Is a classic car a good investment?

Jon Lawson
Is this a good investment? (Image: Maryia Plashchynskaya)

What with relentless quantitive easing and the erosion of the fiat currency, investors are looking for a safe haven. 

Some are moving to bitcoin, some to traditional tangibles like gold and silver. Some are looking to classic cars to provide a store of wealth and a hedge against inflation. If you are considering a purchase, here are 3 things to consider.

What to pay?

After setting an outline budget for the sale price, consider the other expenses. Get some insurance quotes. Get prices for storage if you don’t have space at home. What about parts availability? An exotic super car might look great but if spares are hard to come by it may end up being more of a liability. And how thirsty will it be? 

Also who is going to do the maintenance? The good news is there are some great firms around who can leverage modern technology to look after classics better than ever before.

Once you’ve set the budget, then the fun part can begin.  

How to choose which model to invest in

You may have a model in mind - the car you always promised yourself, or a reminder of something owned years ago. However, if you are looking for purely investment purposes, be analytical. 

Models which were once plentiful but now are scarcer are holding their value well. Take Fords, early Mustangs in the US and early Escorts in the UK are quite highly prized, and what’s more spares are fairly easy to get and the vehicles are easy to work on. Also there will usually be a large pool of potential buyers when it’s time to sell. The more exotic vehicles like Ferraris or Maseratis may also command good money, but fewer people have an interest in them, meaning a smaller market to sell into when it's time to part company. 

Some vehicles like early Beetles, Land Rovers or Minis have a have a broad appeal across many groups, with variable prices to match. 

Do your research and check the owner’s club web sites, often a useful source of pre-purchase information. 

Where to buy from?

Try to avoid auction houses and dealers as these can offer poor value for money, also it’s very useful to speak to the owner direct. They know the car best. So classics web sites or internet auction sites are a good place to start. 








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