First Time Buyer

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West Cork
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Joined: 2013-07-25

I am looking to enter ownership of a Classic Car and would appreciate feedback.

I am looking to spend up to £10,000 and would like a car in excellent condition with low mileage and FSH. The car will be garaged and used on occasional weekends throughtout the year.

I do not intend to carry out any maintenance work myself . The car will be serviced by a specialist and maintained to the standard it was purchased for.

What car would you recommend ?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Coventry Climax
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Joined: 2012-02-16

It would be difficult to recommend anything without knowing more... Are you thinking of a two-seater roadster, a luxury saloon, a thoroughbred coupé? And from which era? Should it be inexpensive to run, or are running costs less important?

West Cork
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Joined: 2013-07-25

At this stage I am very open to suggestions. Having read a number of magazines and searched the Internet I have come up with the following short list:

Triumph Spitfire

 Volvo 1800

Porsche 911

Jaguar XJS V12 

Running costs are not a major concern as it will only be driven a few weekends per year.

Which of the above represents the best buy based on budget of £10000. I am looking for something that is in very good condition with FSH

Coventry Climax
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Joined: 2012-02-16

I imagine you ought to be able to get a near perfect Spitfire for that sort of budget, and although you say running costs aren't going to be an issue, it ought to be the cheapest of the bunch to run (in terms of both fuel and servicing costs).

Conversely, I doubt that you'd get anything like a decent 911 for that sort of money, and you might struggle to find an XJS or Volvo too, although I'm a bit out of touch with prices in the UK these days.

 

Chris Martin
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Joined: 2011-08-20

I second that.  With a 10k budget, the Porsches have long gone, if you find one for that price... beware!  I also agree that for that price range you would have a choice of the best Spitfires and have change.  The Volvo has a less defined market presence, so I don't kniow for sure, but I suspect if someone really wanted one and was patient it should be possible.  The big winner there could be the Jag.  Yes there are many asking more, but some do still sell at bargain rates, although it will need an expert inspection and a genuine FSH to avoid a moneypit.

But the real question here is, do we think this potential buyer is genuine?  To come up with such a diverse range of possibilities is odd enough, but having done so, and then ask a group of strangers their opinions is not really the best way to go shopping for a classic.  It would be better to invest some time and effort in research on one's own, and combined with a more specific set of personal preferences should result in a more suitable choice of car.

Take more time to learn the market - my Cord 812 might be your Morris Marina !

Chris M.

 

West Cork
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Joined: 2013-07-25

Coventry Climax wrote:

I imagine you ought to be able to get a near perfect Spitfire for that sort of budget, and although you say running costs aren't going to be an issue, it ought to be the cheapest of the bunch to run (in terms of both fuel and servicing costs).

Conversely, I doubt that you'd get anything like a decent 911 for that sort of money, and you might struggle to find an XJS or Volvo too, although I'm a bit out of touch with prices in the UK these days.

Many thanks for your feedback !

Chris, I am not sure why you question whether I am genuine ? I am doing my research and at this early stage advice from others who have more knowledge than I have is worth obtaining. At this early stage I have an interest in a number of cars (already listed). My final choice will however be based on what I consider to be importnat criteria for investing - FSH, excellent condition  etc. Hopefully other members will be willing to offer advice so that I can eventually make an educated purchase based on researching the market as thoroughly as possible !

Swordfish
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Joined: 2011-08-26

You may be surprised what you can get by going the EBay route also.

I think its fun tawling through  a big kids sweety shop, but oft times that temptation to press the bid button is too much.

That said I have really met some very nice genuine folk on line-which I was very wary of initially, auction wise.

XK V8 coupe Jags fall within the bracket, half the price of an XJS based DB9, which had ironically a Suprcharged Jag engine and later 2 Mondeo Duratech V6s joined at the hip, in the Vantage V12 which will be 3 to 4 times your budget when a better looking(in my humble opinion)there was also a Maseratti 3500 GT looking gorgeous in Dark Green, a while back for less than 10K,but those are excotic cars and prone to heavy repair bills.

The Volvo 1800 P and ES are 'aquired  taste cars' but drive nicely -as does the strangely plain interiored B1600/B18 series Volvo Amazon saloon, how about a Rudspeed Estate which took over from 6/110 Wolseleys with various Police forces.

I had a friend with  White P1800, which inevitably got the "Oh look its The Saint's Car and he was ofering it for 1800 pounds fully restored back in the ninetees. Likewise another friend had a Bond Equipe 2 litre convertible, he had rebuilt for £1200, however at that time my collection amounted to a TBird, Daimler Jag V8, Humber Sceptre, Hillman Hunter Estate, and Mark 5 Cortina-so lack of space dettered that one.

Italian coupes are not without their foibles, bodywork wise, but then its possible to get a 400 Ferrari for under 10k and stand back and watch the bills flood in, for mechanic bits,so maybe a Lancia 1800 2000 Coupe or Fiat 2300s could fit the bill.

