They say hindsight is 20/20. After all, it is impossible to predict the future, but when it comes to cars, there are several reasonably accurate ways to determine whether a new car will likely become a future classic – a term that in itself is a very wide concept. In this article we take a look at cars that arrived in South Africa during 2021, as well as those introduced in overseas markets.
Words: Wilhelm Lutjeharms
Ferrari, Lamborghini and Porsche all introduced some pretty significant cars during the past year. It is easy to rave about nearly all their high-performance cars, but there are a few that stand out...
Porsche’s Cayman GT4 RS is significant in a number of ways. We've had to wait 16 years for Porsche to finally give us an RS version of its mid-engined little wonder, the Cayman. But it looks like the GT4 RS has been worth the wait, and could potentially also never be superseded if Porsche is going electric for the next-generation Cayman. If the latter happens, then the GT4 RS will become a collectible sports car immediately.
Ferrari launched a number of special cars this past year, but it will be the SP3 Daytona that most of us will remember best. Sharing elements with the LaFerrari Aperta, but with a sonorous, naturally-aspirated 6.5-litre V12 engine offering 620kW, it means there is a 9 500 rpm redline to enjoy. With only 599 produced, it will remain a special car into the future… and it shows that Ferrari is not all set on all its cars boasting hybrid drivetrains… for now.
And if that is not enough, the 812 Competizione (and its convertible sibling) follow in the tracks of the F12 Tdf and 599 GTO. Those will undoubtedly also become quite sought after in the coming years.
Lamborhini’s Hurácan STO will be swan song of this range of V10 Lamborghinis. And apart from the sticker kit, the company has gone to town in its efforts to make this a driver-focused machine… but without upping the power. This engine, whether used in the Audi R8 V10 or in the entry-level Lamborghini, has always been a treat to experience. This hardcore version is likely to be remembered (and cherished) for generations to come.
On the complete opposite end of the spectrum, Toyota has taken the market by storm with its GR Yaris. It is a special car for a number of reasons and although they are readily available, there is a good chance the enthusiasm for this car will remain into the future. After all, when was the last time Toyota built such a unique and exciting car!
Non-collectable cars launched in 2021
These Z cars have been such fun machines during the course of the past decade and a half. The 350Z and 370Z were always solid performance cars with a strong following, and in later years also popular choices for drifting. However, these Nissans were never seen as class leaders and never stood out from their peers in any particular aspect. The design of this new model has grabbed some attention, but again it seems the "Z" will continue to be one of the more "common" sports cars, even when fitted with a 3.0-litre, twin-turbo V6. And, of course, Nissan is likely to make too many for it be truly exclusive.
Lamborghini Countach LPI 800-4
This modern-day Countach is basically a combination of a Lamborghini Sian and Aventador, but with a newly designed body, inspired by the iconic wedge-shaped supercar from the '70s and '80s. However, it has been a while since I’ve seen such a mixed level of reaction to the launch of a new V12-engined hypercar. Could it be that Lamborghini has already launched too many variants of what is basically its Aventador chassis? We’ll forgive them as the STO seems to be something quite spectacular. Having said that, the performance of the "new" Countach is outright impressive.
BMW (G80) M3/M4
It is fair to say that all previous generations of the M3/M4 have achieved a level of collectability. The E30 M3 sits at the top of the pyramid, of course, followed by the lovely E46 (particularly in CSL trim) and then, probably, in third place is the rapidly appreciating E36.
However, the newest member to the family might be faster and more capable than ever before, but it is also more polished and heavier, leaving hardcore enthusiasts wanting a little bit more. This might change in the future though with the likely addition of more focused, more limited-edition variants, but currently these new models just don't seem to have the cachet of their predecessors.