The beauty of owning a classic car is that if you buy it right, your car will only go up in value as you own it. Certain cars are safe bets to be good investments, as long as you know what particular specifications will inflate a car’s value over time. Other cars are doomed to depreciate into the abyss. Here are 5 underappreciated classic cars that, if well-bought, could prove to be a fabulous long-term investment.
We’ve all seen the phenomenal appreciation of the Porsche 911 in recent years. The air-cooled 911s have reached stratospheric heights, with some variants fetching seven-figure sales prices at auction. In the late 1970s, Porsche intended to phase out the 911 and instead have their flagship model be a V8 front-engined GT car. It sounds ridiculous now, since we’ve seen 50 years of evolution of the rear-engined 911, but the 928 was actually supposed to take the reigns as Porsche’s premiere offering. Buy a 928 while you can, they won’t be attainable for long! Just be sure you know a competent mechanic…
BMW e30 318is
While the original M3 is enjoying a wave of popularity in the collector car world at the moment, there’s a dark horse in BMW’s e30 lineup. The 318is finds itself in the shadow of the M3 because it lacks the flared fenders and racey look of the M3, but not for long. The 318is only came to the United States for one year, 1991. It’s right in the sweet spot of both speed and viscerality. While you may think the 325is would be a better buy because of the bigger, 6-cylinder motor, the more rare and oh-so-sweet 318is is the one you really want.
Ferrari Dino 308/208 GT4
The mid-70s were an interesting time for Ferrari. A number of their cars of that era are looked as as oddballs or ugly ducklings. However, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and the GT4s are aging extremely well from an aesthetic point of view. A decent 208 GT4 can be had for somewhere in the neighborhood of $50,000, which in Ferrari talk, is pennies. While you will likely need to set aside some additional funds for when something inevitably needs tending to, the long term appreciation ahead of you is a comforting feeling. The GT4 is the next one to see major appreciation so hop on it if you have the means…don’t forget about the 400i either…
This adorable roadster hid a 260 or 289 cubic inch V8, giving it one of the best power to weight ratios of the era. It was designed by the famous Carroll Shelby for the British Rootes Group, but it was Jensen Motors that eventually got the contract to produce the car. It was produced from 1964-67. Only around 7000 were ever made and many of the survivors have been modified for racing, making any original example a terrific investment.
Giovanni Michelotti styling for the cost of a new Corolla? Seriously? While largely overshadowed by Triumph’s TR6, the prettier, and still 6-cylinder powered GT6 offers an exotic look that draws parallels to the 250 wheelbase Ferraris of the early 1960s, cars that are now fetching eight figures at auction. Michelotti’s resume includes extensive design work with Ferrari, Maserati, and BMW. His take on a Triumph is just stunning.