Maybe you've seen those Alfa Romeo Giulia commercials on television – the ones with the cherry red sedan and the female voice cooing about leaving "Predictable" behind.
Shot in the sun-saturated Italian countryside, they make an alluring argument for the merits of Alfa Romeo's $143,900 sedan.
Turns out, you may be wise to splurge. According to experts who insure collectable cars for a living, the Giulia has what it takes to hold its value as it ages. It could even become an icon.
"Vehicles like this, aimed at [brand] enthusiasts and luxury consumers, continue to outdo themselves year-over-year in terms of power, drivability, and overall performance," said McKeel Hagerty, chief executive officer of Hagerty, an insurance firm for vintage and collectible cars. Those characteristics – power, drivability, and performance – are crucial factors in what can propel a car to a decent value 30 years from now. The sure bet, though, is to buy a car that is exceedingly rare and obtrusively different to see as it rolls down the road. Jarring physical looks alone won't guarantee that a car will become collectible, but if you lack them to begin with, don't expect much a few decades down the road.
Alfa Romeo isn't the only one producing modern classics. Pagani, Ferrari, Lamborghini, and even Ford are churning out models that round up further essentials for making a car become a classic: a limited-edition run and a pre-screened client base that promised to buy one. Contrary to what you might expect, the golden age of the automobile is happening right now, Hagerty said.
Barring some crazy future video game or film franchise that makes, say, Toyota's Camry suddenly and permanently cool, the 13 new cars on this list are this year's top options primed to become collectible gold.
"In some cases, it's power. In some cases, it's innovation or drivability. But all of them have the qualities that define a future classic," Hagerty said. "They have that 'it' factor that makes them stand out from the crowd."
Ferrari LaFerrari Aperta
Price: $4.54 million
This super-rare convertible version of the already historic LaFerrari is already sold-out, so you'll have to be lucky to get one. If you do, hold on to it.
"Limited edition cars from Maranello are either instantly collectible or soon-to-be," Hagerty said. "You just can't go wrong in this market with Ferrari. The 499 coupes quickly sold out, and the 209 Apertas are spoken for as well."
The technology is especially novel: The car has a V12 engine, plus an electric motor and KERS technology for the equivalent of 949 total horsepower. And it looks like an alien – sometimes, for collector cars, the weirder, the better. This one certainly passes muster.
What's more, vintage limited-edition Ferraris are selling for tens of millions of dollars, more than triple and even quadruple their original prices.
Dodge Viper 1:28 Edition ACR
Price: $160,566 estimated
The V10, 645-horsepower car is meant to celebrate the lap record Randy Pobst set in a Dodge Viper ACR at Laguna Seca Raceway in October 2015.
It can hit 60 miles per hour in three seconds and hit nearly 320kph at top speed. It's also the final edition and last-production Dodge Viper, which makes it an even more special prospect for collection, because once this year's 28 units are sold, they're gone.
"This Viper ACR ... is celebrated for the large-displacement, small sports car formula executed by so many legends," Hagerty said.
Chevrolet Camaro ZL1
At 50 years and counting, the Camaro is an old model. Historic. This proves how beloved it has become – the car has seen many generations and performance upgrades.
The Camaro gained notoriety through countless drag racing wins and movie cameos, especially in the massively popular Fast and Furious franchise.
Camaro would tell you that its latest is the most important yet. The 2017 Camaro ZL1 has a massive, 6.2-litre V8 engine and 295 kilograms-feet of torque. It'll hit 96kph in 3.5 seconds—faster than the RWD Lamborghini Huracán Spyder.
This light, fuel-sipping coupe is basically an upgraded Scion FR-S, but it has more aggressive styling with a wider stance, plus better shocks and handling. It's also wildly more interesting to look at than, say, your average Toyota Camry.
The 86 comes in manual drive, which makes it alluring to people who really want to drive their cars – a stick-shift feels more authentic to the driving experience. This means that in the long run, it'll have staying power as an authentic, entry-level, little rally car.
The added benefit here is that the 86 is affordable now. If you can't get into a Ferrari, this is your best bet.
Porsche 718 Cayman & Porsche Boxster
Price: From $72,116
Porsches remain on the auction market today. That won't change, especially for "lesser" but more interesting models than the standard 911, such as the 718 Cayman and Boxster.
