Bonhams held its first Belgian event, the Spa Classic auction, on May 25 in Francorchamps.…
These 6 classic vehicles are sliding in value
As tastes change in the collector car hobby, so do prices. Some cars go up, some go down, and some stay right where they are. That’s why we update our pricing data three times per year, and in May we released our latest round of changes.
So far, 2019 has not been a good time to be expensive and Italian. Values for nearly all the Ferraris we price were down, while several Lamborghinis and Maseratis also felt a significant drop. There were other notable dips, though, and these six cars have taken the biggest hits so far in 2019.
(Down 5–17 percent, depending on variant)
Average value in #2 (Excellent) condition: $122,300
With over 400 horsepower from a flat-12 engine and unmistakable cheese grater side strakes, a Testarossa captures attention like few other machines on the road. Yet it just doesn’t command the same prices it did a few years ago. The later, revised 512 TR model fared the worst with our latest pricing update, dropping to $166,000 in Excellent condition. All Testarossas are down after values skyrocketed beginning in 2014 and peaked in 2016, when the Testarossa in Excellent condition was $130,000, and the 512 TR was $241,000. Now, you can find the same standard Testarossa for $100,000.
(Down 12.7 percent)
Average value in #2 (Excellent) condition: $298,000
The 280SE 3.5 Cabriolet is among the most valuable postwar Mercedes-Benzes, and in the early 1970s it was among the fastest, most luxurious, and priciest convertibles anywhere in the world. As 300SL prices started to soar in 2013, they did for other collectible Mercs like the 280SE 3.5, as well. The best 3.5 Cabriolet in the world was barely a $200,000 car at the end of 2012, but by the end of 2017 really good ones were worth 400 grand or more. They’ve been descending to more realistic levels ever since, in a fashion similar to previously red-hot Mercedes models like the 190SL.
(Down 11 percent)
Average value in #2 (Excellent) condition: $14,000
The Continental Mk IV went through a few significant changes over its short production run and there were several glitzy “Designer Edition” trims by the likes of Cartier, Bill Blass, Givenchy, and Pucci. But regardless of model year or level of mid-’70s kitsch, values for these 4800-pound cars fell 11 percent across the board.
Over the past year, the Mk IV is down about 12 percent, and over the past three years, about 17 percent, so it looks like it’s about time to hop off the sinking land yacht. There are Cartier wristwatches that cost more than what the world’s best Cartier Edition Continental is worth now, but, then again, it’s oodles of car for the money and makes quite a statement on the road. Just don’t expect your mileage to get better than the mid-teens, even in ideal conditions.
(Down 12 percent)
Average value in #2 (Excellent) condition: $88,100
It may be named after the place you took your last cruise, but there’s nothing sunny for the Packard Caribbean at the moment. It was already one of the biggest losers in 2018, and at the time we noted that we expect the Caribbean (along with other expensive postwar domestics) to keep slipping in 2019. It has done just that. The facelifted V-8-powered 1955–56 convertibles are faring the worst, dropping more than 20 percent over the past year and over 24 percent in the past three years.
The 1955–56 Caribbeans look great and have power everything, electronically self-leveling suspension, and nifty reversible seat cushions with leather on one side and cloth on the other. But Packard is an orphan brand, and these cars are very expensive to restore, especially if they’re missing hard-to-find trim and parts. Fewer people are willing and able to put up the effort and expense, but with values for good examples still close to six figures, there’s unfortunately still room to drop.
(Down 5–18 percent, depending on year)
Average value in #2 (Excellent) condition: $167,700
The brief marriage between Citroen and Maserati in the 1970s produced funky cars like the Bora, with its Giugiaro-penned lines and stainless-steel roof over a 4.7- or 4.9-liter aluminum quad-cam V-8. More comfortable but less exciting and a little slower than the equivalent Lamborghinis and Ferraris, the Bora has long been a budget choice for people who want a mid-engine Italian thoroughbred without paying Countach or 512 Boxer money, and the gap just got a little wider.
Countaches and Boxers are mostly flat, but Boras are way down regardless of year or engine, although it is worth looking a little further back to note that Bora values are up around 60–80 percent just over the last five years.
(Down 11–18 percent, depending on year)
Average value in #2 (Excellent) condition: $99,900
Fifty years before the Urus SUV, Lamborghini’s people-hauler was a pseudo-wagon called the Espada. A four-seater GT with a large V-12, razor-sharp Gandini-penned lines, and a name that means “sword” in Spanish, the Espada is an easy car to like.
Still, not very many people (aside from Hagerty editor-at-large Aaron Robinson) seem to be falling in love at the moment. Aside from the earliest 1968–69 cars, all Espadas are down more than 10 percent. Never as much of a crowd favorite and bedroom poster star as the mid-engine Miura, Countach and Diablo, the Espada is a cult favorite rather than a dream machine. And although most Lamborghini values were down with the latest update, the Espada dropped the most. For reference, though, all Espadas are worth well over twice as much as they were 10 years ago, so it’s all relative.
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