Who Needs a Boat When You Can Buy a Vintage Sno-Cat?
There's a new sheriff in wildly impractical purchase town
Looking for a hot investment tip? Maybe lay off the bitcoin and spring for a Sno-Cat.
As reported by Bloomberg Pursuits, the gargantuan orange snow pontoons from Tucker Sno-Cat are being snatched up by a new demographic outside of the normal military, oil drilling and utilities buyers.
The new adoptees? “Private landowners who want to get to their mountain retreats in style.”
Skis? Child’s play! Snowmobiles? Too exposed. Trucks with snow treads? Too heavy.
That, in particular, is the beauty of these beasts. Although the company’s most popular personal vehicle, the $125K 2000Xtra Lite, weighs in at 8,000 lbs., the four treads spread out the weight allowing the vehicle to glide across deep snow rather than sink into like even much smaller snowmobiles tend to do.
And unlike similar manufacturers, Tucker has historical appeal. From November 1957 to March 1958, British explorer Vivian Fuchs led the first overland crossing of Antarctica (a 2,158 mile journey) with the help of four custom Sno-Cats.
While you won’t be able to get your hands on those particular models, the vintage market is the more enticing investment at the moment.
“[Avid collector Jesse Cook] says values for vintage Tucker Sno-Cats have tripled in the past five years, with prices ranging from $10,000 for a rust-frozen heap to well above $100,000 for a fully restored rig,” writes Bloomberg.
Capitalizing on the growth in interest, Tucker has begun repairing and selling used vehicles. But the hulking exterior belies the relatively simple engineering of these machines, so refurbishing them on one’s own is possible with a little mechanical know-how.
So be on the lookout for these rusted orange tanks. And if you’ve got one collecting dust in a garage, now’s the time to fix it up — for personal use or a hefty profit.
Photo courtesy Tucker Sno-Cat Corporation