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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So just trying to get a general consensus from the community.

What is the current value that one would expect to pay for a true 1965 C-Code fastback with auto trans, no A/C and power steering?

This would be a Mustang that is totally nut & bolt rotisserie restored inside and out. I’m talking new everything as if the car just rolled off the factory assembly line in 1965.

Everything done correct, including paint markings under the car on suspension parts, correct paint colors used in engine bay, looking under the dash everything is brand new, all body panels aligned to near perfect, everything in interior brand new, all hardware brand new and nothing was overlooked.

Is it out of the question to see these approaching the $50k mark? Is a Seller asking price between $40k-$50k too high for a C-Code fastback?
 

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So just trying to get a general consensus from the community.
Oh, yeah. Good luck with that. ;)

With your assumptions, I'd say $35K would be my top offer. At the other extreme, there's a lot of clueless BitCoin-Billionaires and Six-Figure-Salary-Pro-Gamers in California who might pay $75K for that car. When you have a 1.5 million dollar mortgage on a 1800 square foot house, then $50K for an old car is pocket change.

In your scenario, someone put more time and money into a car than they can get back. But just that's our hobby in a nutshell. I've done it before, and I'll do it again with no regrets.

Unless an old car is rare, I quickly lose interest around the $30K point. A lot depends on what you consider "fun money". If you're financing a classic car, or paying a painfully large amount, then you've lost perspective.

Then there's the fact the car is just a hobby "toy" in a free market. Can I build that car exactly how I want with a $45K budget? Am I dead stuck on that specific car and model year? With a $50K budget and a little patience, can I build a (presently) more-valuable car like a 68 GT390 or a 69 428CJ? I've owned and restored several classic Mustangs, but with $40K cash in my hand, it's not too hard to find a modern Shelby or a used C7 Vette with low miles. There's a lot of fun to be had there, and I expect both cars to be quite collectible someday.

Just my 2 cents.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I’m not in the “Bitcoin” or “millionaire” section of the US...

I’m not clueless either - been in the Mustang arena since the 80’s - and have owned (20) to date including the 2 in my sig line. Also a member on quite a few Mustang forums with tons of useful Tech posts. :)

Over the years, I’ve been mostly entertained with the “confirmed GT’s”, the A’s, the K’s and the GT350’s - (and the sporadic 68 GT 390 fastbacks), just never really paid any attention to the 1965 fastback C-Code market.

So a totally inside/outside/mechanically “brand new” C-Code fastback (non-GT) isn’t worth any more than $30k-$45k? Is this because of the mere fact it’s a “C” in its Warranty number or due to some other bias?

To restore a 65 C fastback from ground up to brand new condition, wouldn’t the costs be right around the $40k mark - IF doing it right?
 

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I’m not in the “Bitcoin” or “millionaire” section of the US...

I’m not clueless either -
Nobody said you were. But they are out there and they affect the market.

Is this because of the mere fact it’s a “C” in its Warranty number or due to some other bias?
Yep. The body code is the biggest factor, followed by the engine code when determining value. Options are not significant factors since they can easily be changed later.

As an aside to non-experts who may be following this thread, I'd like to mention that the inner fender VIN stamp is the reference for any 65/66/67's potential value. For later years, it's the dash VIN tag and inner fender stamp. The door Warranty tag is irrelevant and may not match the VIN.

To restore a 65 C fastback from ground up to brand new condition, wouldn’t the costs be right around the $40k mark - IF doing it right?
Sure. You may spend more than that. Top quality would use original NOS parts instead of cheap re-pops, use only the best primer, paint, interior, use NOS sheet metal, and so forth. Just paint and body can cost $10K for a decent job. Rebuilding the original drive-train will be thousands.

But after you spend $40K or more restoring a car, that doesn't mean you can find someone to buy it for that much. It's hard to break even with any car restored to concours levels. That's what I meant by putting more time and money into a car than you can get back out. The more rare and desirable the model, the easier that "Break Even" goal becomes. If you can find a "K" code GT fastback for $10K and put $50K into the restoration, then you can probably sell it for more than you invested. But not with a "C" or "T" code fastie.
 

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I have an account with Hagerty.
You said "C" code so 289 200hp.
#1 Concours cond ~ $48,300
#2 $39,200
Current Values

  • #1 Concours $48,300
    Condition #1 vehicles are the best in the world. The visual image is of the best vehicle, in the right colors, driving onto the lawn at the finest concours. Perfectly clean, the vehicle has been groomed down to the tire treads. Painted and chromed surfaces are mirror-like. Dust and dirt are banned, and materials used are correct and superbly fitted. The one word description for #1 vehicles is "concours."
  • #2 Excellent $39,200
  • #3 Good $29,000
  • #4 Fair $15,000

Value Adjustments
-10% for auto
. +6% for a/c.
If link lets you view.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the replies fellas, much appreciated! Looks like per the Hagerty info a C-Code “could” be upwards of $45k+, only IF it’s done right for their Concours rating and per the VMF consensus if it’s a correct resto.

