14 Vintage Coke Bottles That Are Worth Money
If you have several vintage Coke bottles hidden away in your basement because you thought they might be worth something later, you may be right. However, you probably won’t be able to retire from your collection alone. That’s because vintage Coke bottles are not as rare as you may think. That is unless you happen to have a Root Prototype bottle.
Regardless, there is something about Coca-Cola merchandise that reminds us of our youth. Having some of these reminders around is never a bad idea, so we never discourage fun collections. Here is a look at what vintage Coca-Cola bottles you should be trying to collect.
14. Amber Toledo, Ohio Bottle, $685
Collectors of vintage Coke bottles will enjoy this Toledo, Ohio, variant made of amber glass. This is an earlier example because the bottle has straight sides. The color of the amber glass is darker. The words “Toledo, Ohio” are imprinted on the bottle’s heel, while the Coca-Cola logo is displayed in the bottle’s center as a double diamond.
It’s in good shape and free of chips and cracks. Additionally, there are no stains present despite the glass having a slight haze and wear from being in a case.
All of this meant that it was purchased when it was placed up for auction online. The buyer added it to their collection by paying a pricey $685.
13. Statue Of Liberty 125th Anniversary Commemorative Bottle, 2011, $1245
Even Coke bottles from the last ten years or so can be extremely valuable. As usual, rarity is the key. A small number of aluminum vintage Coke bottles were made in 2011 to honor the Statue of Liberty’s 125th birthday. For Coca-Cola, which was also celebrating its 125th year, it was a double celebration. The bottles were never made to be distributed widely. Instead, they were reserved just for a celebration held on Liberty Island in October 2011. In 2022, it was put up for auction online and received several bids. Not bad for an object that was only 11 years old at the time, the ultimate hammer price was $1,245.
12. Chinese Coca-Cola Bottle, $1,500
This 1992 Coke bottle in near-mint condition was sold in 2020 for just over $1,500. It wasn’t because it was unopened, but this particular bottle was part of a commemorative series in China to celebrate the opening of the first McDonald’s restaurant in the country. The vintage Coke bottles were purchased from a Coke executive who had kept them in storage and placed on eBay in 2020.
11. 1900s Coke Bottle, $2,375
The Coca-Cola bottling plant in Jellico, Tennessee manufactured these vintage Coke bottles with an old-style embossed logo on the glass. The time period for manufacturing this bottle is believed to be around 1915 as the sides are curved instead of straight. It is almost impossible to find these antique, unlabeled bottles that remain unopened. This one bottle was sold on eBay in 2019 for $2,375.
10. Seoul Olympic Games Commemorative Bottle, $2,500
Summer Olympics 1988 were held in Seoul, South Korea. Coke sponsored the games, and amongst the sponsorship was a commemorative Coke bottle that was sold in a tall cardboard box. These vintage Coke bottles are ideal for you if you are an Olympic enthusiast and Coca-Cola collector.
The bottle has Olympic art on all the reverse sides. While most of these bottles were bought, opened, and drunk from, one of the bottles appeared on eBay recently in 2021 and sold for $2,500 at an auction.
9. Thailand Coca-Cola ACL Bottles, $3,000
Admittedly, this is the best photo we could get considering the history of these vintage Coke bottles, but it is meant to show Applied Color Label (ACL) bottles from 1941.
During that time, this kind of bottle was used by Coca-Cola instead of the custom-molded or paper labels, which had the labels built directly into the glass. The reason ACL became so popular was that the bottling companies did not need to reapply the labels again and again after washing and shipping. Vintage Coke bottles with an intact ACL can sell for over $3,000.
ACL labels were limited to two colors, but the process definitely made the entire production process easier. A bottle from Thailand was sold in 2020 for $3,000. The ACL process got its first major advancement in the 50s when the ‘lehr’ was invented. It was an oven that could reach 1200 degrees, which was enough to fuse the paint of the ACL label to the bottle’s glass.
8. Hutchinson Bottles, $4,000
The Hutchinson Bottles were the first bottles to be commissioned by the Coca-Cola Company after it was taken over by the original owner. The bottles had straight sides with a logo embossed in the center of the bottle and a metal stopper. These bottles were only used for seven years. By 1906, the company switched over to its more familiar-looking model. The original Hutchinson vintage Coke bottles are now in very short supply and can cost over $4,000.
The original owner, Dr. John Pemberton, died in 1988. Before dying, Pemberton sold the Coke syrup to local soda shops to mix with carbonated water so that it could be served as a fountain drink. By 1906, Coca-Cola switched over to its more popular-looking model, which was the amber-colored bottle with a triangular logo in the center.
