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Classic cars that are depreciating


Rustycarlover
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16 hours ago, SiC said:

I don't buy that most people want to buy a particular classic car because of its their generation. There are some but plenty of others want to buy something because it interests them - whether a driving experience they can't get elsewhere, love the look+feel and/or just facinated by the history.

I disagree (politely), there are plenty of people like us who just like various cars because the engineering or history interests them but what drives the market are people who are collecting what they couldn't have when young like XR3s and so on.  They will buy the best with no real concern on price and then plenty of others jump on that rising market and ask inflated prices.

Does seem logical that the lower end of the market will be softening even more than usual at this time of year with the fuel shortages, gas prices and general malaise going around.

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On 9/17/2021 at 4:50 PM, HMC said:

I often like to look at old copies of motor sport from say the  early 60s-late 70s particularly the classifieds. It’s interesting to see what (that was considered a blue chip classic) was held in high esteem with a suitable price tag, larger ad etc; and what was a grainy small photo parked on a muddy bit of grass for a fraction of the price. The relative price differences then and now between different types and era of vehicle within a snapshot of time are often suprising.

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Circa 1971 - Is a cobra now just over twice the price of an xk140?

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That xk is still about- still the same colour but has lost the rear spats and gained the inevitable chromed wire wheels.

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Perhaps with a bigger market to draw on and smaller numbers, a genuine Shelby cobra now seems about 700k and an xk140 dhc about £125k.  

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56 minutes ago, HMC said:

Perhaps with a bigger market to draw on and smaller numbers, a genuine Shelby cobra now seems about 700k and an xk140 dhc about £125k

I've always said that the XK haven't gone up in value as much as they should have, given their pedigree. Especially compared to the E-Type.

I think the original photo showed wire wheels, just hard to tell.

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9 minutes ago, SiC said:

I've always said that the XK haven't gone up in value as much as they should have, given their pedigree. Especially compared to the E-Type.

I think the original photo showed wire wheels, just hard to tell.

They're a bit shit though, aren't they. 120s look nice but aren't very practical or particularly fast, and they're worth lots of money. 140s look shit and aren't very quick, so aren't worth loads. 150s look okay but only the S is properly fast - and they're worth loads. Annoying, as I really liked the 150S I drove (battleship grey, spats, steels, original paint and interior) but it was just a tiny bit out of budget...

1 hour ago, cort1977 said:

I disagree (politely), there are plenty of people like us who just like various cars because the engineering or history interests them but what drives the market are people who are collecting what they couldn't have when young like XR3s and so on.  They will buy the best with no real concern on price and then plenty of others jump on that rising market and ask inflated prices.

Does seem logical that the lower end of the market will be softening even more than usual at this time of year with the fuel shortages, gas prices and general malaise going around.

Also politely, XR3s etc aren't really 'the market' - the most expensive cars in the world are all 60 or more years old, often much older

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43 minutes ago, barrett said:

They're a bit shit though, aren't they. 120s look nice but aren't very practical or particularly fast, and they're worth lots of money. 140s look shit and aren't very quick, so aren't worth loads. 150s look okay but only the S is properly fast - and they're worth loads. Annoying, as I really liked the 150S I drove (battleship grey, spats, steels, original paint and interior) but it was just a tiny bit out of budget...

You're going to be a better judge than me, given (iirc) it's your day job and you have more experience of them first hand - especially driving. In terms of being a bit shit, surely compared to other stuff of the similar era, they're pretty decent? Of course the usual that all are a bit shit (especially on paper) compared to similar stuff from the next decade, likewise that decade being a bit shit compared compared to the decade after.

I'd dig any of them and I think they all look good. Admittedly, me being me and even if I had the money to not, I'd be rocking around one that's bit of an old nail. Like this

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Also interesting of note (to me) that the guy who owned that looked to be in his 50s. That would have been 30-40 years old when he was 18. Similar sort of age to MGBs when I was 18 and I started noticing them.

A car that definitely would have been before his time - even taking into account errors in my age prediction of him.

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16 minutes ago, barrett said:

Yep, well, I'm 35 and the best car I've ever has was made in 1923. Admittedly I'm an outlier, but there are plenty of others like me - enough to ensure Vintage stuff will never be worthless for at least as long as petrol is available to private motorists

Aye.... I'm 64 and the 'best car/grin - per - £' I ever had was built when I was 6!

