Approximate dollar difference: $40,300 (Assuming No. 1 condition)
Annual rate of return: -1.6%
Stutz 1974 Blackhawk, 18KT Gold interior, sheepskin carpeting, electric sunroof, hand-crafted body, 18,000 miles, fully loaded, Current replacement cost, $88,500. Trades considered for Mercedes 450SL or Excalibur, asking $32,500.
The Stutz Blackhawk really fits in with today’s perception of 1970s pop culture: wild clothing, disco music, and over the top “personal luxury” styling on automobiles. Much like the Dual-Ghia 15 years before, the Blackhawk attracted the elite (the only people who could presumably afford one). Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Lucille Ball, and Elvis Presley all owned one. These cars were over the top, decked out to a level of luxury maybe only Rolls-Royce could rival.
The Blackhawk is a relatively forgotten car, and it truly takes a special owner who appreciates a vehicle with this level of craftsmanship and customization. Therefore, the market hasn’t been especially active. Much like any luxury car, prices gradually declined over the years, and in today’s money it is worth less than in 1981. The question now: Has it been long enough that new collectors will rediscover the Blackhawk and nudge the market along? These cars do not come to market often, so it may be a while before we find out.