Ten Future Classics From the Last Decade
Cars made between 2010 and 2020 that will almost certainly be collectable classics.
No one can predict the future or say with total certainty which cars will end up being widely desirable in the future. 20 years ago, who could have predicted the explosion in price of mid-90s Japanese sport compacts? What soothsayer of the late 1970s had the foresight to predict the skyrocketing prices of ‘60s American muscle cars — some hitting seven figures by the mid-2000s?
Outside of supercars and super-exclusive limited production models, it can be hard to predict what’s going to maintain or increase in value in the automotive world. However, we can make some good guesses based on current desirability, exclusivity, pedigree and historical significance.
Now that we’ve entered a new decade (so weird that we’re now living in “The ‘20s”), it’s time to reflect on models that only existed in the past decade and which we think will be worth holding on to as more decades come to pass.
Ford Mustang Shelby GT350
2016 – 2020
There are definitely a few Mustangs we could put on this list from the 2010s. Namely, the 2012 – 2013 Boss 302 and 2013 – 2014 Shelby GT500. Both of which are notable as top-tier models and coveted nameplates which were very the last to feature a live rear-axle.
However, the much-loved Shelby GT350 is almost sure to be the most desirable and collectable moving forward. Partly because of its unique and wonderful 5.2-litre flat plane crank V8. Partly because, unlike the GT500, the GT350 only came back for a short period of time before disappearing again. But mostly because it could very well be the last Shelby Mustang ever with a clutch pedal.
Dodge Challenger SRT Demon
I don’t think most Challengers — even the 392 Scat Pack and Hellcat cars — are going to command a super high price in the near years to come. The market is just too saturated with them and a lot of time is going to have to pass before their rarity and demand start to hit that critical tipping point.
However, I think the story will be different for everything higher than the Hellcat trim, such as the widebody and Red Eye models, because of their year-to-year exclusivity.
Of course, no Challenger model fits that bill better than the one-year-only, 840 horsepower Demon model. If past Mopar classics like the HEMI and convertible E-body cars are any indication, there’s going to be some serious collectors out there interested in acquiring the most powerful Dodge ever.
Subaru BRZ tS
2018 – 2020
With the Toyota 86 and Subaru BRZ being such commonplace, and with a newer, more powerful model on the way, it could be difficult to see how these cars could ever become highly desirable or collectable.
But let’s not forget the lessons of the Nissan 240SX. The majority of those cars were either modified beyond recognition or drifted into a wall and as result, good examples are hard to find and are highly desirable.
Since the tS model featured every performance addition added to the 86 and BRZ over its lifespan and had a limited production run of just 500 units, it will almost surely be the most desirable one.
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X Final Edition
Whereas its introduction in 2008 was met with high praise for its extreme handling abilities and healthy amounts of turbocharged horsepower, the Evolution ultimately failed to evolve over its seven-year lifespan, chiefly due to Mitsubishi’s financial troubles.
So in 2015 we said goodbye to a car that felt like it was from a previous decade… because it was. But that doesn’t mean the Final Edition wasn’t one of the best the 2010s had to offer.
Besides featuring all the best performance and bodywork bits of various Evo X models, it’s the lack of sophistication that will make the Final Edition so desirable. Putting aside the blistering performance and the cult following that the Evo commands, this was a car on sale in 2015 that featured no back up camera or navigation system. The interior was so crude and noisy, it’s like it was made from melted down action figures. It had a five-speed manual transmission. And razor’s edge steering. The whole thing was analogue and raw, and represented a generation of car that would simply no longer exist after 2015.
And that’s why people will want them. The Evo X Final Edition is a time capsule.
Chevrolet Camaro Z/28
The Z/28 was not supposed to happen. It was an unsanctioned Frankenstein’s monster of a project that consisted of mashing a cavalcade of obsolete GM parts from other models onto a chassis which itself was about to be sent out to pasture. It also didn’t have a radio. Just like the original.
Even better, there were 35 factory parts which GM restricted the sale of in order to prevent any LS, LT, SS, or even ZL1 owners from building a Camaro Z/28 clone. The only way to have a Z/28 is to have a Z/28.
