I’ve always been a big fan of simple cars that are easy for owners to maintain. Older cars with carburettors and distributors are wonderful first cars to work on, since they don’t have any complicated electronics to work on. A test light and timing light is all that’s needed to test the electronics for owners, and the mechanical tools you’d need really aren’t required.
I have to agree with Kenwood Tire (a local tire/repair shop) when they say that shadetree mechanics are a dying breed though. Pretty much any vehicle made after the obd2 standard was created requires special scanners (many obd1 cars also require specialized tools). It’s more important than ever to go with an old car to keep the tradition of working on cars by hand alive. They’re less expensive to buy, less expensive to own/maintain, and offer a special kind of class that newer, more complicated cars can’t offer.