From the Renault Twizy to the Suzuki Jimny, here are some surprising cars that should make good investment buys

Classic cars can be a solid investment, with rare and loved classics fetching millions at auction. 

But you don't have to sell out vast sums to buy a used car that could appreciate in value. We've asked the analysts at Cap HPI to pick out some affordable cars that could become future classics.

The most affordable future classics 

Renault Twizy

One of the early electric vehicles, the oddball Twizy has been in production since 2012 and is still being made today. 

You’d think that would depress its classic potential, but its low production volume, way-out-there looks, 50mph top speed and relatively tame 62-mile range helped to make the Twizy something of an acquired taste.

They’re quite hard to find — there’s only one on PistonHeads — but prices start from £3500 upwards. 

Our Verdict

Volkswagen Polo

Volkswagen’s ever-sensible supermini gets even more grown-up as the Polo hits its fifth decade, but can it take top honours?

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Find out more: read our Renault Twizy review here

Renault Avantime

Another French fancy, the Avantime is the only three-door MPV produced to date. 

In its time, that fact and a few packaging issues put buyers off, even though the arthouse styling caught the eye. Seventeen years later, the car's scarcity adds to its appeal and the Avantime is still bold and dynamic in appearance.

Want one? Well, they’re scarce and there's none available on PistonHeads (an equally kooky Vel Satis is available, mind). But when they come up, expect to pay between £4000 and £10,000, depending on condition. 

Find out more: Fabulous failure - the Renault Avantime

Alfa Romeo Brera

Few will disagree that the Brera is one of the prettiest cars to come out of Turin. 

Relative rarity caused by the car’s somewhat lukewarm performance at launch offset the striking looks, so the punchier 3.2-litre V6 attracts the biggest premium. The diesel was the less desirable option, so well-looked-after examples can represent a bargain.

Prices vary, with leggy examples less than £5000 but clean sub-75,000-miles cars approaching £10,000. Take a look at the Breras currently for sale on PistonHeads here.

Find out more: Alfa Romeo Brera | Used Car Buying Guide

Peugeot RCZ

Peugeot’s answer to the Audi TT is no more and, with no replacement planned, demand is rising. 

Poor promotion led to its axing after just five years on sale, but not after it gained accolades for confirming the French brand’s renaissance. Handling, styling and pricing were all promising, but it couldn’t be saved.

That’s a win for used buyers — £6000 will buy an early model with less than 90,000 miles on the clock, while prices max out at £15,000 for low-mileage late models in the PistonHeads classifieds.

Find out more: Peugeot RCZ | Used Car Buying Guide

Mk5 Volkswagen Golf GTI, R32

Prices for the first and second generation Golf GTI have been rising for a number of years now, but the unloved, lukewarm third and fourth-generation Golf GTIs have been skipped. 

Values of the R32 version of the fourth-generation Golf have already started taking off, so all eyes turn to the hot Mk5 variants. That GTI was something of a renaissance for the hot hatch icon, while the VR6-engined R32 (the last of the VR6 Golfs) is an altogether rarer prospect. 

£4000 gets a high-mileage Mk5 GTI, while R32s start at around £2000 on top of this. The best buys are unmodified, though, so find a less used example for the best gains. 

Find out more: Volkswagen Golf GTI | Used Car Buying Guide

986 Porsche Boxster

Few cars pick up value like a classic Porsche, but the big earners tend to be expensive in the first place. 

The Boxster, however, is Porsche’s most affordable modern model and Cap HPI predicts that the first-generation Boxster, the 986, will have its moment shortly. Look for a clean, lower-mileage model and the sub-£10,000 you spend could grow.

Rock-bottom examples start from less than £4000, but it’s not until £5000 that the miles creep below 100k and not until around £7000 that you can get the more desirable 3.2-litre cars. Take a look at the selection available on PistonHeads.

Find out more: Used car buying guide: Porsche Boxster from £3000

Suzuki Jimny

A new Jimny will be launched later this year, so the current-generation Jimny, as tough off road as it is diminutive in stature, is experiencing something of a resurgence in popularity. 

Sure, its on-road manners leave a fair amount to be desired, but with cult appeal it's definitely one to watch. It’s been in production since 1998, so there's a Jimny for most budgets. 

£2000 buys a clean enough example with less than 80,000 miles. Take a look through the Jimnys available on PistonHeads classifieds here.

Read more: Next Suzuki Jimny to be revealed later this year before sales kick off in 2019

Toyota MR2

Reliable? Check. Fun to drive? Check. Scarce? Increasingly, yes. That’s a holy trinity when it comes to appreciating modern classics and the Toyota MR2 is no different.

Naturally, the first-generation is most scarce, but will bring the biggest rewards: prices are already on the rise. Those on a budget should seek out a third-generation car, although they will have a longer wait before considerable appreciation sets in. 

Although tempting, £2000 examples won’t have the same investment potential as more-cared-for £4000 cars. Browse all three generations here.

Join the debate


11 May 2018

Some of them are fair enough the avantime ever going to be classic?

Please tell me you opinion

11 May 2018
BradP wrote:

Some of them are fair enough the avantime ever going to be classic?

Please tell me you opinion


I really do think the Avantime will become a classic simply due to its absurdity and rarity.

I own a Brera S (the limited edition Prodrive fettled version) and expect/hope that it’ll become a classic.  Used values relative to he standard car tell a good story.

11 May 2018

Yes...fair play. Although, there is other absurd cars.

11 May 2018
BradP wrote:

Some of them are fair enough the avantime ever going to be classic?

Please tell me you opinion


Yes, the Avantime was cool, flawed but cool.

11 May 2018
The Alfa Brera only ever used the Fiat 2.4 jtd 5 cylinder diesel. In the UK at least. Not a vauxhall engine. The v6 petrol and (I think) the 2.2 petrol were GM engines, or at least derived from them, but the diesel was Fiat's own.

11 May 2018

Not quite right - the 2 litre JTDm was also available towards the end of poduction, but that unit is also a Fiat engine. Since 2003 Vauxhall/Opels have mostly used Fiat diesel engines, no Fiat has EVER used a Vauxhall/Opel diesel engine - GM got joint rights to the 1.3, 1.6, 1.9 and 2.0 litre 4 cylinder JTD engines after 2005 when Fiat and GM ended their agreement (GM didnt want the 2.4 5 cylinder). So almost all Vauxhall/Opels since 2003 have used Fiat diesel engines, the exception being the Daewoo derived models which used 2.0 litre VM units, the 1.7 Isuzu Circle L engined cars and the GM developed 1.6 "whisper diesel" in use since 2013. So even today GM Europe cars using GM Europe platforms with 2 litre diesel engines use Fiat units. How do I know all this ? From reading Autocar, so why dont they know it themselves !

11 May 2018
I always thought the brera never sold well for one reason- it was God awful looking with a huge badly proportioned arse. The spider on the other lost the arse and gained the looks .

11 May 2018

I wouldnt say it was God awful, more its almost really good looking but some weird proportions ruin it. I d have said it didnt sell very well cos it didnt drive that well, sitting on a Saab developed platform with horrid GM gearboxes and lacklustre GM petrol engines. That Fiat 5 cylinder diesel was a great engine though, made such a wonderful noise.

12 May 2018
The least certain to appreciate significantly is the Jimny. It's a cool car, no doubt, but I have a feeling the replacement is not only going to be a much better vehicle, but it will also look much cooler.

12 May 2018

I’d have thought the early SLK would have made the list. Lots have rusted away so good ones are becoming scarce. Here’s hoping they are in the up as I have one...


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