Ford Escort CabrioletWe might be well on the way to Christmas and the new year, but there’s still time to invest in a modern classic car. The CCA December Classic Car Sale is one of the last auctions of 2018, so save your Black Friday cash and delay the Christmas shopping for another day. Head to the Warwickshire Event Centre on 1 December if you fancy treating yourself to an early Christmas present.

Ford Escort Cabriolet – £14,000 – £18,000

Ford Escort Cabriolet

If you’re attending an 80s-themed fancy dress party this Christmas, might we suggest turning up as Detective Sergeant Lady Harriet Makepeace? All you need is a willing partner to play Lieutenant James Dempsey, a blonde wig and this immaculate Ford Escort Cabriolet. It has covered just 2,279 miles and is finished in 80s-tastic Diamond White paint.

Ford Escort RS Turbo S2 – £12,000 – £15,000

Ford Escort RS Turbo S2

Alternatively, if the reference to Dempsey and Makepeace leaves you cold (or scratching your head), why not try an Escort with a little more roof? This 1990 RS Turbo S2 has been treated to a few upgrades, including a watercooled Garrett T3 turbo, revised engine management, improved gearbox and a larger clutch. Cosmetically, it stays true to its original showroom specification.

Opel Manta – £6,000 – £8,000

Opel Manta

Remember Opal Fruits, the chewy sweets made to make your mouth water? Maybe you’ll be salivating over the prospect of owning this Opel Manta GTE Exclusive. Leaving the tenuous link to retro confectionery aside, we’re not sure the modifications will be greeted with universal praise. We’ll avoid showing the rear end, because, as one member of the Opel Manta Owners’ Club forum pointed out, it’s “horrendous”.

Aston Martin DB7 Vantage – £14,000 – £18,000

Aston Martin DB7 Vantage

An Aston Martin for the price of a new Ford Fiesta – that’ll be the DB7 Vantage. A quick look on Auto Trader reveals prices ranging from £20,000 to £75,000, making this the cheapest modern Aston you can buy. Heck, even the Cygnet is worth more than some of the lowest-priced DB7s. This 2002 DB7 Vantage was registered as a Category D insurance loss in 2004, hence the low price.

Renault Sport Clio V6 – £12,000 – £15,000

Renault Sport Clio V6

For a similar price, you could help yourself to one of the most bonkers cars of the new millennium. The Renault Sport Clio V6 is powered by a mid-mounted 3.0-litre engine mated to a six-speed manual gearbox, making it a match for many, more illustrious sports cars. Sure, the phase one cars were a bit of a handful, especially in the wet, but few cars are as crazy as the Clio V6, especially for this budget. It’s “just looking for a new playmate”, says CCA.

Tickford Ford Capri – £18,000 – £22,000

Tickford Ford Capri

Gordon Gekko doesn’t strike us as the kind of chap who would drive a Ford Capri, but the Tickford feels very much part of the ‘greed is good’ culture so synonymous with the 80s. It’s like a Capri 2.8i with big hair and shoulder pads, with Aston Martin’s engineering division adding glass fibre body panels, walnut and leather to a host of mechanical upgrades.

Audi Quattro – £13,000 – £16,000

Audi Quattro

A car that needs no introduction and one that, we suspect, will sail through the slightly pessimistic pre-auction estimate. Audi built the first right-hand-drive Quattros in 1982, with this car rolling out of the showroom just two years later. It was fully resprayed less than two years ago and has 141,500 miles on the clock. Damen und Herren, your winter wheels are ready for collection.

Mercedes-Benz 500 SEC Lorinser – £7,000 – £9,000

Mercedes-Benz 500 SEC Lorinser

Erwin Lorinser founded an independent garage in 1930 and was soon accepted as an authorised reseller and servicing company for Daimler-Benz. The company has developed a strong reputation for aftermarket tuning and accessories and can list the likes of Roger Federer, Niki Lauda, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sharon Stone and Alain Prost as celebrity customers. Buy this 1988 500 SEC and you can add your name to that list.

BMW 325i convertible – £9,000 – £11,000

BMW 325i convertible

To create the E30 convertible, BMW reinforced the body shell along the sills and strengthened the floorpan and areas around the suspension mountings, windscreen and behind the rear seats. The result was a car some seven per cent heavier than the saloon, although the 325i’s six-cylinder engine was relatively untroubled by the extra weight. Back in 1986, this was one of the most desirable cars in the UK, with exclusivity guaranteed thanks to a low number of imports.

