I am getting the impression that collectors are pushing the prices skyward. Fly especially seems to be catering them lately. Slot cars over $100us just aren't going to be raced (not by me, anyway) maybe they know this and aren't worried so much about the "running" quality?
The only shelf queens I have are those veterans too beaten up to run anymore and are retired for a much deserved rest and reminiscence of past glory. My shelf doesn't gleam with new cars. For that kind of money, I can have three cars with the tuning goodies for racing. Now it's time for some laps!!!