What Happens to Car Collecting In an EV-Driven World?

street value illustrations
The eclectic Robert Lederer collection in Chicago spans the entire motoring age and exemplifies the need for specialized caretaking skills.

Jeremy Cliff

Think about the big-name car collections. The Collezione Umberto Panini in Modena, Italy. The Revs Institute in Naples, Florida. The Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles. Now consider the real heart and soul of connoisseurship—the smaller collectors, like Hank Davis, owner of Hank’s Garage in Bucyrus, Ohio, with his 14 Edsels, or Robert Lederer, owner of Chicago Parts & Sound, whose cars you see pictured here.

Now imagine all that machinery left to rot. From the talk we heard at Monterey Car Week in August, it seems the car-collector world is facing a crisis. Future generations won’t care about vintage vehicles. The internal-combustion engine will be legislated off the road. The values of prized cars will plummet.

This story originally appeared in Volume 8 of Road & Track.

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Classic Car Collecting Doesn’t Deserve The Pricey Stigma

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But how does it stack up against other hobbies?

My best friend’s dad is someone everyone knows as the ‘collector guy’. He collects cars, coins, knives, cards, whiskey, you name it. On top of his collections, he’s also an avid boater and golfer. During dinner last week, while he was discussing several of these things and then talked about selling one of his Cadillacs to make room for another classic car, his wife joked that collecting cars was the cheapest hobby he has. This comment definitely got a sideways look from my side of the table, but when I started thinking about it, I decided it was a subject that warranted some digging.

Before going down this rabbit hole, I wanted to lay down some criteria to find out how cheap or expensive collecting a car is, in comparative to other hobbies.

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