The Cost and Value of Vintage Car Repair in Cincinnati

Terry Robert's 1970 E-Type 01

Owning a classic car is living the American dream, until the bill comes due. Vintage cars can often put you between a rock and a hard place. They’ll naturally deteriorate if you drive them, and rust from lack of use if you don’t. On the fiscal balance sheet they may not be an investment that keeps on giving, but they can, however, provide a lot of pleasure, which is often worth the bottom line. There’s nothing like driving a classic Mustang with the top down on a sunny spring day with James Brown turned all the way up.

What’s the Big Difference Between Classic, Vintage, and Antique?

Let’s break down how most folks in the auto industry define a car as classic, vintage or antique. Age is the primary force for each definition. And no, modified cars or replicas are not considered classic or antique—though they are pretty cool.

Classic applies to any car over 20 years old. Antiques are over 45 years old. And a vintage car was manufactured somewhere between 1919 and 1930. Keep in mind, though that the exact definition can vary according to state, insurance companies, and auto clubs.

Generally, if a car was manufactured after 1922 and is over 25 years old, it’s considered a historical vehicle.

The Classic Car Club of America consider cars between the years 1915 and 1948 to be classic.

But regardless of what you call it—the important thing is that the vehicle gives you joy. And if it’s special to you, rest assured your classic automobile is in good hands at European Auto Specialists.

Minimize Your Vintage Car’s Repairs By Only Driving It On Weekends

If you want to keep your vintage car in top shape for as long as possible, don’t plan on your classic car being your main mode of transportation. Save this beauty for the weekends and special occasions—this is not what you want to take to work every day. Vintage car repair can be expensive if you drive the car all the time, especially in Cincinnati—salt doesn’t discriminate. And the type of car you own can vary your repair costs greatly. A V12 engine will be exorbitantly more expensive to maintain when compared to a four cylinder. Generally, the rarer and more exotic the car, the more expensive it will be to maintain.

One of the best ways to keep your vintage car repair costs down is to  have a secure garage to store the vehicle, especially during winter. Ideally, the storage space needs to not only be dry, but the right temperature. This beauty is your baby. It deserves to be treated with extra special care. Classic cars need love, especially when it comes to classic car maintenance.

Classic Car 101: Antique Cars Do Need to be Driven

That being said, don’t let any car sit too long, especially if it’s a classic or antique. Naturally, you’re not going to want to take it out in inclement weather. But take it for a weekend cruise at the first sign of a nice day. Let the engine breathe a little. Give those European brakes some flex. It helps your classic car when you get its fluids flowing again, and makes sure those resting tires don’t get flat on one side.

The Value of Expertise Outweighs the Dollar Amount You Pay

Can we be honest with you? Restoring and repairing classic and antique cars can be a great hobby. They can be an incredible value. But you have to know what you’re doing. If you aren’t careful, they can be a bottomless money pit. It’s like Vegas. You have to know when to hold, when to lay your cards down—and when to leave the table.

That’s why it’s so important to have a specialized mechanic that understands vehicle restoration. We can let you know when a restoration job just isn’t worth it—especially if you are trying to turn a profit. We can save you from betting the farm on a broken down mule. And we can also suggest more affordable approaches that can save you a bundle. Achieve the same performance for less. That’s the beauty of working with a mechanic that truly understands what they’re doing when it comes to classic or vintage car repair.

The bottom line is if you plan on driving your classic car at all, you must commit driving it occasionally. It doesn’t need to be a lot, but a quick half hour drive every week or so during the warmer months and firing it up occasionally during the winter can do wonders in the long run. Make it a weekend hobby to take it for a spin. It’s a great way to find new restaurants and other local hidden gems. Get the whole family involved and have fun! That is why you own a classic or antique car. It’s not about practicality—it’s about having fun with cars. Life’s a joy ride. Take it for a spin.

Special cars require specialized auto repair work. If your classic car is a BMW, Porsche, Mercedes, or Jaguar, you’ll want a repair technician who specializes in that type of vehicle. We’ve been specializing in European cars since 2001. We understand the personalized care import and vintage car repair requires. Wondering how long a specialized classic car repair takes? We’d be happy to talk it through with you. Every classic car and classic car repair is unique. Because we treat your car it as if it was our own, we want the best for it as you do. We live and breathe European cars. We’ll ensure it maintains its quality and keep your classic car looking brand new.

Take It from a BMW Technician: Inspect Your Cooling System

Not understanding how your cooling system works in your BMW can easily cost you several thousand dollars in engine replacement. Ask any BMW mechanic. Your cooling system can be your best friend or your worst enemy. For starters, always keep a good eye on your thermostat, especially in hot weather. If the hot temperature gauge should go off, pull over immediately, not when you get to a convenient exit or are just a few miles from home. Driving just another hundred yards could cost you your engine. Have your radiator inspected at least once a year, and that includes all belts and hoses as well. Keeping up on your cooling system can significantly prolong the life of your vehicle.