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Thread: Collectible car opportunities in today's market

  1. #1

    Collectible car opportunities in today's market

    Elsewhere we've discussed the recent increase in Z8 prices that may affect our driving habits with less time behind the wheel. Along this trend towards higher prices for collectible cars, despite my lack of garage space I still find myself scanning Autotrader and eBay motors looking at cars currently undervalued. For P-cars the 996 series appears to be in this category, especially for the GT3 and the rare GT2 (aka "the widow maker"). Anyone else car to share their thoughts on buying opportunities?
    My Best,

    Ed

    2002 Z8 Jet Black//Sport Red
    2012 SLS AMG Obsidian Black/Classic Red

  2. #2
    As an ex 996 GT3 owner I'd say the 997 was a much nicer all around car, so I'd get one of those before a 996. Oddly enough I think that the Acura/Honda NSX and S2000 both have some long term potential and for sure a good Lotus Elise - Exige if you can find one that hasn't been tracked to death. Of course as an SL55 owner I'm also very partial to those, you can get a mint 05 with low miles for under 50k, spares are plentiful and reasonable, and it's an absolutely wonderful GT.
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

  3. #3
    Z8Mania
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    It is so hard to know the next car to become a market darling. I think just like with artwork: buy what you love, and what you can afford. Obviously you want to find protection from depreciation but I think if you can afford a car taking a 50% hit- and that would be a pretty big hit- without breaking a sweat, being kept up at night, then that's a good choice for you. This way you can focus on the enjoyment of the automobile rather than the worry over the investment. There is a good article in Sports Car Market that plays with absurdity of someone with a collectible wanting a 700% return over the experience of a 7,000 RPM redline experience. I think the point is well made to make sure you enjoy what you end up with.

    NSX has already been heating up. I have a friend who is wired into the NSX scene if you want me to find out. Ive driven his car. Its really nice.

    I don't really know Porsches but my limited view point is the 996 is kind of in-between the 993 and the last of the hydraulic steering 997. But perhaps like you say there are special models of the 996 that make sense.

  4. #4
    Those are all good suggestions! On the 996 GT2, there were only 200 sent to the US with a reputation to fight back hard if not driven as intended. Those attributes makes the car appealing to me. The Ferrari 550/575 from my limited point of view has the look and the v12 under hood to position it for future demand. This seems to be a point of discussion on FerrariChat. I'm also a big fan of the MB 230, 250 and 280 SL.

    I am very happy with my two fun cars, but I also enjoy speculating about the next Z8 or 993 C2S.
    My Best,

    Ed

    2002 Z8 Jet Black//Sport Red
    2012 SLS AMG Obsidian Black/Classic Red

  5. #5
    In the heydays of my tracking I saw several GT2's spin into the dirt, often causing enough damage to take them out of the running for the day. The real issue is with the massive, but yet very linear push of the turbo, which simply overpowers the tires. You really can't feel and feather the motor in the same way as you can in a GT3, and that puts it in the same category as a Viper, meaning it's a car you can never really drive hard, because it so easily overcomes the tires ability to cope. It may make it interesting collectible-garage queen, but as a sportscar to really drive and enjoy, the GT3 has it beat. However, the standard 993 TT is a hell of a machine, one you can really use in anger, so it's both very usable and has the potential to appreciate.

    The MB SL 280 is a very attractive and sweet car, especially if you upgrade the gearbox so it isn't over revving at cruising speeds, but it'll only ever be a nice potter about at the weekend machine, it's never going to give you the thrill of the Porsche, Lotus or Hondas we're talking about.
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

  6. #6
    Z8Mania
    Guest
    Interesting about the GT2. Makes sense. Big power sounds so amazing in the magazines but then in real life it sometimes really is too much.

    There is a very strong interest in the Mercedes SL- the original 300 Gullwing and roadster and also the one that came next- I forget it now- I think its the 190 or something like that. I think only the newer ones from the early 90s and forward will continue to depreciate. And they are actually wonderful cars.

    As to the Ferraris- I think they really got it right on the 550. The 575 is a bit too tarted up and most have the F1 gear box which is really badly dated now. The 550 continues to depreciate, though I wonder when that might reverse course a little bit. I do think the 550 represents the best buy in a modern Ferrari right now. But I can't say its truly collectible.

  7. #7
    Sport Button On - DSC Off Kevin's Avatar
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    The 190SL was sold along side the Gullwing and later the 300SL, as a cheaper alternative. Kinda like the Z3 vs the Z8 except the Gullwing was in a much higher price category than the Z8 and likewise the 190 to the Z3. The one that came next was the Pagoda SL, which started as a 230SL and ended it's run as a 280SL in 1971. These Pagoda SL's are really starting to appreciate, a perfect 1971 280SL would easily run you $100k rite now.
    2003 Z8 Silver/Black AH62031 (Sold)

  8. #8
    Z8Mania
    Guest
    Thanks Kevin. Yes I've been watching those SLs.

