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  • Future of Internal Combustion Collector Cars

    This topic has been debated many places many times but I'm specifically interested in reading the thoughts of E30 enthusiasts rather than all car collectors. The questions are:
    1. How long do you estimate (and why) until civilians can't drive themselves in a gas car of their choice?
    2. What happens to all the unusable car values at that time?
    3. If you had a spare $100k to throw at investment cars, would you? And at which?

    For question one, there are many seemingly inevitable ways this could happen such as IC cars stop being produced and eventually banned, autonomous cars take over, the market for parts/service for IC cars dries up, etc. What is most likely to happen first?

    For question two, will there be a significant market for retrofitting collectable cars with the future required tech such as electric and/or autonomous?

  • #2
    Originally posted by fronton View Post
    This topic has been debated many places many times but I'm specifically interested in reading the thoughts of E30 enthusiasts rather than all car collectors. The questions are:
    1. How long do you estimate (and why) until civilians can't drive themselves in a gas car of their choice?
    2. What happens to all the unusable car values at that time?
    3. If you had a spare $100k to throw at investment cars, would you? And at which?

    For question one, there are many seemingly inevitable ways this could happen such as IC cars stop being produced and eventually banned, autonomous cars take over, the market for parts/service for IC cars dries up, etc. What is most likely to happen first?

    For question two, will there be a significant market for retrofitting collectable cars with the future required tech such as electric and/or autonomous?
    1. How long do you estimate (and why) until civilians can't drive themselves in a gas car of their choice?
    2030. Read up on the UN agenda 2030 and other relevant material. Seems like what they lay down usually ends up happening (see drug schedules nixon copied from the UN drug agenda).
    BMW even had 2030 as their target for autonomous cars in SC in one of their video loops they play at the museum. Probably can still drive but under heavy taxation. The end game is a global carbon tax imo. Won't be much longer after that when you simply can't manually operate a vehicle at all unless you are way out in the country. In order for all of this autonomous stuff to work and communicate successfully they must implement the 5G network in much closer proximity which should help with consistency with intervehicle communication.


    2. What happens to all the unusable car values at that time?
    Either goes through the roof or drops dramatically - this is with the caveat that "ownership" is still around. Based on the direction things are going comrad.... hard to say.


    3. If you had a spare $100k to throw at investment cars, would you? And at which?
    No. Fix what I have and spend the rest on seat time at the track. Screw preserving a car for someone else, someone else can have that chore.

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    • #3
      If I had 100k to invest, the absolute last thing I would do is purchase cars.
      1988 M3
      2012 335is
      1993 Civic Si

      Comment


      • #4
        This is something I think about very often, and a great topic to discuss. Having driven some electric cars (Teslas, but it doesn't matter) and thought extensively about the concept, IC powered vehicles will become obsolete in the not to distant future. Responses in CAPS.

        1. How long do you estimate (and why) until civilians can't drive themselves in a gas car of their choice? I THINK OPTIONS WILL REMAIN ON THE MARKET FOR ANOTHER 20 YEARS. 10 YEARS FROM NOW 50% OF CARS ON ROAD WILL BE PREDOMINATELY OR EXCLUSIVELY ELECTRICALLY POWERED.
        2. What happens to all the unusable car values at that time? REGULAR CARS WILL BE WORTH WHATEVER SCRAP PRICES ARE. COLLECTOR CARS (CARS OF EMOTIONAL, HISTORIC OR JOY VALUE) WILL RISE. I GENERALLY THINK OF COLLECTOR CAR MARKETPLACE AS INCREASINGLY BECOMING MORE SIMILAR TO THE ART MARKETPLACE, THAN THAT OF A MARKETPLACE FOR INTERESTING ENTERTAINMENT/ENJOYMENT TOOLS.
        3. If you had a spare $100k to throw at investment cars, would you? And at which? QUESTION IS HARD TO ANSWER, DEPENDS ON WHAT ONE IS WORTH. I WOULD SAY I WOULDN'T HAVE THE BALLS TO DO SO, BUT SEVERAL CARS I'VE LUSTED AFTER AND FELT HAD A VERY COMPELLING PROPOSITION FOR VALUE APPRECIATION FOR A LONG TIME HAVE ALL DONE VERY WELL....993 TURBO, GT 350 MUSTANGS, E30 M3, MKIV TOYOTA SUPRA, Z8.... JUST TO NAME A FEW. I EVEN THINK CERTAIN FOX BODY MUSTANGS ARE A GREAT BUY RIGHT NOW.

