Now Is the Best Time to Own a Vintage Car
It is all too easy to cast a long glance to a bygone era, yearning to have been in the presence of Citroën 2CVs clogging European roads. A time where a Porsche 356 wasn’t a ludicrously expensive item, or even when a new DeLorean could be had for the price of well-equipped Camry today. The past certainly seems like the perfect time to own a vehicle. While that may (or may not) be true, it is clear to me that today, yes today, is the best time to own the very same cars we wish surrounded us daily.
True, cars and motorcycles were more interesting back then, it’s also correct to say that vehicles from “then” are more accessible today to work on in your own garage. Not to mention they are more tuneable and customizable than ever before. But the past is not all roses and sunshine, attempting to restore and run a 30-year old vehicle from any period other than the last decade or two is a completely different enterprise.
Only now are enthusiasts able to keep a greater number, and a eclectic stable of vintage metal on the road. We are in a golden age of old cars and motorcycles hidden amongst our midst. No longer are we forced to be interested in domestic or utility vehicles. Gone are the days of relying on garage sales and yearly meet-ups for parts and advice—we’ve got eBay and Craigslist!
In a big way we should thank this “internet” thing. We can now jump on Google and find a rare euro side-marker light faster than we can flick a turn signal. We can now easily find other like-minded vintage car soulmates who are just as excited about rare Alfas or Indians to form virtual ad-hoc communities—we are no longer bound by geography.
Parts and advice are a forum away, not to mention your new project car. Yes, old school hot-rodders and experts are still notoriously internet illiterate, but that stereotype is quickly fading. They have now resorted to recruiting their grandchildren to create video tutorials and enshrine their knowledge for any and all to utilize.
The rise of restomods have reignited the next generation to appreciate these iconic rolling sculptures. By dumping new technology into these old shells we ensure that they remain on the roads longer and enjoyed by everybody even more. While some balk at the idea of changing the essential characters of their vintage steeds, throwing the latest tech into them keeps them on the road—which should always be the main objective.
Enjoy today, because new cars are turning more and more into boring appliances and irreparable rolling computers. Before you know it, you’ll find a garge full of non-operating modern machines not worth fixing– not that many are interested in even trying. Interesting, soulful cars and motorcycles are turning into an enthusiast’s delight right before our very eyes. The split has already begun between the boring and reliable washing machines and interesting, high-dollar exotica, and it will only get worse. But for now, owning and running a vintage vehicle has never been better. So enjoy the road, tastefully.
(Above are photos by Petrolicious from past articles featuring young people with their vintage machines: Newly Minted Porsche, An American in Paris Creates Custom-Bike Heaven, Aaron’s Duetto, and An Unlikely Pair.)