This is truly a fascinating thread, a great discussion topic, even if it does get a little heated at times. That’s understandable when we’re dealing with something so individualistic and so dear to us as collectability and value.
I’ve pondered this for many years. What will the future hold in what is generally deemed collectible? It all comes down to an individual connection to the object, either through personal experience (growing up in said era) or taught experience, such as an object handed down through generations, though that doesn’t usually apply to vehicles.
When it comes to cars, it’s generally a personal experience, whether you, a friend, or a family member owned one, or you witnessed it going down the road, or a magazine ad or poster that adorned your bedroom wall as a kid. Nostalgia, plain and simple, one of the most powerful forces on earth.
That being said, the bell-curve of car collectability is usually centered on what is currently about 50 years old. The bell curve marches forward in time as the clock ticks away, as we humans also move forward into the future.
Disposable income plays a huge part in what actually makes it into the garages of the collector, thus the younger end of both collector and collectible is not as easily seen, but nevertheless exists. My dream garage (or warehouse, rather) would have vehicles I think are awesome, and multiple examples from each decade of the past 100 years or more. But, most would be ones I’ve seen on the road or driven.
Case in point, I’m 40. I still own my first vehicle (not a daily driver anymore), an 86 Bronco. In the past 24 years, I have witnessed first hand the public opinion of that vehicle change. It has gone from a hand-me-down teenager’s vehicle that wouldn’t so much as get a second glance from anyone, aside from a cliche OJ Simpson joke (there were a lot of them, and it’s not even white in color) to a head-turning, increasing in value, desirable truck of today. During a 2002 basic restoration, I found it challenging to get aftermarket replacement parts. Now, it’s easy.
Many of you will never give vehicles of that era a second look, and that’s ok. But there’s a growing population that sees value in that era. It’s all about nostalgia.
Model companies would be wise to follow the nostalgia-powered bell curve of collectibility. For the most part they do, but it also requires plenty of new subjects to be kitted and reissued as time moves on.