Hagerty, an insurance company specializing in classic cars and boats, releases an annual “Hot List” naming those new vehicles that the company’s experts believe will be car enthusiast collector’s items in future decades.
“This year’s Hot List is comprised of vehicles from a wide variety of market segments and manufacturers, but they all share one thing in common–a certain ‘cool’ factor that will be remembered by car enthusiasts for many years to come,” said McKeel Hagerty, president and CEO of Hagerty. “Well-preserved examples will be sought-after well beyond their contemporary peers have been used up and recycled.”
Listed below, in alphabetical order, are models from the 2013 Hagerty Hot List that are available for less than $75,000, accompanied by base prices and details from the latest J.D. Power studies surveying vehicle dependability, quality, and overall appeal.
2013 Audi RS5
The Audi RS5 Coupe ($68,900) is a high-performance version of the Audi S5 Coupe, itself a sport-tuned variant of the Audi A5 Coupe, which is the top-ranked Compact Premium Car in the J.D. Power 2013 Automotive Performance, Execution and Layout (APEAL) Study.SM
Equipped with a 450-horsepower, 4.2-liter V-8 engine, the RS5–available in coupe and convertible body styles–is equipped with a 7-speed automated manual gearbox with a launch-control feature, self-locking crown-gear center differential, torque-vectoring rear sport differential, and a sport exhaust system. Audi says the RS5 accelerates to 60 mph in 4.5 seconds and can achieve a top speed of 174 mph.
2013 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 Convertible
Take one supercharged 6.2-liter V-8 engine formerly employed in the Corvette ZR1. Take one Camaro Convertible. Put them together, and mix with a Performance Traction Management system with launch control, a performance-tuned Magnetic Ride Control suspension, dual-mode exhaust system, ventilated Brembo braking components, and staggered-width 20-inch wheels wrapped in performance tires.
The result is the 580-horsepower Camaro ZL1 Convertible ($59,545), which accelerates to 60 mph in about 4 seconds, according to Chevrolet.
In J.D. Power’s 2013 key automotive studies, the Camaro led its segment in terms of quality and dependability, and is among the top-ranked models for overall vehicle appeal.
2013 Chevrolet Corvette 427 Convertible
Thanks to a $2,000 rebate on remaining 2013 Corvettes, the 427 Convertible’s price ($75,925) drops below $75,000. Offered only for the 2013 model year, the Corvette 427 Convertible is equipped with the same 505-horsepower, 7.0-liter V-8 engine as the Corvette Z06, and is constructed, in part, using carbon fiber materials. The result is a factory-built, one-off sports car that Chevy says is the fastest Corvette Convertible ever made.
The Corvette is not among the highest-ranked models in its segment for quality, dependability, or appeal. A redesigned version debuts for 2014, and is called theCorvette Stingray.
2013 Ford Focus ST
A performance-tuned version of the Ford Focus 5-door hatchback, the new Focus ST ($24,115) is equipped with a turbocharged 4-cylinder engine generating 252 horsepower and 270 lb.-ft. of torque. A 6-speed manual gearbox is the only transmission choice, and the Focus ST is also equipped with a sport suspension, bigger wheels, summer performance tires, red-painted brake calipers, and unique styling differences.
The Ford Focus was redesigned for the 2012 model year. The new version has not been ranked among the best models in its segment in the J.D. Power studies of quality or vehicle appeal. The previous-generation Focus performed well in terms of vehicle dependability, but that does not infer reliability of the newer models.
2013 Mini John Cooper Works GP
A lightweight, 2-seat version of the standard Mini John Cooper Works Hardtop, the limited-production GP model ($39,250) is, according to its maker, the fastest Miniever, able to accelerate to 60 mph in about 6 seconds. Unique wheels wearing performance tires are bolted to a lowered sport suspension, and the John Cooper Works GP is identified by its special paint and red accents.
In J.D. Power studies, the Mini Cooper claims a top spot among Compact Sporty Cars in the latest Vehicle Dependability Study (VDS).
2014 Porsche Cayman S
Redesigned for 2014, the Porsche Cayman is, essentially, a closed coupe version of the Porsche Boxster. The Cayman S is the hotter of two available models, equipped with a larger 325-horsepower 6-cylinder engine, dual exhaust outlets, bigger brakes with red-painted calipers, and upsized 19-inch staggered-width aluminum wheels.
While the new Cayman hasn’t been ranked highly in the 2013 J.D. Power surveys, the Boxster with which it shares a platform and powertrains sits atop the Compact Premium Sporty Car class for both initial quality and overall vehicle appeal.
2013 Tesla Model S
An electric luxury sport sedan that can seat up to 7 people, the Tesla Model S costs $62,400 after applying a federal tax rebate of $7,500. The standard Model S is offered with a choice between a 60 kWh and an 85 kWh battery, while the Model S Performance comes standard with the 85 kWh battery. Tesla says that the bigger battery offers 300 miles of range at an average speed of 55 mph. Deplete it, and it can take 60 hours to recharge the car using a standard household wall outlet. Get a 240-volt charger, and a full battery is yours in less than 10 hours. A high-powered 240V/80-amp quick charger tops a Tesla off in less than 5 hours.
Due to the small number of sales, no J.D. Power automotive study results are available for the Tesla Model S.
2013 Subaru BRZ
Subaru and Toyota teamed up to build the BRZ ($25,495) and Scion FR-S sports cars. These small, lightweight, rear-drive, 2+2 performance vehicles are equipped with a 200-horsepower, Subaru-engineered 4-cylinder engine, and the BRZ is the less common of the two.
Based on the latest J.D. Power APEAL Study, the BRZ is performing worse than its segment average in terms of satisfying owners, indicating that the Subaru is not delivering on buyer expectations. The 2013 APEAL Study data also shows that the car’s twin, the Scion FR-S, is creating the same kind of disconnect.
2013 Volkswagen GTI
Long considered the original pocket rocket, a nickname given to performance-tuned small cars, the turbocharged, 200-horsepower Volkswagen GTI ($24,200) is enjoying a final year in current format in advance of a complete redesign. WhileVW has announced that it plans to build a short run of 2014 GTI models in 5-door hatchback format, it is the 2013 model that Hagerty cites as a potential future collectible. Two limited-production variants are offered for 2013: the Wolfsburg Edition and the Driver’s Edition.
In J.D. Power studies, the 2013 GTI is ranked as the top Compact Sporty Car model in terms of overall vehicle appeal, and is among the highest-rated models in its segment in terms of initial quality.
By: Jeff Youngs, 7/25/2013