ToMM© was a bit of a rocket.... But, still, all the time I owned it I never did 7k upchanges/tyresmoker.

SuziQ however, @993cc, is WOT everywhere 😎

*I love IMPs me

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40 minutes ago, barrett said:

Yep, well, I'm 35 and the best car I've ever has was made in 1923. Admittedly I'm an outlier, but there are plenty of others like me - enough to ensure Vintage stuff will never be worthless for at least as long as petrol is available to private motorists

Same age as me. A few additional thoughts.

As above, there is not really that many old cars left especially the older you get. Enough for us outliers imo. But possibly not enough if more people get hooked into older cars. The older I get, the older the cars that seem to interest me and I don't think I'm a complete outlier in that regard. The pool isn't increasing apart from projects that are dug out. But the skills, knowledge and tech to recreate parts isn't completely dieing out and in some cases is improving while becoming more readily available (e.g. 3D printing, laser cutting, CNC machining)

Secondly I have noticed plenty of Millennials at car meets - especially Haynes Breakfast Meet. Many are driving in older cars. Admittedly not so many pre-war cars but there is less of them about anyway. Looking at the age of the person taking photos of cars that interest them is also interesting. Definitely interest in classics from all generations, especially Gen Z and us Millennials. Can't see that going anyway soon. Those that are interested in older cars won't necessarily be stuck in one era either. The fact they're looking/owning cars that are far older with little sentimental attachment will, I imagine, lead then to explore all eras.

Idea of the Haynes breakfast meet and what turns up here in their FB group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/530159797641538/

The pre-war Rollers, Bentley's and such are owned by older gentleman but that's understandable given the cost expenditure to not only buy but also run such a machine.

Finally I'm not fearful of us not ever getting fuel. You can already buy specialist exotic race fuel and the like online and couriered to your house. Expensive admittedly but still is possible.

One thing that strikes me over all the E10 shinagians and scaremongering is that the classic car industry should not be fighting it. If anything the classic groups should be investigating higher ethanol contents and how to run older engines on it. If in half a century time we've stopped extracting oil in any quantity, there will have to be alternative sources. Sugar beat, corn kernels and the like are always going to be grown. All possible to be converted into pure Ethanol. There is an argument for wether it's right to convert it into fuels but that's a different argument. If there is a demand and legislation doesn't prohibit it, then it will be converted into different products. So in a Dino juice free future, to continue running our rattly lumps may need to be converted to run off straight Ethanol.

There is talk from Porsche, et al of synthetic fuels. However given how easy it is to grow crops that can be converted to Ethanol, I find it hard that they will be competitive against it.

TVO is a good example where the original fuel has disappeared from general availability long ago. Those that run equipment from it have had to find other methods of creating roughly equivalent.

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2 hours ago, barrett said:

They're a bit shit though, aren't they. 120s look nice but aren't very practical or particularly fast, and they're worth lots of money. 140s look shit and aren't very quick, so aren't worth loads. 150s look okay but only the S is properly fast - and they're worth loads. Annoying, as I really liked the 150S I drove (battleship grey, spats, steels, original paint and interior) but it was just a tiny bit out of budget...

Also politely, XR3s etc aren't really 'the market' - the most expensive cars in the world are all 60 or more years old, often much older

The XK140 are very nice. I used to have one. They are pretty fast - 130+ if in a good state - but of course the dial of what is performance has moved on since...1954 which was when mine was made...the thing that inhibited fast use was the drum brakes and their propensity  to fade fad fa f.....

They of course have the coolest boot badge of any car...

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If you get the chance to drive one I would recommend  it...they are very special. And if one came up affordable jump at the chance to own one. 

These days they can have aftermarket discs fitted...so you stand a chance of survival...

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2 hours ago, barrett said:

Also politely, XR3s etc aren't really 'the market' - the most expensive cars in the world are all 60 or more years old, often much older

Surely there's a market for more or less anything, how you segment it is up to you.  I suppose i was talking about the British sub-10k market SiC was referring to in his posts but the cars at the likes of Pebble Beach are much older agreed.  Arguably, those cars would be better segmented with fine art or property as investments though.

