Special SUV: 1979 International Scout Midnite Star Edition – Sold?
September 13, 2021 Update – We just confirmed the listing for this rare IH Scout “Classifind” expired, so with no replacement found we’re assuming this ride “Sold?” While this one got away, please reach out either by email or call us directly if you’d like to be informed when we come across something similar.
By 1979 International Harvester’s (“IH”) consumer business was on life support as two decades of continually adding unrelated business lines created a disjointed corporate conglomerate. Overly conservative management and a rigid policy of in-house promotion tended to stifle new management strategies and technological innovation. Despite satisfactory sales throughout all of this, profit margins remained slim and cash reserves low. In 1979, the IH board elected a new CEO, Archie McCardell, who was determined to improve profit margins and drastically cut costs. The company’s consumer business is his first target.
Facing increased competition, struggling to meet increasing emissions regulations, and suffering through rising gas prices, IH continued to watch the sale of its Scout II SUV decrease each year. With barely any money to innovate its aging SUV dating back to 1971, the company turned to outside suppliers to develop and market a variety of special editions. One of the rarer variants was the 1979 Midnite Star Edition like this restored example originally listed in August 2021 on Craigslist on Staten Island, New York offered at $41,995 currently. Comparing that price against the Hagerty Insurance Online Valuation Tool confirms the private seller has their Scout II priced between this guide’s #3 “Good” estimate of $28,600and its #2 “Excellent” appraisal of $55,000. Interestingly, the Collector Car Market Review Online Tool provides a much different assessment as in this case the asking price is over eight thousand dollars above this guide’s #1 “Excellent” appraisal of $33,900.
The Midnitestar was a variant of the International Harvester “star” series converted by Goodtimes Inc. of Arlington, Texas. Features included a hood scoop, an SSII-style grille, fender flares, plastic tailgate and rocker moldings, rubber body trim, and window louvers. Only one hundred fifty examples were believed to be produced for the 1979 model year.
Here’s a classic International Scout commercial from 1979:
By the limited pictures provided, this appears to be a nicely restored, low mileage Scout II that is well-detailed throughout. With prices of rare special edition examples like this Skyrocketing, now may be the time to pick up this rare example.
Here’s the seller’s description:
“This 1979 International Harvester Scout II is a Midnitestar Edition which is finished in Dark Brown Metallic over a Sierra Tan vinyl interior and powered by a 345ci V8 paired with a three-speed automatic transmission and a two-speed transfer case.
A $16k service performed by Automotion of Topeka, Kansas in December 2018 included the installation of a new carburetor, pushrods, brake booster, master cylinder, power steering gearbox, and air conditioning compressor as well as electrical, cooling, and other work. The truck was sold on BaT in August 2018 before being acquired by the previous owner in October 2019. Wheel bearing and brake work was performed under current ownership. This Scout II is offered with service records, a copy of its line setting ticket, and a clean title. In my 2 years of ownership the car saw a few sunny days and under 500 miles of driving. I added the roll bar for the rear as well. The top comes off with 3 options, hardtop, rag top, no top (with a roll cage). Great Beachcomber
The Midnitestar was a variant of the International Harvester “star” series that was converted by Goodtimes Inc. of Arlington, Texas. Features included a hood scoop, an SSII-style grille, fender flares, plastic tailgate and rocker moldings, rubber body trim, and window louvers. This example underwent bodywork and a repaint in factory Dark Brown Metallic (1606) under previous ownership in 2011, and gold pinstriping and factory decals were reapplied afterward.
Factory 15″ steel wheels were refinished in gold and wear 31″ BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A tires. The December 2018 service included installation of a new brake booster and master cylinder, power steering gearbox and pump, upper and lower steering shafts, and associated brackets. Service to the wheel bearings and brakes was performed under previous ownership.
The Sierra Tan interior was refurbished with new carpets and a white headliner under previous ownership, while the seats were rebuilt with new foam and recovered using pillow-top vinyl upholstery. A center console with cupholders was standard on Midnitestar Edition Scouts. The air conditioning system was rebuilt and converted to use R134a refrigerant in December 2018.
Service records and a copy of the original line setting ticket are included in the sale. Attached are itemized invoice from December 2018
No lowball offers, this car needs nothing at all and Im in no rush to sell it
No I dont need help selling it
No I dont want to trade for something else“
Show or go: what would you do with this restored Scout II? Comment below and let us know!
Scout market is seeing an upward trend. This Scout has been for sale for a long time. It shows very nice, but it’s either not being marketed well or there is something that may not be quite right as I cannot figure out why it’s been for sale for such a long time.