Sometimes just looking at a car doesn't tell the whole story about what's going on inside.
On a recent episode of CNBC's "Jay Leno's Garage," the comedian and car enthusiast teams up with world-renowned auto appraiser Donald Osborne to evaluate three cars that offer more than meets the eye.
In the video above, they determine how these sneaky, special cars have appreciated over the past five years, starting with a 1939 French Delahaye Type 165. Back then, it would sell for about $3,300. Only two were ever made. And under the hood was a very special engine — a modified version of the one used in the so-called "Million Franc Delahaye," which stunned the Germans by winning the French Grand Prix in 1937.
The 1963 Studebaker Lark R2, which originally sold for about $2,800, was also a very rare car. Of the 800 Lark convertibles ever made, only 43 Daytonas were produced with a special trim and configuration — and serious horsepower. Its top speed was about 130 mph, which was very impressive at the time.
Finally, a 1994 Mercedes-Benz 500E looks pretty much like your standard Mercedes. But even the press called this car a "Wolf in Sheep's Clothing" because this model was actually built by Porsche for Mercedes. Porsche was going through rough financial times and needed more work. Thus, Mercedes farmed out production to them, which ultimately led to this special, high-performance car. It originally sold for about $80,000.
So all of these cars offer hidden value, but how much does the unseen affect the resale price tag? Watch the video above to find out.
CNBC's "Jay Leno's Garage" airs Wednesdays at 10 p.m. EDT.