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I'm not sure there are many on this group that are buying £1m+ cars.

However, the largest growing market has to be 80s cars now? I mean, Escort Mk1s and so on appear to be hitting a high. Now us folks in their late 40s and 50s are pushing the prices up on your Lancia Delta Integrales (which are going up stupidly) and even now the 90s Scoobies are going back up in value.

I bought my MR2 Roadster simply because I loved the shape of them at the time and could have arguably afforded one. However, at the time, I'd just had my second child and a family car, they're not.

I do think many of us buy "modern classics" because they were cars we always wanted at the time.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Sept 1998 Practical Classics price guide.
Hi Res images so should be possible to zoom in for a closer look.
For an idea of value comparison, £1k in 1998 is £1.8k now.
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As I'm back to obsessing over Minis again, here is the classifieds for them. MK1 really were not seen as that desirable even only two decades ago. Morris Minors are a similar value! Likewise a MG Midget or B is twice the price of a MK1 Mini.
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Was chatting to the trader I bought my Fabia off. He said that classic MGs really haven't changed in price all these years. Looking through a bunch of old magazines I bought today, I would say that's true.

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On 10/13/2021 at 10:34 AM, barrett said:

Also politely, XR3s etc aren't really 'the market' - the most expensive cars in the world are all 60 or more years old, often much older

No. But they’re still classics.

what I would say is that the XR3s haven’t really gone up. The RS turbo and escort cosworth are now bonkers.

probably for the same reason as the jag above. The XR3 looked nice, but the performance wasn’t all that great. The Focus RS vs the much milder ST will have similar in the future.

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12 hours ago, SiC said:

Sept 1998 Practical Classics price guide.
Hi Res images so should be possible to zoom in for a closer look.
For an idea of value comparison, £1k in 1998 is £1.8k now.
94fa045d4fa336e842aeeb67ddb6f153.jpg
ab8f65830439dc206f1478e5ef11100b.jpg
48126b8e34e318f1373712ef20d2de92.jpg
2afa714d9febbd16c58e398bdfaf6329.jpg
6f04925e862ec17f36eea9b9b74998f6.jpg
2101d3fa87a8f65a383a46ad871fcbf6.jpg

As I'm back to obsessing over Minis again, here is the classifieds for them. MK1 really were not seen as that desirable even only two decades ago. Morris Minors are a similar value! Likewise a MG Midget or B is twice the price of a MK1 Mini.
3d29eb596742db84ab6f10dfe8628321.jpg

Was chatting to the trader I bought my Fabia off. He said that classic MGs really haven't changed in price all these years. Looking through a bunch of old magazines I bought today, I would say that's true.

Yes some MGB's remain very cheap - particularly  the less desirable types. 

What is it? Supply and demand, lack of nostalgia (not aspirational to the generation that grew up with them), too boring, just a lot of better cars about etc? Too 'middle class' when those prosperous middle classes have moved on to spend their money on other cars or things?

I think the Mini boom was completely  unseen to many - they were just a throwaway car made in their millions to most. 

Funny the see-saw of values. Triumph  Heralds were all the rage at one point. 

Minor values seem on a plateau - partly I'd guess because many  surviving cars are at a point where they need serious  money spending on them and garage work is now so expensive?

And of course  generations die off - who will care for all the Rover P4's and Hillman Minx as the Rays, Rons and Dons disappear?

A similar situation  with many Pre-War cars - values are not huge on most.

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Yes some MGB's remain very cheap - particularly  the less desirable types. 
What is it? Supply and demand, lack of nostalgia (not aspirational to the generation that grew up with them), too boring, just a lot of better cars about etc?


Really popular for a long time and a type of car that people treasured. Great parts supply and plenty of information on them. Hence a good survival rate and thus...
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Plenty of demand but still plenty of supply. Don't think it's not having a generation grow up with them thing. Just look at how many of my generation (Millennials) on Instagram, etc who have MGBs and love them. Could also be nostalgia as go to a show when you're young, you see plenty of them and hence make a mark. Then when having enough disposable income (late 20s, early 30s) to afford to buy one. Despite their shortcomings of being an old design, people still love them for the same reasons that they sold so well originally.

