Has the promise of warmer weather ignited your desire to drive your own classic car around the Cotswolds, asks Rebecca Denyer


Owning a classic is rarely about efficiency and speed, but very much about experience, style, exclusivity, and craftsmanship. Their appeal isn’t limited to car lovers, but lovers of art, history, engineering, and design. Although the prospect of purchase is exciting, it is incredibly important to consider the potential pitfalls and concerns before taking the leap. 




Owning and driving a car that, at best, only a few other people may have, is incredibly special. Classic cars have their own personalities, and part of the joy in ownership is found in the search for your perfect match. Additionally, there are car club membership opportunities, offering meetings, advice, friendship, and fun. 

The drive 

Classic cars do not handle the same as modern vehicles and that’s part of the fun. If you prefer the luxury of power steering, for example, then a modified classic might be more suitable for you. 


Unlike modern cars which depreciate upon leaving the dealership’s forecourt, many classics appreciate or at least maintain their value. A quick scan through classic car listings will reveal very swiftly the types of cars which appreciate, but since a classic car purchase is an emotional one, I recommend you choose the vehicle that suits you – the one that you will enjoy driving and being seen in.  


Classic cars evoke strong emotional responses. Many owners love the retro style and feel of cars from a particular era, or have childhood memories of a certain model or loved one who owned such a vehicle and want to recreate the feeling. Whatever the reason for you choosing a particular make of classic, you cannot put a price on that.  


Insurance for classic cars in the main is often low, and there is an argument for younger drivers to consider classic cars as a realistic possibility for their first car. Specialist brokers include Footman James, Hagerty UK, and many others; discounts are often available to car club members. 



High running costs 

Owning a classic car comes with many associated costs. Some classics are more expensive to buy because of their scarcity, but there is always a good supply of, say, MGB roadsters that are more achievable for lower budgets, making the potentially higher maintenance costs less eye-watering. Repairs, rust, and breakdowns with classic cars are more likely given their age, and some spares can be tricky to source and may require custom fabricated parts. 


...or should we say unreliability? Classic cars can – and do – break down more often than modern cars. My convertible Morris Minor spent 365 days in our garage accumulating dust, leaking oil, and not being enjoyed as she should have been before making the painful decision to sell her on. 


Current safety standards were not in place when these cars were built, and you may need to consider some modifications and upgrades. Working seatbelts, upgraded brakes, appropriate tyres and airbags can easily be retrofitted. 


Due to the age and type of engines they have, classic cars are a contributing factor to air and noise pollution.  


Purchasing a classic car is a personal decision and I encourage you to consider your budget, lifestyle, and mechanical abilities first. If you are looking for convenience and modern features, then either a highly modified classic, an electric converted classic, or a replica may be more suitable. There are also plenty of weekend hire companies that can give you a “try before you buy” opportunity.  

You never really know what you own until you strip a classic car back in full, so be prepared for the unwanted surprise your classic car may reveal… despite these challenges, classic car ownership is a delight I highly recommend. 


Rebecca Denyer is Head of Happiness at Vital Spark Group – Vital Spark Electric Vehicles and Sebring Sports Cars. Email: rebecca@vital-spark.io