In a nutshell, that was the question that High Speed Stuff listener, Will from Corpus Christi, Texas, asked me in an e-mail just a day or two ago. I thought it was a good question. Will also mentioned that he couldn't really envision many current production cars withstanding the test of time to even make it to that point. Here's how I answered:
I had to agree that most cars mass produced today probably wouldn't really qualify as true "classics" in 2059 (other than fitting the age requirement, of course). Very few modern cars have distinctive styling or other unique features that make them collectible. However, some vehicles will likely always be coveted by collectors, like the current Corvette ZR1 or the Ford GT for instance. Those types of cars have relatively low production numbers, lots of style and loads of horsepower and torque, making them instantly desirable -- which will likely translate to highly collectible 50 years from now. I also guessed that not nearly as many "plain Jane" sedans, hatchbacks and minivans will be retained for their value. But then again (at the time), who would have ever thought that anyone would eventually choose to collect the AMC Gremlin, the Ford Edsel or the original Mini Cooper cars?
So now I'm asking you the same question that Will asked me: What are the future classic cars? Which cars will we look at in 2059 and decide that they're still worth hanging onto?