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SHO Collectable?

New 11/28/05

 I know the SHO collectible market. I wrote many years ago that SHO's, like almost all 4-door cars will never be what most consider a "true collectible" one that gets well above average sales. But there are "true" collectibles in all areas of stuff. In the car world, Edsels are collectible, but they don't bring as much as a Galaxy, which is pretty much the same car sold in greater numbers. and a Galaxies doesn't get what an Impala gets, and they were made in even greater numbers.

One gauge of collectibility is rarity. Well Cobra's and Shelby Mustangs were pretty rare when new, because not many sold. And not because there weren't that many available, but because not many people wanted them. They were expensive and didn't sell well. Modern equivalents would be the new Marauder and the SVT Contour for example.

But some cars sold in great numbers but aren't collectible. almost any 1948-1954 American car sold in great numbers but they are hardly a top collectible. They were not fast, had old style and look kind of dumpy compared to cars before and after. And yet there are people like our SHO group that love them, and enjoy being able to buy and use the cars for a lot less money.

As for the Plus not being verifiable. Yes, that is a minor aspect of the value, but there are lots of cars that can't be verified other than by build sheet or window sticker. Lots of valuable cars with option packages that aren't in the VIN number. The Plus falls there.

I don't agree that the plus package is worth just $100. It isn't worth any more than that to YOU, it IS worth more than that to the typical SHO collector that is looking for one, just not a HUGE amount more. Let's not get caught up in a huge war of extremes. Go with me to the middle road and just admit that to a SHO collector like me and a lot of others that like the Gen I SHO's, that the plus is a good thing. How good depends on the person buying the car.

I doubt many people will clone all the parts of the Plus package, again it isn't worth it, and that is also why I like to get unrestored cars when history is on the line. That factory stuff isn't possible to recreate exactly.

As for garden variety muscle cars from the 60's not being worth much, again it is a matter of degrees, but just watch Barrett-Jackson this winter. There are some pretty garden variety cars that pull big numbers. The market is up and that drags along all the cars. Even small block "muscle" is getting some big bucks if it is nice and especially if it has a 4-speed manual.

As for SHO enthusiasts setting the market for SHO's but NOT for collectors, I will call a BS foul on you, because if the typical SHO enthusiasts is NOT the TRUE SHO Collectible "market" then what the heck is? We are the ONLY true market for the SHO and the only one that counts. That is true of any car. The people that love Hemi's from the 60's and 70's set that market, not people that love AMC cars or a typical used car dealer.

The SHO enthusiast will from now on set the true market for SHO collectibility, since we are the main and really the only market for the car. it has run the course of 1st, 2nd and 3rd etc car, and also pretty much run the course of cheap fun car for teens. The people buying them now are buying junkers for their last few miles, or there is the only other market: the people in the SHO community that are buying them like me and a lot of people on this list (and you have taken yourself out of the SHO market as far as I can see, so your opinion of the market is, with all due respect, not valid!). Really, I understand you consider the SHO just another outdated old car, but that is the way with any old car. That I see it as a good car, and others don't see it that way is the way of any "car or vehicle" from when new till it gets crushed.

When people ask me what their SHO is worth (and several do a week), I point them to the typical used car value sites: kbb.com and edmunds.com. (the free ones), and ask them to start there. Be brutally honest then visit SHOclub.com classifieds and see what people are asking (key word "asking"). Then they should be able to peg an asking price for their car, or what they should be looking at paying if they are trying to buy. From that point, condition and miles add or take from the car like with any car. Your favorite color with the right options and great condition/low miles equals something worth a lot more than the price guides or typical used car, as with any car. And yes. Add the Plus package to the '91 and the buyer determines what that is worth. $100 to you, less maybe to someone else, a lot more to others.

Don Mallinson

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