Paul Michaels, Chairman of Hexagon Classics, on the classic car market in 2016 and what to expect in 2017:


“After the rapid rise in values from 2012 to 2015, the classic car market in 2016 has been much more stable. There have been a few surprising auction results, but on the whole the days of huge growth are over and everything is a bit calmer. So what’s done best? The Porsche 911 continues to prove a popular model. From the 993 to the 964 and 930 – particularly the rare and special versions of these models – values are strong. In fact, in many cases it’s been cars from the 1980s and 1990s – the poster cars – that have performed best with steady demand. But if you fancy something older, certain Astons, Alfas and Jensens have done well. I’ve picked out some cars at a range of price points that havehad a good 2016.


“What’s in store for 2017? Well, one thing is for sure, this year has not been short of political shocks and that does tend to have a hangover. Buyers are much more cautious, so I think we can expect a steady year. I’ve picked out some cars that should return around 10 percent, maybe a bit more. If you’re looking to buy a classic, there are several golden rules. The prices quoted at the top end are for absolutely immaculate examples: the best of the best with low mileages, full histories and in perfect condition. And that’s always the key. It’s the top quality cars that keep their value – or go up. Secondly, buy something you love and will enjoy driving. Otherwise you might as well dabble in the stock market. With a classic car, you get more than a piece of paper – you have something that should become part of the family. And if it makes money, it’s a bonus.”


2016 – the winners

  1. Porsche 993 (1993-1997)

Price range: £50,000 – £1.8m

Increase in 2016: +10-15 percent

“One of the most remarkable things I’ve seen this year was watching a 1995 Porsche 993 GT2 sell for £1.8m at RM Sotheby’s auction in September. The estimate was £750k. What happened? Two very rich guys competed against each other and the price went ballistic. Nobody could quite believe it. I don’t expect to see that sort of situation repeated very often but it goes to show how desirable the special versions of the 993 are. The truth is that all 993s have had a great year. The last of the aircooled 911s, it’s always been held in high regard among collectors as it represents the last of the line – a ‘proper’ Porsche built at a time when the Stuttgart company didn’t let the accountants compromise on the engineering. Plus, in many people’s eyes, it’s also one of the best-looking 911s ever made. Prices have steadily risen with the best examples of Carrera 2, Carrera 4, C2S, C4S and Turbo appreciating by 10 percent. Further up the range, the really special cars – Turbo S, RS and GT2 – have jumped at least 15 percent.”


  1. Aston Martin V8 Vantage (1977-1989)

Price range: £300,000-£400,000
Increase in 2016: +20 percent


“There’s been quite a lot of heat in the classic Aston Martin market over the last few years with big rises for the DB4, DB5 and DB6. But 2016 saw that leveling off with those cars holding steady rather than rocketing upwards. As older cars become more expensive and move further out of reach, values of younger cars are brought up – and the real movement in 2016 has been in the V8 Vantages. Built from 1977 to 1989, these were most definitely poster cars and it’s not hard to see why they’re so desirable: the shape is barely contained muscle, the 5.3-litre V8 a masterpiece and they’re the last of the properly old-school handbuilt Astons, crafted at the old Newport Pagnell factory in tiny numbers. The late Eighties cars are in particularly high demand as are the more powerful X Packs. Prices currently range from £300,000 to £400,000, up around 20 percent on a year ago. Really rare V8 Vantages, such as the 27 Prince of Wales-specification versions, are way in excess of this – a Volante POW sold for £650,000 at Bonhams earlier this year.”


  1. Jaguar E-type V12 Series III Roadster (1971-1975)

Price range: £80,000-£90,000
Increase in 2016: + 15 percent


“There’s a simple reason why V12 E-types have gone up so much in value in 2016: fewer and fewer people can afford the earlier Series I and II six-cylinder cars, which are well into £100,000-£150,000 and beyond for the very best models. So the limelight is being shone elsewhere. Produced from 1971 to 1975, the Series III is not the prettiest E-type that’s ever been made, but in Roadster form it’s still very desirable. With a big 5.3-litre V12 engine and an automatic ‘box, it’s got plenty of lazy performance, making it an excellent cruising machine. Not so long ago, these were £50,000 – they’re now £80,000 and upwards for the cream of the crop, so you’re looking at a big jump in value in a short space of time. Add in a bit of celebrity ownership and some examples have even gone past £100k: a 1973 Roadster used on the TV show, Only Fools and Horses, sold at auction in September for £115,000 so there’s plenty of appetite out there.”


  1. Jensen Interceptor (1966-1976)

Price: £55,000 – £65,000

Average increase in 2016: +5-10 percent


“The Interceptor has always been regarded as the poor man’s Aston Martin and as prices of the latter have risen, the muscular Jensen has been slowly heading upwards too. It’s certainly had a good 12 months, with the very best cars gaining around 10 percent with exceptional Coupes commanding £55,000-£65,000 (rare Convertibles are well in excess of this). It’s not hard to see why it’s finally coming of age: you’ve got to love the combination of a very English interior full of wood and leather, shooting brake tailgate and a big American V8 up front. There’s also the image. Whereas similar vintage Aston Martins were always for the upper classes, the Interceptor has the something of the cultured hardman about it. The association with legendary boxers like Henry Cooper (RIP) does it no harm at all. On the downside, Interceptors are very expensive to restore and put right (almost as costly as Aston Martins in fact but without the same return on investment), which is why buying an A1 car is the only real way to go. Do that though and you won’t look back.”


