He's chancing it; £1500 for a 1990 automatic. At auction, that car would fetch maybe £4-500 tops (body counts for nothing). If exported, it will probably need at the very least a full repaint to make sellable.
I see crap like this going through the auctions all the time.
Everyone knows that finding the right balance between luxury and sport is a tough. I mean, look at how hard companies like BMW and Audi have to work at it and even they don't always get it right every time.