Ron Dauzet, proper, along with his good friend Jim. All photos: David Tracy.
I’ve obtained some excellent news on Ron Dauzet, the Michigan man being pressured by Northfield Township to dump his monumental automobile assortment at a staggering fee of 20 vehicles per 30 days: because of the assistance of Jalopnik readers and the huge quantity of consideration round his story, Ron is on observe to fulfill his month-to-month quota.
To Ron Dauzet, it’s a set of greater than 200 vehicles—some frequent, some uncommon, all the pieces from outdated…
Really, the information is healthier than that; Ron expects to not solely meet his September 20-cars-per-month quota, however he additionally thinks he’ll be capable to make up for the months he was poor (like final month). So Ron must be all caught up when the township inspector is available in early October.
Ron, chances are you’ll recall, is the 74-year-old man whose property at one pointed contained greater than 200 outdated vehicles. His native authorities deemed it in violation of zoning legal guidelines, after which ordered him to promote 20 vehicles a month—a troublesome ask for a automobile dealership, not to mention one man.
Clearly, higher information would have been if the township had reached out to Ron and lower him a break, reducing the quota or simply eliminating their mandate fully (since Ron’s assortment is out of sight, in the course of nowhere). However, alas, Ron says the township hasn’t stated a peep.
However who has stated a peep, Ron instructed me, are outdated associates like Jim within the high picture, with whom Ron used to work with at Ford (Ron was once a powertrain dyno-cell technician).
I met Jim yesterday after I visited Ron to verify on progress; apparently, the 2 hadn’t spoken in 25 years. Jim is only one of a lot of outdated Ford coworkers who’ve reached out after studying about Jim after Jalopnik broke the story final Monday.
However the calls which were sending Ron’s telephone off the hook aren’t these from outdated associates, however reasonably these from potential patrons. Ron says he’s amassed 130 missed calls on his telephone for the reason that story went up, and that his spouse had so as to add extra money to his cell plan to accommodate the inflow. Ron instructed me that, within the days following the article’s publication, individuals confirmed up at Ron’s place from 10 a.m. till eight p.m., with vehicles parked on the dust highway outdoors his driveway for a whole block.
Ron thanked me endlessly for writing the story, telling me that because it went up, issues have gotten higher, saying, “It’s undoubtedly an enchancment [over the slow trickle of people coming to buy cars before the story went up]… this was like a mad rush.”
That inflow of inquiries has led to 13 vehicles being offered within the final week alone (11 of that are gone, and two of which Ron will signal the title over to as quickly because the verify clears), with individuals coming from so far as Illinois and Tennessee. Demand has been particularly heavy for the Jeepster Commando and Chevy Stepside; Ron tells me he’s gotten in all probability 150 inquiries on simply these two automobiles. Ron plans to get the truck working and the Jeep’s engine freed-up earlier than parting methods with them.
Along with the vehicles he’s offered this month previous to the story, and the six vehicles he’s obtained lined as much as promote to a outstanding Michigan junkyard (they reached out to him after studying the story, and supplied him an honest value), Ron says he’s in pretty first rate form so far as the township’s quota is worried.
He’s truly hoping to get a bit forward of the township’s necessities, as Ron instructed me that, as quickly because the climate will get dangerous, he received’t be capable to get his forklift to the vehicles with out getting caught. Proper now, he’s working from again to entrance to prioritize the automobiles which are in spots that might problem his “Hello-Lo.” Getting forward of the quota may even permit Ron to repair up a number of the vehicles that he is aware of he may get going with only a bit of labor; he has numerous seized brakes to release.
Sadly, Ron has needed to take care of a bunch of lowballers. But when there’s one factor I’ve discovered about Ron, it’s that he is not going to be ripped off. He could also be turning 75 subsequent week, however he drives a hell of a tough discount, and won’t be swayed by individuals who pester him with the basic, “I’ve obtained money.”
And whereas I don’t assume all of Ron’s vehicles are wonderful offers, a lot of them are literally fairly good buys. Like this 1989 Toyota 4Runner from Virginia. The physique has little or no rust, and though the handbook transmission wants some work, it’s a 4Runner for $900. I’m half inclined to purchase that myself.
And that’s not even mentioning all of the VW Cabriolets Ron’s obtained sitting round. This one doesn’t present any rust on the skin, and although it wants work on the highest and maybe on the gasoline injection system, Ron’s solely asking $600 or greatest provide:
I’m tempted to choose that up myself and run it in subsequent yr’s Gambler 500.
On a distinct observe, Ron confirmed me some vehicles I hadn’t seen earlier than, a lot of which aren’t on the market. Right here’s the within of considered one of his buildings, whose roof is within the strategy of disintegrating (that’s a Mannequin A reproduction with a Ford 2.Three-liter inline-four beneath the hood, an outdated BMW e23 735i, and a Renault Alliance within the nook):
Right here’s a again lot of random vehicles I didn’t see after I final visited (that is throughout the road, technically in one other township):
Additionally throughout the road is an Austin Mini, and a bunch of BMWs being smothered by shrubs:
There have been extra vehicles again there:
In one other considered one of Ron’s garages sat a really clear BMW 2002:
There was additionally a one-owner, low mileage Tremendous Beetle convertible (which isn’t on the market):
And there’s a really low-mileage Honda Accord that’s clearly been sitting for some time:
Additionally within the storage: A Porsche 928:
After which there was what seems to be a late ’50s Mercedes 220S:
Ron says he might half methods with what seems to be a VW Beetle-based equipment automobile:
As you’ll be able to see by the pictures, and that Instagram video above, Ron’s nonetheless obtained tons of vehicles to do away with. However, thanks partly to Jalopnik readers, he’s in a a lot better spot at present than he was every week and a half in the past. And he appreciates that immensely.