Oz & USA Muscle Car Market Review 2021

By: Cliff Chambers

ford ford

Lockdowns have made for an interesting year, some prices have surged, others stagnated

As this value guide was being completed, we were just days away from the closing dates for a couple of major auction sales.

We can’t include those results in this Guide and in 12 months’ time they will have passed into irrelevance, but the very existence of those sales and the influence they have on the national psyche is immense.

Collector car auctions have become a bit like the Melbourne Cup. People who care nothing for horse racing will for that one day spend big on flash gear to attend flash lunches and become instant experts on jockey attire and barrier draws.

Same with the automotive sales events that have found their way onto mainstream TV news broadcasts and get livestreamed into home offices and outdoor iPads across the country.

People paying insane money for rat-infested wrecks have become a talking point and also symbolic of our national spirit in the face of calamity. Aussies who for ages couldn’t travel overseas or even interstate were somehow comforted to know that somebody somewhere was still able to spend a million on a car previously owned by another somebody who was famous.

Contrived excitement did a lot to stimulate soaring prices, and few cared that cars supposedly ‘sold’ for record-setting bids might be back on the market a few months later.

Those with long memories will recall that extreme values have been with us a couple of times before and that they diminish quickly once the economic climate begins to change.

That still leaves a mainstream collector market where owners enjoy sensible returns on the money their cars have absorbed while keeping plenty of desirable models at affordable levels.

Brisk sales, including over-the-phone interstate transactions reported by dealers, and strong auction house clearance rates confirm that demand is still there, and that cars have only become more expensive in relative terms.

If you own a home a metropolitan area, then it and you are a worth a good deal more than you were two years ago. With housing interest rates now lower than at any time in recorded history and banks paying almost nothing on savings, our ability and desire to fund a recreational vehicle have improved.

The money you have available may not buy a 1970s Falcon GT, or even a triple-carb Torana, but many of us can access an XR8 Falcon or SS Commodore. Loads of interesting US-made cars also remain affordable, those cars part of a strengthening global market for pre-Seventies Americana.

Whether these models and others like them will continue to appreciate as circumstances change, we cannot say.

What they do and will continue to provide is interesting, involving transport that, with appropriate care, will survive the decades ahead and face whatever challenges that era may bring for engines of the internal combustion kind.

Cliff Chambers
December 2021

Read next:
- Oz & USA muscle car value guides
- Understanding our guides


From Unique Cars #460, Dec 2021


Unique Cars magazine Value Guides

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