With the continued decline in the price of new cars and the wide variety of financing options, the number of classic cars used on the roads has taken a drastic nosedive.
Just 20 years ago, you could travel to countries on the periphery of Europe, such as Spain, Malta and Greece and you could see immaculate condition vehicles being used on the road as a primary mode of transportation.
There was a time when there were old cars, 30 years or older would have been common on the road, having been well looked after and still kitted out with original upholstery, dashboard, gear shift knobs and more. Even those vehicles that might have had modifications would still have been in period style and in keeping with the car’s history.
The roads in such countries were awash with fully functioning Ford Anglias, Morris Marinas, Morris 1000s, good old Volkswagen Beetles, Ford Cortinas and of course, Escort Mark 1s.
Many a wise collector did the rounds and offered what might have been considered at the time as a tempting offer that would allow the owner to buy a new car, or at least put down a deposit on one.
Fortunately for the collectors who swooped in at the time, the owners of the classic vehicles could not have foreseen how the value of the cars would soar in the next decade and many of them made pretty good deals!
You can still see some gems on the roads of these countries, but they are no longer owned by old men. Usually, it is a collector who has bought one of the few remaining classic beauties and turned it into a piece of automotive history.
You can still find the odd classic on a farm or in a field, but the condition and the cost to restore it would usually be prohibitive to any collector.