Studying the past performance of related models can help determine what’s coming, what’s going and what’s staying put. Based on historical market data gathered by Hagerty and reflected in the most recent Hagerty Vehicle Rating, here’s a look at three Fords headed in different directions:
BUY: 1979-93 Mustang (HVR: 71)
The third-generation Mustang debuted in 1979 on a new Fox platform that forever defined 1979-93 models as “Fox Body Mustangs.” The Fox Body was sleeker and lighter, and although it didn’t look like other Mustangs, it still had plenty of history—and that famous name—behind it. Popular with younger folks who want a Mustang but don’t want to pay an exorbitant sum to get one, the average value for a Fox Body in #3 (good) condition is $5,400. Considering that an HVR rating over 50 signifies it is leading the market, the third-gen’s HVR of 71—along with the fact that its Hagerty Price Guide value that hasn’t moved much in eight months—makes now a good time to buy.
SELL: 1955-57 Thunderbird (HVR: 15)
Among the most recognizable American cars from a decade that was nicknamed the Fabulous ‘50s for good reason, the 1955-57 Thunderbird is definitely an automotive icon. The two-seat “personal luxury car”—don’t call it a sports car—has even been featured on a postage stamp. But with an average price of $46,350 in #3 condition, the first-gen Thunderbird is too expensive for first-time buyers and is most popular with an aging demographic. That translates to a poor long-term outlook. Sell.
HOLD: 2005-06 GT (HVR: 7)
Inspired by the 1966 LeMans-winning GT40, the 2005-06 Ford GT made quite a splash when it debuted. With impressive performance (550-hp V-8 and a top speed of 205 mph) and a sticker price to match ($150,000), Motor Trend magazine called the supercar “awe-inspiring.” That hasn’t changed. But GT values have been sliding since prices spiked in 2014 and ’15. While the GT has plenty of long-term potential—and an average #3 value of $248,000—it also has a Hagerty Value Rating of 7. It may be best to hold onto yours for now and weather the storm.