The $50,000 question: Mustang GT fastback or 5 different fun flavors?


Can I get 3 $15k cars instead.
Just enough for driving around with, fixing and maintaining (which I do enjoy doing)
and not too many that I cannot store, drive or afford.
I have 3 cars, drive #1 for a month while working on the other 2, then rotate
and drive #2 while working 1 and 3 etc… every time I drive one after not doing so for ~2 months
I get a “new” feeling and a wide smile, its like a whole new experience again. Its perfect for me and my budget


Sorry rather have something more useful and can make from A to B just 2 at most fun cars is enough having 5 or 10 piles is lame have a classic put a good paint job on it and have interior this isn’t a post apocalyptic mad max movie


1969 Alfa Romeo GTV 1750


@michael.obrien - Judge says… I’ll allow it! What would be your three cars of choice?


I currently own and drive 5 Ford Pintos. I am retired and do all restoration and maintenance on them myself. So I think it’s obvious how I feel regarding your question. I think I’d become rather bored with one car only. BTW, the Pintos fit my budget and I have a total of 35K invested. J


First the cars I’d buy would all be grade 3 cars. Grade 2 only if the selling price is reasonable to me. That being said I could easily find 5-6 grade 3 cars costing around $30-35K. My tastes cover a wide range. The other $15K is for work on the cars. While some have zero mechanical skills and just want to a done car to drive I do not. Have the fun is in driving and half the fun is in repairing the cars to my specifications. Of course, upon my wife’s insistence, I would either need to seek mental help of a divorce lawyer, Another 5-6, on top of 10 cars now, would be too much for her.


Not a bad plan. Luckily that is the majority of cars out there.


I vote Quality over Quantity.
I never thought I’d do better than the 1981 280ZX turbo.
Blue and Siver w TTops.
I had it for 13 years.
Damn that rust. It had to be put down.

I will stick with the 2 I have now.
Count me in for $50K…
I can’t say there is ANYTHING I’d rather drive.
I’ve got…

  1. Azurite Blue over gray 1998 SL500 w Pano & Sport Pkg. Blue soft top.
    1A. Silver over black 2006 S65 AMG.

Both run like brand new.
A great day is when I drive both.
AND I do drive them both.
No GQ’s here…
GQ =Garage Queen


My $50k choice wouldn’t be a fastback, but I agree with the others - quality over quantity. Now going for 3 $15k cars (or 2 $25k cars) would make a more compelling comparison.


If I get to keep my current stable of cars? - I’ll take the '68 Mustang.

BUT… if my garage was empty? I wouldn’t do the single '68 Mustang, but can’t say I would do the 5 cars listed either. However, I would spend the cash on at least 2 better cars and a daily driver old pickup (if I have to have those 5, then I’d give away the MR2 and GT to my boys)!

I am about drivers over showpieces from experience. I own a very rare, low mile first gen Camaro and in 20 years, I’ve put less than 4K miles it. Its no fun and a pain in the ass because I don’t drive it for fear of depreciation or damage. Didn’t think about that at the time I bought it. From this lesson, I since bought an “original nothing” '64 Corvette and an AC Ace replica. Both very fun, affordable (relative), and I drove the crap out of them. Why 2 more cars? Because when one needs servicing, the other is willing and able, no lost seat time. Smile factor has gone off the charts!


I see you took the approach of collecting cars as an investment to make some cash on the backend. If I had a theoretical $50,000 budget, it would be for car that I would drive and enjoy so with that, I would buy a 69 Firebird convertible resto mod that someone else built and is willing to sell for around 50,000. I have a 69 Firebird that I absolutely love but would love it even more if it had all of the modern conveniences and safety afforded in a resto mod.


My very first car was a 1974 pinto wagon. I currently drive a 69 Firebird convertible and I hardly ever see pintos at car shows, but when I do, I always look at them fondly because there’s no replacing your first car


I, having the attention span of a gnat, can appreciate have multiple drivers. However, there is something to be said for storing, maintaining, insuring, and registering all your toys. I sold off my storage and eliminated my 30 Model A, 76 C15, T Bucket, and M5. Now I roll my rat rod to shows and such and the 66 Galaxie when I want to get the fam out for ice cream.
My dream garage would have to have an E36 M3 though…


I bought a '72 911T 20 yrs ago for $9500. Today, avg value is shown as $50K. I love this car and I plan to keep it the rest of my life, leaving it to my son. But I wouldn’t buy my car today for $50K. My $50K would look like this; 944 Turbo (already own one), '94 Miata (used to own one), and a new Mustang Ecoboost Perf Pack, 6 spd (just bought one). The 944T is great for track days. The Miata for sunny, country drives. And the new Mustang for a fun, practical, inexpensive, daily driver.


