In the past, collectible car auctions were all about cars like the '32 Ford and the '57 Chevy. The classic cars of yesteryear. While there are still plenty of these kinds of cars seen in auction houses all over the country, there's another group of vehicles that are also turning up there, generating a growing level of interest. These collectibles include muscle cars and souped-up off roads such as jeeps and trucks. Classic? Not really, in most cases. Collectible? Most definitely. Anything can be collectible if there's a demand for it, and these cars and off-roads are starting to generate high demand. But why are they becoming popular, and what does that mean for the future of car auctions and high-end auction houses?
Why the Demand for Muscle Cars?
There has always been a demand for muscle cars, but most of that demand has been based on driving them and racing them, not so much on putting them into auction houses and treating them as collectibles. The majority of people who purchase cars from high-end auction houses aren't looking to drive them, and especially not to race them. They want to add the cars to their collections and keep them pristine in their private garages and showrooms. While that's not true for everyone who buys a classic car, it's the case for the majority. With muscle cars, there are two different groups of people - those who buy these cars to protect and display, and those who buy these cars to drive and enjoy.
Muscle cars are a big part of the fabric of American life, and that can make them iconic in a number of ways. For people who are older and have fond memories of the days when they hot-rodded around in a particular muscle car, owning another one can provide a heavy dose of nostalgia and a promise of more great memories to come. Finding a muscle car just like they used to have, though, or like they dreamed of having when they were younger isn't always easy. That's especially true if they aren't looking for a large restoration project, or they aren't comfortable buying something from a stranger and hoping it's going to work properly. By going through a high-end auction house to get their muscle car, they can feel better about the quality of their purchase.
What Does "Off-Road" Really Mean?
The off-road category is another one that's becoming more popular at auction houses today. Smaller houses have offered these vehicles for a while, but the larger, higher end houses are also beginning to showcase vehicles that aren't designed for standard street driving. Jeeps and trucks that have been "souped up" in some way are the most popular choices, and often this conversion is centered around a vehicle that is older and classic in some way. Trucks from the '50s and '60s, along with older jeeps, are often converted to be used off road. Most can be driven on the roads or off, and aren't designed to only be driven off road, but the opportunity to go places that you can't get to in a more standard vehicle is certainly part of the allure of these jeeps and trucks.
Many people enjoy the idea of building an off-road vehicle, but it's a lot of hard work and may not be for everyone. For those who want to own one but don't want to build one, and who are willing to pay a good price to make sure they get a quality product from a reputable source, online auction houses can be an excellent choice. It can allow them to get a truck or jeep that's just what they're looking for, and one that they can add to their collection or use right away. They won't need to do the work of building it, but there is always the risk of damaging it in some way if they decide that it's more than a showpiece. With good insurance that covers the vehicle properly, though, using it and protecting it can both be accomplished.
High-End Auction Houses Are Big Business
The auction business has continued to grow since its humble beginning. The largest houses televise many of their auctions, so those who aren't able to attend in person can see the cars and trucks offered. These auction houses also have websites, and anyone interested in what will be offered at the next auction can get all the information they need in order to get started. That makes it easy for people who aren't sure where to buy something to find what they're looking for, and can also mean bigger profits for the auction house. The more people who see something that's being offered, want to buy it, and have the means to do so, the more the auction house stands to gain.
While the seller of the auctioned item is the one who will get the majority of the money from the sale, most auction houses take a hefty percentage. That's how they stay in business, and how they are able to provide televised coverage, a website, the auctioneer, the facility, and everything else that comes with running an auction that offers high-end cars and trucks. By establishing a reputation for quality and for providing buyers and sellers with a good experience, these high-end auction houses have grown into companies that can make millions of dollars and facilitate the transfer of a number of cars and trucks between sellers and buyers. The business continues to grow without signs of slowing down.
The Collectible Car Industry Continues to Grow
It's not just the auction houses that are continuing to grow, either. It's the entire collectible car industry. Without the strength of this industry, auction houses would not have been able to build themselves up to the level they have reached. Collectible cars of all types bring back memories for older generations and allow younger generations to experience some of what they have seen in older movies and heard about from relatives who experienced those days. The majority of cars people collect also have a certain "look" about them, that you can't find in the cars of today. Most of today's vehicles look very similar to each other, and car enthusiasts who choose collectible cars often do so because those cars stand out from the crowd and have something unique and classic to offer.
Older muscle cars were all about power, and those cars are still about power, all these years later. They look like they're traveling fast, even when they're standing still, and they remind people of times that are quite a bit different from the way things are today. Whether those times were better is a matter that has to be decided individually, but they were definitely different, and much of that was reflected in the cars and trucks that were on the road at that time. It's not possible to go back to those days, but it is possible to hang onto some of that feeling and nostalgia by collecting cars from that time period. With those feelings and the raw power and beauty of those cars working together, the collectible car industry will continue to grow.
Make Sure That Car or Off-Road Vehicle is Protected
For people who buy muscle cars or souped-up off roads at high end auction houses, protecting them properly is extremely important. These vehicles may evoke a lot of memories and feelings, but they are also an investment. Tens of thousands of dollars can be spent on just one car or truck, and that's not something to be taken lightly. In some cases, more than $100,000 has been spent on an individual vehicle, especially through a high-end auction house. Simply parking this kind of vehicle in the garage may not be realistic, but having somewhere safe to store it may not have been high on the priority list before the purchase was made. Fortunately, there are multiple options for storage that can protect the vehicle.
A climate-controlled vehicle storage option, for example, can protect your investment in a muscle car or souped-up off road, and help ensure that the elements don't do any damage to the paint, interior, or moving parts. Along with a good insurance policy to cover you in case of any damage, you can have peace of mind about storing your car (or cars) once you've made your trip to the auction house. With so many great muscle cars and off-road options appearing at high-end auction houses throughout the country, you may quickly find that you need more than one climate-controlled vehicle space to store your treasures.