        With all of that said, I am very bullish on the values of E30 M3s over the next 30 years. Not that regular examples in mint condition will be worth $1M, but rather they will continue to appreciate nicely over time. My car had been off the road largely for 7-8 years, and just finished a complete restoration in 2018. The amount of attention my car gets, vs. 7-10 years ago, from all walks of life, is astonishing. I think that speaks towards the cars appeal, which translates into value.

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        • #5
          I think a lot of people are taking as fact a lot of BS that is being disingenuously put out by a variety of sources....

          First of all, completely autonomous, self driving cars are far, far, in the future....I mean decades....and I believe it may never happen at all. It is one of those cases were 75-80% of the required technology is relatively easy to develop, but the final 20-25% is still indefinitely beyond reach. Don't get me wrong....there are and will continue to be cars that can "self drive" in specific stretches of road under specific circumstances. But a car that is completely autonomous poses so many problems, technologically, logistically, legally, and in terms of required infrastructure....that it is not happening any time soon. I don't think it will happen in my lifetime, and yes I am old, but not THAT old. You heard it here first.

          This technology is sold as being far more attainable than it really is, just to garner publicity and hopefully investment. It is just like Musk talking about shooting people around at supersonic speeds in pneumatic tubes, or Amazon talking about delivering packages within the hour by drone. Musk and/or Amazon know these things will probably never happen, but they like the publicity that comes from pretending that it is just around the corner. After WWII all the big industry in the USA tried to sell everyone on the idea that each household would soon have some sort of flying machine to be used as their prime means of transportation. That is no closer today than it was in 1946....in fact now everyone knows it was a silly notion. Completely autonomous cars are in the same category. Disingenuous bullshit.

          If you doubt what I am saying, consider this: It would be vastly easier, from a technology perspective, to have autonomous aircraft than it would autonomous cars. An airplane takes off and lands at a very specific, controlled location. Once in the air, all it needs is an altitude and a heading. There are infinitely fewer obstacles, conflicts, and challenges it must negotiate than an automobile. Yet every commercial aircraft, and the vast majority of military ones, still have pilots in the loop, and there is no talk of removing them. Even military aircraft without pilots on board, are still flown by a human pilot. Just remotely. Why do you think that is?

          As far as fuel sources, I think we will see a gradual increase in the percentage of hybrids and pure electric cars on the road, but I don't think the future will be purely electric, if for no other reason than the US power grid would have to be roughly doubled in capacity if all the cars in the USA were 100% electric. Where will this electricity come from? Fuel oil? Why not just use it to power cars directly. Coal? Probably not. Wind? Wind generators have always largely been expensive, inefficient, feel good devices rather than useful power generators. Hydroelectric? New dams are a political nightmare. Solar? Might help, but won't take over any time soon. Nuclear? Probably the best all-around answer...but a political minefield in the USA.

          I think the future of automotive power will be a mix....fossil fuel powered cars for decades yet, supplemented by electric, hybrid, possibly natural gas, hydrogen....who knows? But it will be a very slow and gradual evolution, not sudden change.

          The problem is that the predominate narrative about the future (in the USA at least) is political rather than scientific. What we hear, and the "truth" that is reported, is merely the reality some would prefer, rather than the actual scientific reality that exists, and will exist in the future.
          Last edited by Ironhead; 01-11-2019, 11:33 AM.

