When every car on the road looks like practically every other car on the road, you realize you need to do something different. For some, that something different is to drive a classic or antique vehicle, even if it’s only on sunny days or weekend car shows. Then you realize that practically every antique car looks like every other antique car. Henry Ford said, “You can get any color Ford you like, as long as it’s black.”
Indeed, those were not the most interesting of times to be driving a car, which is why Ford dropped the monochromatic scheme in the late 1920s. With the introduction of the Ford Model A, Ford introduced color, four colors that were sure to pique interest. Given that some 900,000 Ford Model A still exist, there’s a good chance that there’s another 275,000 out there that are the same color as yours. If you’re driving a pre-1925 Ford Model T, there’s a pretty chance that it’s, well, black.
Restoration vs Personalization and Customization
Restoring an antique vehicle is one thing, but is there a way to make it truly yours? Now, if you’re planning on entering your car into a restoration contest or you plan on selling your antique to someone who might value that sort of thing, there’s nothing wrong with that. On the other hand, if you really want a unique antique, something that has no equal, then you want to customize and personalize your antique vehicle.
Unlike restoration, which seeks to present the old in a new skin, customization and personalization allows you to express yourself freely. Sure, you can use the same canvas, but you don’t have to use the same paint or style, kind of like the difference between a photograph and Van Gogh’s “The Starry Night.”
How Can You Personalize Your Antique Vehicle?
If you want to have a truly personal vehicle that still qualifies as an antique, here are a few things you might consider:
- Color – Some of today’s vehicles are available in a mind-boggling 8,000 colors, so there’s no reason you can’t apply one of them to your antique vehicle. Some choose to cover everything one color, or you can go with a two-tone paint scheme – even hot colors work on those old bodies! You can accent with chrome or custom hand-painted pinstriping. Don’t forget custom interior upholstery, such as on the seats, steering wheel, and interior panels.
- Safety – Safety technology has come a long way, so there’s no reason your antique vehicle shouldn’t come forward a little in this regard. Better lighting, electric windshield wipers, and safety glass are all excellent upgrades. This might require making some upgrades to the electrical system, as well.
- Sound – It wasn’t until the 1950s that radios became common in automobiles, but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be able to enjoy the radio in your antique vehicle. Just be sure to install the head unit and speakers discreetly, and you can enjoy a fine orchestral reproduction while maintaining the look of your vehicle.
- Comfort – Again, this is something that’s come a long way, and there’s no reason you shouldn’t enjoy a comfortable ride. Upgrading the suspension is a great way to improve ride quality and control.
Of course, when it comes to antique vehicle personalization, one might say that the sky is the limit, and you could do any number of things to make your antique vehicle truly yours!