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The car in question is a 1973 Ford Falcon XA GT RPO 83 hardtop in its orignal colour of 'McRobertson's Old Gold Orange'. Only two have ever been sold in Australia, and the one that sold last week - nicknamed the Chicken Coupe because of the wire installed at the front of the shed/garage where it had been stored - is in much worse condition than the one owned by Mr Zerk.
Initially, Mr Zerk bought the car - which had been painted blue by its previous owner - to race. When he noticed there was increased interest in the car, the mechanic decided instead to restore it to its original glory at a cost of AU $40,000 - much cheaper than the AU $150,000 he said it could have cost to get done by someone else.
His decision seems like it will pay off. The car that recently sold had apparently been stored in a dusty garage for 30 years and is in desperate need of restoration. Even so, it greatly exceeded its AU $230,000 asking price.
Over the years, Mr Zerk has had offers for his restored vehicle, which he initially drove from on side of Australia to the other to compete in events. It was while doing so that he noticed the increased interest in his vehicle, so decided not to race it. That doesn't mean it doesn't get driven, however.
Mr Zerk said: "I built it to be used not showed and I am not one to leave it sitting in the shed. If it gets worn during use, I can always restore it again and pass it on to my children."
Mr Zerk has received two huge offers on the car over the years. Over a decade ago, a man tried to buy it and trade another vehicle for it.
He said: "I can't remember how much it was, but I remember joking to my wife it was enough to pay off the house and get a jet home. But she told me not to sell it. She said I would just get another car."
He also refused an offer by a man from Zealand a couple of years ago, who offered to purchase the car for between $200,000 and $300,000. Given the price of the one that just sold, it seems Mr Zerk was right to say no.
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