Classic Cars of 2040

© FCA US LLCCars of Future Past
The classic car market is hot right now — cars are selling for record prices, and if you happen to have the right vehicle you can really cash in. Sure, no one has a crystal ball, but could you buy now for a possible future windfall? Our friends at Hagerty Insurance like to think so — they publish an annual Hot List of future collectibles. Hagerty Insurance is the world’s leading insurance provider for classic vehicles, which gives them a unique perspective on predicting what a vehicle will be worth in the future. Here’s Hagerty’s take on which of today’s cars are likely to be classics in 25 years. To be included in the Hot List, a car must be produced in the 2015 model year and be priced below $100,000.

© FCA US LLCAlfa Romeo 4C Launch Edition
Price: $68,400
This little Italian number represents Alfa Romeo’s true return to the U.S. (yes, there was the 8C a few years ago, but very few were sold). Although inspired by Alfa’s legendary history in sports cars and racing, the 4C is a thoroughly modern machine — made clear as soon as you slip into the composite-framed sport seats behind the D-shaped performance steering wheel with paddle shifters. A thermoformed dashboard and exposed carbon fiber monocoque confirm the 4C is no retro throwback.

© FCA US LLCAlfa Romeo 4C Launch Edition
The small 1.7-liter turbocharged engine puts out 237 horsepower, and while that may not seem like a lot in today’s world of high-horsepower supercars, the 4C weighs only 2,400 pounds, which means it can hit 60 mph in less than 5 seconds and claim a top speed of 160 mph. The Launch Edition that Hagerty calls out is even more special. Only 500 will be built, and they boast a number of unique features including a carbon-fiber rear spoiler, race suspension tuning, larger Matte Black forged wheels, special sport seats and a serialized Launch Edition plaque. Clearly a vehicle to enjoy for the next 25 years.

© BMW AGBMW M4 Convertible
Price: $72,500
Convertibles tend to be built in smaller numbers and are often sought after by car enthusiasts, so it’s surprising that only two entries on Hagerty’s Hot List can be driven with the top down. But we certainly couldn’t disagree with the choices — you’ll see the second one soon, but for now the M4 Convertible combines the high-performance credentials of BMW’s M line with the glory of open-air motoring. The M4 is equipped with a retractable hardtop that can be opened in 20 seconds. Other worthwhile features include available neck warmers, a full-color head-up display, a high-powered Harmon/Kardon sound system and side- and top-view cameras.

© BMW AGBMW M4 Convertible
Carbon-ceramic brakes, 18-inch forged alloy wheels, Xenon HID headlights, an aluminum hood with power dome and a sport exhaust system with quad tailpipes let others know that you’re driving something special. The M4 is the only M convertible under $100,000 (the M6 Convertible starts at $118,000) and boasts a 425-horsepower twin-turbo engine that can put 60 mph of wind in your hair in a mere 4.4 seconds. Bonus for true driving enthusiasts — the M4 has an available 6-speed manual transmission.

© General MotorsChevrolet Camaro Z/28
Price: $72,305
A price exceeding $70,000 for a Camaro may seem a bit outrageous, but the Z/28 is not your typical Camaro. It is street legal, but everything about the Z/28 — from its exterior styling to the big V8 under the hood — is designed for the racetrack. The 7.0-liter engine puts out 505 horsepower, teamed with a 6-speed close-ratio manual transmission. With aerodynamic components including a front splitter, a rear spoiler, a belly pan, front wheelhouse liners and a unique front fascia, at 150 mph the Z/28 produces 410 more pounds of downforce than a Camaro SS. “Every one of [the Z/28’s] unique components supports the goal of faster lap times,” says Mark Reuss, GM’s executive vice-president of global product development.