    Fellas, FYI, I just got this in my email:

    2002 Porsche GT2... Very RARE car!! MSRP was $198,295.00
    This is a 2 owner car and has been in a very respected Porsche Collection. It's Yellow over Black and has 7200 miles. Options include: Wheel Caps w/ Colored Crest, Cruise, Carbon Interior Pkg, Carbon Door Sill w/ Model Insignia, Aluminum Instrument Dials, Pillars/Roof Liner in Leather, Rear Console Carbon, Leather Visors, Steering Column Leather, 3 Spoke Steering Wheel in Carbon/Leather, Sports Seats w/ Painted Backs, Porsche Crest in Headrest, Seat Belts Speed Yellow, Floor Mats w/ Porsche Lettering, Footwell Lighting, Brake/Shifter in Carbon/Leather. Has original window sticker and a lot of other documentation.
    Car has just been serviced at an authorized Porsche dealer
    $85,000.00
    LMK if anyone has any interest I will put you together with the dealer that has the car. I gain nothing out of this aside from the satisfaction of putting two people together.

  9. #9
    Sounds like a respectable deal to me. I only remember seeing those in yellow and black back in the day, I can't say I really liked either color on that car, but I guess it is 'correct'.
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

  10. #10
    Thank you Jerry, without the space for storage I'm on the sidelines until our new house is built. Here's a GT2 that I would be all over if my situation was different.
    2002 Porsche 996 GT2 Grand Prix White | Sloancars
    My Best,

    Ed

    2002 Z8 Jet Black//Sport Red
    2012 SLS AMG Obsidian Black/Classic Red

  11. #11
    Z8Mania
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    That's very very enticing. Although I'm not much for 911s this looks amazing. My preference would be the 997 GT3 RS 4.0. I know, I have expensive taste.

  12. #12
    Sport Button On - DSC Off Kevin's Avatar
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    As soon a 997 GT2RS or GT3 4.0 hits the bottom I plan on getting one, but realistically that's prob 10 years from now. The 4.0s going oversticker right now but I think as soon as they start making some special 991 GT3s we'll see a dip in the 4.0s pricing.
    2003 Z8 Silver/Black AH62031 (Sold)

  13. #13
    I'm not sure the GT3 4.0 is ever going down, I think as the last great stick shift GT3 it'll always be 'the one'. I know if I had the space and bandwidth I'd have one, even at todays prices.
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

  14. #14
    Sport Button On - DSC Off Kevin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by macfly View Post
    I'm not sure the GT3 4.0 is ever going down, I think as the last great stick shift GT3 it'll always be 'the one'. I know if I had the space and bandwidth I'd have one, even at todays prices.
    I agree completely that it's a very special car but at about $350k it's pretty close to the current value of a Carrera GT, which is in my opinion an even more special car. I think you'd be able to pick up a nice 4.0 for 200k at one point, but that's just my opinion.
    2003 Z8 Silver/Black AH62031 (Sold)

  15. #15
    This is a rather lovely example of the GT3RS - link
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

  16. #16
    Sport Button On - DSC Off Kevin's Avatar
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    Personally I've been looking for a 89 Ferrari 328 or 89 Porsche 930 Turbo Slantnose cab as I think they both have huge potential.
    2003 Z8 Silver/Black AH62031 (Sold)

  17. #17
    Great conversation. I had 280 SL's for 25 years, then decided I wasn't old enough to own one. A beautiful car that is now being appreciated, but very stodgy as a driver. A nice cruiser (in a straight line) except for the gearing as Andrew mentioned. The stock 396 gears put you at 4000 RPM at 70 mph. Ugh. I had mine changed out to 356(?) gearing that got it down to 3200 at 70.

    Agreed that the 550 is a relative bargain and one of the nicest-looking cars. If you want the stick shift, you will have better luck finding one in a 550. Don't think it was available in the 575. My guess is that it will appreciate about as quickly as putting some hard miles on will depreciate it. Not a bad deal.

    Consensus in the Porsche world is that the naturally aspirated GT3 is a far more desirable car than the GT2 and for a lot less money. Be careful with the non-turbo 996's and the issue with the IMS bearing. Now that Porsche has finally admitted the problem and settled on the class-action suit, we know it's a problem, but you won't necessarily be covered if you buy one now.

    The 993's are still relatively cheap but are climbing fast. Great car. And, yes, the 997 is a much better-dressed car than the 996 for a little more money, and the later 997's avoid the IMS issue. I know the Boxster has its detractors, but an S (post 2005) with 280 + HP is a blast to drive and is cheap enough to be a daily beater.

  18. #18
    Z8Mania
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    Andrew thats a gorgeous car. Really nice.

