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Hagerty
Hagerty Employee

4 cars that were the last of their kind, and whose prices command a premium | Hagerty Media

The car business is evolving constantly. As in nature, though, not every engine, body style, or model evolves fast enough to survive. These extinctions, sad as they can be, are also focal points for enthusiasts who wax poetic about "the end of an era" or "the last of its kind."
https://www.hagerty.com/media/market-trends/hagerty-insider/4-cars-that-were-the-last-of-their-kind-...
65 REPLIES 65
F360Spider
Detailer

None of those cars toot my horn.
2019GTS
Pit Crew

You are definitely not a car enthusiast then
Solosolo
Intermediate Driver

I can't get very enthusiastic about any of them either.
Lightning1
Detailer

A Rotary engine, might as well be a 2 stroke. A big engine in a big car, corners like a boat. Esprit, cool but lots of Britishisms. A formerly nice little sports car that is priced like an exotic.
There are many other interesting cars out there priced right.
MATTMERICA
Technician

lol on 2 stroke
pkelly
New Driver

For the record, 2-strokes are f'ing awesome!
BMD4800
Technician

Low T is a treatable medical condition.
jello67
Intermediate Driver

I have a late (94) 4 cylinder Lotus Esprit. It's fast. It's also fairly reliable. The joke in the Lotus Club is - "Is your Esprit a V8?" "No, I have a car I can drive." Joke, of course but the early v8's did have a lot of issues. Later ones are much improved.
MarveH
Intermediate Driver

Let me focus in on one minor point of this article to grandstand my not-humble-enough opinion.
It's no wonder the last real manual Ferraris are gaining in value over their paddle shifted decedents.
Manual transmissions are far better for the enthusiast driver than the paddle shifters. I know the auto/manuals can shift gears in one millionth of a blink-o-second, so what? If I made my living being 1/10th of a second faster than the next guy, OK, but I don't.
Sports cars serve no practical purpose at all and no one needs one. They exist for fun and fun alone, and I think a true manual is much more fun than flicking two shifting spatulas protruding from the wheel. My soap box and I will be going now.
Studenorton
Instructor

"Descendents," not "decedents," but I'll bet everyone here gets the joke.
Tsaxman
Detailer

Here's an added bonus: valet parking. I pulled up to a rather nice hotel with my 6-speed and the valet just shrugged, so I backed it into a prime spot in the front, and gave him a tip to keep an eye on it.
MATTMERICA
Technician

MarveH, I see your point clear as day, and I agree with it but add one caveat. Two years ago my buddy had me up to his house in CT. His next door neighbor worked for one of those companies that helped "clean up" the mortgage financial mess. This guy had a LOT of money and a sweet tooth for Ferraris. There were three at his house, four others in storage. We start talking about the stick vs paddle shifters and the guy starts laughing. He claimed that while he is no race car driver, he does track the Ferraris, and the times are night and day. He said the newest Ferrari that he had, if it were a manual, would be too difficult/dangerous to drive with one hand off the wheel even for a brief moment. He took me for a hot lap on the Merrit Parkway and I could clearly see his point. I would submit that the while the shifting is 1/10th of a second quicker, the resulting handling with two hands on the wheel adds up to a lot more time - and fun - on the track than you might think. And honestly, where else can you go that fast except the track? Also, paddle shifters in a $400k car are NOT the same experience as the paddle shifters in a BMW,
psmith
Intermediate Driver

a hot lap on the Merritt? What kind of irresponsible adolescent are you? One of the small gaggle of tinydicks in Ferraris, Porsche Turbos, and a Lambo that flew by me (I was already probably 10 mph over the 40 mph speed limit) on Town Farm Road near the polo club last Autumn?
There are also drugs to lower T levels....as well as surgery.

(for those of you who don't know, the Merritt is a CCC/WPA-era limited access highway with two lanes each direction, no berms, congested as are all roads in the northeast, and trees in close proximity)
GreatAukSi
Pit Crew

In the Porsche 911 piece, why do writers persist in saying engines are "water cooled?" I doubt whether any owner of a modern car cools it with water, much less someone with a classic Porsche. How about "liquid cooled" and air cooled?
Studenorton
Instructor

It used to be a Porsche joke that there was "water-cooled" and then "oil-cooled."
Rider79
Instructor

"Water-cooled" is the commonly-used phrase, and is understood by most everyone. And, since water is used in a mixture with antifreeze, it is not really inaccurate to say "water-cooled" - perhaps just incomplete.
Tinkerah
Technician