© General MotorsChevrolet Camaro Z/28
Considerable chassis and suspension changes — including a lower center of gravity, stabilizer bars and higher-rate coil springs — have been optimized, allowing the Z/28 to achieve 1.08 g in lateral acceleration. Carbon-ceramic brakes and sticky Z-rated tires create 1.5 g in deceleration. The Z/28 also benefits from significant weight reduction, including thinner window glass and the deletion of most amenities. There’s some symmetry here — the current Z/28 was inspired by the original Trans-Am Series racer introduced in 1967. According to Hagerty Insurance, that 1967 Z/28 could be worth as much as $118,000 today — a nice return based on the original price of $3,273.

© General MotorsChevrolet Corvette Z06
Price: $78,000
We have seen some powerful Corvettes through the decades, and many vintage models from the ‘50s and ‘60s have been fetching top dollar at auction in the past few years. It’s not much of a stretch to suggest that the most powerful production Corvette ever will likely be a classic in 25 years. Not only is the Z06 the most powerful Vette, the 650 horses from its 6.2-liter supercharged V8 make it more powerful than any other production car from General Motors — ever.

© General MotorsChevrolet Corvette Z06
With the addition of the Z07 package, the Corvette’s performance numbers are truly staggering: 60 mph comes up in just 2.95 seconds, and a quarter mile in 10.95 seconds at a speed of 127 mph. With massive Brembo brakes at the corners, the Z06 stops from 60 mph in less than 100 feet. The figures are even more impressive when you look at the starting price — you’d pay considerably more to get the same performance from an Italian or German exotic. Holding onto this one for 25 years shouldn’t be much of a burden — the problem may be parting with it in 2040.

© FCA US LLCDodge Challenger SRT Hellcat
Price: $57,895
Where the Corvette Z06 is an incredible value as a high-performance sports car, there really isn’t a better value for mere bulk horsepower than the Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat. On appearance alone the Challenger looks like a classic — note the heavy influence of early ‘70s Challengers. Hagerty Insurance estimates a 1970 Challenger HEMI V8 coupe could be worth more than $200,000, so if those early Challengers are any indication, get a Hellcat and hold on tight.

© FCA US LLCDodge Challenger SRT Hellcat
You’ll also need to hold tight to the steering wheel of the Hellcat, because under that long hood is the first production use of a supercharger on a HEMI V8, which results in a crazy 707 horsepower. That makes 60 mph come up in under 4 seconds with a top speed of almost 200 mph. Even more impressive, this beast can seat up to 5 passengers and is rated at 22 mpg on the highway. You’d think something this special would be a limited edition, but it’s not. However, Dodge recently stopped accepting orders for the Hellcat because it can’t build them fast enough to keep up with demand.

© Ford Motor CompanyFord Mustang GT Performance Package
Price: $35,620
Like the Challenger and Camaro, the current Mustang is clearly inspired by its 1960s ancestors. While it has that classic look, the 2015 model is all new with a stronger, lighter platform and fully independent front and rear suspension, making this Mustang the most nimble as well as the most comfortable to date. There are multiple engine choices, including a high-performance EcoBoost unit, but Hagerty Insurance calls out the GT with the 5.0-liter 435-horsepower V8 as the way to go, and we’d never argue against a V8 Mustang.

© Ford Motor CompanyFord Mustang GT Performance Package
As good as the new Mustang GT is, adding the Performance Pack takes it to a new level, giving it a thicker rear sway bar, extra cooling ability for track days, unique tuning for ABS and stability control, a center gauge pack, larger brakes, a strut tower brace and unique 19-inch Ebony Black alloy wheels shod with Y-rated tires. It wouldn’t be surprising if the 2015 Mustang is collectible in 25 years; the addition of the Performance Pack would make your Mustang stand apart from all others.

© Mazda Motor CorporationMazda MX-5 Miata 25th Anniversary Edition
Price: $32,205
Since its introduction 25 years ago, the Mazda MX-5 has had a loyal following, especially among driving enthusiasts. In fact, the MX-5 holds the Guinness world record as the best-selling 2-seat sports car in the world. The Miata has always possessed particular qualities — front engine, rear-wheel drive, perfect balance, light weight — and while the car has changed over the last 25 years, Mazda has wisely stayed with this successful formula, and that goes for this special 25th Anniversary Edition too.

