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  • Writer's pictureMatt Rutledge

Hagerty's Top 10 Japanese Collector Cars Under $25,000

Its so fun to see what is in the hearts and minds of auto collectors and enthusiasts. Recently, Haggerty (car media juggernaut) published a top 10 list of collectible Japanese cars under $25K.

As a kid from the 80's and 90's this list is full of fun stuff from our youth, and as you'd expect there are naturally, Nissan Z cars, the simple but fun CRX Si and Marty McFly's Toyota 4X4 of course. But one little creature caught my eye, the diminutive, go anywhere Suzuki Samurai.

Growing up in SoCal, the Samurai was a huge smash hit, cheap, cute and fun transportation. Not to mention you could take them anywhere, they were like little moutain goats. In fact, they were super difficult to purchase and I'm sure were full of dealer markups and add ons back in the day. You had a choice of Hardtop for grandpa and the convertible top for everyone else. 5 speeds, real 4 wheel drive and a spare mounted on the tailgate meant this ute really provided some great value.

As it happens, the same week this article was published, we, in partnership with Dryce (, were commissioned to Dry Ice Clean a nice low mileage 1988 Samurai. Our client is reliving their youth and as an avid collector, wants his Samurai to be one of the best around. The cool thing about these little trucks is they are coated in cosmoline from the factory, just like a BMW or Porsche. That means if the cosoline is still there, the finishes underneath are like brand new.

This particular truck wasn't perfect, but probably shows just the right amount of patina after we've gotten it cleaned up. Check out the before and after.

Just remember, all cars are collector cars, so one man's Samurai might be another man's Speedster! All we know is hopping in and turning the key opens up wave of emotions and usually another great day behind the wheel, regardless of what car or truck you are driving!

We look forward to your next project, small, big, cheap or expensive we want to be part of your car's story.

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