Automobile enthusiasts who collect and restore classic cars do so for several reasons. Perhaps the most important, it provides a reminder of the “good old days.” According to carspyphotos.net, classic cars “allow [collectors] to have a piece of history in their hands. They allow them to reminisce about their youth.”
Older cars also allow amateur mechanics the opportunity to tinker. They are easier to work on than modern vehicles with their complicated high-tech computer-controlled systems. Changing the spark plugs and setting the distributor timing on a classic car usually doesn’t require advanced analytic equipment.
Classic car collectors are also motivated by the investment potential of owning the car of their youth or a rare edition. In recent years, buyer demand is continuing to drive prices higher. Most attractive are those classics with original parts in good condition, cars with low mileage, and certain brands like Pontiac Firebird, Ford Mustang, Chevrolet Corvette, Jaguar, Ferrari, and Porsche. In general, older cars are more valuable.
For those considering the purchase of a classic car, here are the 2020 prices for twenty examples.
20. 1969 Chevrolet Camaro Z28 - $58,000
Via: Mecum Auctions
Few rivalries can top the fierce competition between the Ford Mustang and the Chevrolet Camaro in the 1960s. It was a battle that lasted thirty-five years until 2002 when GM retired the Camaro. Perhaps the most desirable of all the Camaros is the 1969 Z28, which boasted a combination of exceptional styling with engine, exhaust, and brake options.
19. 1967 Volkswagen Beetle - $18,000 - $22,000
The VW “Bug” is neither a muscle car nor is it an exotic sports car, but it has become one of the world’s most iconic vehicles and remains in high demand among collectors worldwide.
One former VW owner said, “The cars were clunky, cold, cramped, sluggishly performing, and quirky as hell. The rear end was so heavy that if it ever cut loose on you, it'd be the front end before you knew it. I can't wait to own another one!”
18. 1995 Dodge Viper - $34,000 - $39,000
Designed by Lamborghini during the years that Chrysler owned the Italian exotic car maker, the 8-liter V10 engine gave the Dodge Viper exceptional power. Despite the use of aluminum, the engine still weighed over 700 lbs., significantly contributing to the cars 3,300 curb weight, but it accelerated the beast to 60 mph in under 4 seconds.
17. 1969 Ford Boss 302 Mustang - $79,900
Via: My Car Board
Ford produced only 1,627 Boss 302 Mustangs in 1969, making the pony car a rare model compared to standard Mustangs.
The Boss 302 had a factory gross power rating of 290 hp. However, road tests of a car weighing about 3,500 pounds with a driver and test gear conducted in the 60s showed mid-to-high 14-second ETs at 94-97 mph. The results suggest a power rating closer to 400 hp, and many enthusiasts still believe the higher figure to be more accurate.
16. 1990 Ferrari Testarossa - $130,000
In 1999 a previously owned Ferrari Testarossa sold for a mere $45,000. Today, the same car would fetch $130,000.
The 4.9-liter V12 generates 380 horsepower, accelerating the car to 60 mph in 5.2 seconds, which isn't fast by today’s standards. However, the Testarossa has gained value over the last decade (and will continue to climb) because the Ferrari offered a unique driving experience not found in a modern vehicle.
15. 1987 BMW M6 - $40,000 - $45,000
Based on the BMW 635CSi, the M6 was developed entirely by the company’s racing division, Motorsport, along with the M3 and M5.
Motorsport gained fame for the exotic M1 introduced in 1979, and for developing the BMW Formula 1 engine that won the 1983 World Championship. The coupe accelerates from 0–62 mph in 4.2 seconds and reaches an electronically limited top speed of 155 mph.
14. 1950 Jaguar XK120 Roadster - $65,000
Via: WinSpeed Motorsport
The ultimate postwar British car, the Jaguar XK120, represented a turning point in Jaguar’s history. At the time of its introduction in 1948, the XK120 was the fastest car in the world and is still considered one of the most beautiful British cars ever made.
1950 Jaguar XK120 Roadster boasts a curvaceous bodywork (available in British racing green), which covered the new XK inline-6 engine and promised never-before-seen performance.
13. 1964 Aston Martin DB5 - $450,000
Via: Classic Driver
Although the Aston Martin DB5 used in the original James Bond films, Goldfinger and Thunderball is priced out of most collector’s budgets (it sold for $4.6 million in 2010), another DB5 that has never appeared on the big screen, can be found for a mere $450,000. However, the car would most likely lack the red button on the gearshift connected to the passenger ejector seat.
12. 1977 Pontiac Firebird - $22,000
The Trans Am was the highlight of the year for Pontiac in 1977. It offered a new style, a powerful 400 engine, and a new level of efficiency compared to its predecessor, the 455.
The muscle car became famous for the large bird painted on its hood, but perhaps more for its role in the road comedy film, Smokey and the Bandit.
