Price isn't the best indicator of how good a guitar will sound.
The tonal quality of a guitar can vary greatly along the same model line, especially when considering solid top models.
The tonality is influenced significantly by the top wood, which varies due to it being a naturally grown product and having much variance from tree to tree.
Manufacturing processes have changed as more automation is put in, and bracing and layout changes are made to make it easier to use the new technologies. This also affects the tonal profile of the guitar. The earlier guitars were more likely to be mostly hand made, and quality control of the materials would be better than automated mass manufacturing.
High quality spruce is also becoming more rare and costly, and new guitars are using a different quality of wood than you will find in earlier models.
The wood also gains more tone and "warmth" as it ages, so a 40 year old guitar is usually going to have warmer and more open tone than a newly built guitar.
The price to quality difference may be because a "limited edition" guitar isn't being sold just on its sound merits, but also on the reputation of the manufacturer and its potential collect-ability. In many cases an established brand such as Fender will be a higher price than an equivalent quality of guitar that does not have the brand name.
After a certain price point you are no longer paying for the materials and workmanship, but paying also for the branding and marketing of the guitar.
In some cases the tonal difference is part of the marketing of the guitar model. Flamenco guitars are designed to be brighter and clearer than the similar classical guitar, so you may find some difference in a brand's models depending on what the market for that model is.
Cheap guitars can often sound better than an expensive one. Find one that you like the sound and play-ability of, and get that one.