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          • #6
            I agree with Ironhead 1000%. I believe we are, at the least, 60-70 years away from anything of this kind. Ironhead makes some great points...I mean infrastructure, logistics etc..... hell, we can't even get potholes covered here in Connecticut!!!! We are a long way from being the Jetson's....that is for sure. Hell, a lot of people are merely turned off from hybrid cars because there aren't many charging stations around. I can't remember the last time I saw one. I still think, also, that the majority of people want to drive. Driving is one of the great freedoms and priveledges we have here. One reason older people fade away when they get older is because of lack of interaction and freedoms. Take away somebody's keys and see how they react. I think that there are more people that want to drive than not and if that isn't the case....boy, they are missing out on one of life's great freedoms and relationship with machine. I think we are still a very, very long way away from all electric vehicles and even further from the autonomous ones. For every software guru who designs this stuff (with capability), there is a smarter (hack). It would be a great way to shut down and entire country! I want to have as much control as I can have....and getting around is something I do not hold for granted. Technology is great....to a point and I like to keep it in perspective.

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            • #7
              I agree. Unfortunately, urgency is the only real driver of change. Change is happening, but when behavioral change is needed for impact, things tend to slow down. Lot's of factors at play.

              If you had a spare $100k to throw at investment cars, would you? I prefer cars with racing history and low production numbers. Call me Captain Obvious. I am not sure a 100k is needed to buy a car that has good value and has the potential to increase in value. There are some water cooled turbo Porsche if optioned correctly seem pretty interesting. None the less, E30 M3 check all the boxes in regards to collectibility. It's pedigree speaks for itself, the story is a difficult one to rival. Maybe the Ford GT40 story . . . lol.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by 88hennaM3 View Post
                I agree. Unfortunately, urgency is the only real driver of change. Change is happening, but when behavioral change is needed for impact, things tend to slow down. Lot's of factors at play.

                If you had a spare $100k to throw at investment cars, would you? I prefer cars with racing history and low production numbers. Call me Captain Obvious. I am not sure a 100k is needed to buy a car that has good value and has the potential to increase in value. There are some water cooled turbo Porsche if optioned correctly seem pretty interesting. None the less, E30 M3 check all the boxes in regards to collectibility. It's pedigree speaks for itself, the story is a difficult one to rival. Maybe the Ford GT40 story . . . lol.
                In terms of pure investments, I would put my money in real estate and mutual funds, not cars. I buy cars as a hobby. I think we would all like cars to pencil out as good investments, but it rarely works out that way....and when it does the loses tend to cancel out any gains from the wins.

                But back to technology...people often make the mistake of assuming that our technical capability marches on and on at the same rate. It doesn't. Technology matures and plateaus. As an example, commercial airliners today look basically the same and go basically the same speed as airliners from the late 1950s. They might be somewhat quieter or more efficient, but the basic design is the same as the Boeing 707 that was drawn up in the early 1950s. The only supersonic airliner that ever existed has been retired, and there are no more on the horizon. It is a case of need/cost/technology reaching a point where it all aligns.

                Personal computers are another example. In the early 1990s, a PC would become hopelessly obsolete about six months after purchase. Today, a high performance PC is viable for 10 years or more from the date of purchase, before it really starts to show its age. The technology has matured, and any improvements now are either highly incremental, or based upon planned obsolescence as a marketing strategy...
                Last edited by Ironhead; 01-12-2019, 03:04 AM.

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                • #9
                  Lots of solid wisdom in here. It sounds like the general consensus is 'not in our lifetime' will have our internal combustion keys taken from us. My guess is that non electric cars will be banned from public streets before autonomous vehicles take over, but not for another 20+ years. My take away is not to treat any car as an financial vehicle (terrible pun intended) anymore but enjoy it for what it is today as we may be one of the last lucky generations on the blip of humanity that got to experience RWD gas powered gear shifting bliss. And that is an investment far more rewarding than most!

                  No one responded to the electric/autonomous retrofit concept for classic cars. Perhaps that is too depressing for most but I'd still rather be delivered in a e30 M3 sans steering wheel than some soulless Kia Autobot.

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