By Iain Tyrell, Coterie’s Classic & Supercar Consultant
OK, so you have some cash, or funds available, and you want to fulfil a long-standing dream of having a classic car or cars. Ideally, you’d like to have the inside track on what’s a safe bet and what isn’t. Tough call… or is it? In absolute terms, yes. But whilst there are no certainties, let’s have a look at five particular makes and models that are my potential good places to put some funds into. Some cars have, over the last three years, become overblown, so I discount them now. It’s the “sleepers” we’re after. Here goes…
Mercedes R129 SL (1989-2001)
These cars are fantastic value for money at present. They are just on the cusp of going from passe to classic. The AMG 6.0s have already flown the coop at £50-60k, but a very respectable SL320 (good MPG) or 500SL or SL500 (depending on model year), for those who want one of the top-line cars of its era, are poised to start appreciating. Buy the best you can on condition, mileage and maintenance (say£12-15k) and it could easily appreciate up to 50% over the next 2-3 years.
Bentley Turbo RT/ Turbo R Mulliner (1996-1997)
The Bentley Mulsanne Turbo, launched in 1982, was a game-changer from Crewe. An instant 30%+ power hike from the standard Mulsanne turned a boulevardier into a rocket armchair for four. The model was continuously developed until the last of the line, such as the models I’ve selected above. Condition and prior maintenance to keep the old-school engineering in order is crucial, but buy the best you can of these, preferably with as many factory-fitted “Mulliner” special-order upgrades as possible, and natural selection from the many ratty ones out there will keep demand and prices for these niche cars strong and stronger. Budget £25-30k for a really good one at present.
Ferrari 550 Maranello/575 (1996-2006)
There had to be a Prancing Horse in here somewhere; so many people to aspire to own a Ferrari of some age/type! These very fast but eminently usable GTs enjoyed a huge surge during the frenzy of Classic car buying circa five years ago. Now, they’ve “adjusted” back down again, but it’s temporary. Right hand drive is important for the UK; LHD examples are cheaper and more plentiful. A good UK-spec car can be bought now for £80-90k, but they’ll soon be back over the £100k mark for very good ones. Buy carefully, don’t rack up the miles too much and enjoy.
Lamborghini Murcielago (2001-2010)
This car still looks very imposing and has serious cred as a driver’s car. Currently overshadowed by its replacement, the Aventador, and preceded by the Diablo, which has already grown in value, this is an appreciating asset waiting to happen. There are a bewildering number of models and specifications, but get the right advice and this is an interesting proposition. Prices hugely variable depending on many factors, but anywhere from £140-£300k+
Lamborghini Miura (1967-1972)
I make no apologies for a second Bull from the Lamborghini stable in this list. The Miura, arguably the first Supercar, has enjoyed a negligible downturn in value over the “adjustment” of the last three years. This only goes to show how resilient this car is, once it’s borne in mind that other cars such as several Ferrari models, e.g. the Daytona, have depreciated significantly. The Miura is a rare combination of cutting-edge engineering in the 1960s and drop-dead looks. For these reasons, its future appreciation is almost bulletproof. Current prices from £750k-£2.2M, depending on model.
My advice would always be to buy what you would like- never just to join the classic car club for the sake of it. Whether you end up driving it a lot or not, joy of ownership has to be part of the equation. What would you dream of owning?
Want a conversation with Iain about starting or growing your own collection? Click here and we’ll set it up for you.