The 25 hottest collector vehicles (OK, 29) heading into fall

Cars 25 years and older are considered “antique” (not “classic”) as defined by the Antique Automobile Club of America. Cars considered as “classic” are those that are defined as such by the Classic Car Club of America. Collectible cars are generally referred to as “special interest cars.”

*Is that a Road Runner or a Super Bee? Or a Satellite or Coronet with a tape stripe kit? A Camaro or a Firebird? Torino or Comet?
1956 Chevy or a Buick (they both have fins and bulbous hoods, and if they weren’t what you wanted as a youth, you wouldn’t know the difference) *
*If you can’t tell the difference between a Honda and a Caddy, I don’t think you can consider yourself a car guy. Sorry.
In the 50s, if your car wasn’t prewar, preferably brass era, it wasn’t a part of the “hobby”. In the 80s, muscle cars got no respect from the “old guard” tri-five Chevy folks. Now, you same old farts are trying to keep the new blood from the scene. Sorry, trying to sandbag what young people want won’t prop up overpriced muscle cars. It’s a viscous cycle. *

Wow… you sound angry…you don’t know the difference between a Road Runner and a Super Bee or a Buick and a Chevy? Are you a real car guy?

The old car hobby goes by generation. Model T’s were big, then Model A’s. Now a lot of the people who liked those cars are gone and the prices reflect that. Another generation liked the 40’s and 50’s and now those prices are declining, Muscle cars were bigger a few years ago than they are now and that too will pass when we are gone. A few years ago anything with a Hemi was $100,000 to start now they are $60,000 - $70,000 for some. Yes, I know 71 Hemi Cuda and Challenger convertibles are going for $500,000 and Cobra’s are $1,000,000 but it takes a pretty special low production car to bring that kind of money.

As far as new blood to the scene, have fun with your tuners, plastic interiors, unrepairables, hybrids, and SUV’s. That will be your collectible market in a few years with overpriced vehicles. It will take a while for New Mustang GT’s, Camaro SS’s, Dodge Darts to become collectible. Then the kids who want them now will be able to afford them. So what is collectible to the new blood or are you even interested in them?

OK, maybe I exaggerated about the Caddy and Honda but still if you lined up a bunch of 4 door sedans or SUV’s with no badging wouldn’t it be hard to tell the difference?

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Not angry at all. And not a millennial. And I clearly know the difference between a Road Runner and a Super Bee, and the difference between them and their base line models.
I do know the difference between a Buick and a Chevy of the tail-fin era, as well as the difference between a Skylark and a Chevelle or a Malibu, or Cutlass or LeMans for that matter. But you know what? Most people don’t. And someone who would compare a Honda to a Cadillac, that person is either soft in the head as my father would have said, or is just throwing crap at the wall thinking it will stick.
Plus, I didn’t see any 4 door Japanese sedans from the 90s on the list. Supras, RX7s, etc. yes. Sports cars that spanked the Americans and even Europeans in the 90s, those are collectible now. And only in original form, just like muscle cars were in the 80s. Back then, no one wanted anything that wasn’t numbers matching and factory stock. Now, the muscle car “tuner” scene has become a thing, while the tuner cars of the 90s are being returned to stock. Look how much the low miles, all original 1994 (I think that’s the year) Supra Turbo sold for on Bring a Trailer. $150k, I believe. And it’s listed at $500k at the buying dealer. Outlier, yes, and a pipe dream at that price I’d say. But look at what Demons go for 18 months after production. And they made 3000 of them.
Yeah, I’m a car guy for life, and I know what I’m talking about. You notice the Malaise era was ignored, right? Because cars from Detroit in the 70s were lackluster. 80s Japanese cars raised the bar, and by the 90s it was game on on all 3 continents. So, the domestic garbage is passed over. And the muscle car collectors get their panties in a bunch over kids’ ‘tuner’ cars. Sorry, not angry. Just call ignorance when I see it.

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No one is trying to keep anyone from anything. You and several others here keep referring to older people ignoring younger folks’ cars and not recognizing that late model cars are valued too. BS. Stop generalizing and stereotyping people over 50. It’s annoying as hell.


Dude, I’m 46. I’m not a “young person” and I’m closer to 50 than 40. And I’m not insulting older people, just generalizing based on trends. Which is exactly what Haggerty does. It’s a fact that people typically collect what they wanted in their youth but couldn’t afford. So chill out.


Interesting. Growing up, I always thought that antique meant older than classic.

Learn something new every day.


I’ve noticed that my fellow readers have a tendency to jump to the defense of their favorite car/s, many getting upset by cars on the list that they don’t think are worthy. Guys, the list doesn’t reflect the valuation or long term collectibility of vehicles listed. All it is a list that reports on what’s TRENDING most recently.


I am very confused. I have a 57 coral sand Ford Thunderbird. Heads turn and horns blow every time I take it out. Its worth a lot to me. I guess the value is in the owner. I am an 80 year old woman, so my memories are differant than the younger classic car owners. Just please love and protect old cars.

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To hell with the list. My list consists of cars that I simply like because they hit a cord inside me and that is all that matters. Your Fleetwood is on my list. Stunning car.

Had to laugh at the guy who said only American muscle showed any imagination. And they say Americans don’t do irony.The Wagoneer and Caddy El Dorado appeal but the true beauty for me is the Alfa.


You are absolutely correct. Thank you for setting the record straight.

I often see these lists of the top or bottom portions of collectibility ratings. Any chance of seeing the middle portions… For example, rating numbers 87 through 23? I understand it is a wide swath of makes/models, but I would really like to know where my car fits into the mix. Any help would be appreciated, Thanks!

I am a proud owner of a 1982 Corvette the last of her body style. Only 3 years of this particular car (style) were made.
She is silver green in color and you don’t see them often in that color.
Had it in a parade over the weekend along with all the newer Corvettes.
The kids go wild over this car and I hear the older ones say they would like to own one just like it.
It is sad to have had this particular C3 ignored like it does not exist.

Wow, surprised there’s no 2002-2004 C5 Z06s on this list. That car is is an absolute bargain with tons of performance and nearing 20 years in age.

@sradivan - It sounds like your car is not ignored, the public loves it when you take it out!

I’m a Boomer and I have no interest anymore in American cars from the 1960’s - the styling was amazing, the horsepower was good but they just don’t drive well, especially if you want one as a daily driver. So much progress has been made in suspensions, steering and braking since then - and the Europeans were way ahead of Detroit. I now have 4 cars I rotate as daily drivers that are 25 to 30 years old: BMW 840ci and 318ti M Sport; a Mercedes 420SEL and 300e. They look great and they drive great.


As explained in another similar post of your’s, this is arrogant nonsense.

The link to valuation for the Supra’s all go to non-turbo valuation pages. The TURBO models are the one’s you want to highlighting here in the links. Same goes for the 300ZX.

You are the first post on the subject of Ford Thunderbirds…Congradulations! Like you I am also 80. During the 50’s I had the 50 chevy and a 52 chevy but really wanted that 57 Black T-Bird with red interior. Now after 60 years of riding motorcycle I gave up two wheels and finally puchased what I really wanted many years ago, a 57 T-Bird. Yes it is a beautiful black with red interior. Enjoy that T-Bird it is wonderful car