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Techno Classica Essen market tour: Where usury lurks

Kai Klauder
Techno Classica Essen market tour
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G The Techno Classica 2015 press kit is right in front of me . The focus is clear: the development of the classic car share price. The headings read like stock market reports: 'Oldtimer value increase: The HAGAI oldtimer index for rare and high-quality classics', 'Oldtimers recorded slight increase in value in 2014. German Oldtimer Index of the VDA' or 'The most expensive oldtimers of the year - Oldtimer auctions 2014'.

I see - and hear - N24 stock exchange minister Mick Knauff ponder the classic car scene in a smoky and distinctive way: 'Yes, yes, there is nothing you can do about that, classics are becoming more and more expensive, the price curve is pointing steeply upwards The end is not in sight. '

But I grab Frank Wilke from the market observer classic-analytics and take a tour of the market to make a price assessment myself at the world's largest classic fair. Is the classic scene really in the hands of speculators and price drivers, investors and people who see the vehicles as an investment?

SIHA, the organizer of Techno Classica Essen, speaks of 'over 2,500 vehicles' that are in this year at the classic car fair. On the first day, the 'Happy View Day' for press representatives, 'insiders' and retailers, many providers are still busy putting their classics in the right light and parking them down to the last centimeter. No wonder, you have to use every square meter in order to use the space as efficiently as possible.

We start in Hall 3 at the Motor Klassik stand. First surprise. The former outdoor area 3 was roofed over with a hall construction and now houses some privately owned vehicles as 'Hall 2A.Private automobile supplier'. However, we also find many vehicles from at least semi-professional dealers.

We show the vehicles in our photo show.

The many imports are striking here - and, as the tour later will confirm, the surprising little-represented Mercedes classics such as W123 and W124.

'Not for sale for the money'

A Ford Anglia Sports Tourer from 1947 catches our eye. 'The condition is great, the car is very rare here - but the car is not for sale for the money,' says Frank Wilke, who gives three reasons: 'First, it's a Ford, second, it has an engine that is hardly available , and thirdly it is this shape. Nobody wants it. And if it does, then it would be around 13,000 to14,000 euros realistic - but not the required 21,000 euros. '

Consumed instead of used

In Hall 2 offers a Swedish dealer is selling numerous German classics: including a VW Beetle barn find that looks nice and is nicely draped - including a matching sledge on the roof. 'It's finished. It's no longer used, it's used up, 'judges Wilke. The patina has given way to a junkyard aura, the 39,000 euros called up are far too much.' At just over 20,000 euros, it has to end there, and only for one enthusiast. 'The DKW 3=6 convertible also fails with the professional:' It's in great condition, the shape is great, the restoration is high quality, but the 79,500 euros are utopian. A maximum of 35,000 euros is realistic. '

Techno Classica as a test fair

These high price demands do not surprise Wilke at all 'Techno Classica is a test fair - and it always has been. If you want to try something, try it here. Sometimes really heavy prices are written on the boards, but the dealers are testing it out. Curiously enough, they usually stick to the price claims for the entire Techno Classica - and then pack the car again. Perhaps they will offer it a few weeks later via an online marketplace or the classified ads in the specialist magazines. 'Wilke remembers the prophecies of doom that existed around 5 to 6 years ago when a renowned dealer bought a BMW 507 800,000 euros. 'At the time, many shouted that it was way too expensive and completely excessive. But now a really good 507 is already 1.6 million - and the doomers are silent. '

Saturation effect on the gullwing

There are some trends to be noted at the moment, such as the fact that the scene is looking for classics that are fun to drive. For example, the mid-engine Renault 5 Turbo, which has seen a sharp price surge in recent years. 'People are now looking More and more active cars with great technology - and an R5 Turbo benefits from that. Renault turned a shopping can into a mid-engine racing car. And this crazy idea is getting more and more fans. It's pure driving pleasure, badly processed, but it doesn't matter because such a car is only taken out of the garage on Sundays. '

On the other hand, there are already the first signs that some of the scene's former draft horses lose their radiance: 'The 300 SL is such a case. It's gotten a little cheaper lately. I think that there is a slight saturation effect. The subject of the 300 SL is also good, 'says Wilke.

Wait and wait for the first twitch

The Audi Sport Quattro is also aSpecial case. Since January 2015 such a short Quattro more than Raised 402,000 dollars (347,000 euros) it has become very quiet on the market. 'There are currently no cars. Anyone who owns a Sport Quattro is now waiting to see what will happen in the next few months. Some are now getting hot for the Sport Quattros, some are hoping for prices to explode. And with that, a momentum develops. '

' Original restored '- original or restored?

We come to the booth of a Horch restorer. 'Oh yes, the cars are pretty nice, but you can only sell them in Germany.' For example the Horch 350 Phaeton from 1927. It should cost 275,000 euros. But that's far too much, says Wilke: 'Around 200,000 euros would be realistic.' The Horch 420 Sport Cabriolet parked next to it is boldly priced at 380,000 euros. 'The market for these cars is very small. With this car, there is also the fact that it is called 'originally restored' - what does that mean - original or restored?

Antiseptic Alfas and the head cinema

The next eye-catchers are two open Alfa Romeo 6Cs with Ghia bodies. One, a 1947 2500, won a class at the Villa d'Este. 'That should be around 700,000 euros,' says Wilke, unfortunately there is no information on the price - you only get it if you are seriously interested. The other convertible is a likewise fully restored 2500 from 1947, which should cost 395,000 euros. 'It works so a little bit antiseptic to me. An Alfa is driven and also lives, so it may be a bit scratched. Because this is the only way to start the mental cinema and you think which godfather probably shot through Tuscany with this big Alfa. However, if the car has been completely restored and you have to take a seat on newly upholstered seats, the car loses its flair. '

After the first tour of Techno Classica 2015, the price level for the To report to professional dealers. Tomorrow we look around the private market - and look for the bargains.

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