There are cars that don't get the mention they well deserve. Such cars, in most cases, never made the headlines, and not a lot of people know about them. Some of them have been produced recently, while others stretch back into the past. Everyone loves a good bargain, and this is particularly true when it comes to cars. There are strategies you can use to get the best deal when buying a car. The best strategy is to know the history of the car thoroughly. There's a consumer report issue that comes out every year in April, which highlights the most reliable used cars and their market estimates.
A car generally depreciates by 45% after 2 years. This is acceptable, but there are some cars whose depreciation is way higher, and it has nothing to do with internal factors. This is the kind of cars we'll be focusing on. Their current market value doesn't reflect the worth of the car. This could be a blessing in disguise for car enthusiasts who know the real value of a car. If you're buying a used car, the general rule of thumb is you should buy a car that's at least 2 years old. The blue book value can also play a part in determining the cost of the car. Here are 25 undervalued cars that should be worth a lot more.
24 Porsche 914 (1969-1975)- $17,000
There were several 914 Porsches produced in the given time period, and a majority of them aren't running or have been turned into scrap metal.
What makes the Porsche 914 stand out was the engine that was used at that time. It featured a 2.0-liter flat 6-cylinder engine, which produces up to 108 hp.
The Porsche 914 was the highest-selling car from the company during its production, even outselling the 911, which was seen as the Flagship. The car has since been forgotten, and no one really talks about it. It's estimated that a total of 118,978 units were produced. There are a couple of them being sold online with some as low as $9,000, which isn't reflective of the real value.
23 Datsun 240Z (1970-1974)- $10,000
The Datsun 240Z, also known as the Nissan S30, was the first Japanese racecar to conquer the world market. Japanese cars are known to have an economical image to them, but the Datsun changed the stereotype. The car came with a 4-wheel suspension for all the variants.
It had a 2.4-liter engine with the option of a 4-speed manual or a 3-speed automatic transmission. The Datsun 240Z was a work of modern engineering and sleek styling, which was rare in vehicles in those days.
You can get a Datsun 240Z for around $10,000, which is also dependent on the mileage and the condition of the car. The price is likely to go up as more people appreciate the value of the Datsun 240Z.
22 Mazda RX-7 (1978-2000)- $4,000
The Mazda R-7 has been on the assembly line for quite some time, and there have been so many amazing models over the years. You can get a used one for about $4,000, which might not be the true value since the car is worth more than that. The RX-7 convertibles were beautifully designed.
The overall design was all about aerodynamics, and you'd think it's a rocket if you looked at it from the side.
Even with about 800,000 units being produced, the Mazda RX has become scarce, and you have to do some digging before you can find one that's in good condition. It's famous for its rotary engine design and comes with the option of either a 5-speed manual or a 4-speed automatic.
21 Toyota Celica GT-Four (1986-1989)- $4,000
My old man owned this car for about 3 years from 2001. It was his daily driver, and it never disappointed one bit. The car can fetch around $4,000 currently, which is a pity because it should be worth a lot more, especially if it's in good condition.
The GT-Four was the high-performance variant from Toyota Celica.
There was also one that was designed for safari rally and made its debut in the 1992 Rally Monte Carlo and went to win a total of 4 events that year. A car with such history should be worth a lot more, but guys aren't really concerned with the past. This is a genuine rally vehicle that's street-legal.
20 Peugeot 309 GTI (1987-1993)- $4,000
Any car with the GTI badge is tuned for performance, and it's the same case for the Peugeot 309. The car was in production from 1987 to 1993. The car wasn't as popular as its sibling, which might have contributed to the current predicament. What could be described as 'awkward' styling came about because Peugeot decided to reuse door shells from the 305 models. Phase 2 saw a facelift in terms of design. The rear lights were more smoke-like in styling. There was also an overhaul of the interior because the company had received a lot of criticism. The car was succeeded by the 306 in 1993 but remains one of the best production cars from the company. $4,000 isn't a lot of money to pay for such a car, but it could be worth a lot more.