This is despite the classic press seemingly loving to poo poo them in any comparison with other cars. Basically to work in the classic press, a prerequisite is to moan about the MGB. Despite the fact they were and still are so popular for good reason. If they weren't fun to drive and nice to look at, they'd have not sold well originally and wouldn't have lasted so long.

Likewise the ol' Moggie is much loved, plenty of parts and easy to repair. Also possibly nostalgia from grandparents, etc having one as their toy classic car.
Hence they are still cheap. These numbers are probably even on the low side as many likely have just Morris on their V5.
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Minis still loads about but prices have climbed. Mostly boomed post covid. Again plenty of parts, easy to work on and a great first project - fits in a garage easily to work on. They are a cult icon unlike the MGB and Moggie, which explains the greater demand. However you can still reliably get a really good one under £8k and 1980s examples are regularly under 5k.

Numbers hard to judge as there is the Austin Mini, Morris Mini, Rover Mini and just Mini which is mixed in the BMW Mini. However a quick look of Austin Mini and Rover Mini shows many thousands still registered.

This is my view, I'm sure others will have differing.
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Yes as an 'asset class' they are particularly 'illiquid' - requiring expensive storage and maintenance  to hold their perceived value and quite difficult  to market effectively  and achive a sale.

Better to stick to Bitcoin or vintage Rolex. 😉 

I remember  during the late 80's classic car boom ther were various 'investment funds' where you could buy into a collection of 'appreciating' classic supercars - ie old nails in a shed being polished by some geezer with a beard. Understandably they all went pop...

 

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I think the question actually goes deeper than what's in vogue and what isn't. The car has only been around for just over 120 years as we know it. Society is still developing its views on the car, therefore, how we treat classics and where we draw the line is still up for debate. We have had tables for thousands of years and antique tables are highly varied and some are more valued than others. This is because we have a backlog of thousands of years to reference, so we know what is an antique and what isn't. Nowadays the idea of the 'modern classic' has basically led to people calling contemporary cars collectables, therefore they are unlikely ever to go down in price as much as their forebears. I am trying to find a Nissan 370Z for my mother at the moment as a birthday gift, and nice early ones seem to be around the 14.5k mark. Are they ever going to get cheaper and be like the 260Z in 1998, or will they get put on the MoDerN claSSiC bandwagon before their time. As a classic enthusiast, I prefer 1980s and 90s cars, as I feel they are the most useable everyday. They are Modern Classics totally, but I feel people are jumping the gun in order to justify higher prices. Just some food for thought

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It’s what people are spending on these ‘appreciating classics’ are unbelievable. Some years ago me and a mate did an XR3i up, went out for a run it in it, it was dreadful, slow, heavy etc. Looked great but it would have its tits ripped off by a Clio 1.2.

In summary it looked the dogs bollocks but as soon as you turned the key, you remembered they were actually a bit shit. They were a good car in 1988, but now it’d annoy me, the parts are eleven million quid, it’s foul to drive and you can’t escape the fact that times moved on, you are 45, you won’t get those days back when you were 20 hammering the life out of an XR3i. It’s gone...

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11 minutes ago, sierraman said:

It’s what people are spending on these ‘appreciating classics’ are unbelievable.

I know! Likewise, I can't believe people waste money buying and running old bangers.

I mean who the hell wants to waste money on something like a shitty old Mondeo MK4 or Insignia? Knackered, old fashioned, slow, smell of other peoples sweat and tears. Noddy infotainment without even Apple Car Play. No radar cruise or lane assist so hard work driving. Crappy incapable halogen headlights or just about acceptable xenon - not a patch on LED headlights though. Certainly no auto dip function, let alone intelligent matrix zone lighting. Then none of the latest crash safety and eCall.

Why on earth would anyone want that old shit garbage when you can get the latest and freshest car for only a few hundred quid a month? A years worth of payments is only about what one of those pauper cars costs. Plus there is the warranty to cover it, unlike wasting the same on a heap that will need money spending on it or blow up in that year. 

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The reference to antiques is interesting. The world has moved on a lot in the last forty years. Fashion has changed and a lot of, previously valued, stuff is now available for a fraction of what is was. OK the museum quality stuff is still there, but the more run of the mill stuff has plummeted. Years ago every, run of the mill, antique shop would have loads of brass, few people want it now. Some very nice, properly made, furniture is so unfashionable you can hardly give it away, also it's too big for many houses. China and porcelain are the same, the best of the best still has a value, but the stuff that got dragged along is cheap. 

