The financial difficulties facing Detroit, MI, are well known with examples including not having the funds to replace batteries in its parking meters and at least considering selling off its art collection. To make some extra money, the city is holding a public auction on November 5 where it's getting rid of what it is calling surplus vehicles. Usually, Autoblog wouldn't cover a municipal auction, but a few of the lots are so interestingly bizarre that they need to be seen.
Looking through the items, you find pretty much all of the machinery a city needs to function with a huge number of vans, pickups, medium-duty trucks, even a transit bus. But then lots 224, 225 (pictured above) and 226 jump out at you because they consist of three trolley cars that appear much older than everything else listed.
Remarkably, all three appear to be in impressive condition and vary in length from 22 to 32 feet. Lot 224 is in a shade of sea foam green and eggshell white that you just don't see anymore. All three are covered in dust, but the wooden interiors of 224 and 225 still seem to be in great shape. Lot 226 seems to be in the worst shape of the bunch from the photos, but it still isn't too bad. There's also a listing for lot 1050 that just says "3 trolley cars" with no further description or images, as of this writing.
There's no indication what these old streetcars were used for or how long the city has had them. It's possible that they could be among the nine, historic trolleys that ran along Detroit's Washington Boulevard from 1976 through 2003. Check out the auction listings for more photos of them.