Friday, August 14, 2009

Recreations, Replicas and Originals - what can you live with?

Doing my usual scan through a number of car ad sites I found this Bugatti T37 on ClassicCarsforSale, one of my favorite sites. The Bugatti is listed with an estimate of 100'000 to 150'000 USD (RM Auction, August 15, 2009) and it's clearly marked as a (well done) recreation. It looks awesome in my eyes and I am pretty sure it's as fun to drive as a T37 original car, insured for 1-2 million USD. I have even been told that quite a number of Bugatti owners actually bought a recreation to drive, while safeguarding the original in the garage at home. So, it can't be that bad to drive the copy.
So the question really is, do you buy cars to drive them or two collect them (as an investment)? And, is the original that much better as an investment as the copy? And another question is, whether the originals aren't really recreations too. I learned for example that there's almost no Porsche Carrera 6 (906) in existence, that really still has its original chassis and engine. So, most of these cars are actually recreations too. They are traded as originals because they kept their initial chassis number, but that's it. Similar as with the Bugatti a true recreation Carrera 6 can be bought for a fraction of the price of the original and no part might actually really be different.
So, here's my take. Recreations are okay, and I wouldn't mind to own this Bugatti, just be honest and declare it as what it is. Same with the Carrera 6. If only the chassis number is left from the original car, declare it as rebuild based on original chassis number. What I don't like at all are modern copies of old cars, where new materials and manufacturing methods are used the make the car more competitive than the original. If a new Lola T70 is much faster than the original in a historic car race, then something is wrong.

1 comment:

John L said...

We've had those discussions regarding Bolwells and Falcon GTs here in Australia as you know. It's the same around the world I guess.