It never fails to crack me up to see a cutting edge high-performance supercar or hypercar puttering around the parking lots of shopping centers in my city. There’s a fair number of them, so I’m perpetually amused. Sorry guys, but nothing gets a full belly laugh out of me like seeing a bright green Lamborghini or a smirking McLaren (the grille totally looks to me like the car is smirking) ignominiously high-centered on a speed hump in front of a Marshalls.
To me, having a car like that is a double-edged sword. On one edge, there’s the experience of piloting an incredible machine that is capable of things most drivers are not, including remaining conscious during high-G cornering. They are sexy, sleek, modern, and use every cheat code in their comprehensively computer-controlled arsenal to seemingly defy physics. They are the distillation of the entirety of automotive engineering and styling. Which is very cool indeed.
On the other edge, there’s the experience of piloting an incredible machine capable of things most drivers are not through the Pizza Hut parking lot, scraping all of those meticulously designed and executed ground effects on whatever traffic control protuberance happens to have been protuberated there for the purpose of keeping drivers in super- and hypercars from going faster than 10 mph without grave penalty. Sure, life ain’t fair, cry me a river.
To me, it just seems silly to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on a highly capable machine which is not capable of making it across a parking lot without the need of a tow truck or an on-board insurance adjuster. It’s kinda sad to me. Like a race horse that never gets let out of the barn, these thoroughbreds need to run hard. That’s what they were made to do. Yet so many of them are garage queens, just waiting for their king to take them to the gourmet grocery store to pick up a bottle of overpriced olive oil. Yes, I have seen this in action.
These cars need to be tracked or at least be put through the twisties on a regular basis, not to be a Chinese food take-out mule. I’m sure there are those who would make the argument that these cars are special and should not be run hard or often, and should be kept in as pristine condition as possible in order to preserve the investment.
I’ve got some bad news for those making that argument: The vast majority of those cars are only special until the next iteration’s capability surpasses them, causing their value to plummet. That’s a sad reality. A lot of times, we don’t know what will make a car an excellent investment until it starts becoming one.
Exclusivity has its part to play, and rarity is also a factor, but consider this: a 1981 Ford Escort is so rare, I couldn’t find one for sale nation-wide on all of Craigslist, Ebay, Autotrader or anywhere else I looked. It’s vanishingly rare because they all fell apart, but the same could be said of many an Italian collectible.
You never know when some influence on the market will cause the prices to shoot up. The Acura NSX depreciated heavily and now prices are going back up based on it’s merit and a lot of favorable youtube reviews. It’s still not back to its original sale price though. Yet the likewise meritorious Toyota Supra is killing it because of it’s appearance in The Fast and the Furious.
But many of their much higher price contemporaries are not so lucky. I won’t name names, but suffice to say you can get some pretty sexy sheet metal at a deep discount. Which is good for those of us who love the analog machines for what they are, not for what society tells us they are, or what society thinks they say about their driver.
So I think of modern supercars and hypercars as trees. I enjoy them thoroughly in every respect, but I don’t need to own them. Someone else can do that. That’s one reason I enjoy the analog car, the ones truly worth owning are still around and hold their value. Many increase in value even if nothing is done to them, but some are fortified with new thingamajigs that modernizes it without spoiling what makes them unique and special.
Take this 1966 Pontiac GTO for example.
The car is absolutely stunning to behold, and retains much of its analog charm. This frame-off restoration looks fabulous in the photos and I am a total sucker for the over-under headlight configuration popular in the mid-1960’s. This is a car that can do pretty much what you need it to do without causing you to black out or high-center it, and it knows how to handle a speed bump as well as a street race. No, this one is meant to be driven not just rubbed with a diaper. It is a thoroughly modernized analog vehicle. To me, that’s a nice combination.
While not for the old-school purist, this completely rebuilt resto-mod is a classic you can live with and drive on a daily basis. It’s best to read the original listing to get a sense of how much has been done to this car (pretty much everything, so I’m not even going to try). So with that said, I suggest you click HERE to take you to the listing on Craigslist for more information.