I used to work with a snowmobile enthusiast who insisted the phrase was "liquid cooled". I had to press him to get him to admit it wasn't some mystical concoction but simply water/antifreeze.
DT
Advanced Driver

How about not being so picky ???
TG
Instructor

Technically speaking, antifreeze is an additive to water to lower its freeze point and raise its boiling point. You are still cooling with water - treated to handle a broader temperature range.
My neighbor has a bobcat that is literally oil cooled, so you do have to be more technically specific than liquid.
kip
Intermediate Driver

Only car of this bunch that represents is the Lotus. Porsche - come on, they are still making practically the same looking cars. Mechanics may be different, but the base look remains the same. Chevelles - dime a dozen. Go to any car cruise and you will see a ton of them with most being SS clones. The earlier RX7s belong, maybe, but not the later ones.
erne75
Intermediate Driver

There is nothing preventing Mazda to bring back the RX-7...
cslandry
New Driver

. . . other than emissions issues and terrible gas mileage. Several years ago, my son and I rebuilt one for his first car. Lots of fun!
stevecobb45
Detailer

I think the 1970 AMX should be added to this list (or better yet, get rid of some of these dogs).
RightofPlumb
Pit Crew

I owned a 1969 Javelin w/ 343 4bbl. auto trans. Almost bought a 1970 AMX 390 4 speed for $1800.00 in 1976. Sometimes I still beat myself up on not buying the AMX.
MYTFAST
Intermediate Driver

Without a conv. model, the AMX will never be anything but an also ran to the Big 3 competitive offerings. Even the Avanti made a convertible in the late 1980s.

A lesson to be learned when Chrysler's big past mistake was a limiting convtible production for the Plymouth Barracuda & later slightly larger Dodge Challenger, which makes those convs. incredibly expensive at today's auctions.

Even today, Chrysler has no competitive convertible offering in the Dodge Challenger since it was reintroduced in 2008. Also, the only Challenger change since it's reintroduction in 2008 was in 2015 with a very minor face-look. The only reason the Challenger exists today is that by keeping the exact same body appearance, you can't tell a well kept older model from a new one. This reduces the desire/need to buy a new model Challenger, since the used car market is flooded with many cheaper older look-alikes, making any future Challenger "collector" sales stale, with low pricing.
farna
Advanced Driver

I disagree. While a convert would be nice, and command more money, more hardtops of all makes and model muscle/sports cars were sold than convertibles. Converts have been "halo" cars for most, with many of them done in outside shops from hardtops sent from the factory. There is one AMX convert running around, but it is a custom job done by an enthusiast.
Rich8
Intermediate Driver

The Chevelle is the only one I'm impressed with!
smtguy
Intermediate Driver

I'd add the BMW e10 to this list.
dd1
Intermediate Driver

I think all of these cars are uniquely special in their own way but for me it's the '70 Chevelle that evokes the deepest emotions and the most heartfelt memories. The memories are so vivid in my mind--the crackle of youthful enthusiasm, rock music, pretty girls and cars, cars, cars, cars and more cars!
Mopar_Den
New Driver

This list is terrible. You want a premium investment, you have to have a '63-'67 Corvette on the list, particularly the '63 Split window and the '67. But no list is complete without some Mopars. The Hemi 'Cuda at the top, of course. But followed by some less-discussed such as '66/'67 Belvedere/ Satellite or a Coronet. And some Dart and Dusters in either 340, 360 and maybe even a 440 thrown in. But even a Slant/6 can be fun and oh yeah, reliable!

My favorite that I own: The '66 Plymouth Belvedere II Convertible. Small Block V8 Mopar punch in a great summertime cruiser...
MajorTomB
Intermediate Driver

I'm shocked that neither the Pinto. or the Vegam made this list. They were truly the last of their kind.
Tinkerah
Technician

Only half way there to meeting the criteria of the article though.
RightofPlumb
Pit Crew

I too had a 1971 Vega GT 4 speed. Fun car to drive but, not very fast.
RobK
New Driver

If a 70 SS454 LS6 doesn't thrill you much you must not be into muscle cars, as it is one the most prized.
BTW, the Iron block of the 360 HP 454 has 2 bold main caps, while the LS6 has 4 bolt main caps
The LS6 also had holes for an oil cooler near the oil filter.
OldCarMan
Instructor

