The exact meaning of a classic car is subject to
differences of opinion, however the Classic Car Club of America maintains that
a car must be between 20 and 45 years old to be a classic, while cars over 45 years
old are considered antiques.
Owning a classic car is great, but a lot of it depends on how serious and/or well funded you are. There's a lot to know if you're going to buy a classic car as an investment. Keeping in mind that the definition of investment is, "the investing of money or capital in order to gain profitable returns, as interest, income, or appreciation in value."
Many people lost track of this and have lost a lot of money trying to buy a classic car as an investment because they didn't do their due diligence and found themselves in over their heads.
Ford and Chevy Classic Cars
Dodge, Plymouth and Ford Classic Cars
Some classic car buyers buy one or two of their favorite classic cars because of sentimental value or because they're really wild about a certain make or model. This is OK if you don't dramatically overpay and intend to keep the car for a very long time or maybe forever. However, if you're intent is to purchase a classic car as an investment, then knowledge, as usual, is your most important ally.
Obtaining the knowledge needed to determine a good classic car deal from a mediocre or bad deal can come in two forms. Either you have to do the work of learning all that you can about the make and model car or cars that you're interested in purchasing or you have to hire someone who already possesses this knowledge.
You or your expert needs to know many, many things regarding the values of specific cars you're interested in. Knowing what to look for regarding a particular model, such as which year of a certain make is more valuable than another and why. How many were built, what came standard, what were the options, how was the car restored and also importantly, who did the restoring, will help you to judge the value of the car. Also knowing how to look over a car from bumper to bumper and finding what isn't correct is a skill that is a must. Remember, this is just barely scratching the surface, so again, either become an expert or get one.
For many people, a course in negotiating wouldn't be a bad investment in time before trying to buy their classic car. Many people make mistakes when negotiating that cause them to not get the best deal they could have. Some of these negotiating mistakes come in the form of what poker players would call, tells. But it doesn't matter whether you're playing poker or buying a car, additional information given to others at the wrong time can cost you money.
So now that you have found your car and have agreed on a price, you need to decide how to pay for it. Paying cash (if you can do so) may or may not be a good idea. Classic car values have really accelerated over the last 10-15 years, however many makes and models have recently cooled with the economy.
Obviously, the more money you put down, the lower your loan amount
will be, which will give you lower monthly payments and save you
possibly thousands of dollars in interest over the life of the loan.
However, another school of thought is to ask yourself whether or not you
think the car you are buying will appreciate more per year than what it
will cost to borrow the money. If so, maybe financing is the way to go.
Of course, trying to determine the amount a car will increase in value
going forward is very speculative. The bottom line is, no answer is
correct for everyone.
If you decide to finance, get multiple, competing offers by contacting several lenders. Whatever time you spend doing this should be rewarded by the savings you should secure.
More homework that should be done in advance is who will be handling the transporting of your new vehicle. Unless it's a "driver" or you will be transporting the car yourself, you should already know which professional transporter you want to do the moving.
Again, it's important to know a lot about your transport company, if that's the direction you're going to go. Finding out how long they've been in business, what types of automobiles they normally ship, do they use open or enclosed trailers to transport your car and what it will cost to do so are just some of the things you will want to know. A good, piece of mind question to ask would also be, do they offer in-transit contact between their office and their drivers?
Many companies advertise that they use professional drivers. Find out what their definition of "professional drivers" is. How carefully do they screen their drivers, how long have their drivers been with them and how many accident-free miles have they accumulated?
Getting the right classic car at the right price is one of the best feelings there is, at least to a car lover.
Chevy, Ford and Dodge Classic Cars
Ford Classic Cars
Classic Car Poll
More Muscle Cars and Classic Cars
- Ford Classic Cars
Ford built some of the coolest classic cars of their day including the Thunderbirds and the always classic Ford Mustang. Please see below for some thoughts and photos on these great cars!
- Classic Muscle Cars
Please click for some thoughts, photos and videos of three of Chryslers coolest Mopar muscle cars of the day; the Dodge Charger RT, Dodge Challenger RT and the Dodge Coronet RT.
- Old Classic Cars
The three classic cars below, the Tucker 48, the Ford Skyliner and Ford Edsel were truly unique and separated themselves from the pack, each for different reasons. Read on to see some info and great photos of these three terrific cars!
- Mopar Classic Cars
When I think of classic cars from Detroit and Mopar in the same sentence, these three cars come to mind; the Dodge Polara, the Plymouth Belvedere and the Plymouth Fury. Please read on for some of my thoughts and comments as well as some pretty cool p
- Chevy Muscle Cars
Read on to check out photos and information on two of the best Chevy muscle cars of all time, the 1969 Chevrolet Camaro Z28 and the 1970 Chevy Chevelle SS.
- Chrysler Turbine Car
The Chrysler Corporation built the Chrysler Turbine Car in a small plant in Detroit, Michigan in 1963. Read on for more info and photos about this rare car!
- Chevy Classic Cars
When the discussion turns to classic Chevy cars, it usually begins and ends with the second generation of Chevy Bel Airs made between 1955 and 1957. Check out some of the great photos below!
- American Muscle Cars
If you were an American muscle car fan of the 1960s and 1970s, you had a lot to choose from. Check out these great American muscle car photos of the Pontiac GTO, Dodge Super Bee and Ford Mustang Mach 1.
- Mopar Muscle Cars
If you were into muscle cars in the late 60's and early 70's, you had a lot to get excited about. Read on to see some great photos and check out some of the coolest Mopar muscle cars of that era.
Jamesriolo56@gmail.com on October 12, 2020:
The automobile back in the day... 50s and most of the sixties may not have had the technology of today...but they sure had style...today, they all look the same!
Serge Gagnon on January 20, 2019:
My car : 1964 Pontiac Grand Prix. I had one.
Juggergnost (author) on July 23, 2012:
Especially the ones with the portholes!
paulw35 from UK on July 22, 2012:
Interesting hub. I think my favorite American classic is the Thunderbird
Juggergnost (author) on October 30, 2011:
Thanks for the nice comment, Melody
melodyandes on October 29, 2011:
AllSuretyBonds on April 12, 2011:
Great Hub. My favorite is the T-Bird Convertible. Very nice looking car!
vietnamvet68 from New York State on August 31, 2010:
Great hub, now there is my car the 55 Chey Convertable.
Check out my last hub on the street classic car show.
Juggergnost (author) on August 27, 2010:
Good choices too!
Thanks for stopping by.
Collin.G from US on August 27, 2010:
Nice Hub man!
I love classic cars
my favorite ones are the Impala 67 and the Mustang Shelvy 67. pretty good pretty neat.
Juggergnost (author) on August 25, 2010:
Thanks for the kind words, Suziecat!
suziecat7 from Asheville, NC on August 25, 2010:
I know they were gas guzzlers but they sure are beautiful. Great Hub.