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Published on: 08/23/2023

Are Cars A Good Investment?

When we discuss investments, we typically think of stocks, bonds, or real estate. However, an often overlooked asset class is alternative investments, which include things like cars. But are cars a good investment? Not typically. But there are a few specific circumstances under which cars can become an attractive investment, depending on factors like the type of car, its rarity, how well it’s maintained, and market trends. 

This article will delve into the ins and outs of cars as an investment, providing you with an insightful perspective on whether or not cars can, in fact, generate a significant return on your investment.

Is it wise to invest in cars?

It’s important to remember that cars are typically a depreciating asset, meaning they become less valuable over time. It’s not uncommon for people to invest in cars as collector’s items or as showpieces, but this approach can be a risky prospect financially, as many collectors are not trying to profit off of their collections, and you won’t often make your money back — no matter how rare the vehicle. 

On the other hand, investing in cars that are in excellent condition and have a good resale value, but are not particularly sought after, could potentially lead to financial gain. This is especially true if you’re able to purchase the car at a discount, such as from an auction or private sale.

Advantages of investing in cars

When done right, investing in cars as an alternative investment vehicle can be a sound way to generate income or diversify your portfolio.

Here are some potential advantages of investing in cars:

  1. Appreciation Potential – Depending on the make, model, and rarity of the car, you could see a significant appreciation in its value over time. For instance, a car famously driven by James Bond might maintain value to collectors over time. 
  2. Liquid Assets – Unlike traditional investments which are tied to the markets, cars can be liquidated relatively quickly if need be, enabling you to access your funds with relative ease.
  3. Tax Benefits – When investing in cars, you may have the opportunity to take advantage of certain tax benefits, including deductions for vehicle depreciation, mileage, and record keeping requirements.
  4. Flexibility – Investing in cars can be done on any budget, with price tiers ranging from fleets of commercial vehicles purchased at auction to rare vintage models and luxury vehicles.

Disadvantages of investing in cars

Before jumping into cars as an investment, it’s important to understand the potential drawbacks associated with them as well. You may also want to work with a financial advisor who offers asset management to help you determine how this type of purchase can be worked into your current financial plan, and how it might impact your finances now and in the future.

Here are some of the disadvantages associated with investing in cars:

  1. Maintenance Cost – Cars require regular maintenance in order to prevent wear and tear, which can add up over time resulting in higher ownership costs.
  2. Volatility – Just like stocks, the value of cars is subject to market fluctuations, making it difficult to predict their performance with any degree of accuracy. 
  3. Theft Risk – Investing in cars carries the risk of theft, meaning you could experience a near-total loss in value if the vehicle is stolen or damaged.
  4. Storage Cost – If you don’t have a designated garage or other storage area, you may need to pay for a special storage facility in order to protect your car from environmental damage and other risks. 

Learn more: Is investing in art a good idea?

What cars can you make money on?

When it comes to cars as an investment, there are several types of vehicles that may be of interest. Generally speaking, cars that are rare, classic, and in excellent condition often appreciate over time. Bonus points if you can get the original keys, owner’s manual, and accessories including its tire jack. Examples of good investment cars include vintage and specific models of: 

  • Ferraris
  • Lamborghinis
  • Porsches
  • Rolls Royces
  • Bugattis
  • Mercedes-Benzes
  • BMWs

However, you don’t need to limit yourself to these types of vehicles – there are many other cars that can generate a good return on your investment. For example, the best classic car investments can range from the well-known Volkswagen Beetle all the way to specific models of Honda racing cars that are sought after by enthusiasts. 

It’s also important to keep an eye on popular car trends, such as electric cars or autonomous vehicles. If you’re able to anticipate these emerging markets and invest early, then you may be able to capture some of the high returns associated with emerging markets.

Looking to diversify your investment portfolio? Let’s talk.

So, what’s the verdict? Are cars a good investment? At the end of the day, investing in cars can be a lucrative venture if done properly. To get the best return on your investment, it’s important to understand what type of car is most likely to appreciate and become a collector’s item. It’s also important to research the market and keep an eye out for any emerging trends in the automotive industry that may lead to beneficial investing opportunities.

If you’re wondering how investing in cars can complement your larger financial plan and are looking for a fiduciary in Houston, Austin, The Woodlands, or Sugar Land, Avidian Wealth Solutions can help you determine the ideal investment allocation strategy between cars vs. real estate vs. stocks and beyond.

To learn more about our comprehensive wealth management services, schedule a conversation with us today!

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