One previously owned car I had affection for was a rebuilt Vitesse 2 Litre Convertible-however overpowed on the original Herald based swing axle suspension a reason I had to rebuild it, and when I finally sold it I was put off keeping it, Ok by a gearbox that got v hot, offset closely positioned pedals not too size 10 friendly,mainly becuase I got laughed at when saying it may be a collectors or even future classic .

That criteria is not advised especially as individuals spending eyewatering amounts like a record 19 million inclusive of tax and commission on an x 55 Moss Mercedes that was actually very tatty so it seems the sky is the limit, for some, however ascending stars can be shooting ones and drop from the heavens. Which for folk like Rock stars Nick Mason /Chris Rea, or DJ TV presenter Chris Evans, Chef Mr Martin and so on but they can weather most storms. So try buying with your heart and not go the possible investment route, because after the pants dropped out of that Yuppie driven nonesense in the 90s-seem to recal the likes of Elton John and Rod Stewart demanding their deposits bake on Jag 220s, which I had 3 goes at getting near to see the proto at the 1988 Motor show when it was still muted to be V12 4 cam powered, instead being released with a Metro VR6 Croup B rally type engine.

Coming back down to earth

What you have to be wary of with the early spitfire, Vitesse and GT6s is the dreaded swing axles-which in rear engine configeration was the Nadeir of an American writers zeal, he  who wrote a book unsafe at any speed, but he didnt include English Triumphs-the later Mark 2 Vitesse and GT6, had TR5 heads to compensate for the extra weight of semi traing arm suspension, often referred to as a poor man's EType. The later Mark 3 GT6 had simplified suspension in line with the Mark 1V Spit, the axle being tamed by a block to reduce positive camber,  that in 1500 form with Overdrive in my Humble Opinion the best bet, as earlier ones go for more and are inferior to drive.

What about a Spridget, much more fun than a Spit and real cheap to run.

There seem to be a whole load of Stags around here and they still do not go for big Money either?

A couple of others, an MG B GT even pre rubber bumper in excellent condition can be had for well within your budget as can a Sunbeam Alpine with removeable GT hardtop.

Personaly I wouldnt touch an XJS with a very long barge poll, even ones fited with AJ 40 six pots are a great car when going right...when

Mercs the later SLs and earlier Panzervagen SLC are goood buys too.

 a nephew has a Porker 944 which has ben slepping about but has had a real nice respray-and all in for 6K-parts for the non Turbo engine based on a VW van engine shouldnt be a problem either.

Me I'd look for a real nice Vitesse Mark 2 convertible and have lots of change to spend on other things.

Chris Martin
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West Cork wrote:

Coventry Climax wrote:

I imagine you ought to be able to get a near perfect Spitfire for that sort of budget, and although you say running costs aren't going to be an issue, it ought to be the cheapest of the bunch to run (in terms of both fuel and servicing costs).

Conversely, I doubt that you'd get anything like a decent 911 for that sort of money, and you might struggle to find an XJS or Volvo too, although I'm a bit out of touch with prices in the UK these days.

Many thanks for your feedback !

Chris, I am not sure why you question whether I am genuine ? I am doing my research and at this early stage advice from others who have more knowledge than I have is worth obtaining. At this early stage I have an interest in a number of cars (already listed). My final choice will however be based on what I consider to be importnat criteria for investing - FSH, excellent condition  etc. Hopefully other members will be willing to offer advice so that I can eventually make an educated purchase based on researching the market as thoroughly as possible !

Not so much questioning if you are genuine as much as your intentions, and the reason is simply it is too vague a request with too wide a choice of four very different models. If however you have by whatever means narrowed your choices down to those four, it would still be a bit hit-and-miss asking on here as there is an element of luck as to who looks in one day or the next, and most have their own biases that would not be of help to such an enquiry.
If you are serious about finding more about those cars, one useful line if investigation would be to seek out back issues of C&SC as they will have covered in depth features and buying guides for all four at some time, and I am not just saying that because this is their website, it always has been the biggest and with the best writers, but by all means check out other mag's too.
For further knowledgeable advice I would then seek out the relevant club for each marque or online websites and forums specific to those cars (there usually is one for every model these days) to find out strengths and weaknesses. Remember there are a couple of old clichés that still hold true; buy the best you can afford (that will be a problem with the Porsche) and contrary to your stated wish to find "important criteria for investing" the general wisdom in this market is buy what you like, not what you think will earn a few quid, as no investment is guaranteed - many smart operators have got their fingers burnt before, and will again, so get a car you can at least enjoy driving.
For my money, I would be seriously tempted by the Jaguar, but the difference between a good one and a bad one will be a lot more than the initial purchase price, so to protect yourself from the horrors of a Jag' gone bad you must get one with FSH and have a marque expert check it over.
Good luck!
Chris M.