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These 9 Vintage Cars Are the Hot New Pandemic Buys

These 9 Vintage Cars Are the Hot New Pandemic Buys

Americans have taken up all manner of hobbies as a means of alleviating the stressors associated with our ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. From knitting to baking to playing addictive online games to binge-watching literally anything, new habits have formed this past year like no other time in recent memory. But as people with the means to do so have fled from cities, from shared and public transportation, and from the constraints of a daily commute, many have found a new joy in purchasing a vintage vehicle.

Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace remain mainly the province of tire-kickers—people who make lowball offers and are shopping, not buying—but bargains are out there for the perseverant. The big news is in newer auction sites like BringATrailer and Hemmings Auctions, as well as fresh online offerings from premier automotive auction houses such as Gooding & Co, RM Sotheby’s, and Bonhams, all of which have joined stalwart eBay Motors in offering biddable collectible vehicles of all varieties.

“We’ve seen a ton of traffic and bidding action since the end of March,” says James Wyler, director of auctions for Vermont-based vintage vehicle publication Hemmings. “Since March, cars have been selling like hotcakes and we’ve averaged an 82% sell-through rate for all auctions listed, which is outstanding. It’s not just buyers, though—we’ve seen on average a 20% increase in live auctions month over month since March as well.”

The cars that are selling come in all forms, but the hottest segment of the market is in affordable (four- and five-figure) modern classics. “As the online auction space continues to grow, with more sites and a larger audience, vehicles that appeal to digital natives are doing well,” says John Wiley, an expert analyst at classic car insurance and valuation company Hagerty. “Typically, those vehicles are from the 1980s and newer.”

We asked Hagerty to send us a list of the top autos that have been perused on its site since the pandemic, then we curated this list of our favorites. The cars are listed in ascending order in terms of cost. The values listed are for cars in average condition (number 3 on a scale of 1-5). If you’re interested, and have the assets, now is a great time to buy.

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