Collectors expert McKeel Hagerty says it's a 'golden age of muscle'


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When it comes to today’s new vehicles, you don’t have to go very far into the weeds and old barns to find the collector’s items of tomorrow, says McKeel Hagerty, CEO of Hagerty, a company most known for classic car insurance. But more than insuring cars, Hagerty’s task is knowing the value — present and future — of automobiles as assets.

Hagerty believes the long-standing allure and appreciating value of muscle cars will carry on in many of the models currently on the market. A critical factor is whether they can perform respectably on a racetrack.

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“We’ve been in this strange golden age of muscle,” he said. “People think the muscle car era was the ’60s, early ’70s. But arguably, the Chargers, Challengers, Demons and even some of the high-horsepower Camaros of today — they are track-worthy.

2018 Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport

“You’ve never been able to buy more horsepower and reliability cheaper than you can right now,” he says. “It will be interesting to see what happens with them.

“My guess is that lower-mileage, higher-option examples of them will go through a depreciation curve. But then they will hold their own, if not start creeping back up.”

Nameplates from iconic brands with established followings that have been built up over the past decades, such as Corvettes, Ferraris and Porsches, will continue to live on as collectibles, he predicts.

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“If those cars survive and don’t get wiped out in accidents, they’ll be collected someday,” Hagerty said. “It’s hard to deny that a new Grand Sport, or a new Z06 or a new 911, is a pretty cool car. They will have more than just transportation value for people over decades to come.”

But surprise collector’s items continue to pop up, Hagerty says.

“If you think of the Kia Stinger, that’s where I’m fascinated. I remember walking around an auto show and some people saying, ‘You gotta sit in this thing — it’s crazy.’

2018 Kia Stinger GT2

“The question for us will be,” Hagerty mused, “can a brand that wasn’t anything just a little while ago actually produce a car that could have collectible value?”

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