When I think about the sixties, the first car that comes to mind is the Ford Mustang. There are so many great examples of re-imagined Mustangs from that era but I found a great one over at Classic Recreations. For a cool $149,000 they offer a beautiful variant of a 1967 Mustang convertible. The Shelby G.T.500 CR 545 Convertible is breathtaking in both presence and power. The details of craftsmanship are evident on their website and I’m sure it does no justice for the feeling you get seeing this car in person. It’s 427 C.I. crate engine pushes 545 horsepower through a Tremec transmission, down to the Z-rated performance tires wrapped around Shelby 427 wheels. I’d love to drive one of these. For now, I’ll just stare in wonder.
So for about three weeks I’ve had an infatuation with the ’80s version of the Jaguar XJS V12. I saw one (think it was an ’86) parked on the street in burgundy red and was just a bit smitten. It sparked an interest and I’ve been hitting up the search boards and ebay since then. Turns out you can grab up one of these luxury rides for under $10k and they are just as stylish now as they were then. Upon further research I even found the Lister version of this car that pushes over 480bhp and can be had for between $40 – 60k. There aren’t many cars this rare as Lister only produced 90 special tuned XJS in 1989. The Car reportedly hits 200mph and you don’t see that often for this amount of coin. I’d opt for the less affordable pedestrian XJS V12 but if you are a collector and want to add an absolute beast to the stable…this may be a cool and cost-effective way to do it.
Steve Linden wrote a great piece in Newsday about the difference between collecting and investing in classics. Is it driving out some car lovers who just want to own one of these beauties? I think it may just be. I bought my first car, a 1970 Barracuda 318 for $3300 in New Hope, PA. I had to junk it when I pierced the gas tank during a repair. Back then (in 1995) there was little to no interest in these cars. Of course I kick myself daily for this but if I still had the car it would probably be worth $15-20k. It was impeccable. No pedestrian car enthusiast with a family and responsibilities has that amount to drop on a weekend car. So what happens when the ordinary cars start to enter the stratosphere when investors show up? Hopefully they’ll just stick to their Ferraris and Mercedes SL300s.
Morgan Korn over at Yahoo! Finance wrote up a great piece (with video) on how classic cars have become one of the best alternative investments on the market. Check out Morgan’s article. Makes me wish I had enough dough to run out and buy a few of my own. If I did, my first purchase would probably be a vintage ’70 Nissan Skyline GT-R or a ’72 BMW 2002. On the American side, I’d shoot for a stock ’65 Ford Mustang 289 V8 hardtop in black. For now I’ll just stick to writing about them.
The Datsun 280Z is one of my favorite Japanese classics out there. The fellas at Datsun Spirit Inc. in Manassas, VA have a great option for owners looking for some extra power from the gas pedal. They offer a nice L28 rebuild (using your core engine). You can choose from three different levels of power potential. The L28 can be found in the 1975- 1978 model.