Question Of The Day: Japan's Future Classics
When a publication like Barron’s is getting in on the “Japanese classic car” story, you can be sure that this is more than just a flash-in-the-pan phenomenon of aging boomers looking to buy the 240Z they lusted after in high school. It also helps that most Japanese cars, save for the Toyota 2000GT and an all-original Nissan Skyline GT-R “Hakosuka” with the original S20 engine, are within the reach of most potential classic car investors.
Aside from obvious candidates like the Acura NSX and the Toyota Supra Turbo, I think that there are some solid gems that will fetch decent money or be otherwise desirable in the future. Front and center is the Acura Integra Type-R. Most of them have been crashed, stolen or modified. I don’t think they’ll ever hit the same heights as a Hemi Cuda, but they occupy a similar place in the imagination of the Fast and Furious generation. I’d also add the Mitsubishi Evo and the third-generation Mazda RX-7 for similar reasons. Any other candidates?
What?! No votes for the 1981 Dodge Challenger in two-tone paint made by Mitsubishi?! It will certainly be rare. :)
I don't think any of these will be collectible. Perhaps a very small number of mint showroom condition high end models like the NSX or RX7, but nothing that was just a regular car. The NSX is hard to sell now and people really love them... Just not enough to actually buy one for the insane asking prices. Older Japanese cars will be quirky and appealing to guys like me who will buy them but only when they are cheap, and they will be cheap because the market is so small. The problem is they simply aren't that nice, the appeal is all nostalgia. They don't age well, they have too many electronics to go bad, it's not easy to source parts, and all that plastic just degrades. I love my MR2 but a new FRS or MX5 beats the pants off it in every category except price. Old muscle cars have a huge industry to support them, that doesn't exist for the imports.
I've predicted that '90s-early '00s Hondas/Acura/Toyotas will be *the* car that my generation will covet and collect down the road, like the Boomers and their Mustangs, Camaros and Chargers, no doubt about it. That is if our dictatorship of a government doesn't ban vehicles that employ an internal combustion engine when we Gen Y'ers are getting gray hair. If I ever decide to own classics, it would be a mix of LH platform Chryslers from both generations--Intrepid, Concorde/Vision, New Yorker/LHS, 300M--for sure. If I could have more room in the stable, the '94-02 Ram truck (preferably one with a Cummins), and yes, an NS platform Chrysler minivan or three ('96-'00). Maybe a Neon and a Grand Cherokee too.
JDM Altima Bluebird SSS.?