Classic cars appreciating faster than art

Updated: 
Lamborghini Countach

Classic car prices have increased exponentially since the start of 2015 and they are not showing any sign of slowing down.

As investors turn to alternative assets, an average rise of 8.4 per cent has been seen in the classic car values in just six months. Not even more mainstream models such as the Golf GTIs or Ford Cortinas are exempt from this trend, which is thought to have also been caused in part by growing wealth in developing countries.

Specialist classic car insurer Hagerty analysed a number of classic cars for its price guide and found that 23 models have risen by more than 30 per cent since the start of the year.

One such example is the Lamborghini Countach LP400S, which has enjoyed appreciation of 42 per cent, with values rising from £210,500 to £298,500, making it the third-highest grower on the list. The Volkswagen Golf GTI took 16th place, rising in value by 33 per cent from £7,890 to £10,463.

The findings are good news for classic Fiat owners, as the Italian brand dominated the top of the list. The Dino 2000 Spider took first place with a 45 per cent price rise from £45,000 to £65,050, while the Dino 2000 Coupe followed close behind with an increase of 43 per cent from £21,675 to £30,900.

Not every classic has seen such great price growth, and some have remained as non-movers. The rare Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwing Coupe has maintained its average value of £1 million.

The Hagerty Price Guide's discovery came after a study published in March by property firm Knight Frank, which estimated that classic car values had seen the largest increase in a decade - up by 487 per cent, while art prices had risen by only 252 per cent in the same period.

2014 also saw a new record set by a car at an auction in California, when a 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO sold for $38 million (£24 million).

Not every classic car would mean re-mortgaging your house, however. The Hagerty report also highlighted a selection of affordable classics, for example the Ford Cortina Mk I which starts at £4,800, or the Escort RS 2000 Mk II which can be found for as little as £7,600.

Author: Laura Thomson