That's why when you want to differentiate yourself a bit from the pack, the 2017 Porsche 718 lineup is a very good option. It's not as expected a choice as the ubiquitous 911, and it's arguably more fun to drive. This version has a brand-new, turbocharged, flat-four engine and 25 more horsepower in the 718 than in previous models.
Mazda Miata RF
This 155-horsepower, four-cylinder car has made the Hagerty "to watch" list in previous years; it has been loved for decades. This year presents a new, hard-top targa roof, a more rigid structure, and more of a coupe-like design across the top and sides.
People love to hate on the Miata because it can be had for a relatively inexpensive price and because it is so small, but they can't deny its endearing smile – and how fun it is to drive.
Ford F-150 Raptor
When Ford made the original special edition F-150 Raptor in 2009, the truck was welcomed with rapt attention.
The Raptor is like a hyped-up, super-in-shape, race-ready version of the bestselling vehicle in America going on four decades; it's always a good idea when scouting for collectible cars to get the special, souped-up version, anyway.
For 2017, the Raptor has even more power (450hp on a twin-turbo, 3.5-litre, eco-boosted engine) and is 226 kilos lighter to boot. It's considerably more efficient than the previous V8. This is the year the truck got a true makeover – and it's the perfect time to buy.
Fiat 124 Spider Abarth
This classic 124 Spider shares architecture with the Mazda Miata, which – despite its humble mien – is fun and sporty to drive, as any road-racing dilettante knows.
It can hit 96kph in 6.3 seconds, so it's not lightning-quick, but the "MultiAir" turbo engine and lusty torque on such a small, lightweight body give it true Italian verve.
This is the European gift you'll have fun driving and keeping around for a few decades, while it appreciates.
Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport
Here is another iconic sports car that will remain so for the foreseeable future. With a sprint to 96kph in 3.6 seconds and a tried-and-true, 460-horsepower, naturally aspirated, V8 engine, the Grand Sport can keep up with virtually anything exotic (Lamborghini, Ferrari, Aston Martin, ahem) on the track.
It has a newly lightweight architecture, a track-honed aerodynamics package, and Michelin tires. And it looks almost as good as its forebears, the heroes of American racing: the 1963 and 1996 Grand Sports.
Chevrolet Colorado ZR2
Old Ford and Chevy trucks are undoubtedly cool. And along with the and , they're , too. This one stands a good chance of joining the mix.
The ZR2 comes with plenty of technologies that make it viable off-road, including dynamic shocks, locking front and rear differentials, increased ride height, and a widened track. Chevy will have to make sure it doesn't overproduce these or sell too many into fleet service.
If the company can resist those urges, these could be very special 30 years from now.
Price: $80,280 estimated
The 400-horsepower TT-RS has a new and unique 2.5-cylinder, inline, five-cylinder engine and will hit 99kph in 3.7 seconds. That's just a tenth of a second slower than Lamborghini's impressive . (After all, they share a parent company in Volkswagen AG.) Not too shabby for the German sports car.
Plus, with those looks, it has the novelty of a toy. These are all bonuses when it comes to being collectible.
Price: $535,190 at first debut
"The new GT combines racing success –past and present – with design and innovation," Hagerty said. "The thing collectors really like about these is what it says about themselves: They're all-American, innovative, and they value winning."
Better yet, the 3.5-litre, twin-turbo, V6 modern version still taps incredible history. It is just as focused at beating Ferrari on the track as the 1960s original. This year, Ford will make 250 of them in total.
Pagani Huayra Roadster
Price: $3.2 million
This is the outrageous car that was belle of the ball in Geneva earlier this month. It is entirely hand-built, with a new, removable rooftop made from carbon and glass and a 6.0-litre, twin-turbocharged Mercedes-Benz AMG V12 engine that gets 764 horsepower. It'll do zero-96kph in fewer than three seconds. Plus, it's extremely rare: Only 100 will be built, and they're already sold.
"There is simply nothing like Pagani in the marketplace," Hagerty said. "The experience of co-creating a made-in-Italy work of art. together with the man whose name is on the building, can only come from one place: Pagani."
Check out the gallery above to see your next investment car.
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