that will likely need regular attention, go for it. Keep in mind, if you don't like to DIY, a lot of shops will not want to get anywhere near something like this.


2002 Ford Ranger XLT | 3.0 V6 Auto 2WD | 241K miles
1994 Ford Explorer XLT | 4.0 V6 Auto 4X4 | 256K miles
Re: Thinking about getting a CMC Gazelle (Mercedes replica kit car) [Re: Hal9000] #5449364 06/08/20 10:15 PM
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tomcat27 Offline
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They're fun. I have a friend with one.


2019 Cherokee, 2018 Jetta, 2014 Sentra, 2001 Camry, 1995 Escort, 1970 Cougar, 2013 XT250, 2010 Vstar, 2014 CTX1300
Re: Thinking about getting a CMC Gazelle (Mercedes replica kit car) [Re: Hal9000] #5449375 06/08/20 10:37 PM
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Hal9000 Offline OP
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I appreciate all the responses. Good suggestion on really going through the hoses and giving it a thorough look.

I do wrench on my own vehicles for what I can (basic to intermediate stuff). Parts for the engine are available, and it's a stout power plant. The front end is off a Mustang II. The underside looked rust free and nothing stood out as glaringly off. Little things need attention (turn signals not working, but I can always figure out how to wire my own switch in if need be). It's impossible to tell who actually made it as it's a 1974, and the knowledge available goes back about 5 years.

I wouldn't be into it all that much, and I tend to like quirky stuff. Yeah, it's just a toy, even a little silly perhaps, but it might be good for smiles a few times a month. No snow here, and I have off street parking.

Last edited by Hal9000; 06/08/20 10:38 PM.
Re: Thinking about getting a CMC Gazelle (Mercedes replica kit car) [Re: Hal9000] #5449417 06/09/20 12:41 AM
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andyd Offline
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Neat little winter car for FL Disc brakes in front If the wheels are 4 lug, it has a Pinto rear end I'm guessing. 5 lugs would be a Toyota axle.. I would look into a bolt on power front disc kit from a Granada or a Fairmont.


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Thick oil is better grin2
Re: Thinking about getting a CMC Gazelle (Mercedes replica kit car) [Re: Hal9000] #5449478 06/09/20 06:43 AM
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Death trap


“It took untold generations to get you where you are. A little gratitude might be in order. If you’re going to insist on bending the world to your way, you better have your reasons.”

435i
Re: Thinking about getting a CMC Gazelle (Mercedes replica kit car) [Re: Hal9000] #5449516 06/09/20 07:43 AM
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This car is light, so make sure your tires have good tread. It WILL hydroplane. Does it have heat and air? Make sure seat belts are well attached and try not to crash.

Rod

Re: Thinking about getting a CMC Gazelle (Mercedes replica kit car) [Re: Hal9000] #5449558 06/09/20 08:29 AM
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Road legal is the only issue I see. Safety/emissions inspections not given in Florida, if you can register it and get plates, go for the gusto.

Does the Siberian Husky come with the purchase, or is the dog an option?

Re: Thinking about getting a CMC Gazelle (Mercedes replica kit car) [Re: Hal9000] #5449584 06/09/20 09:01 AM
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You have driven an early Miata? Depends what you want to do, but I'd drive one just for reference if you are going to do some longer trips.


06 Focus ZXW, 5spd manual, 220km
18 Outback 2.5 CVT 35km 0W20
Re: Thinking about getting a CMC Gazelle (Mercedes replica kit car) [Re: Hal9000] #5449622 06/09/20 09:56 AM
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Hal9000 Offline OP
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No air. Not sure on the heat.
I've driven a number of 1960s - 80s vehicles with drum brakes, no modern safety standards, poor handling compared to modern cars, etc. I just maintain awareness, don't follow cars too closely (knowing a modern car can panic stop faster).
I have a first generation Miata. I've also driven a Geo Metro convertible before, so I do have a reference for very small, light cars. The Gazelle would really only be intended for nice days, knocking about here and there, and maybe an hour or two trip somewhere every so often on a weekend.
The Husky is not included, although if it were an option I might check that box. grin

Last edited by Hal9000; 06/09/20 10:01 AM.
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