Techno Classica 2018. Shiny, old sheet metal that presents itself from its most beautiful side. The wave of digitization is breaking out outside, but everything seems to be fine in the halls. An impression that is deceptive. The years of unchecked growth are over for now. It is unclear whether it will just be a setback or a turnaround.
The Porsche 911, the mainstream car of speculation, continues to dominate the fair. The brand practices itself in a kind of overpresence. A large stand of the Porsche AG, a discreet from the Porsche Center Gelderland, countless dealers with a focus on Swabian sports cars. The official Porsche Club probably has the largest number of clubs, probably paid by Porsche AG. And for an ordinary 911er is now an average of 70.000,00 € on the price tag, instead of 50.000,00 as before 2 years ago.
But something is different. Hardly anyone seems to be interested, the stalls of the dealers remain empty and there are no “sold” stickers on the windshields. Is a bubble bursting or is it just a market adjustment?
The mainstream crisis has its advantages. For the visitors who are unnerved after 3 halls in which every 2nd car feels like a Porsche. And for retailers who can rediscover other, neglected brands. So you could see more French vehicles this year. A neat R16, an R5 Turbo, a DS in the high-price segment, luxury from Facel Vega.
A beautiful, original Saab 92B
Saab is finally an issue. Both in the high-price halls, as well as on the outdoor area. A very nice, very original Saab 92B was for sale in hall 9. A classic with a visibly lived life that has not been restored to death. The paint dull and probably original, the interior undamaged and recognizable 65 years filled with life. One can only wish that the potential buyer carefully preserves and preserves the Saab. Perfectly over-restored classics are already enough.
The price of 25,000.00 € shows where the trend for classics from Trollhättan is going. The Saab 900 Monte Carlo Cabriolet from the same provider was on offer for € 35,000.00. A few halls further a 95 V4 for 16,900.00 € and, right next to it, a 900 convertible. A strange vehicle, with a pubescent painted radiator grille and missing extensions on the fenders. More rolling restoration than a serious offer.
Saab 9000i with 66.000 kilometers
Two interesting cars were on display in the open air. Really tasty: a Saab 9000i from the year 1988 with 66.000 kilometers. An extremely authentic car that was 27 years at its Swedish owner. He must have loved and cared for his Saab, as the stickers on the car prove. The condition is reminiscent of the first and second look at a year-old car, hardly capable of a H-class classic. The ingenious bokhara red (!) Interior is pure 80er years, and the Saab would be the safe ticket for any vintage car ride.
The two cheerful, nice Swedish salesmen can prove kilometers and history. After almost 30 years of first-time ownership, the Saab 2015 came to a collector, from whose estate the 9000i is now being sold. The price: 9.000,00 €. Sure, what else .. Reasonable? I guess so. He may be the only 9000i with manual gearshift with this condition, mileage and history. The best Swedish car of the 80 years is not expensive. But priced in appropriately. Fancy a good 9000 CC? The address of the seller is available to us.
Saab 9-3 with 29.600 kilometers
One row further, the next Swede. A Saab 9-3 from 1999. The first 9-3 generation has now officially arrived in the youngtimer age. An exceptional car with 29.600 kilometers on the clock. Believable? A look into the interior and the paint removes any doubt. This is only what almost untouched seats look like, so there are only cars that have seen little sun.
The price 9.800,00 €. Again, you can save the discussion about the price. The 9-3 may be the only one in this condition and with this mileage. A case for collectors. But mood does not come up. I would have liked to buy the 9000i for the two Swedes. Because the car fits, because good mood and a story behind it. After a few beers, the price and the feeling would have been in harmony and everything would be perfect.
Not so with the 9-3. The impression shows that a used car professional wants to make a checkout here. The thick applied paint reminiscent of sinister gravel, the flaked emblems on the back and front spoil the car character of an otherwise very clean car.
Is the classic scene coming back to its roots? Will she become more diverse and interesting again? This year's Techno Classica gives reason for a small hope. The Saab density has doubled, at a very low level. Maybe a start.
Large classic fairs are also trend barometers. Another traditional brand is a trendsetter and demonstrates where the journey could go. More about this week in the column "Tom`s rearview mirror".