Collector-car market continues fall from 2021 heights

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The Hagerty Market Rating is a monthly assessment of the collector car market’s activity and strength. For a detailed explanation of what goes into this rating, please click here.

The Hagerty Market Rating continues to fall from its heights last summer, dropping more than 1.5 points in July. That’s the largest single-month drop in over three years. If the Market Rating continues its trajectory, it may depart the “rapid expansion” segment, something it has not done since November of 2021.

When adjusted for inflation, the median sale price of a vehicle at public auctions is at the lowest point since the start of the pandemic. Over in the private market, average sale prices between private individuals have slid back to 2021 levels. Additionally, owners who have held on to their vehicles are beginning to pull back on insured value increases. The ratio of insured value increases to decreases for Broad Market and High End vehicles has fallen for the eighth consecutive month—removing much of the influence this metric had on keeping the Hagerty Market Rating high. However, insured values are still increasing on average—just at a slower rate. Currently, for every owner who lowers the insured value of their vehicle, 11 other collectors increase their vehicles’ insured values. This ratio has dropped a third since its height in the fall of 2022, when the ratio was 1 to 17.

It appears that softening prices have leached their way into the Hagerty Price Guide. At the start of the month, a new update to the price guide showed the median condition #3 value lowering slightly when adjusted for inflation. These value decreases affected common collectibles and rare, high-end vehicles alike. The Hagerty Hundred index (a weighted average of the #2 condition value of the 100 most-insured vehicles), dropped to its lowest point in six months. The Hagerty Blue Chip index, which is comprised of the Ferrari 250 and its 24 closest peers, has dropped back to August 2022 levels.


Our industry experts, who rated their optimism at the lowest since July 2020, when things looked really bleak, took notice of softening prices among the upper tiers of the market. Specifically, the 1964 Ferrari 250 LM that sold at Artcurial earlier this month with a €14M high bid. This may sound like a good sale, but this same car did not meet reserve with a €20M high bid at Artcurial’s Rétromobile auction just a few months earlier.

A 30 percent drop in hammer price in only four months on such a high-profile car will catch anyone’s attention. 2023’s Monterey auctions this August will have no shortage of top-flight, historically relevant cars, and we’ll be watching closely to see if these sales provide a boost to the market.




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    So the prices are not really dropping, just not going up quite as fast. Headline and article, especially the headline could be clearer.

    A car can be insured for any value, as long as owner and insurance agent agree. Though the article mentions a slowing rise in insured values (likely fewer cars are appreciating strongly), it points out that actual sale averages have dropped:

    “When adjusted for inflation, the median sale price of a vehicle at public auctions is at the lowest point since the start of the pandemic. Over in the private market, average sale prices between private individuals have slid back to 2021 levels.”

    All this means is that the people who buy and sell cars as investments are slowing down because of the perceived slowing of the economy. They know when to fire up the check book and when to put it away! Regular folks do not own these cars for the most part. I think, our hobby (my baby) is less likely to be affected because its a passion. Interest rates, stock futures and dividends mean nothing when your playing with collector cars for the average. Most folks will lower their coverage if income drops or things are tight financially to make their bills lower. Otherwise not. I recently upped mine and I consider my household to be lower middle class income wise. It won’t be long and the “fat cats” will be at it again. You can count on it!

    That bid on the Ferrari must not have been real then. Especially at the same auction house. Nobody took the bait and it had to be rerun to find the real money on the car. Otherwise you’d simply get in touch with the previous high bidder and cut a deal.

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