Porsche 911 SC Targa – £30,000 – £35,000

Porsche 911 SC Targa

“A lovely SC Targa, the subject of a £30k restoration,” proclaims the auction catalogue. And yet, this 1982 Porsche is likely to sell for a similar amount. If the images and auction report are anything to go by, it could be worth every penny.

Ford Capri 2.8i Special – £10,000 – £12,000

Ford Capri 2.8i Special

Capri purists will spot that this 2.8i Special is riding on the 15-inch wheels from the 280 ‘Brooklands’, but it’s also fitted with upgraded exhaust system. As a 1986 car, it’s one of the last Capris to be registered in the UK and it retains its original handbooks and service book from when it was supplied new by Trimoco in Chelmsford.

Renault 5 GT Turbo – £15,000 – £18,000

Renault 5 GT Turbo

Although the Capri enjoyed a remarkable innings, it was eventually bowled out by the rise of the hot hatch, which also saw off a number of sports cars in the early 80s. The Renault 5 GT Turbo was part of the new wave of performance heroes, although this one was sold new in Japan. The left-hooker was recently imported to the UK and has just 27,000 miles on the clock. This might explain the eyebrow-raising estimate.

BMW E30 M3 – £35,000 – £40,000

BMW E30 M3

“It might 28 years old, but the E30 M3 defines drivability.” The CCA auction catalogue has gone a bit Partridge with this line, but it goes one step further when it suggests that the E30 M3 is “a tiny title for a legendary motor car.” It’s the perfect car for taking to the ring road in search of tungsten tip screws.

Porsche 964 Carrera 4 Cabriolet – £28,000 – £32,000

Porsche 964 Carrera 4 Cabriolet

This 1990 Porsche 964 Carrera 4 Cabriolet isn’t perfect, but at least that means you won’t be afraid of using it over the winter months. CCA points out that there are “a couple of minor electrical issues”, referencing the seats and mirrors in the auction catalogue. On the plus side, the mohair electric roof is in working order and there are four new tyres.

BMW 840Ci Sport – £8,000 – £10,000

If you’re not prepared to wait for the new BMW 8 Series – or you can’t stomach the thought of spending upwards of £76,270 on a new car – this 1999 840Ci Sport is a perfectly adequate alternative. The 840Ci Sport is arguably the 8 Series range sweet-spot, with a 4.4-litre V8 engine, stiffer suspension and wider tyres combining to create a proper drivers’ car. All this presence and elegance for just £10,000.

Chevrolet Corvette C5 – no reserve

This Corvette is of the same vintage as the 840Ci, but the two performance cars are as different as chalk and processed cheese. This Corvette C5 automatic has been with the current owner for the last two years, having arrived from Japan in 2016. It is being offered with no reserve, so it might go for a song. Tempted?

Jaguar XJ8 4.0 – no reserve

The 3.2-litre unit was the entry-level engine of the Jaguar XJ8 (X308) range, but don’t let that you off because this is a proper, old-school Jag. It’s also a Sport model, which means stiffer suspension, sports seats and larger alloy wheels. It has covered just 60,000 miles and is being offered with no reserve.

Jaguar XK8 – £5,000 – £7,000

The classic car market is a curious beast. People will spend a six-figure sum on a fast Ford, or the equivalent of a deposit on a first home on a hot hatch, and yet a Jaguar V8 coupe could be yours for as little as £5,000. Horses for courses, etc, but this XK8 would be welcome at any dinner party or ambassador’s reception.

Mercedes-Benz SL 500 – £7,000 – £9,000

We’re not sure this qualifies for the ‘modern classic’ tag, but it just goes to prove what you can afford if you’re prepared to wait for the ravages of depreciation to take effect. Back in 2004, this SL 500 would have cost £75,000, but today, it could be yours for around 10 per cent of that price.

Mercedes-Benz SLK 55 AMG – £12,000 – £15,000

This SLK 55 AMG would have cost a little less in 2005, but a price tag of around £50,000 was still a significant chunk of money for an AMG-enriched SLK. At 1,610kg, it’s quite a heavy sports car, but doesn’t stop it from hitting 62mph in just 4.6 seconds, before going on to reach a top speed limited to 155mph.

Land Rover Discovery G4 Challenge – £16,000 – £20,000

There were many Camel Trophy and G4 Challenge special editions built before the event was cancelled in 2008. Which means that this Discovery represents the end of an era – a change to buy one of only 68 vehicles built for the aborted G4 Challenge. It’s based on the lavish HSE trim, but the G4 Challenge also features a snorkel, roof rack, winch, spotlights and the orange paint. Sure, it has done 115,000 miles, but this looks way cooler than the current Disco and it would eat a crossover for breakfast. Not bad for £20k.

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