19 Volkswagen Corrado (1988-1995)- $6,000
This car was dubbed the blueprint for future cars in terms of technology. There were a total of 97, 521 units produced over the 7-year period. Auto Express termed it as ''one of the best-ever driver's cars from Volkswagen.''
The British magazine Car listed it as being "One of the Cars You Must Drive Before You Die."
Even with such accolades, the Volkswagen Corrado is still undervalued and doesn't generate the same interest as the GTI models from Volkswagen. It came with two engine choices. There were the 1.8-liter 16-valve and the 1.9-liter 8-valve engine, which was able to produce up to 158 hp. In terms of transmission, you could pick between the 5-speed manual or the 4-speed automatic.
18 Rolls-Royce Silver Shadow (1965-1980)- $10,000
The Rolls-Royce Silver Shadow is the car that saved the company from sinking. There were concerns that Rolls Royce was lagging behind in terms of automotive innovation, and the Silver Shadow was made to silence critics. The Silver Shadow was the first car from the company to use chassis construction and a unitary body. There was a major change from the model that came before it, the Silver Cloud, in terms of design. It had a long wheelbase variant, which was 4 inches longer than that of the normal Silver Shadow's to provide more leg room. There were 30,000 units produced for 15 years, and not a lot of them are still alive. The car currently is priced at around $10,000, which is a shame given its history.
17 Fiat Dino Coupe (1966-1973)- $150,000
The Fiat Dino Coupe doesn't come cheap, but that doesn't mean it was substantially valued during its time. The car has a heritage with race cars.
The 'Dino' name came from the Ferrari Dino V6 engine, which was specifically produced by Fiat for Ferrari in Formula 2 racing.
The birth of the Fiat Dino was necessitated by Enzo's need for a homologate engine that could be used in Formula 2 racing. Fiat saw that the engines were too powerful to be used exclusively on Ferraris alone and decided to produce a road version with the same powertrain. The car came with a 2.4-liter Dino V6 engine and a 5-speed manual transmission. Only real car enthusiasts know the true value of the Fiat Dino Coupe.
16 Citroen GS (1970-1986)- $5,000
This has to be one of most undervalued cars on the list in terms of price despite the fact that it's a very rare vehicle. It was on the assembly line for 16 years before they stopped production in 1986.
It received a couple of accolades during its existence. It was voted 'European car of the year' in 1971.
It had advanced tech features with superior comfort. The exterior aerodynamic design was also class-leading for a car of its time. The GS was so successful that it had more than 5 assembly plants spread across the world. The car is now a shadow of its former self, and its rich history seems to have been buried for eternity.
15 Mercedes-Benz W123 (1975-1985)- $15,000
The W123 has been described as the epitome of Mercedes-Benz quality, and it has everything to do with the engineering and the craftsmanship that went into producing the car. You can get one that's still running for around $15,000-20,000 although you'll need to put in more work for it to look presentable. The car is slowly becoming a collector's item, and the price can only go up as the years pass. It marked a successful period for the car manufacturer, as over 2.6 million units were produced and sold in a span of 10 years. It had a 3.0-liter engine, which came with a 5-speed manual transmission. The car has aged gracefully, and you can't help but appreciate the work that went into the exterior
14 Lancia Montecarlo (1975-1981)- $6,000
You've probably heard of this car. The name sounds more like a place in South America than a car. The Lancia Montecarlo was a sports car that was produced in Italy and was offered in a spider and a coupe version.
There were a total of 7,798 copies ever built, with 220 of them being competition models.
There weren't so many Italian cars at that time that were for mass production, and the Lancia Montecarlo can be seen as a thoroughbred Italian sports car. It had a 2.0-liter Lampredi l4 engine. The racing variant could produce up to 490 hp, although they weren't street legal. For around $5,000, you can experience one of the rare mass-produced sports cars from Italy.
