Weigh up the good, the bad, and the ugly and decide for yourself whether the Vector M12 is worthy of its price tag today.
The development of the eagerly anticipated M12 marked the peak of Vector Aeromotive’s rise to supercar fame. The Vector M12 was easily the best model the little-known carmaker ever produced, although it did earn itself a mythical reputation for what could have been. It would seem like Vector had all the right ingredients to make a massive success out of the M12. But it turned out that it was just the wrong time, as it hit the market a little too late and carried the reputation of its siblings of poor build: it seemed the Vector M12 never really stood a chance.
Despite its sad fate, it’s the same bad timing and booming V12 engine that makes it highly desirable in today’s market. With only a handful built, the M12 is a criminally overlooked and extremely under-appreciated supercar, so much so that the auction prices that one would bring now are almost insulting, as picking one up can now be cheaper than they were when Vector first debuted them. It needs to be known that the M12 is not just a lesser known distant relative of the Lamborghini Diablo, but a viable alternative.
Was The Engine Swapped For The Better?
In place of American sourced engines, new owners MegaTech swapped out V8 power for Lamborghini’s powerful V12. The reasons behind this engine swap was nothing more sinister than MegaTech’s acquisition of Lamborghini the previous year. Sharing the Diablo’s engine, it was a 5.7-liter naturally aspirated V12, with the M12 installation rotated 180 degrees with its transmissions at the rear. Although the M12 was able to boast 492 hp and an impressive top speed of 189-mph, the M12 seemed to flop as it was considered unable to pay for its own engines.
The Vector M12 would always win in the looks department, with its low profile, more futuristic and aerodynamically superior low drag body. The M12 looked cool alright, making it one of the best-looking supercars of the ‘90s, but it skimped on materials to keep costs down. This Vector model was made entirely from carbon-fiber. Its interior also lacked luster, with few gadgets and plain leather ‘boring’ seats. Vector could have certainly gone in a different direction in many ways.
So, What Would A Vector M12 Cost Today?
For all the M12s’ promises, the Vector never took off with gearheads. With a sticker price of $189,000, it was a lack of identity which arguably swung sales in favor of the Lambo. Although the Vector M12 is ultra-rare, with only 17 ever being produced, 2019 saw one of them being sold at a measly $176,000 at Barnett-Jackson. A recent valuation of an M12, which commenced in 2021, saw a price tag of around $184,000 be placed on this Vector classic in today’s market.
Don’t be mistaken, it is certainly a popular car, probably because only a handful were ever created, but it’s definitely not one for bringing the big buck’s home.
2020 Barrett-Jackson Preview: 1999 Vector M-12
About The Author
Thomas Morgan (45 Articles Published)
Tom is currently working as a radio presenter, film producer and also a writer. He is a true Mancunian, with a big passion for the media industry, he feels privileged to be in so many different sectors of the industry.