Snag these 7 cars before prices jump


I have a 1969 Ghia that I have refreshed. Rust free top to bottom, dropped in a modern interior and the engine is a perfect 1,600 dp. It is not a rocket, but its not slow. No slower than an old 356 and it gets just as many looks. Plus it corners like its on rails and is dead-easy to work on. Plus, minor modifications like dual carbs can make them pretty quick.

Its way roomier than my Spider 124 and its a rock-solid reliable daily driver.

I drive it to Seattle from time to time. 75 MPH over the pass, passing many modern cars.

The Ghia is a gem. Love it.


The key to them being cool in the summer is to open the rear windows. The airflow from the front though the back windows keeps them very cool. I live in the desert and drive mine in 105 degree heat and its not bad. Just sucks if its been sitting in the sun. But that is the key, for sure.


Not a car to drive if you want to remain anonymous.


Frank…great looking Scrambler, how many miles does it have now? Love that it is totally original…I have an 84’ with under 6k original miles - same thing, 100% original.


Power is easy to fix. The primary difference between a VW and Porsche engine is the Porsche was allowed to breathe. Granted, I’m a former race engine builder/tuner, but even the first 1600 I built is still going strong enough to bully some modern traffic. It’s stock enough to qualify for SBBC class at Bonneville (the car is registered with USFRA), and the engine looks dead original, but revs to 6k and does 100mph without breaking a sweat (I’ve had access to closed tracks).

Not saying it’s better than the Corsa in any way, but a Karmann Ghia does not have to be a slouch :wink:


I owned a Karmann Ghia and also a Corvair Monza. I would choose
the VW any day because of the poor handling characteristics of the Corvair (Ralph was right) . I drove both cars hard and the Corvair had triple the horsepower of the VW but I could still corner faster with the VW. I did enjoy the Corvair but it was not for spirited driving.


@vintage_roadster_res - Just out of curiosity, do you consider the '55/6/7 Chevrolet Bel Air a collectable? Many consider that one of the most collected cars to date, yet they made a whole heck of a lot of them.


I thought the 914 was the replacement for the Karmann Ghia…when they first sold in Europe, the 914 had ‘Volkswagen’ on the back engine grille. The Karmann Ghia tag went on the front fenders …when they imported them to the USA ‘Porsche’ replaced ‘Volkswagen’ on the back engine grille.


Yes some of them are. Any of the 4 door models in any of these years are certainly not collectibles but the 2 door coupe, the convertibles and the Nomad are without a doubt collectible, especially the Nomad since they made a total of just over 21000 over these three years. Compare that to the total of 805309 Two-Ten models in 1955 alone and I would imagine that the Two-Ten can be found just about anywhere.


Here we go again…if and when we run out of real cars to hunt down…most of theses 7 are either just what your looking for or not when you had the chance…they can be right for some people but not too many because it is the right time to buy because they cost a lot less then they were ever meant to cost…if your going to drive it then do yourself good and get one now but drive the damm thing…some of these my go up a little in value and may drop even harder till someone else turns of age and remembers a car when they were younger that they should of gotten when they had their chance…every decade will define the market…not so sure about the year 2028 buyer and just what they might have their eyes on…


Perhaps… but they certainly are charming.


I have a 1971 Ford Ranchero 500 with a Cleveland 351 2V engine in it, power steering and AC from factory… I want to sell it but I don’t know:
a) how much should I ask for (Good condition)
b) where to advertise my car.

Any advises???


Looking at the long term, those Cobras and really anything SVT all have a bright future in terms of collectability. Early Saleens, too.


@romo.anaya I am happy to report that the Hagerty Valuation Tool reports market values for your configuration. Hopefully this can help you narrow down an appropriate range to ask for your Ranchero. https://www.hagerty.com/apps/valuationtools/1971-Ford-Ranchero-500?id=141593

As for where to list it, fortunately there are a ton of venues these days. Hemmings, Auto Trader Classics, Cars on Line, etc. are all well known listing sites that specialize in collector cars. Of course, if you don’t mind tire kickers, Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace are great places to list for free.


Admittedly I own an 1980 FIAT 124 Spider. 200,000 were shipped to North America (primary market) between 66 and 85. Estimated under 7,000 remain rusting away in fields somewhere with significantly less road worthy examples. They had $0 value not running so most got crushed or cut up for parts. Point being, production quantity equal current availability.


Of the 8,000 produced there are only 20,000 of them left. No, not a typo lol!


This is an uninspired list save for the Karmann Ghia and that is not new news. Owned one of those C-5 Corvettes and the performance was great, build quality not-so-great (actually awful). The rest of the list…meh.


This is a bit longer than planned. Sorry, I’m a bit passionate about these cool cars!
As a long time owner (20 plus years) of a Karmann Ghia I can say with certainty cannot be an introvert!
Ghia’s were not built in small numbers. Nearly 445,000 were produced during the 19 year run. They are undeniably beautiful, so much so the Karmann Ghia was named one of the worlds most beautiful products in 1969. The VW badge along the inexpensive, well engineered and proven VW mechanicals made the KG affordable but never easy to buy new. Many dealers had waiting lists.
The body, built by Karmann and dropped on a VW platform probably started to rust before it made it to the end of the assembly line. 60’s 70’s era steel was not nearly as corrosion resistant as it is today. Unless you visited Ziebart one had to be very diligent and flush salt laden snow off a car back in the day or the rust would appear before you eyes. Rust belt cars just got ate up and scrapped. I agree they are “VW slow”, especially the earlies with 25 or 36 hp. The last Ghia’s with a stock 1600cc put out 56hp. About par for a car like that of it’s time. Performance options abound and just like any other engine depending on the dollars your willing to spend you can go from 0-60 as quick as you desire.
As for collectability, Karmann Ghia’s can be divided into three catagories;

  1. 1956-1959 “Low-Light’s” called this because of the headlights are lower due to a more pronounced curve of the fender. Low-lights are some of the most valued and the most rare. I would say that the nicest ones of this era are investment grade for sure.
  2. 1960-1971. I have kind of broadly lumped this group together because the bumpers during this time are all elegant chromed blades. Values are rising fairly quickly because the low-lights are harder to come by.
    3.1972-1974. “Big Bumper” era along with enlarged taillights. Tail lights actually started to grow beginning in 1970. There are devotees of this group because of the fairly significant changes.
    Karmann Ghia’s will probably never reach the crazy money the 21-23 window busses have seen lately but I do think they are poised to see a significant bump as “real” collectors recognize the potential and look for nice unrestored examples. Those are rare for sure!


Except for the Chevies I like every car on this list. I had a 62 Ranchero from 1964 to 1967, and of all the cars I’ve owned it is probably my all time favorite. Handy, easy to work on. Absolutely gorgeous tan upholstery that was covered with imprints of longhorn cattle heads. Regarding the Karmann Ghia, does anyone else remember that at some point VW tried to “update” the body and gave it a very squared off 1980’s sort of look? Only lasted one year. Would be a rare collectible if it wasn’t so hideous.


Over a million first gen Mustangs were built. Tell me again how they are not not collectible?

There are examples where desirability trumps rarity.