Truth be told, the '67 Chevelle was the best looking Chevelle ever. Considering that no GM car besides Corvette handled well until the later F bodies, only a street light racer would car about the boat anchor big block. IF the only criteria being considered was the motor, then OK, but it shouldn't be at all. And auction results are an aberration for the financial speculators and thus useless, also.
A case should be made for many other cars as some have already mentioned. Might want to have the writer go back and rethink the premise...
Tinkerah
Technician

We can debate the features and performance qualities until we're out of bandwidth (in fact, I think that's a primary reason this forum exists) but the title of the article is "4 cars that were the last of their kind, and whose prices command a premium" and with that in mind the writer satisfied the premise.
70cuda
Pit Crew

Disagree, just 1 example: Hemi Cuda
race911
Pit Crew

Funnyism on 993 Mania from yesterday--wife drove our '03 996 Turbo (a Ruf R Turbo conversion) for the first time yesterday, after seven years of ownership. Circumstances required it, there was no bailing out this time. She drives our '97 993 4S often; and drove both a 964 C4 on track ~20 years ago, and a track rat, heavily modified '74 3.6L widebody for autocross. So it's nothing about not being able to shift. Just that riding in the Turbo, she somehow thought the car would get away from her. Ugh. So she gets back home, I ask her how she tolerated it.......and she couldn't believe how much better a car it is than the 993. (We also have a PDK '13 Boxster S that she drives the most.)

I don't get Air Cooled Mania, and I've got four of them. But I soldier along with them because I got them when everyone was tripping over themselves to get 996s, so they were cheap. And I can work on them.
munron
New Driver

Any trouble getting the keys back from your wife?  I have a similar situation at my house only in my case its a six speed '05 GTO.  Once she gets hold of the keys I have to get up at 3 in the morning and retrieve them from her purse while she's sleeping.

DHR
Pit Crew

The Volvo 1800 series ended after the 1973 model year when safety regulations would have forced them to put bigger bumpers on it.
LamboEd
Intermediate Driver

I'll take the Esprit and the Chevelle provided the Chevelle is a stick!!!
RightofPlumb
Pit Crew

The Mercedes-Benz 1987 190E 2.3-16. The most fun car I have ever driven. So sorry I sold it.
Maestro1
Instructor

The Porsche and the Mazda. Although I like 912s better than 911s, I've had bad experiences with 911s, and I'm in City traffic a lot so there's little advantage in horsepower, and my ego does not demand such things. The Mazda is expensive for a Mazda but I bet it's a blast to drive, and it's very attractive. Thank you for this.
okfoz
Detailer

Keep in mind it appears that the current Generation Mustang (code S550) will be the Last mustang that will have an internal Combustion engine as well. Although there is rumors of the Mustang going with the Aviator/Explorer Platform (Code S650) in 2023, there are other rumors that the current car might find some updates in 2023, but in 2028 or 2029 the Gas engine will be replaced by an Electric vehicle only.
Keep in mind that Gasoline will be around for a while, even if we cut the cord at the pump, aircraft will still use a form of gasoline well into the future.
okfoz
Detailer

To add on top of that, once gone to EV, this might be the end of the Manual transmission.
70cuda
Pit Crew

I think it’s time Hagerty gets rid of these bias writers and hires some REAL CAR Motörhead’s to write these articles. Anymore this is like watching/reading fake news. Very disappointing to say the least.
MrBill-1943
Detailer

While I agree some may not toot any ones horn the 1970 Chevelle with a 454 and Cherry Bomb pipes will still turn many a head and get me to give it a honk. The othesr will get a best a Oh look at that but I will watch the Chevelle till it goes out of sight and wish I had an extra $124,000 to add it to my collection.
BMD4800
Technician

A solid lifter, high compression big block is an experience to behold.
If you’ve never driven a big block 4-speed GM A-body, it is totally worth it.
Your sensibilities and sensitivities to NVH, proper handling and braking will immediately evaporate with the sudden, brutal, and overpowering application of torque. Big port heads in the hi-po cars flow huge numbers which makes freight train torque and a broad power band.
I can destroy any *stock vintage* 429CJ, LS6, L88, ZL1, 440, even Hemi with my turbo LS build, but the slower low 12 second LS6 car was hands-down the most brutally enjoyable and memorable car I’ve had the pleasure of experiencing. I’d like to build a clone with modern heads, cam, hard parts, etc, just because.

To each their own.
CBK
New Driver

I bought a brand new 1970 Chevrolet SS 396 with 4 speed and cowl induction hood. Not the 454, but was still awesome. It was great and certainly wish I still had it. In ‘72 I sold it due to the high insurance costs, marriage and child. Awesome car(s). 👍❤️‼️