Despite being gorgeous remnants of European automotive history, depreciation wasn’t kind to these cars, and they are now sold for surprisingly cheap.
Though they may be buried in the shadows of the popular classic cars, these vintage European cars look expensive and are guaranteed not to break the bank. With a little hunting, these cars go for around $40,000 or less.
It has been perceived that all discovered classic cars have skyrocketed in value. But despite depreciating heavily, these cars will still excite every serious car enthusiast with a love for automotive history.
These tidy, affordable, and classy cars are usually harder to find, but managing to get your hands on one is well worth it given their surprisingly low price tags. Here are 10 European classic cars that deliver a cool and vintage look on a budget.
Volkswagen Karmann Ghia
Before, The VW Karmann Ghia was just known for its bizarre but stylish body from the past, designed by Carrozzeria Ghia, Luigi Segre, and Felice Mario Boano. Prices had spiked by almost double virtually overnight. Earlier models produced between the 1960s and 1974 still cost on average $20,000. The vehicle combines the VW Beetle’s mechanics along with the Karmann built body, hence the three names.
Do think twice about the term ‘sports’ car when it comes with this vehicle. The Karmann Ghia can really be considered the world’s slowest sports car ever. The initial power output was somewhere in the range of 30 to 60 horsepower close to the end of production.
Fiat Bertone X1/9
$5,000 is all that is needed when it comes to securing an X1/9. The Fiat Bertone X1/9 was designed by Bertone’s Marcello Gandini and remains one of the most appealing classic cars one can afford. Bertone’s X1/9 brings in some of the high-spec Italian performance pieces out to the public.
The Fiat Bertone X1/9 may be far from powerful, but its compact, light-weight body which measures around 1,940 pounds compensates for the lack of power under the hood. The amenities as well, including air conditioning and power windows. It is a quick, fun, and easy way to get into mid-engine cars without costing too much.
This evocative ’60s sports car was like no ordinary Volvo. Manufactured and marketed between 1961 and 1973, the P1800 was originally a stylish coupe rather than a sports car. Gaining popularity when driven by Future James Bond actor Roger Moore in The Saint.
Later on, the final product of the P1800 series, known as the 1800ES, was manufactured. Improvements in road performance were visible despite the engine being downgraded to 125bhp. When it comes to buying, go for the safer option of buying at lower mileage. Buying at a lower price may mean these cars have been extensively driven.
BMW E3 Bavaria
With a 100mph in no time. The E3 – Bavaria was a line of cars manufactured from Europe for the US only from 1968 to 1977 (all E3 models internationally). Known as the E3 among gearheads, it shares many similarities with the E9 Coupe, which many agree as BMW’s most beautiful design.
This rare gem costs 7,800 dollars approximately as a base Bavaria. It costs around 10,000 dollars, including the AC, auto, radio and leather. Reviewed to be a “sensationally good buy” compared to its peers from Jaguar and Mercedes-Benz.
A lot of people are familiar with the W124, but you have to reach back further with this one. The W124s may have put the Mercedes-Benz S0Class on the map, with 0 to 62mph in 13.70 seconds, around 110 horsepower, and a maximum speed of 84 mph.
The W115 serves the inherent classic and expensive look on a budget, and models start from 2,300 dollars. It was designed by French auto designer Paul Bracq and sold new between 1972 and 1976.
Fast-forwarding a couple of decades and into the ’90s, the Corrado impacted Volkswagen’s performance to a new level. It was marketed as VW’s “first-full-blooded sports car”. The Corrado, whose name comes from the Spanish word “to run” reaches a top speed of 135mph and will do 60 mph in 7.7 seconds. The Golf-based car runs on a wider wheelbase, a typical sporty, comprehensive, and clear framework, and instrumentation.
The Volkswagen Corrado exceeded the 45mph speed compared to the Golf/Jetta line cars. Also offering four-wheel disc brakes with an optional lock capability for the average price of $2,500. If you would be willing to do what it takes to maintain the car, you would be rewarded with an original sporting coupe that has a fantastic performance.
Jaguar XJ Series 3
Once a common car to see on British roads, the XJ is an under-swept car series from the ’70s to the late ’90s. It has a skillful mix of early, well-proven concepts and components from past series combined into this body.
By the ’80s, the V12 models’ cylinder heads were upgraded to “fireball” high compression, resulting in the high efficiency (HE) models. The Jaguar XJ Series 3 reaches around 285 horsepower and goes on sale for roughly $15,000. Sadly, the XJ Series was a project that kept getting put on hold, with no window improvements and the seal against wind noise.