Real or fake?
Claimed to be the only Tucker 48 built as a two-door convertible, the Tucker has drawn criticism from many collector car enthusiasts, including Jay Follis of the Tucker Automobile Club of America, who issued a statement in 2009 noting that the club has found no evidence that the factory ever built such a car. Justin Cole of Benchmark Classics in Madison, Wisconsin, who owned the car at the time and undertook its restoration, nevertheless presented it as a one-off prototype secretly built at about the time when pilot production of Preston Tucker’s four-door, air-cooled, rear-engine sedan ended. Cole initially offered the Tucker for sale for $5 million, then later dropped his price to $3.99 million. When it crossed the block at the January 2010 Russo and Steele Scottsdale auction, it bid up to $1.4 million but failed to meet Cole’s reserve.