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22 June 2015

There are quite a few vehicles—both classics and modern classics—that haven't yet exploded in price the way some of the sports and muscle cars of the 1960s have. On a hunch, I created an assemblage of cars I suspected would be primed for a rise in value soon, and cross-referenced with the Hagerty valuation index, which tracks the values of certain vehicles over multi-year periods.

Below are ten of the coolest cars that'll be worth a ton in the future. Invest wisely.

1. Porsche 912
Crafted as the cheaper alternative to the first generation of 911s, the 912 is a 911 but with the four cylinder engine out of a 356. As a result, there are connoisseurs who consider it a more balanced and fun to drive sports car than its faster brother. Unlike the 911, however, 912 prices haven't yet launched into orbit, and it's only a matter of time before they go northward.

2. Series I Datsun 240Z
When the 240Z first rolled off the line, it was impossible to know that it would be such a classic. Flash forward nearly 45 years, and the nicest examples of the earliest Z cars are already starting to skyrocket. You can bet even the nice-yet-imperfect cars you're not afraid to drive around town will follow suit.

3. Mercedes 190E
If you want a small-yet-great German sedan from the 1980s, you really have two choices: this, or a BMW. Prices are just starting to climb on more ideally-optioned examples—you could get it with a Cosworth-enhanced engine—and there's no reason to think that trend will change any time soon.

4. BMW 1 Series M Coupe
Generally known as the 1M, this is the definition of a future classic. Less than 800 made it to the U.S. during its single production year in 2011. Unlike the overwhelming majority of cars on the market, the cheapest way you could possibly get one was to buy it new. Prices are already more than $10,000 over MSRP, and they'll continue to rise.

5. Lotus Esprit
There was a brief period of time when you could get a good condition Esprit for less than $20,000. Prices have jumped nearly 10% so far in 2015 after a few years of stability, so if you were ever looking to get into one of the classic Bond cars, you might want to hurry.

6. Acura NSX
The absolute best time to buy an NSX was about five years ago, but with the new NSX supercar on the way and a legendary status that's firmly locked in place, prices are beginning to climb again after a few years of stability.

7. Fox Body Mustang
The 1987-1993 Mustangs are plentiful. Ones in good condition that didn't serve a stint as a beginner's car for a high school kid aren't. Like most Mustangs, the 1987-1993 era has gone up steadily in value, and will likely continue for a few more years.

8. BMW E30 3-Series
The 1980s-era E30's faster and fancier M3 sibling has climbed so far in price that the only alternative is to search for a well-preserved base model that's not in need of a lot of work. Prices are climbing, and likely will for a few more years.

9. Corvette Grand Sport
The Grand Sport was built only in 1996 both as a tribute to one of Corvette's more famous cars of the early '60s, and as a way of keeping things fresh ahead of a new model in 1997. In the past year, the most pristine, museum-worthy examples have shot through the roof, indicating that the cars that have actually been driven will follow shortly.

10. Porsche 944
Much like the Mercedes or BMW of its day, the 944 is a steady bet. A lot were abused by enthusiastic owners over the years, but just as many were properly maintained and are perfectly suited to weekend driver status.

Aaron Miller is the Rides editor for Supercompressor, and can be found on Twitter. He's desperately fighting the need to pick up an old Mercedes right now.


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