I personally have chosen the 5 car path (if not by design). I just can’t sell any of my toy cars and I love the varied driving experience. I invest in the stock market - I hope my cars don’t depreciate. I have an 2011 miata, a 1997 porsche boxster, a 2003 911 turbo x50, two anniversary Hertz Shelby GT-H Mustangs (an 06 coupe and 07 convertible) and a 74 911 targa. Other than the Miata I bought as a leftover in 2012 I try and find cars at the bottom of their depreciation curves that are distinctly different to drive AND have a great story behind them. I love each of them but for very different reasons. The reality is the maintenance costs are significant for the Porsche’s and insignificant for the Mustangs. Insurance isn’t bad really as each additional car is only an incremental cost (I guess because I can only drive one at a time…). It is the time it takes - especially this time of the year - to manage putting them away for the winter and managing yearly inspections, etc. I love driving too much to just have one fun car… which is the other angle to this question - does anyone actually drive a $50K big block Mustang or just look at it in the garage? I drive ALL my cars and all of them (except the 74) have airbags and are very reliable.


My choice merges the two choices. I’ll buy a good driver 68 mustang coupe, install fastback kit, repaint in highland green, and drive it’s wheels off. Total investment about $20k and maybe some appreciation later.


LOL - this question is answered for me by time, not choice. Since I usually can’t give up beloved cars I just keep them! While I have 14 total, several are “daily drivers” in 3 locations that are just … necessary. Last year I drove 36,000 miles (I don’t fly), it’s gonna be 40 in 2018. But here’s my favorite five that I actually own and love dearly. NOT high value investments, just what I liked when I bought them and could never give up!

1967 Olds Delmont 88 convertible, triple yellow, purchased in 1985 for $1,800, #3 condition. Hagerty insured for $10,000

1974 Continental Mark IV … purchased in 1979 for my Mother for $2,700 … Mom is long gone but the car is still gorgeous! Hagerty insures for $10,000

1978 base model Thunderbird … ordered in August and took delivery 9/21/77, like $7,800 … 163,000 miles. Near mint. Hagerty insured for $7,000

1985 Mustang LX 5.0 convertible, purchased 12/85 as a “factory executive car” with 7,000 miles, now 48,000 and better than #2. Hagerty insured for $12,000

2000 BMW Z3, “Miss Z”, bought used 12/2002 with 28,000 miles for $21,500, now 155,000 and still driven North America-wide. Gorgeous, hot little car with never a chip, new top and $3,600 routine maintenance two years ago. Too new for stated value but online estimate is $3,700 … I wouldn’t sell her for $37,000!

So there’s my collection of 5 for $42,700. I agree with the Hagerty values, but Miss Z has to be worth more … anyone looking at this pristine car would agree. The key is to maintain what you’ve got! This exercise was fun!
Cheers, JJ

PS - If Hagerty is monitoring this … the others that you insure I agree are also worth your stated value! :slight_smile:


@wtnorton - Sounds like a good plan, but a decent paint job these days eats up a lot of that $20k estimate! Could certainly do what you have there under $50k though.


I bought a new '74 Pinto Squire wagon when I “thought” I’d be accepted to law school and shouldn’t be driving a '72 Toronado. LOVED that little car and took it on a 4 month, 13,000 spin around North America basically living in it prior to “starting law school”. 'Um, wasn’t accepted :frowning: … but put 96,000 trouble free miles on that car in 39 months and sold it for $1000 less than I’d paid for it! BTW … went to law school 15 years later and had a great career! :slight_smile:


I think you could satisfy a lot of the niches on the list, while still getting that old school mustang feel. Get a 64-68 Fastback with a 302, cam, intake, and heads with a solid tune, should be able to get a nice driver, nothing fancy, for around $25k. Get that pickup for $5k, get a decent 1st -3rd generation miata for $5k (yes you can get a 3rd generation mx5 for that much now), and that still leaves you with $15k for 2 other interesting toys, may I suggest a pre-VANOS BMW 5 or 7 series and perhaps a fox body to accompany the first generation in the garage?