Are Muscle Car Prices a Bubble Ready to Burst?

For as long as high-class powerful cars have made an entrance, people have made all sorts of jokes related to people that buy these vehicles when they are typically way over their personal budgets. While this is not a post designed to mock people that spend too much money on cars (who’s to say what “too much” means, anyway), we are interested in whether or not muscle cars are becoming more affordable. Are these products that we can expect to see more people buying in the future?

What Is a Muscle Car?

Before we move any further, let’s try to define what a muscle car really is. Muscle cars are associated with high-performance coupes with V8 engines, but this is a term with plenty of history behind it. The first muscle car was produced back in 1949 and was named the Oldsmobile Rocket 88. Ever since then, muscle cars have evolved one decade after another.

For a long time, muscle cars were considered an emblem of American rebellion, associated with fun and youth. However, the definition of a muscle car will be different depending on who you ask. For the most part, a muscle car will have the following characteristics:

  • A V8 engine that’s as powerful as a certain model can provide.
  • A manufacturing year in the 1960s and early 1970s.
  • Is made in the US.
  • Comes with a lightweight two-door body.
  • Is designed for straight-line drag racing.

Of course, there certain features have been added to this list as the concept of muscle cars was passed down from generation to generation

Why Are Muscle Cars Expensive?

Because they are rare. Everyone knows that when a product is available in a limited edition, it’s bound to be more expensive because of the status it offers to its buyers. Muscle cars are no exception to this rule, and here’s why.

The world of muscle cars is arguably the most fascinating one in the automotive industry. From crazy nights to blood-thrilling races, muscle cars are considered masterpieces, which is why collectors are willing to pay exorbitant amounts of money for them. From the Chevrolet Corvette 305 “California” to the Pontiac Firebird Trans AM, these cars are the emblem of a period when freedom meant something completely different than what it means today.

Some of you might be wondering how come a muscle car manufactured in 1970 is worth more than a modern-day one? While scarcity is part of the answer, it isn’t the only valid response. The aesthetics of the car also have a lot to do with it. It’s for a good reason that modern muscle cars are trying to copy the design of the older versions.

Some would argue that the 1970s were the benchmark decade for muscle cars, so it only makes sense that these older models are more expensive. Those cars were made with fewer environmental constraints considering their powerful motors.

Are Muscle Car Prices About to Go Down?

If you closely observe the current status of the economy, it’s only fair to believe that the bubble is about to burst. While there are collectors that wish to sell muscle cars for huge amounts of money, there is always a matter of who is going to pay the price. In times of economic rehab, buyers are starting to become scarcer than the classics of the 70s, which means that sellers need to be more realistic when attempting to sell.

One of the most common ways for a collector to sell a classic muscle car is through auctions. These events are a great tool for establishing the value of these vehicles.

The conversation is actually more complex than we’re making it seem right now. In recent years, the price of classic muscle cars has grown at an unsustainable pace. People that have invested in these cars with an intention to sell them are now facing a reality where they have to “get rid” of the cars in times of economic imbalance and uncertainty.

One can’t disregard the huge number of factors that contribute to price fluctuations over several different markets, with the muscle car niche being no exception.

How did this muscle car collector frenzy start? After the 2008 financial crisis, people started investing in these cars, and prices were jacked up in the process. Where there is high demand, there will also be more products, which means that more muscle cars were bound to make an entrance at some point.

In the end, we can’t disregard the fact that the upcoming generation of car owners is bound to show less interest in owning a 1970s muscle car. Sure, technology is now more advanced than ever and we can see modern cars being jacked with Bluetooth connections and smart cruise control, but the truth is that millennials aren’t going to be as interested in a classic muscle car compared to someone who has actually lived in that period.

And, as basic economic knowledge has always taught us, where there is no demand, there is bound to be less production and lower prices.


Not only is the bubble about the burst, but the process has slowly begun already. Some of the most iconic muscle cars are still being sold for considerable amounts of money, but this is a market that seems to be decreasing because there are fewer enthusiasts that are ready to pay the price. You also have to consider the hobbies of the potential target market. How many millennials do you know that would like to purchase a DeLorean?