  1. Alfa Duetto Spider Series 1 (1966-1969)

Price: £25,000 – £30,000

Increase in 2016: +10 percent


“Many 1960s and 70s Alfas have moved up in the last 12 months but the spotlight has fallen on the Series 1 Duetto Spider. It’s the textbook glamorous but classless Italian roadster – and the fact that it had a cameo role in The Graduate adds even more to its charm. They haven’t jumped that much – last year, you would have paid £20-£25k for a good car, this year you’re looking at £25k-£30k – but I’d expect this upward trajectory to continue into next year and beyond. There’s even evidence that in Italy, the car’s home market, prices are moving even more quickly so if you can live with left-hand drive, buying one with the steering wheel on the ‘wrong’ side might actually be a very canny move, widening your market when re-selling. As ever with an Alfa, things like rust and electrics are the Achilles’ heel but, again, the golden rule is not even to touch a ‘project’ car and buy one that’s been completely restored or been lovingly looked after. Then you’re in for a whale of a time – and will make plenty of friends wherever you go.”


2017 – the ones to watch


  1. Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona (1968-1973)

Price now: £600,000-£700,000  

Potential increase in 2017:  +10 percent


“The Daytona has shot up in the last 10 years but compared to the car it replaced, the 275, it has never really caught fire and last year it was pretty static. While an excellent 275 is worth around £2m, the same condition Daytona is not even half that. I have no doubt it’ll follow the 275 upwards and I can see growth next year of around 10 percent. Plus there’s no reason why the best Daytonas can’t begin to nudge £1m in future. After all it’s an absolute masterpiece of a GT car. It’s powered by one of the greatest engines ever made – the famous Colombo V12, which can trace its roots back to the 250 – and it’s a proper headturner. Prices currently range from £600,000-£700,000, with right hand drive cars – and those with the plexiglass front end – commanding the upper end. This is pretty much the only undervalued period front-engined Ferrari out there. Definitely one to watch in 2017.”


  1. Porsche 928 (1977-1995)

Price now: £60,000 – £90,000

Potential increase in 2017:  +10 percent


“The 928 has been underrated for far too long and the reason for that is simple: it’s not a 911. That’s understandable as most people with £50,000-plus to spend on a classic Porsche generally want the 911 shape and six-cylinders hanging out the back. My advice is this, though: don’t overlook the front-engined 928. It’s got a long way to appreciate and 2017 could be the year it finally gets the respect it deserves. Built from 1977-1995, it got faster and grew spoilers and wings as it got older, but didn’t really change that much. With that big V8 up front and the gearbox at the back, it has near perfect weight distribution, so every version handles well yet it’s a properly comfortable GT car too – I should know, I’ve owned plenty. Pick of the bunch is the rare S4 manual, which costs around £60,000 for the best examples. It made up just seven percent of total production and is a great investment. Further up the range, the supercar-fast 928 GTS manual models are £80,000-£90,000 and still rising.”

  1. BMW E46 M3 Coupe (2000-2006)

IMG_8838.a-1 - Hexagon

Price now: £20,000 – £25,000

Potential increase in 2017: +5-10 percent


“The E46 M3 is without doubt one of the best BMW coupes ever made with a race-derived 3.2-litre S54 M Sport six-cylinder engine and great handling. It also looks taut and muscular yet is based on a regular 3 Series so it’s practical and reasonably spacious. Prices for the rare versions have really accelerated in recent years with the carbon-roofed CSL now £70,000 (up from £50,000 around 18-months ago) and the UK-only CS now around £35,000 (up from £25k) but the ‘basic’ M3 still has some way to go. Around £20-£25,000 will buy a low-mileage manual gearbox car which will give you all the performance of a Porsche 993 C2 for about half the price. If you’re in the market, double check the rear suspension (the subframes could crack and were replaced under warranty by main dealers) while the engine’s VANOS valve timing system can play tricks, but apart from that buy a loved car from a specialist and you’re in for a treat. And potentially a 5-10 percent uplift in 2017. If you want to make even more money you’ll have to take the plunge on the CSL – I’d expect a £10k increase in value next year.”


  1. Austin Mini Cooper S (1963-1967)

Price: £25,000-£50,000

Potential increase in 2017: +5-10 percent


“The original Sixties Mini is a classic that’s always been in high demand. My favourite is the Mk1 Austin Mini Cooper S, a car you can live out all your Italian Job fantasies in – particularly as it’s about the only car from that film which is still within the reach of normal people. Just. They’ve jumped a good 15 percent in recent years and I don’t see that slowing down by much in 2017. Prices currently range from £25,000 for good cars to £50,000 for concours examples and you can expect that to go up by 5-10 percent next year. If you love Minis but fancy something a bit more modern – but very nearly as collectable and more affordable – take a look at the two-seater 2006 MINI JCW GP. Just 500 came to the UK and they were essentially road-going versions of the Cooper S Challenge race cars. Immaculate low mileage cars cost less than £15,000 and they’re only going to go up in value.”


  1. Lancia Delta HF Integrale Evolution (1991-1993)

Price now: £40,000 – £70,000

Potential increase in 2016: +5-10 percent


“The Delta HF Integrale has its roots in the extreme world of Group B rallying and is still revered today. A development of the turbocharged Delta HF 4WD, the Integrale got a wider track and flared wheel arches, along with numerous engine changes to create one of the most legendary hot hatches ever. If Ferrari had made a hatchback, it would have driven and looked like an Integrale. Originally introduced late in 1987, it’ll celebrate its 30th anniversary next year, which will undoubtedly lead to a surge in interest. From its release up until 1993 the Integrale was constantly refined with more power and technology updates, including the addition of ABS and a move from 8 valves to 16 valves. The later Delta Integrale Evolution, Evolution II and Final Edition models are the most desirable. They’re the fastest, rarest and most exotic. Prices currently range from £40,000 right up to £70,000 for the very best and with next year’s anniversary, now seems like a good time to buy.”