    On the 550- they are all stick. 575s had the F1 as an option but the factory really tried to get people to order the F1 and it worked. But there are 575s around in stick shift. To my eyes the 550 looks cleaner than the 575. The 575 to get are the Modifica cars with the suspension upgrades. The 550s are prone to engine mount failures so make sure they are good or you are looking at a very expensive bill. You can replace the 550 mounts with those from the 575- thats the usual fix.

  19. #19

    There's a lot to consider!

    I'm a fan of the slant nose 911 too. I understand this was a $23k option back in the day.
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    The IMS bearing failure is definitely a consideration for the 996 and maybe the early 997 too. I remember this affecting the base and S models only(?). I love the look of the 997 GT3 RS.

    Thank you too Dennis for your perspective on the 280 SL. I'll cross that one off the wish list for now.

    I've seen both the 550 and 575 side by side; and their both handsome to my eye. I understand that a few 575s were produced with a 6-speed manual and are sought after today. I was told that the 575 was the last hand built body by Pininfarina. As a result, an artist is required to repair damage to the body because the panels are somewhat unique to each car.
    My Best,

    Ed

    2002 Z8 Jet Black//Sport Red
    2012 SLS AMG Obsidian Black/Classic Red

  20. #20
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    I know I have said this before , but do not overlook a Ford GT, Unfortunately prices are moving up quickly (low milage ones hitting $250,000). I own one since new. It is a hoot to drive. Nothing like a supercharged american V8!! Easily modified with a pulley and tune to over 600 RWHP (up to 850!!!). Motor and transmission bullit proof! Also incredibly cheap to maintain!!! Unlike the porsches (espacially carrera GT) and Ferraris. Values only going up!!

  21. #21
    Z8Mania
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    As a collectible I agree, the Ford GT seems like its going no where but up. However, I must be in the minority but when I drove a friends GT I was underwhelmed. The sight lines were terrible- hard to drive if you can't see where you want to go, the car felt like it was not made well at all, the switch gear all felt like it would come apart, I was worried I might pull the gear shift knob off. It was fast but felt big. I've never been so happy to get out of a car in my life. I suppose its possible his was a bad example but I don't think so.

    I do not think the info about PF and hand built 575 bodies is correct. These are modern, mass produced cars. They did make a few 575 Zagatos and those are bespoke and could very well be hand built.

    I love the picture of the slant nose. Great stuff.

  22. #22
    I recall the Ford GT in the 130-160k USD price range in the last 18 months. A quick scan of ebay today shows a majority of these cars at 250k+/-. Hindsight is always 20:20, and that's the kind of opportunity I'm speculating may be inherent to some of the cars above. Having said that, my track record of purchasing such vehicles is poor, except for the z8.

    On the hand built bodies of the 575, I may have misunderstood what the salesperson was telling me.
    My Best,

    Ed

    2002 Z8 Jet Black//Sport Red
    2012 SLS AMG Obsidian Black/Classic Red

  23. #23
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    I must disagree about the quality of ford gt build. Having owned many ferraris, BMWs, ford is as good if not better! Yes outward vision is limited , but open the rear clam shell and you will understand! The car is gorgeous! Park it next to ferraris. Lambos, and Porsches , 9/10 people will come and see the ford first!! In 9 years of ownership I have only changed fluids on it (myself no less). Many owners own multiple cars in different colors! I am proud to own a real American supercar!!

  24. #24
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    I totally agree! I have 19,000 miles and I get a thrill every time I drive it. I did a Pulley and a Tune and have 650HP. I keep getting asked what model Lambo or Ferrari it is. People can't believe it is a Ford. My mechanic, who races BMWs, even asked me if I would be insulted that he felt it was better than my F430 Spider.

    Joe
     

  25. #25
    The recent uptick in Ford GT prices would suggest most buyers feel positive about the intrinsic value of this American supercar. There's a Ford dealership near our home in the Bay Area that has a blue GT sitting in its showroom since new. I need to stop by for a look soon.

    On the NSX, there's a nice write up in the April 2014 issue of Automobile.
    My Best,

    Ed

    2002 Z8 Jet Black//Sport Red
    2012 SLS AMG Obsidian Black/Classic Red

  26. #26
    Z8Mania
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    There is no doubt I am in the minority opinion but I will note the cars tendency for snap oversteer. As my buddy discovered when he put one into a tree. As to others opinions, I generally don't care. I do this because of my passion. Not theirs. What makes the GT special is they did it as a homage to a classic and never again- just like the Z8 Its no surprise the market place values both cars. But I keep my own council on what I like.

    The NSX is a tremendous car and if I may be so bold: one of the most important cars ever (certainly sportscars). Yet I have no desire to own one of those either. Just doesn't capture my imagination. The FGT did but after that drive I won't do it again. I'm glad its out there though because I like looking at them. Beautiful car Joe. I love it in that color- really all the colors.

  27. #27
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    Thank you!

    Joe

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