If only you had a nickel for every time you heard “I’m saving that. It’s going to be worth something someday.” You’d probably be rich. The person saving? Well, they’d likely be stuck with junk. Everything might be worth something to someone, but more often than not, it’s rarely as valuable as it is when it’s brand new. Talk to anyone who paid full price for a plasma TV, or a Microsoft Zune, or an Apple Newton; some things are just duds, and there’s no way around it.
It’s pretty much the same in the automotive world. If you paid top dollar for a Hummer H2 or Cadillac XLR 10 years ago, you’re never, ever going to get what you put into it. But at least here, there’s a glimmer of hope because with each passing year, a new group of models unofficially passes over from used car to collectible status, and overnight, an embarrassing older car can become the darling of the modern classics set.
We looked at the phenomenon as it was in 2015, when the Ferrari Testarossa doubled in value, and vintage Porsche 911s sold in December for an average 154% more than they had been in January. Now that a new year is upon us, classic car insurance powerhouse Hagerty has picked a new 10 for 2017, and it’s one interesting list. Ranging from common sporty cars to vintage iron to the already unobtainable, these 10 are a virtual lock to make their owners money should they decide to sell this year.
1. 1997–2004 Chevrolet Corvette
The C5 Corvette is an odd duck. On the one hand, it offered 50/50 weight distribution, the then-new LS1 V8, and a 175 mile per hour top speed. On the other hand, its styling has always been … polarizing, its interior is about as nice as a Chevy Cavalier of similar vintage, and fit-and-finish is almost laughably bad. As a result, most C5s have languished at around the $10K mark for the better part of a decade, confounding that weird old guy on your block who keeps his under a cover and swears that it’s going to be worth something someday.
Well, 2017 could be the C5’s breakout year. It’s likely at the bottom of its depreciation curve, and it’s becoming too much of a performance car bargain to ignore anymore. Go for a clean, well-documented Z06 with its distinctive fixed-roof coupe body style. We doubt you’ll be disappointed should you decide to sell it in another five years.