As auction prices soar, car collectors turn to affordable alternatives
DULUTH, MN. (Northern News Now) - Northland car collectors play a long waiting game.
This Challenger has been under wraps and blocked in by snow since October. This Mount Rushmore of snow covers a Barracuda waiting for restoration. When spring arrives, both will spring to life.
Interest in customizing cars sprang to life as soon as the automobile was invented.
The concept of collecting cars came after World War Two when it was realized how many antique autos were destroyed for the war effort. Ely, for example, kicked in a 1912 Kissel during a scrap drive.
Duluth car shows began in earnest in the 60′s with the World of Wheels. Motorhead Madness at the DECC continues the tradition and this year’s version of the show was held just a little while ago. The hottest collector cars, like this 69 Dodge Daytona, can approach seven figures in value.
“If they have a hemi, 1.6 million with a hemi, yup!” said car collector Dean Birman.
The most popular and valuable collector cars right now are the two-door muscle cars from 1964 to 1971. But, other types and eras can attract attention, too.
“The big thing that surprises me in the auctions if you watch them right now are the old Broncos. Old Broncos are bringing big huge money right now at the auctions for some reason,” said Birman.
Collectors on a budget have to hope for the proverbial barn find and they do turn up once in a while.
“The field finds and old garage finds that are tucked away and if you can find them, it’s a very good thing.” said car collector Jesse Lund.
Otherwise, there’s no shame in cruising in a fun, affordable vintage station wagon or lower-cost four-door sedan.
“In fact, there’s a four-door here this year and it is very, very sharp, so four doors are coming back, especially the bigger ones,” said Lund.
Another option is to snap up a modern car like a Challenger, Camaro, or Mustang and hope for it to become collectible someday.
“Well, I don’t have a crystal ball but, yeah, that might be a good bet,” said Birman.
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