Official: 30-year-old cars are classic


What makes a car a classic? Go too new and you run the risk of looking like you’re trying to sell your old snotter that’s at the bottom of its depreciation curve. Conversely, getting old too much and declaring a car as a classic becomes somewhat redundant. If it’s carbureted and didn’t come with seat belts at first, this ship probably sailed years ago. So when does true classic car status begin?

The International Federation of Vintage Vehicles, also known as the International Federation of Historic Vehicles (FIVA), believes that you can’t go wrong at 30, given the right make and model. You are not much more official than that.

Cars are classic at 30

“There is no magic rule that can be said when a vehicle becomes a ‘classic’,” says Tiddo Bresters, FIVA President, “but reaching 30 is one of FIVA’s clear criteria.

“So in 2020, we’re excited to welcome a brand new series of 1990 classics, as they celebrate their 30th anniversary, thanks to their caring owners. Historic vehicles don’t need to be extremely rare or valuable; the “new classics” range from supercars to city cars to motorcycles – but all are important milestones in the history of our automotive heritage. “

Define a “historic” vehicleCars are classic at 30

“Clear criteria” is not a joke either. FIVA has four checkboxes if you want to declare your historic vehicle. First, he must be at least 30 years old. The second is that it is “preserved and maintained in a historically correct state”. This means no modification, and preferably no rust. Third, and oddly enough, it doesn’t have to be a daily means of transportation. We’re not sure which one, given that technically one could use a Ferrari 250 GTO on a daily basis.

Fourth, it must be “part of our technical and cultural heritage”. It’s 30 years old, clean, unmodified and used sparingly, but does it have a place in automotive history? Is this a note worthy of the great automotive upholstery? Otherwise, all is not lost. You will almost certainly get a seat at the Festival of the Unexceptional. We would be curious to know what FIVA does with this event.

Class of 1990Cars are classic at 30

So which cars have achieved true classic status? Entries range from the humble Renault Clio supermini to the snorting Lamborghini Diablo supercar. The Honda NSX is also mentioned, as is the noisy Lotus Carlton at 177 mph. In the case of the latter, infamy plays as much in classical status as age.

Indeed, all are remarkable cars in their own way, whether it’s because you’re deliciously French (Clio) or running at 200 mph (Diablo). So maybe FIVA is right on this fourth point concerning the technical and cultural heritage.


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