Three Classic Cars that Won’t Suck Your Wallet Dry

A mint-condition beauty like this one will set you back a pretty penny. But as a fixer-upper, the Ford Torino is among the most affordable classic cars.

Got a little Christmas jingle left in your pockets? If you’re an auto enthusiast resolving to make your first classic car purchase in 2013, E3 Spark Plugs has a few suggestions that won’t break the bank. Here are our top three picks among the most affordable classic cars.

Triumph Spitfire

Named for the British World War II fighter plane, the Triumph Spitfire is as iconic as it gets for small, two-seater, convertible British sports cars. The most desirable is the Mark I, the car’s first generation produced from 1962-1964. But far more accessible is the Mark IV, made from 1970 to 1974. You should be able to pick one up for between $2,500 and $4000, though in better condition, they may run upwards of $6,000

Volvo PV544

Designed after the 1942 U.S. Army Staff Car, the Volvo PV544 debuted in 1958 and remained in production until 1966. They were a dime a dozen a decade ago, but are becoming fewer in number and higher in value. You’ll find them with one of two engines – the B16 or the B18. B16 engines are cheaper, but good luck finding replacement parts. You’re better off going with a B18 model, as replacement parts can still be ordered at the counter of your local Volvo dealer. Expect to pay between $5,000 and $8,000.

Ford Torino GT

If you’re considering a Ford Tornio GT, go for the 1968 Fastback model. The sloping roofline that glides right into the edge of the trunk lid made for some serious aerodynamics that proved advantageous on the race track and with the ladies. The recommended 302 V8 and 390 V8 engines won’t do you any favors at the gas pump, but the sleek looks will make up for it. Yours will run you $2,500 to $7,000.

Which classic car are you eying? Post your thoughts on the E3 Spark Plugs Facebook fan page.