Classic Cars: Driven By Obsession?
Updated March 28, 2014
Ever since the exploits of 19th century German motoring pioneer Karl Benz (of Mercedes Benz fame) the world has been in thrall to the lure of the motor-car. And when what started as the preserve of the few became accessible to ever greater numbers thank to the pioneering production line of Henry Ford and his famous Model T, the blue touch paper was well and truly lit; there was no stopping the growth in the popularity of cars.
While the automotive industry has changed significantly in the intervening years, there’s still a fascination with cars that many find hard to shake off. And perhaps the best evidence of that is the strength of the classic car scene and its many enthusiasts worldwide. Yes, without a doubt, classic cars are not going out of fashion anytime soon.
To some, classic cars conjure up images of expensive models beyond the reach of the ordinary car lover – the vintage Ferraris, Lambourginis, Porsches and the Rolls Royces. Yet while there’s no denying these super models of the classic car world cost a pretty penny to find, purchase, refurbish faithfully, maintain and house, the many many classic car clubs across the country is testament to the hobby’s affordability and accessibility.
Classic models well within reach
Contrary to popular belief, classic cars doesn’t necessarily mean sleek motoring heroes of yesteryear. These days, eighties classics are just as much in demand as ancient models.
A good example of eighties favourites with a big fan club in the classic car community is the Saab 900. Introduced originally in 1979, the Saab 900 has been one of the UK’s top classic cars for many years. Its angular, chunky styling may not appeal to everyone, but there’s no doubting its unique look and feel, which has given it a cult following.
The name Mercedes is synonymous with luxury motoring. But surprisingly, there are past models in the Mercedes range that are not beyond the reach of ordinary enthusiasts. Like the Mercedes 190 – a sporty slice of car history (some with spoiler!) about the same price as a second-hand Mondeo. But obviously a lot more desirable sitting in your drive.
Another car make that gives you a warm glow and your bank manager a heart attack. Again, as with Mercedes, the classic car world is host to many past Porsche models that are not the stuff of fantasy in terms of affordability. Incredibly the classic beauty and sporting style of the Porsche 944 can be bought for under two thousand pounds.
The MG is a bona fide British classic, oozing Swinging Sixties style from every pore. These covered coupe MGB GT is an especially highly desirable model. And again, it’s possible to get hold of them for around under the two grand mark.
Things to watch out for
Buying a classic car is just one step of ownership however. Remember, these beautiful machines do take some looking after – which can be a full-time job and over time, potentially a bit of a money pit. Do your homework thoroughly before going for it.
Then there’s safety. Yes, some older classic cars may not handle the same way as today’s models, requiring a much more ‘hands on’ approach to driving. Plus you need to be confident every part of the vehicle is in good order – or it could lead to an accident. And let’s face it, personal injury claims would take the edge of the classic car experience!
Categories: Gear Grinding