What is Considered a "Classic Car"?

Recently we have had a few “classic” cars brought into the shop for us to work on. It has been a whole lot of fun making these cars, that were made fifty years ago, look like they were just bought off the lot. We are lucky enough to love what we do. While working on these "classics," got us to thinking. What is actually considered a classic car?  

We bounce the term around here in the shop quite a bit so we might as well know what the literal meaning is. 


Obviously, the first topic of conversation we are going to bring up is the age of the car. According to the Antique Automobile Club of America, a car needs to be between twenty-five and fifty years old. You would think that your vehicle can’t be too old to not being considered a classic, right? Any car older than fifty years is considered an antique. In our eyes, it can be considered both a classic and an antique. According to the Classic Car Club of America, they have declared that for a car to be considered a classic, it needs to have been built between the years of 1925 and 1948. That seems a bit steep to us considering everybody in our shop believe the 50’s through 70’s Corvette Stingrays are some of our favorite classics. Both clubs say that the car also needs to be defined as “fine,” “unusual,” or “distinctive.”   

Does It Matter? 

That is a question you are probably asking. Ultimately, does it really matter if your car is technically considered a classic? For some situations, yes. There are special rates for "classic car" lenders and insurers. The term "classic car" is classified differently by different banks and insurers, so you want to look into that before you buy a classic car. For instance, some lenders have declared that the quality of the production standards was quite low in the 70’s and 80’s, so they won’t give special rates for cars built in those years. 

For insurances, the definition of a classic car can vary state by state. If you have a car that is considered a classic car, they will give you special rates and even historical license plates that are really cool! 

At the end of the day, some of these classifications are too thought out. We believe there are some really cool classics that, by these terms, are being left out. Some of these definitions are missing the point was appreciating classic cars. Some cars get forgotten about in a garage somewhere, and our goal is to spruce it up and make you love your car again!