This was lightning in a bottle car that put an egg on the face of the Boss 302 Mustang and even some BMW M cars of the day. It kick-started the “muscle cars that handle” trend that we see reflected today in the Camaro 1LE and Mustang Performance Pack offerings. It’s very special. And people are going to want them.
Dodge Viper ACR (Fifth Generation)
There’s a general feeling that every generation of Dodge Viper will be the last Dodge Viper, because there simply aren’t that many maniacs out there who can afford to drop $100,000 to prove that they really are over their divorce.
As a result, most generations tend to see at least some kind of collector and enthusiast market spring up around them and it’s the higher scale, track weapon models, like the T/A and ACR which command the highest prices.
The very last Viper ACR featured the behemoth and utterly silly 645-horsepower, 8.4-litre V10 as all Fifth Gen Vipers did. But it also featured an enormous carbon wing, front splitter and canards. These types of aggressive, track-focused styling cues would go on to be adopted by other top-tier performance variants like the Corvette ZR1 and Shelby GT500 Carbon Track Pack.
Chevrolet Corvette (C7)
2014 – 2019
The last front-engine Corvette. The launch of the C8 Corvette ushered in a design change that various ‘Vette engineers had been striving to accomplish for decades—moving the engine behind the driver. And while the hype for the C8 has hit a fever pitch for the moment, there are a number of Corvette faithful who believe the rightful place for the ‘Vette’s motor is firmly up front. Unless Chevy reverses their rear-engine decision (and there’s no sign of that happening any time soon), the C7 will represent the absolute pinnacle of front-engine engineering for the Corvette. This means it’s sure to be a sought after collector’s item — especially for those who will maintain that the C7 was the last “real Corvette”.
Cadillac CTS-V Wagon
2010 – 2014
The 2010 CTS signified a new direction for Cadillac, and for a time, it seemed like the brand planned to base everything around the CTS, offering it in a coupe, sedan and wagon form.
The problem was, Cadillac didn’t sell a lot of CTS wagons. And they sold even fewer CTS-V Wagons. By 2013, only 1,200 of the 556-horsepower station wagons had been sold. That was roughly 0.5 percent of Cadillac’s total CTS sales.
So they’re rare. But they’re also awesome. At the time, the CTS-V was the fastest production station wagon ever. In 2011, Top Gear USA raced one against a Ferrari California and the CTS-V wagon absolutely smoked it. So, yeah. This is a special car.
Mazda Mazdaspeed3 (Second Generation)
2010 – 2013
It’s difficult to fault Mazda’s new direction of “luxury at a discount” because it seems to be mostly working for them. Positioning their new product line to appeal to the middle-managers of Yorkville might be boring for enthusiasts, but it’s hard to argue with the increase in quality or sales.
However, there was a time in Mazda’s history when quality was a little lower on the priority list and fun was much, much higher.
The second generation Mazdaspeed3 saw only three years of production before it killed the nameplate for good, but that makes this 2.3-litre turbocharged hot hatch even more rare and significant.
While the Mazdaspeed3 is viewed as something of a failure, what’s interesting is to think about how many great hot hatches we got in North America after the Mazdaspeed3 had gone. The Golf R, the Type R, the Veloster N and the Focus RS all seemed to fill a void that the Mazdaspeed3 had left. Maybe it was just a few years too ahead of its time.
Ford Focus RS
2016 – 2018
Let’s also not forget to pour one out for the brilliant Fiesta ST and Focus ST models. Those will continue to be desirable cars for years to come. However, none will retain the level of cult following status or be as coveted as the briefly tasted forbidden fruit that is the Ford Focus RS.
The Focus RS was a casualty of Ford deciding to axe everyone of its cars in North America, save for the Mustang. Which is frustrating. Long had we lusted after the RS and its 350-horsepower, 350-ft-lb of torque and 2.3-litre turbocharged greatness.
While the engine may live on in future Ford performance vehicles, the rarity and limited availability of Ford’s hottest of hatches means the Focus RS is sure to maintain its value amongst the faithful indefinitely.