THE MAR­KET for older ve­hi­cles runs on a diet of ev­ery­thing ex­cept logic. That prob­a­bly ex­plains why a car with the space, looks and scarcity of an HDT Magnum has through­out its life strug­gled to match the money eas­ily gen­er­ated by Com­modore-based cars. With­out op­tions – of which there were many – the WB States­man Magnum in 1984 cost $26,500. Those based on a Caprice and loaded with ex­tras could ex­ceed $35,000.

In 2005, just as HDT val­ues were start­ing to spike, VK Group As were worth around $30,000 and Mag­nums $15,000. Four years later when the mar­ket had soared and slumped in the space of three years, Group As were still cling­ing on at $75,000 but a re­ally good Magnum had moved min­i­mally and was yet to crack $30,000.

Fuel costs can­not be an is­sue. Yes they are a big car and they use fuel but 18L/100km is prob­a­bly re­al­is­tic and most who buy a Magnum aren’t go­ing to use it more than a few times a month. With only 100 or so made and the num­ber of sur­vivors un­known, the clam­or­ing should get intense when­ever a top­class car ap­pears for sale. Seem­ingly it doesn’t. A few fit­ting the description have been of­fered and we have yet to see a con­firmed sale at more than $40,000. Bar­gain buy­ing surely?

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