© Mazda Motor CorporationMazda MX-5 Miata 25th Anniversary Edition
The 25th Anniversary Edition gets a unique look, painted exclusively in Soul Red Metallic with a Brilliant Black retractable hardtop and 17-inch Dark Gunmetal 10-spoke aluminum alloy wheels. The interior has Almond leather trim with satin-chrome accents throughout. The instrument panel features a red base paint but is hand-painted with a Piano Black gradation, meaning no two vehicles will feature the exact same look. Only a few will experience this special edition — just 100 copies are coming to the U.S., meaning it will be especially sought after when Mazda introduces the 50th anniversary MX-5 in 2040.

© BMW AGMINI John Cooper Works Hardtop
Price: $35,850
Take a small, fun-to-drive hatchback and give it more power — sounds like a great idea — and that’s just what MINI did with the latest John Cooper Works edition of the classic coupe. In fact, this is the most powerful production MINI ever, with a 2.0-liter TwinPower Turbo engine producing 228 horsepower. This may not seem like much, but the lightweight MINI doesn’t need much, so it’s enough to reach 60 mph in less than 6 seconds or hit a top speed of 153 mph — if you’re so (legally) inclined.

© BMW AGMINI John Cooper Works Hardtop
The JCW MINI gets 4-piston Brembo brakes for quick stopping power, and red calipers add to the sporty look. Speaking of a sporty look, MINI makes sure the JCW stands out from the crowd with a full aero body kit, dual exhaust and unique 17-inch alloy wheels. The interior is also quite racy, with red stitching on the steering wheel and sporty seats. We can’t imagine this MINI looking dated in 25 years, and the JCW should be able to keep a smile on your face all the way to 2040.

© Subaru of America, Inc.Subaru WRX STI Launch Edition
Price: $37,395
As expected, this list of future classics is heavy with special and limited-edition models, and with only 1,000 copies being produced, the Launch Edition of the new Subaru WRX STI fits the bill perfectly. The STI is all-new for 2015 and is best described as a rally car for the street. Considering the 305 horsepower on tap and sophisticated AWD system with Active Torque Vectoring, to say the STI is fun to drive is a massive understatement. Power is more than plentiful, and handling is outstanding. After a short time behind the wheel, you’ll find yourself going around corners faster and faster with a look of sheer delight plastered across your face.

© Subaru of America, Inc.Subaru WRX STI Launch Edition
Although the STI has been available in the U.S. for more than ten years, the 2015 model is by far the best yet, which is bound to make a difference to buyers in 2040. Past generations felt a bit cheap and tinny, but the new STI is much more substantial with a comfortable, attractive interior. This includes Alcantara-covered seats accented by red and black leather bolsters with red stitching. But if you want to stand out from the crowd, the Launch Edition is the car to get. It’s easy to spot with its World Rally Blue paint and gold BBS forged alloy wheels — a classic look for this high-performance Subaru.

© Volkswagen of America, Inc.Volkswagen Golf R
Price: $36,595
It’s a formula loved by car enthusiasts — small footprint, big power and all-wheel drive. It’s why we like the Subaru STI, and the same reasoning applies for the latest version of this hot hatch from Volkswagen, the Golf R. The most powerful Golf ever sold in America, the Golf R gets a 2.0-liter turbocharged engine putting out 290 horsepower. Stats are impressive: 60 mph arrives in less than 5 seconds, and it’s also rated at 31 mpg on the highway — certainly the best of both worlds.

© Volkswagen of America, Inc.Volkswagen Golf R
The Golf R manages all those horses with the latest version of Volkswagen’s 4MOTION AWD system, as well as a new sport suspension and a stability-control system. The R stands out from the standard Golf with exceptionally large air inlets, a modified grille that sports an R logo, unique 18-inch alloy wheels, black brake calipers with the R logo, all capped off by quad tailpipes. Given the Golf R’s sporty looks and performance to match, it’s easy to see why the folks at Hagerty think this hot hatch will still be in demand 25 years from now.

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