Dear Classic Car Enthusiast,
Exciting times: blessed with wonderful events in glorious sunshine, mixing with like-minded people, what could be better?
“The Classic Car Market”
What is happening and what are the true facts?
We see in the press opposing views, as the media like to dramatise.
“The market is on a downward spiral!”
“The market is reporting record sales!”
If you have one question to ask, surely that must be, from where these stories and rumours may be coming. Who is making these assumptions, and – ultimately - what are the true facts?
The full turnout at the recent Silverstone Classic, Salon Privé, Hampton Court Concours, Beaulieu and the ever-glamorous Goodwood Revival, along with some (sold out) European rallies, all tell us of the same story; the excitement present in all areas of the market is an indication of a buoyant audience, whether the optimism is misplaced or not.
We now see auction houses full to capacity… but, as ever, struggling to find the right ‘star cars’; they are simply not performing as they used to, online auctions are popping up everywhere and no one really knows what is selling and what is not. In the classic car arena, it is unclear whether the system(s) we have come to accept and use are working well or not.
There are also mixed messages from the dealer network, with some players flying and dominating certain areas of the market, and others taking different directions. Of course, there are also those who sit on their hands, at their peril.
It has been very obvious recently, as we inspect more and more cars through auction houses, private sales and a number of dealers, that doing your homework is the route to take; we keep witnessing some quite bad cars and some average offering, with no or very little documented supporting history.
Finding the right car for the right price is becoming a more and more difficult exercise by the day.
Many years ago, so much could be changed - from engine to body paint - with little documented history to support the background of such alterations, but values were not affected greatly. Now, the value of a classic car very much depends on it having matching numbers, colours and a well-documented history. These are the cars that dealers are hunting down, and the values are then set.
Hot topic indeed: what will start to climb and what is putting on the brakes? The market values are dictated by field specialists who find the right cars, display and advertise them in the correct way. If then the armchair expert jumps on board and crashes valuation overnight, by offering a lemon which, presented at auction, ‘bombs’, the market may well take a turn.
If you are hunting for that right car, do your checks, do your homework and present it correctly; if you are planning to sell your pride and joy, speak to the right people.
If you need any assistance with buying or selling a classic, or thinking of a restoration, we are here to help.
Happy motoring and keep safe.