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Guide Review: Hagerty's Cars That Matter

About.com Rating 2.5 Star Rating

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Hagerty's Cars That Matter

Hagerty's Cars That Matter

Hagerty's Cars That Matter

The Bottom Line

A straightforward price guide for exotic and vintage European and American cars.

Pros

  • Comprehensive price guide for sports and vintage autos
  • Easy to find what you're looking for
  • Online access included
  • Updated regularly

Cons

  • No pictures
  • Type is small
  • No pre-war cars

Description

  • "Hagerty's Cars That Matter" is a portable price guide to post-war automobiles
  • Portable in printed form, and even more portable with online access and a smartphone
  • No pictures, no articles -- just current market prices for thousands of models
  • Published three times a year; $20 for a single serving, $40 for a one-year subscription

Guide Review - Guide Review: Hagerty's Cars That Matter

Whether you're in the market or just curious, Hagerty's Cars That Matter series keeps tabs on car prices as they rise and fall. For this review, I'm looking at Volume 10 of HCTM, which covers September through December 2009. The publisher warns, though, that the exotic and vintage car market is always in flux. Luckily, HCTM comes out three times a year, for twenty bucks a pop.

You won't find any Brass Era or antique cars here ("old fuddy-duddy cars," a friend of mine calls them). This price guide covers 1946 to present, a big enough net to catch all of Ferrari and McLaren, if not all of Rolls-Royce and Bentley. Lesser-known cars are found inside, too, like the waterproof Amphicar or the short-lived DeTomaso.

Each entry has four prices, for four conditions of car, from drivable to dynamite. HCTM doesn't waste time with poor-quality or parts cars. The prices here are for cars you'd have a reasonable chance of being happy with. Each little paperback book includes a code for online access, should you prefer to check your smartphone for prices rather than the nearly 300-page guide.

HCTM is no-nonsense, which means no pictures. None. Well, except for two of the guys responsible for its publication. What it lacks in images it makes up for with wit. Advice and market observations are sprinkled among the cold hard numbers. The McLaren F1, for example, is called "the thinking man's supercar. Uncompromising and no paddle shift option means poseurs need not apply." With HCTM valuing the car at $2.5-$3.5 million, I'd say the poseur line is pretty short, in any case.

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