13 Porsche 924 (1976-1988)- $10,000
It's not until recently that people have started to appreciate the Porsche 924, which was in production for 11 years. The price is around $10,000, but you can get it for way cheaper if you know how to bargain. There were mixed feelings when it first launched with some critics claiming it wasn't up to standards with the Porsche line of cars. It still managed to sell 150,000 units despite the negative publicity. The car was a joint project by Porsche and Volkswagen. The 1974 oil crisis and some not-so-friendly automobile enactments made it hard for Volkswagen to justify producing a sports car at that time. This might've been the reason for the partnership with Porsche, and the 924 was produced.
12 Fiat X1/9 (1982-1989)- $3,000
This is one of my favorite cars from the '80s, and it's unbelievable you can get it for just $3,000. There were a total of 140,500 units produced in 7 years. It had retractable headlights, which were only found in high-end luxury sports cars at that time. The Fiat X1/9 shared the same engine with the Autobianchi 112, which was a very popular car in Europe in the '70s. Guys in the UK had to wait for 5 years after launch to get the Fiat X1. The convertible was very popular because it was luxurious and looked like an expensive car even though it wasn't. $3,000 is a ridiculous amount to pay for such a car, but sometimes, you can never understand how things turn out.
11 Austin Metro (1980-1998)- $2,000
This compact car provided convenient transportation for millions of people when it was in production from 1980 to 1998. The car was affordable and economical with fuel. This made it very popular with middle-class folk.
This British car was built to last, and you can get a low-mileage one for around $2,000.
A car enthusiast will most certainly appreciate its value. You can still use it for daily commuting if you live in the city. There are no complications with the engine, and you can even fix it yourself if you know your way around a vehicle. The car has been re-badged over the years with different names, but the reliability still stands out up to now.
10 Renault Fuego Turbo (1983-1986)- $5,000
The Renault Fuego was in production for just 3 years but was one the best vehicles during its tenure. It was meant to replace the Renault 15 and 17 Coupe. The engine and the floorplan heavily borrowed from Renault 18. The Fuego Turbo paved way for a couple of car technologies that are still in use up to today. It was the first car in America to use the remote keyless system. The technology was invented by Paul Lipschutz, who was a Frenchman. It was later adopted on all Renault models. For $5,000 or less, you could get your hands on the Fuego Turbo, which has keyless entry. Guys might think it's a custom modification, as they wouldn't expect such an old vehicle to have such technology.
9 Mercedes-Benz 190E (1985-1993)- $1,000
The Mercedes-Benz 190E was a game changer for the brand in terms of performance. It featured a new 5-link suspension and was the first compact luxury vehicle from Mercedes Benz. There were 1.8 million examples sold, which makes it one of the most successful models to date from Mercedes-Benz.
The car had a 2.5-liter engine and buyers could either choose a 4-speed Tronic automatic or a 5-speed manual.
The 190E just had to be successful because the company had spent close to $840 million on researching and developing the product. There aren't many left on the road, and you can get it for $1,000. A $5,000 one should still be in crisp condition, requiring little work to keep it running.
8 Bentley Turbo R (1985-1997)- $15,000
You'd probably think I'm bluffing if I said you can get a Bentley for $15,000. Bentley is known to produce high-performance and luxurious vehicles, and the Turbo R is no exception. The car inherited the same Turbo engine found in the Mulsanne Turbo. There were only 7,500 copies of the Turbo R that were produced, and I can't help but wonder why the value of the vehicle is so low. Under the hood, you get a 6.75-liter turbo Bentley V8 engine, which can produce up to 296 hp. The standard transmission is a 3-speed automatic, while the 4-speed was an option. The car had a base price of $211,000, which was very expensive at that time. This car is definitely undervalued.
7 Alfa Romeo 164 (1988-1997)- $1,000
This must come as a surprise to a lot of people given the tag associated with the Alfa Romeo brand. There's one that was listed on eBay and sold for around $700 despite it being in good condition.
There were a total of 273,857 units produced out of which 164 units were exported.