7. Dallas Cowboys Coke Bottle, $5,000
Manufactured in 1984 to celebrate the Dallas Cowboys’ 25th Anniversary in the NFL, Coca-Cola released these limited-edition Coke bottles. The label of the bottle listed the team’s yearly game record and their greatest achievement from 1960 to 1983. One of these Commemorative vintage Coke bottles was sold at an auction in 2019 for $5,000. Their value today is still high, which makes sense because of the demand from Cowboys fans everywhere.
6. Lamar Colorado Bottle, Pre-1917, $7495
Coke bottles had the names of the towns where they were made up to the 1960s. There were roughly 1,450 such places, about 250 of which were now exceedingly uncommon.
“Coca-Cola Bot. Co, Lamar, Colo.” is stamped on this particular sample in Colorado. The design’s straight edges place it before 1917.
On the base, UIC and 27S are embossed. UIC is also engraved on the side, but the “I” is replaced with an image of an eye that includes eyelashes.
This bottle is not in the best of health. There is a significant piece of glass missing from the rim, and it hasn’t been cleaned. It is still a unique find for collectors. It is currently up for sale, seeking $7,495 for it.
5. French Wine Coca Bottle From The Late 1890s – $13,750
The French Wine Coca bottle from the late 1890s was a small green glass bottle with a cork stopper. The bottle was not yet in the shape many later knew as “Coca-Cola” since it had smooth edges with no ridges or bumps. Plus, the coloring is green and orange, not red and brown. These original, vintage features create immense value in this collectible bottle.
The label on the bottle reads “French Wine Coca” in fancy cursive letters, along with the brand name, ingredients, and the manufacturer’s name. The bottle was filled with a tonic made from wine and coca leaves, which was the first drink created by Dr. John Pemberton, the inventor of Coca-Cola. It’s truly a piece of history and if you can ever get your hands on it, then you’re sitting on a big chunk of change as one of the rarest vintage Coke bottles.
4. Unopened Coca-Cola Bottle, $29,900
This is the first five-figure Coca-Cola bottle on this list. Its value comes down to three factors: condition, ingredients, and a hidden surprise. Specifically, it is one of the rarest vintage Coke bottles, which immediately creates a piece of history that was well-maintained. Secondly, this 1974 Coca-Cola bottle still has Cocaine in it from its original, controversial formula.
The claim by people familiar with this vintage Coke bottle is that there is a syringe inside hidden among the liquid. The reason for this is back in 1993, Pepsi was embroiled in a scandal that there were syringes packed in its soda cans. However, this was ultimately dismissed as a hoax.
This unopened bottle was sold for $29,900 on eBay in 2020.
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3. FIFA World Cup Commemorative Bottle, 1974, $30,000
Here’s another illustration of how successful the Coke and sports alliance can be. This bottle was created in 1974 to commemorate the FIFA World Cup, the most important international soccer competition.
Because there are so many football lovers worldwide, unusual World Cup memorabilia is constantly in high demand along with vintage Coke bottles.
Additionally, prices might soar to incredible heights when it is associated with a well-known company like Coca-Cola.
In 2020, an online auction site offered this bottle for bidding. It had a strong seal, was in good shape, and had all of its contents. Unverified rumors claim that those contents strangely included a syringe, but this has never been confirmed.
The seller of this bottle received an astounding $29,900 for it.
2. Coca-Cola Root Glass Company Modified Prototype Bottle, $108,000
There are two known examples of this prototype bottle in existence. This bottle was sold at auction on April 14, 2019. The other is #1 on this list and is more than double in value.
The Prototype bottle was sold at auction for $108,000 and was found by a retired Coca-Cola employee who worked for the original designer of the bottle, Chapman Root.
The bottle itself was in perfect condition, it doesn’t have any chips, cracks, or wear. This explains its unbelievable value and historical value as we can look back at the original design ideas before most of us were even born for these vintage Coke bottles.
1. Coca-Cola Root Glass Company Modified Prototype Bottle, $240,000 Vintage Coke Bottles
The rarest vintage Coke bottle ever is known as the Root Glass Company Modified Prototype Bottle. It was designed in 1915 by the company’s parent bottling company in Atlanta. The bottle is believed to be one of the only two remaining test bottles from the original Atlanta facility. This bottle was sold at a 2011 auction for a whopping $240,000. It is truly a piece of history of not only a business but of a product we still know and love today.
Clearly, we can see that most vintage Coke bottles are not worth a mega amount of money today unless they came out of the original prototype or product release in years. It’s also unlikely that you will find a glass bottle from the 1900s in great condition today. That makes each of these bottles rare, but you’d have to authenticate your find before you know for sure you’ve won the big bucks. Either way, we can cherish these rare finds and recognize how much of an influence Coca-Cola had over American culture.