Then the next question would be, if plunking down that kind of money, how often would the car really be driven rather than being just a 1:1 scale “model” sitting in a garage collecting dust...

Does anyone have something like an appreciation scale as to what the % rate of annual appreciation a classic Mustang gains over the years (any model)?

Say for instance if a buyer puts out $45k-$50k for such a restored Mustang, will they see say 10% appreciation in value over the next 10 years? Not to “bank” anything, just overall appreciation due to the vehicle being a classic in itself.
 

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If you are looking to buy one I'd wait. Prices are sure to fall as the economy spirals down. If you are looking to sell, good luck to you.
 

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Then the next question would be, if plunking down that kind of money, how often would the car really be driven rather than being just a 1:1 scale “model” sitting in a garage collecting dust...
A car that meets the Hagerty "Excellent" or "Concours" rating is by definition a "Trailer Queen". After you put a few hundred miles on such a car, it has fallen into "Good" condition. You will get rock dings and other minute damage which knocks the car out the top ratings. Pristine vehicles are impractical and never see significant road time. They don't have incorrect screws or re-pop sheet metal. The flawless, original bumpers were re-chromed to perfection. They're nice to see at National Shows, and I appreciate the work and time that goes into them, but they're Museum cars. They're way over-restored compared to what came off the Ford assembly line. Insane amounts of money are invested to create those cars. Who wants to put $100K into a car that's worth $40K at auction? That's a millionaire's hobby.

Everyone thinks their car is "Excellent" because it was just restored and has fresh paint, but 99% of them fall somewhere between "Fair" and "Good" on the Hagerty scale. Personally, I have no desire to own (or build) an uber-pristine car. I'll take a solid "Fair" to "Good" car any day.

Does anyone have something like an appreciation scale as to what the % rate of annual appreciation a classic Mustang gains over the years (any model)?
The last 30 years of increasing classic muscle-car values may be a fluke. Given the pending global economic troubles, I expect a significant short-term drop in luxury-item markets, especially classic cars. I think it will be interesting to watch how the classic car market reacts while the world economy recovers from this "Delay Of Game" penalty.

In the long term, I suspect the younger generations won't hold our beloved mass-produced Mustangs in such high regard. As us old coots die off, there well may be a market "glut" in 10 or 20 years which causes the muscle car markets to collapse.

Then there's the affects of the looming solid-state battery technology. Electric cars that do 0-60 in 2.5 seconds, have 500 to 1000 mile driving ranges, and re-charge in a few hours will change American Car Culture drastically. We may well be pondering the "investment value" of buggy whips.
 

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In the long term, I suspect the younger generations won't hold our beloved mass-produced Mustangs in such high regard. As us old coots die off, there well may be a market "glut" in 10 or 20 years which causes the muscle car markets to collapse.
I was just reading this same theory recently when somebody asked a financial advisor if a classic car would be a good investment. He replied that only rare, limited production cars will appreciate. The younger generation will not be interested in mass produced muscle cars.
 

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If you had asked this question 4 weeks ago the answer would be different than today.

It also depends on the quality of the car. I see many, many cars that are restored nicely but when you look closely are really lip stick on a pig.

What was the condition of the car before the restoration? Was it a repaired rust bucket? Does it have all its original body panels? Are replacement panels original Ford or are they reproductions?

I can see a really nice C code going for close to $45,000 a month ago.

I can also see where a nice looking decently restored but not top level selling for $35,000. With both prices being fair for the quality of the car.

It is hard to guess where the economy is going with this pandemic. I can see the economy tanking big time and it is always the toys that go first. I can also see where it might bounce back if we can get through this in the next couple of months. What's your guess?

In either case I do not see cars like this one appreciating at 10% per year. I think they are topped out now with maybe rate of inflation increases in the future.
 

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It's hard to say, but based on the description, I think a +/- $45K asking price is reasonable. That may not be the selling price, but it's a start, and fastbacks are desirable.

As far as future value, who knows. Current world weirdness notwithstanding and using my car as an example (C-Code fastback in good, modified condition), it's probably realistic to sell for around $30k. That's been the case for probably 10 years, so who knows. Counting inflation maybe it's getting cheaper?
 

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I too, based on the specific description (as-new, done right, top craftsmanship both aesthetically and mechanically), believe $45K is do-able, and not necessarily to a clueless collector.

I also believe that there's no way you could acquire a project C-code fastback, and get it to that condition, even if you do much of the work yourself, without busting well-beyond that $45K selling price. That dynamic has always existed.

Lastly, there is absolutely no way to "predict" appreciation values, much less specific percentages, 10 years out. Any effort to do that would be a fool's errand. That said I think Mustangs and other 60's classics are still "pretty safe" for the next 10 years, as recessions come and go, to the extent that "no, you won't lose your a$$".. LOL.. But that's about as specific as you can get. Trying to get any more specific, would be unprofessional.
 
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