Stuff is being "repurposed" hacked about and painted to make it fashionable. In most cases you can buy the antique piece for much less than the cost of new wood  to make a new cupboard, etc. 

 

 

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18 hours ago, sierraman said:

It’s what people are spending on these ‘appreciating classics’ are unbelievable. Some years ago me and a mate did an XR3i up, went out for a run it in it, it was dreadful, slow, heavy etc. Looked great but it would have its tits ripped off by a Clio 1.2.

In summary it looked the dogs bollocks but as soon as you turned the key, you remembered they were actually a bit shit. They were a good car in 1988, but now it’d annoy me, the parts are eleven million quid, it’s foul to drive and you can’t escape the fact that times moved on, you are 45, you won’t get those days back when you were 20 hammering the life out of an XR3i. It’s gone...

An Interesting POV that. I am 18, nearly 19. I have only ever driven, and only ever wanted to drive, older cars. When viewed in isolation they are actually perfectly acceptable cars. The cars may never have been bad, it is just the world has moved on. But it isn't as cut and dry as that. My 1988 Volvo 480ES which is my daily, sure it has only got 110bhp, but it drives perfectly fine and will keep pace with modern traffic and you get a fun experience to boot. The Rover I have just sold was an absolute rocket ship that spent a lot of its time cockblocking racy hot hatches (I will never forget accelerating after the car in front of me turned into a side road from a 60 and a Mercedes hot hatch that was trying to jump the queue of traffic behind wasn't fast enough to get ahead of the Rover Twin-Cam). As for the family quattro, that car is still something else entirely, and will shock even the most cynical of older car snobs

17 hours ago, anonymous user said:

The reference to antiques is interesting. The world has moved on a lot in the last forty years. Fashion has changed and a lot of, previously valued, stuff is now available for a fraction of what is was. OK the museum quality stuff is still there, but the more run of the mill stuff has plummeted. Years ago every, run of the mill, antique shop would have loads of brass, few people want it now. Some very nice, properly made, furniture is so unfashionable you can hardly give it away, also it's too big for many houses. China and porcelain are the same, the best of the best still has a value, but the stuff that got dragged along is cheap. 

Stuff is being "repurposed" hacked about and painted to make it fashionable. In most cases you can buy the antique piece for much less than the cost of new wood  to make a new cupboard, etc. 

 

 

Yes its actually quite relevant to the times as in order to save the planet as a civilisation we need to consume less, however we have this fixation on buying new all the time and therefore cars which should be lasting 50+ years are getting left behind for new chod which is often less long-lasting. I expect that a 'modern classic' from 2018 will be exceptionally rare in 2045, whereas my dad's old Willys Jeep will probably still be going at 100 years old, likewise for the quattro (if Audi actually gets off their arse and supports it with parts) 

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18 hours ago, SiC said:

I know! Likewise, I can't believe people waste money buying and running old bangers.

I mean who the hell wants to waste money on something like a shitty old Mondeo MK4 or Insignia? Knackered, old fashioned, slow, smell of other peoples sweat and tears. Noddy infotainment without even Apple Car Play. No radar cruise or lane assist so hard work driving. Crappy incapable halogen headlights or just about acceptable xenon - not a patch on LED headlights though. Certainly no auto dip function, let alone intelligent matrix zone lighting. Then none of the latest crash safety and eCall.

Why on earth would anyone want that old shit garbage when you can get the latest and freshest car for only a few hundred quid a month? A years worth of payments is only about what one of those pauper cars costs. Plus there is the warranty to cover it, unlike wasting the same on a heap that will need money spending on it or blow up in that year. 

I think having no money and being generally tight influences driving old bangers. That and a new car would be completely wasted on me, it gets kept in the street, rarely washed etc. The comment I made was referencing people’s expectations if they spent what is now a substantial sum buying the said XR3I. It was a good car back then but sometimes it’s like revisiting a girlfriend you’d had 20 years ago, going back when she was 50 expecting her to still bang like a shit house door in a gale. 

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