THE CAR AND ITS OWNER: 1935 Chevrolet Standard coupe owned by Cathy Auricchio

WHAT MAKES IT INTERESTING: Auricchio's six-cylinder Chevrolet played a key role in the company's battle with Ford for U.S. sales supremacy through the mid-1930s.  In the eyes of collectors, however, vintage Fords have usually won by a wide margin due largely to their more powerful V-8 engines and hot-rodding potential.  But with classic Ford prices continuing to rise, some enthusiasts have turned to the Chevys as a smart, collectible alternative.  Even though Chevrolet churned out nearly 800,000 passenger cars in 1935 alone (including a reported 60,000 Standard coupes), good examples are scarce because many were daily drivers, junked at the end of their lives.  As a result, the Fords tend to overwhelm the classic car shows.  "It's very unusual to see a Chevy instead of a Ford survivor," says Auricchio.

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WHERE SHE FOUND IT: She bought it from an owner in Alexandria, Virginia.

CONDITION: Auricchio's ride has the original drive train and mechanical brakes.  It also sports a rare factory-installed radio (original price: $45) and temperature gauge. "It was restored in 2003 with detail to 1935 specs," she says.  "With her dual carbs, I can cruise at 55 miles per hour.  I drive her to shows in Nassau and Suffolk counties.  She is never trailered." 

TIPS FOR OWNERS: "Get the youth of today interested in the hobby," she advises. "Keep the spark alive."

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VALUE: Auricchio says the Chevy is "worth the world to me."  The NADA Guides puts a "high retail" value of $21,300 on a similar coupe.  The original showroom price was $475.

THE BOTTOM LINE: "I have always wanted a three-window coupe," she says.  "I am told by the second owner that the original owner used her to run moonshine in the Blue Ridge Mountains."