Should You Buy a Classic Car for Your Daily Drive?


Mar 16th, 2020

Should You Buy a Classic Car for Your Daily Drive?

Are you looking to buy a new car? Then it should be one that meets your needs. It could be a family car, a personal vehicle for weekend and getaway drives, or even a daily drive car. When it comes to an everyday ride, you should be most interested in mileage, powertrain, comfort, and the ability to move around. 

Ticking the boxes on those factors, you will see that classic cars won’t make the cut as daily drivers. But who's to say you can or can't use them for your daily commute? It's easy to get caught up in two minds when deciding this. To give you better insight, we take a closer look at the triumphs and pitfalls of classic cars when it comes to daily commutes. Read on.

How old should a car be to earn the classic tag?

These collectibles are automobiles that have a considerable number of years under their hood. Exactly how many years are needed for a car to be recognised as a classic, is still much a debatable topic.

In Canada, the car has to have at least 20 years in it to be considered a classic. In the UK, this number is 15, while in the US, it is 25 – you get the idea. In our case, 20 or more years does grant a car the classic label.

Some of the popular classic cars today include the Jaguar E type – which, according to Enzo Ferrari, was ‘the most beautiful car ever made’ – Porsche 911, Volkswagen Beetle, and Ford Model T.

What are the Cons of driving a classic car?

We call it a classic because it's old, and like many other aged machines, classic cars tend to be problematic.

Here are some of the things that might give you a headache if you decide to use a classic car as your daily commute.

1. Spare parts and maintenance cost

Sourcing spare parts calls for a lot of effort and time, and this doubles with the age of your car, especially one that has been out of production for a long time. If you want to rebuild one, you'll need to find spare parts – which aren't readily available.

Their maintenance might also dig a deep hole in your pockets. You will need to hire a highly specialised mechanic to check and fix your car, translating to further expenses.

Also, classic cars are likely to be huge guzzlers because they use old engines. It means that operating them will result in higher spending on fuel as opposed to what you’d spend on modern cars.

2. Safety concerns

When it comes to safety, it might not be the best idea to travel with passengers in a vintage. These vehicles were not built to withstand the high speeds modern cars go at today. Some classic cars may even lack basic safety features like seat belts and airbags.

3. Environmental pollution

Seeing as classic cars use old engines, they tend to cause more pollution in the atmosphere than modern vehicles do. They contribute immensely to the CO2 problem, while modern automobiles, primarily electric and hybrid ones, have less to zero emissions.

4. You have to do without some advanced tech features

Imagine driving to and from work without listening to any music? Boring, right? Well, this is the case with some classic cars that lack advanced tech features such as built-in stereo system, Bluetooth connectivity, smartphone mount, USB connector, LCD screen, and even climate control. 

Rolling the windows down might mean flexing some arm muscles instead of a slight touch on a button. Indeed, getting a classic car for your daily drive means depriving yourself of some conveniences.

5. Rust

Classic beauties require a lot to maintain their glossy look, especially from rust, which is the biggest enemy of classic cars. Thus you will need a good garage. Older models tend to rust more than current ones as they're mostly made from cheaper metal. A number of them were also built back when rust-proofing methods had not been invented or applied.

Thieves also have a knack for classics, so you might want to secure your garage properly.

What are the Pros of a classic car?

As most classic owners will agree, taking out that vintage beauty for a spin is one of the most refreshingly thrilling experiences. Here are other things that might give you joy in using a classic for daily drives

1. You get to work on them

Enthusiasts prefer assembling classic cars and find a different kind of satisfaction in collecting spares and making the car work. It's even better and much fun if you're familiar with the car mechanics and can assemble it alone.

2. Worthy investment

Apart from driving classic cars for fun, they can also be viewed as an investment. Collecting and rebuilding the rarest pieces of classics can attract huge profits for business-minded car owners.

3. Attention, style, and experience

Period cars attract the attention of bystanders, pedestrians, and even other drivers. Pulling up in one and seeing cameras flash make all the effort worth it. 

Their production was limited in the number of units built, making them rare 'antiques.' Classic enthusiasts engage in vintage restoration projects to bring back the life and lustre to old cars (usually in various stages of disrepair). Their motivation could be monetary or personal fulfilment, or both. It's also a way to showcase their talents. If you spot a restored vintage model, you will notice the precision of its build and the care given to its styling. 

Learning to drive a classic car might even make you a better driver because they lack modern driver-assistance systems and features like power steering and automatic shifting. This explains why most classic car drivers are more experienced.

Wrap Up

Using a classic car every day might not be a good idea. If you already have one in your garage, we recommend getting an alternate ride - one that's a current model. You can use the modern car for everyday travel, like getting to work. On the weekends, you can then pull out the classic for a 'flex' drive.