How Old Must a Car Be to Become a Classic

How old must a car be to become a classic? Classic cars can be a collector's delight.

How Old Must a Car Be to Become a Classic?
It depends on the definition of "classic car." For example, the Classic Car Club of America defines classic cars as cars that were built between 1925 and 1948. However, not every car produced during this time frame is considered to be truly "classic." The CCCA list of classic cars includes certain models of:

  • Alfa Romeo
  • B.M.W.
  • Du Pont
  • Packard
  • Triumph
  • Rolls Royce
  • Lincoln

Automobiles in this category are typically on the high-end of the price scale and were made in low volume runs.

Some use the term "classic" and "antique" interchangeably when referring to cars. Since 1975, the Antique Automobile Club of America considers cars that are 25 years old and older to be eligible for classification.

There are also legal definitions of classic cars, which vary from state to state. For example, the state of California allows cars to be defined as "vehicles of historic value" including a car that has an engine with a minimum of 16 cylinders that was built before 1965, an auto built in 1922 or earlier or a car that is of "historic interest" that is a minimum of 25 years old.

Classic Car Financing and Finances
If you plan on buying a classic car, make sure that you research your options about classic car financing, your state's Department of Motor Vehicle registration requirements and classic car insurance before you make a purchase. For example, not all auto loan companies will finance a loan for a classic car. You may have to search to find a company that will work with you. In addition, your car insurance and car registration fees will be affected if you plan to "display" your car and drive it on a limited basis instead of using your classic car as your daily ride. 

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