It might be your dream to have a priceless collection of cars, like the Sultan of Brunei or fashion designer Ralph Lauren, but unless you win the lottery it's unlikely that you’re going to be able to splash out on multi-million-dollar supercars and priceless historical vehicles.
However, there are some cars kicking around today which are eminently affordable but have the potential to become future classics in the automotive world. Buying these cars while they are still reasonably priced is the ideal way for any enthusiast wannabe collector to get started.
There are some classic motoring names on this list, and some great pieces of automotive engineering and design, all of which are well within the financial reach of most ordinary motorists – at least for the moment.
19 Mazda MX-5 Miata
Japanese car manufacturer Mazda has a well-earned reputation for making sports cars that the average driver can afford – and most of them even manage to look pretty good into the bargain. The new Mazda MX-5 Miata roadster, however, is perhaps the company’s finest achievement in design and it costs just $30,000.
18 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk
From sporty roadsters to the rough and ready Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk. Car collections don’t have to consist solely of supercars, and the Trackhawk manages to incorporate a stylish exterior with a powerful engine. In fact, Jeep even markets their beefy vehicle as the most powerful SUV on the market.
17 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon
Even real car collectors often like to have a muscle car or two in their garage, and yet a new Dodge Challenger SRT Demon is nowhere near as expensive as you might expect. Although $85,000 is prohibitively expensive for many motorists, it is a very reasonable price for the privilege of getting behind the wheel of a piece of American automotive history.
16 Honda CR-Z
Japanese car manufacturers have been giving their American and European rivals a run for their money for decades now, and vehicles from the Far East are set to be a big part of any future car collections. The Honda CR-Z is a sporty compact which is also environmentally friendly thanks to its hybrid-electric engine.
15 Lexus LC 500
Luxury cars are always a good bet for an automotive investment, and Lexus is growing in reputation when it comes to their executive cars. The luxury division of Toyota, Lexus has been building cars since 1989 and the Lexus LC 500 performance coupe is one of the highlights of their fleet.
14 Volkswagen Scirocco
The original Volkswagen Scirocco from the 1970s and 1980s is already something of a collector’s item and a cult classic, but the German company relaunched its old favorite back in 2008 and the new version has the same sense of style and is seemingly destined to become a future classic. Best of all, the new Scirocco car only costs around $30,000.
13 Audi TT
A popular drive since its launch in 1998, the Audi TT sports car has been an icon of automotive design ever since – and new models are likely to remain all the rage with car collectors well into the future. With a starting price of $45,000, the Audi TT is a relatively affordable yet stylish set of wheels.
12 Audi RS3
Back to Germany for another modern car that is set to be a future classic; the Audi RS3, a high-performance, high-fashion version of the Audi A3 Sportback. Like BMW, Audi cars have a great reputation for reliability, and yet this stylish German vehicle will only set you back around $55,000.
11 Ford Fiesta
The Ford Fiesta has only been on sale in the US since 2008, but it has been around for a lot longer in Europe since the first model rolled off the production line in 1976. The latest Fiesta is a much more stylish version of the original subcompact car, and with a starting price of just $14,000 this is one new car that is affordable and sophisticated.
10 Subaru WRX
The Subaru WRX is a high-performance version of the much more basic Subaru Impreza, which has been a popular compact car since its launch in 1992. The WRX isn’t just faster than the Impreza; its exterior design is also much sleeker and more polished. With a starting price of $27,000, the WRX is an affordable option for motorists looking for a sporty car.
9 BMW Alpina 5 Series
Germany has always had a name for making well-engineered, reliable and elegant vehicles, and the BMW Alpina 5 Series is no exception. The Alpina is a cut above even the other executive cars on the market, and though it has a fairly hefty price tag of $112,000 it still makes for a great investment thanks to BMW’s reputation for reliability.
8 Kia Stinger
BMW may have a long and established history in the automotive industry, but some of the new kids on the block have also managed to create cars which have the look of being future classics. South Korean car manufacturer Kia launched the Stinger compact executive car in 2018, but it has already been a big hit with motorists thanks to its stylish appearance and $32,000 starting price.
7 Toyota iQ
Taking its inspiration from tiny Japanese Kei cars, the Toyota iQ city car is one of the more unusual vehicles on this list, but its unique design is part of what may well make it a future collectible. Toyota is planning to relaunch the vehicle in 2019, but there are plenty of second-hand models out there for wannabe collectors.
6 Porsche Boxster
Every teenage boy dreams of owning a Porsche when they get older, and most probably assume that they will never be able to afford one. However, they bargained without the Porsche Boxster, a classic convertible roadster which will only set you back $60,000 for a brand new model in 2019; eminently affordable for a dream car.
5 Range Rover Sport
The Range Rover Sport has become a highly-desirable car among famous faces in Hollywood, though they tend to go for the top-of-the-range models with their luxury interiors and designer trim. Luckily for the rest of us, the starting price for a Range Rover Sport is just $68,000; not bad for a classy and comfortable SUV.
4 Alfa Romeo Stelvio Speciale
Many of the most exclusive supercars in the world hail from Italy, and while Alfa Romeo may be better known for their luxury vehicles rather than speedy roadsters, these Italian stallions are always going to be a good investment. The Alfa Romeo Stelvio Speciale SUV will set you back less than $50,000 – quite a bargain for such a prestigious name.
3 Jeep Wrangler
The first jeep was developed for soldiers in World War II, but they wouldn’t recognize the range of vehicles which now bear the Jeep name, including the classic Jeep Wrangler. The Wrangler is a combination of interior luxury and exterior toughness, and with a starting price of $28,000 is one of the cheaper SUVs on the market.
2 BMW 1M Coupe
Motorists looking for an automotive investment that is going to give them a good return on their money should look at those cars which are already holding or increasing their value. The BMW 1M Coupe, for example, cost $47,000 back in 2011, but second-hand models are already changing hands for $60,000 and above.
1 Honda Civic Type R
The Honda Civic has been on the road, in one shape or another, since 1972, but the Type R is a sportier version of the standard compact car, with the extra bells and whistles which make it a potential collector’s item. The latest model will set you back a modest $37,000 if you fancy making it part of your future classic car collection.
Sources: KBB, Ford, Subaru, Top Gear, CNet