Liz Murphy, an executive assistant from the Chicago area, sold the car to bidder John Reznikoff for $26,000. She bought it in 2004 and kept the paperwork on the famous owner at the advisement of the car dealer, the Wall Street Journal reports.
“You never know, he might be president some day,’” she recalls the dealer saying.
President Obama bought the black Jeep Grand Cherokee new in 2000 when he was a state senator. It had more than 130,000 miles on it when Reznikoff bought it an online auction.
Kelly Blue Book puts the value of a similar car at $3,500.
"I would have been willing to pay over $100,000 for it," said Reznikoff, the founder and president of University Archives, which is based in Westport, Connecticut.
Another of Obama's former cars is now valued at about $1 million, he said, so $26,000 feels like a deal.
“I think I got myself a bargain there,” Reznikoff said. “Time will tell.”
The University Archives has relics from every American president, including John F. Kennedy's parade car (similar to the one he was assassinated in), a fragment of George Washington's coat, Abraham Lincoln's desk, Lyndon Johnson's sport coat and Ronald Reagan's rocking chair, Reznikoff said.
Reznikoff has never driven the Kennedy car, but he will drive the Jeep when it arrives from Chicago.
“I’ve been too afraid,” he said about the Kennedy car. “One mark, one mar and it brings the value down.”
More than $6,000 of Reznikoff's purchase price will be donated to CARE, a humanitarian organization that fights global poverty.
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