Making money in the collector car market is a crapshoot at best, at least unless you happen to have been fortunate – and lucky – enough to snag a now insanely valuable Porsche or Ferrari back before they appreciated beyond all reason. Sitting atop Mecum Auctions top 10 list of auctioned autos from last year is a 2014 Ferrari LaFerrari that originally sold for what was then an already out of reach $1.7 million, and has since literally doubled in value, going under the hammer for a cool $3,450,000.
Now you don’t (necessarily) need to be laundering oligarch-grade wads of cash to get some skin in the game. That’s because the vehicular soothsayers at vintage car insurer Hagerty have just issued their annual list of mainstream-branded cars that are well poised to become future collectibles. We’re featuring them in the accompanying slideshow with our own commentary, in order of their base prices (though you can expect some of the models on the list to command additional dealer markups over their sticker prices due to their low production numbers and excessive demand).
But unlike fussy old collectible cars that spend most of their time cooped up in climate controlled garage, these are all aggressively cast and shiny new models that beg to be driven – and driven hard – for maximum pleasure today, and a possible financial reward tomorrow. All are new for the 2018 model year and feature sticker prices under $100,000. They range from the just-revamped Jeep Wrangler SUV at the low end of the price spectrum, starting at around $27,000, to the rip-roaring Lexus LC 500 sports coupe at $92,000.
For our money, the sure bet in this race – at least for those fortunate enough to get in on its ultra-limited production run – is a street-legal drag racer, the Dodge Challenger SRT Demon. Starting at around $85,000 it puts 808 horses to the pavement – 840 if it’s running 100-octane gas – which comes out to be around $100 per horsepower, and that’s a true bargain, relatively speaking. And with only 3,000 units slated for the U.S. (and another 300 for Canada), it’s almost guaranteed to rise in value, at least among those who don’t inadvertently trash them trying to exploit all 100-plus horses.
“Every year, we look to identify vehicles that push boundaries and beg to be driven,” says Hagerty’s CEO McKeel Hagerty. “This list is proof that people still love sitting in the driver’s seat, putting their hands on the wheel, and enjoying the experience of driving.”
How far into the future one may have to hold onto any of these 2018 rides before their depreciation curves begin to swing upward is, of course, the proverbial $64,000 question. And all bets are off if prognosticators wind up being correct about fleets of soulless self-driving autos dominating the nation’s highways in the not-too-distant future.
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