The car was designed to compete with premium saloon cars from Mercedes and BMW. It featured a 3.0-liter Alfa Romeo V6 engine, which could produce up to 183 hp and pull 185 lb-ft. There were a couple of variants over the years. It's not yet clear how this car has become undervalued, and a lot of car enthusiasts would agree that it's worth more than $1,000.
6 Nissan Skyline GT-R (1989-2002)- $15,000
The Nissan Skyline name might be popular, but not all models are. Those that were produced between 1989 and 2002 are just part of the footnotes of its history. Almost every year, there's a new GT-R, and we quickly forget the previous one. The Nissan is a high-performance car and getting the GT-R for $15,000 is a bargain. The fifth generation paved way for the GT-R that's popular today, but hardly anyone talks about them. The GT-R is the performance flagship of the Nissan brand, and all models should be given equal respect. The 5th generation could easily outperform some cars that were manufactured a few years ago. It seems there's been a mistake in the valuation.
5 Honda NSX (1990-1997)- $40,000
The Honda NSX has been on the assembly line since 1990 and is one of the best vehicles to have come out of the company. $40,000 for a supercar that was designed to compete with the Ferrari 328 is more than a bargain. Not so many cars in the '90s came with a Fighter Jet cockpit. The first production car made its debut at the Chicago auto show.
There have been less than 10,000 units produced, which makes it a rare vehicle. It has a 3.0-liter V6 engine, which can produce up to 290 hp, pulling 210 lb-ft.
It comes with the option of 6-speed manual or a 5-speed automatic. The exterior design is class-leading, and not so many supercars looked that good in the '90s.
4 Lexus LS400 (1990-2000)- $1,500
Chances are, you know about the Lexus LS400. What you might not know is how it's currently undervalued and that you can get it for less than $2,000. The LS400 was all about luxury and comfort and was one of the most popular cars in the '90s and the early 2000s.
The first 4 generations of the Lexus LS4 featured a V8 engine. Getting a V8 engine for just $2,000 is more than a bargain.
The design and the development process cost the company $1 billion, which was a lot of money back in the day. The car had a limited top speed of 155 mph and could go from 0 to 62 in 8.5 seconds. It was the among the first luxury sedans to include the automatic tilt steering wheel.
3 BMW 8 Series (1990-1999)- $17,000
The BMW 8 series is set to make a comeback in 2018 after disappearing for 18 years. The move could see people start appreciating the first generation, which changed the car landscape in the '90s. BMW took more than 6 years to come up with the design of the first generation 8 series. The car came with the option of either a V8 or a V12 engine, which was massive for a luxury sedan. The car was discontinued because of low sales. It didn't get the love back then, and not a lot has changed even now. BMW needs to make car enthusiasts aware of what they're missing with the 8 Series; otherwise, the 2018 model might also be a failure when it comes to sales.
2 TVR Griffith (1991-2000)- $20,000
The TVR Griffith might not be a household name but produced a masterpiece in the form of a convertible. It packed a punch when it came to performance. It came with a 5.3-liter V8 engine, which could produce up to 340 hp. The exterior design was class-leading for a car that was produced in the '90s. You can get the car for less than $20,000, which might not be the true value of the car. The car is said to be making comeback in 2018 and is bound to excite car enthusiasts. The new model will be under a new TVR brand. Owners of the TVR Griffith have a yearly gathering called the 'Griff Growl,' which is a meet and greet.
1 Aston Martin DB7 (1994-1996)- $20,000
It's possible to get a used Aston Martin DB7 for around $20,000. If you're diligent and patient enough, you could get it for a lot less. Aston Martin is known to be a performance brand, and the DB7 is no exception. The car was manufactured from 1994 to 1996, and a total of 7,000 copies were sold worldwide. Most of the resources that went into building the DB7 came from Jaguar, and the finances came from Ford. The car had a 5.9-liter V12 engine, which could produce up to 420 hp. The DB7 had a top speed of 165 mph and could go from 0 to 60 in 4.9 seconds. The $20,000 price tag is a bargain for such a great automobile.
Sources: motoringresearch.com; wikipedia.org; classicdriver.com