11. 1973 Porsche 911 T Targa - $59,000
Via: RM Sothebys
For 1973, Porsche offered three models of the 911, the top of the line S, the midrange E, and the entry-level T. However, all three models were equipped with the same 2.4-liter engine. The difference was the fuel feed, the 911S and 911E used mechanical fuel injection (MFI) in all markets. The 911T was carbureted in all markets, except in the U.S., where it also used MFI.
10. 1989 Jaguar XJS V12 Convertible - $11,500
Via: Bring a Trailer
Following the iconic Jaguar E-type, the luxury grand tourer XJS was a successful replacement produced from 1975 to 1996 and has become one of the most recognizable models in the Jaguar lineup. The company offered three trims in 1989, the coupe, fixed-profile, and perhaps the most collectible, the convertible.
Recent increases in market value confirm predictions from Dandy Classics and many other enthusiasts that the XJS is still underpriced and will continue its rise in value.
9. 1959 Cadillac - $59,900
Often referred to as a “Land Yacht,” the 1959 Cadillac measures 225.00 inches in length, just 10 inches shorter than the 1973 Imperial LeBaron, considered the longest American-produced production sedan at 235.3 inches in length.
Weighing 4834 lbs., the massive Cadillac represented the flamboyant style of the early 60s automobiles with its rear fins in the shape of jet airplane vertical stabilizers adorned with sharp points and twin bullet-shaped taillights.
8. 1967 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray 427 - $170,000
In the last year of the second-generation Corvette (C2), the ’67 Sting Ray was almost unanimously praised in the automotive press for its handling and unadulterated power.
The 427-cu.in. V8 model with a four-speed manual transmission produced 435 horsepower and offered unique features such as a telescopic steering wheel and power windows. The 'Vette that sold for a base price of $4,240.75 in 1967, today gets over $170,000 at auction.
7. 1956 Ford Thunderbird Convertible - $19,000
Via: Hemmings Motor News
Ford developed the two-seater Thunderbird to compete with Chevrolet’s Corvette in 1955. Although the luxury “sports car” had success selling against the 'Vette with 16,155 Thunderbirds sold in 1955 compared to only 700 Corvettes in the same year, the production run was short-lived (1955-1957).
The “little bird” is perhaps best known for the “porthole” windows available on the lift-off hardtop designed to help visibility.
6. 1967 Alfa Romeo Duetto Spider - $39,000
One of the most memorable scenes from the film, The Graduate, starring Dustin Hoffman, was his character, Ben, driving a 1967 Alfa Romeo Duetto Spider convertible across California with the top down.
The Alfa Spider had few competitors in 1967, featuring a five-speed transmission, disc brakes, an all-alloy engine. overhead (twin) cams, dual Weber carburetors, glass windows, and reasonable price tag.
5. 1981 DeLorean DMC-12 - $39,000
Although the DeLorean suffered from an underpowered engine and bad publicity when its creator resorted to illegal activities to generate cash and save his failing company, the DMC-12 has become a classic.
The gullwing doors and a stainless-steel body distinguish the car as innovative for its time and the vehicle used by Doc Brown for his time machine in the movie, Back to the Future.
4. 1969 Lincoln Continental - $16,000
Via: Classic Cars
The Lincoln Continentals of the 60s era were characterized by their distinctive design as big, luxurious, gas-guzzling, power-everything, “Land Yachts” that competed with Cadillac.
"It's what a luxury car should be." The 1969 model year was the last year that featured the suicide doors, which, when open, enhanced the massive appearance of this classic automobile.
3. 1969 Datsun 240Z - $29,000
Originally known as a Datsun, the 240Z was perhaps the most important car in Japan's automobile history.
Despite its mediocre acceleration, by today’s standards, of 0 to 60 mph in 8.0 seconds, the handling proved to be exceptional. The “Z” was the first Pacific Rim sports car to achieve enormous international success.
2. 1969 Dodge Charger - $56,000
Dodge sold 69,000 Chargers in 1969, perhaps helped by the famous “General Lee” version from the television series The Dukes of Hazzard.
Dodge offered three engine flavors for the ’69 Charger: 2-barrel 383, producing 290 hp, a 4-barrel 383 with 330 hp, and a 335-horsepower 383 Magnum in the Super Bee model painted Chrysler high-performance orange.
1. 1964 Pontiac GTO - $58,000
Via: Vanguard Motor Sales
The ’64 GTO is considered by many to be the first “Muscle Car.” Developed by Pontiac's chief engineer John De Lorean, the GTO combined a four-barrel, big block, 325-hp 389-cubic inch engine with the relatively compact body of the Tempest coupé.
Although fast cars were viewed as politically incorrect within the GM organization at the time, the GTO was launched, generating a high level of excitement from young American buyers who craved performance.
Sources: musclecars.howstuffworks.com, nationwide.com, viccicarauctions.com, forbes.com