MARKET WATCH: Ace leads a two-pronged AC market attack

Price update, 09.03.2022

Classic Cars magazine

by Phil Bell |

More than 20% of this month’s Price Guide Movers On The Up are in £100k+ territory, and those climbers include the AC Ace.

Typical price for a barn find needing open-wallet surgery is now £90k, with driveable cars £140k, mint condition examples £210k and utterly perfect cars £275k. Those are averages taken across the three inline six-cylinder engine types fitted between 1954 and 1973 – AC overhead cam, Bristol overhead valve and Ford overhead valve.

At various times, the relative desirability of those engines has shifted, and along with it, prices too. Right now, the Bristol- and Ford-engined cars have closed right up, and both are around 20% more than the AC-powered originals. In this case, the extra power of the Bristol and Ruddspeed-tuned Ford engines outweigh the desirability of the start of the bloodline that of course would evolve into the wild-riding Cobra and sophisticated 428 grand tourer.

While the Ace has climbed 5.8%, the 428 coupé is enjoying similar attention with a 5.6% rise, bringing a price staircase of £60k, £90k, £125k and £160k, depending on your budget and appetite for taking on restoration work. With just 29 built, and 51 convertibles, the 428 already trumped the Ace and Cobra for rarity, and that was before they suffered being rebodied as Cobra replicas when they were cheap enough to chop up.

Price Guide Movers On The Up is part of our regular 16 pages of market and buying coverage in Classic Cars, which also includes smart buying guru Quentin Willson’s Hot Tips, market-watcher Russ Smith’s Chasing Cars, a detailed four-page buying guide and Ads on Test evaluations of four classics for sale.

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