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Hagerty Employee

5 classics that appeal across generations

As enthusiasts are often a cliquey, tribal bunch, certain cars seem to only get attention from one type of collector. This collector "type" could follow any signifier we can use to categorize enthusiast demographics, a tag ranging from income, nationality, region, gender, and age.
118 REPLIES 118

Um, this is about cars that are purchased by both young and old drivers. Not just old ones like us.

Speaking as a Boomer, one overlooked factor in this piece is the ease of getting in and out of the car. Except for the Viper and Subaru these cars are much easier for a 70 year old to enter and exit than any non-SUV made today. I loved driving my son's old MR2 and my daughter's Pontiac Fiero, but even 20 years ago it was hard for me to get in and out of them. Today, I don't think I could do it without assistance. This might also account for some of the popularity of SUV's. When the company that I used to work for switched their company car fleet from Jeep Libertys to Chevy Impalas I was surprised at how much harder it was to get in and out.

I think the commonality here is that most people are not interested in any of these.

I’m 65, with several cars from 1980 to 2001, plus one 2018, and that’s the case for me.
I always want more interesting cars, just not any of these.

With the exception of my 2018, which is one of the two new cars I’ve ever purchased, in 50 years, all of them were affordable. Otherwise I couldn’t have afforded them….

A very small number are interested in these, but the sample size is too small to draw any meaningful conclusions. Too much background noise.

It’s not age-dependent.
Pit Crew

The E Type Jaguar is not even listed here. The E Type is one of the most iconic cars ever built.
Another favorite of mine is the Austin Healey ..... and that's not listed either.

I'm not sure the "generation" way of looking at things was ever really valid beyond...

...the baby boomers were a large number with new ideas and wants, in a rapidly changing world of predominantly great economic times so they did things differently than the generation(s) before them.

I'm gen X and since I started hearing about it in high school I have seldom thought commentators were talking about me when talking about "me". Later "generations" don't always follow same age span so you can't even compare articles talking about "Gen Z" unless you know how they are defining that.

I honestly think just looking at it by ages: people under 30, 31-55, 55+ would be more interesting. You have beginning of career, prime of career, hitting or in retirement. Depending when you look at the data, you can do the "what was cool when this group was in high school?" filter to the data as well.
Advanced Driver

There are still Datsun 720's out there getting insured???
Advanced Driver

One factor left out is "reality" TV. Currently Street Outlaws has two different CVSs running. For me, as a toy, I prefer (and have many choices) 2 doors, not a truck, and not a Ford. Another issue for me was that some were available only with automagic transmissions. Back then it was mostly a three speed standard, a two speed automatic (and back then we didn't have 3,000 hp) and a four speed manual. The four speed was lighter and faster. Today automatics have 6-10 speeds and need no skill to operate. This is clearly better for those who grew up with joysticks.
So boomers vs millennials is more apples vs kumquats, they really have very little in common particularly when between them is the gap from about 1975 to 1990 when cars were mostly ugly and not Politically Correct. Really the major proponent of speed then was Buick (?) but only with automatics..

Believe it or don't but there was a time when a four door cost more than a two door.

They're running drug stores?
New Driver

Owning several old cars, and not rich just Careful, ANYONE, that has seen a 55-57 Chevrolet or an older Corvette loves and dreams or wishes about having one when they drive by! Anyone exclaining or portraying  "not interested" is either Brain Dead, or Lying! Just my reliance on 70+ years of car and life experiences! Respectfully Silverblue58vette 

Intermediate Driver

I really don't believe it.
Not one young person I know is interested in anything other than their Smart Phones. Cars are just something that can transport a backpack and their pajama boy bodies from point A to point B
Pit Crew

I was unfamiliar with the Toyota Chaser. and for good reason , because it was a Japan only product.

Put the vehicles pulled from the data for the article and a 69 Camaro RS on a stage.

Give 100 people split across your ages groups 2 tickets each to win a car. They can only put one ticket in for each car.

There will be 98 tickets in the Camaro bin. Probably almost as many in the Viper bin unless you get a person that just doesn't like or fit into those and $$$ value isn't in their thinking.

The point being, not sure non-committal insurance quotes really tell us what people prefer. Actual new vehicle policies added does tell us something, but at the end of the day we don't know what the person would have rather had if they could afford it.
New Driver

The Gen 2 Viper GTS is quite unique, because it's appreciated by practically everyone - as well as, by a wide variety of car enthusiasts. It looks good parked beside a Boss 429 or a Ferrari 458. Very few cars can be that diverse, blend in, and be welcomed. In my experience, just about everyone loves a Viper in real life, even those that post online that they hate it.
Intermediate Driver

"...the 1993–96 Toyota Chaser are almost entirely ignored by older generations, while collectors under the age of 40 account for 88 percent of insurance quotes for the Japanese sedan." The main reason for this is the fact that this age group has little or no pride in US made automobiles, and the US automakers let it happen. Secondary to this point is the fact that academia is teaching students that it is wrong to display any kind of patriotism or nationalism for's racist.
Intermediate Driver

I remember when the grand national came out and I watched them at the musclecar Nats beat the classic hot rods. I was amazed. The price tag was too much for a young twenty something. Fast forward now to when the marauder came out. It was sinister in black just like the G.N. My wife and I were at a new model year car show and was drueling over the Merc. My wife couldnt understand and said that's a old man's car. I wouldn't look at a plain grand marquis but the marauder was cool. Years later I bought a 300c and my wife and I were very pleased with that car. On this list the marauder and viper are the ones I like.
Pit Crew

No Buicks?  I thought the Riviera would at least make the list. Or Wildcats from the 60s and Century's from 55-58, Invicta's from 59-62? Also, as far as affordability, the C4 Corvettes are at bargain prices right now. Even the anniversary editions and 90-95 ZR1's can be picked up at a reasonable price. Although not the pinnacle of Corvette performance, you can still find some nice ones. Very nice first generation Rivieras(63-65) may be a bit much for an entry level purchase, but there has been an uptick in values(71-73) of the other generations(8 total). But some that may need a little work can be picked up at affordable prices for someone that wants to get into the hobby.

Pit Crew

I'm surprised to see only the latest Miata on the list. My local club has a wide range of owner ages across all four MX-5 generations. It is especially true of the first generation (NA) model, with the youngest being a teen and the oldest in his mid-70s. As hyperv6 said, affordability is a major factor, but that is diminishing now that collectors have taken interest. Online forum membership is similarly diverse. I'm thrilled with any enthusiast car that Gen Y gets into. For boomers and Gen X and even some Millennials, driving means freedom. For many in the highly connected generation, driving is an undesirable period of disconnection.

It's not appeal that groups these cars but lack of appeal. All so close to zero they appear equal.

That Samurai is pure gold. Make me want to import a Jimny.