Route 66 Motors is no longer for sale


NOTE: See important update at the bottom.

Wayne Bales, owner of Route 66 Motors east of Rolla, Mo., since 1979, is entertaining offers to lease or buy his business, which is a combination of a classic used-car lot and a Route 66 souvenir store. Decorated with many vintage petroleum signs, it’s a favorite stop for many traveling the Mother Road in Missouri.

Here’s a link of another image from Joe Sonderman’s Web site.

Bales told me he’s selling the gift-shop inventory at cost if someone wants to buy it out; there’s about $15,000 worth of merchandise left.

The business has about 800 feet of frontage on the north side of Interstate 44 and its own billboard, which will be a crucial tool to pull potential customers off the superslab. The gift shop itself is about 800 square feet, and it includes an apartment in the basement about the same size.

Bales’ inventory of used cars includes a 1966 Mercury station wagon, a 1968 Ford Crestliner, a 1955 Chrysler St. Regis, a 1967 Chevrolet Caprice and others. He also told me that a Love’s Truck Stop is being constructed just up the road from him, which should help boost traffic to Route 66 Motors.

Bales said the business “has been good to us” and has been an “ideal semi-retirement” benture, and selling it gives him mixed emotions. But he’s approaching 70 years old, and he and his wife Pat are wanting to do have more free time that the business won’t allow.

He told me off the record what the selling price would be, and it sounded very reasonable. Potential buyers can call him at (573) 265-5200 or at home at (573) 364-7656.

UPDATE: Route 66 Motors has been taken off the market. The auto sales part of the business will continue to operate, but the souvenir shop is closed.

UPDATE 6/18/2010: Wayne Bales said in an e-mail that he’s taken Route 66 Motors off the market. He says he still enjoys meeting Route 66 travelers, and will continue to greet them for the foreseeable future.

5 thoughts on “Route 66 Motors is no longer for sale

  1. fHi Wayne, I just acquired a beautiful 1970 Lincoln Mark III from a lady who bought it from a classic car dealer in Missouri but she doesn’t recall the name exactly. The car is burgundy with black vinyl top and a full black leather interior. The keys are on a fob which says Route 66 motors, Rolla, Mo so I am taking a fair guess that you may have sold her the car in 2000 or 2001. Do you remember it and can you give me any history on it. The title for the car says that the seller was Custom Auto Service in Arcadia, not you. Sure would love to know more about the car. It is still really nice. I bought it from her on July 30 and drove it home to Florida from Wooster, Ohio this weekend. Thanks much, Jack Magri

  2. hi wayne,
    you sold me a 1967 mustang fastback racing green in spring 05 and I brought it back to Montreal, Canada…3 1/2 yrs later the restoration is almost complete. I bought an eleanor kit from maier racing in California and basically duplicated the movie car as closely as I could ( and as much as my budget would let me). The back chrome bumper still fashions an authentic route 66 motors bumper sticker so we’ll keep the advertising going up north. I’ll forward you pics shortly….

  3. Hi Wayne, I can see on this side that you have sold the shop in Rolla. Back in -96, we was 4 norwegians in a -65 chewy caprice, visit you and took a look over the shop and your cars. May be you remember that I give you bite of a norwegian newspaper, that have a storry abaout you, we had a great tour that time. Hope you are still going. The -65 caprice and I are still going, on the road ewery sommer in Noway greatings from Bjoern

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