Back in the ’60s, no one knew that the cars on the road would be held in such high regard as classics. As hard as it is to believe, some of the cars on the road today will also hold the title of classic many years from now. Right now, the next generation of classic cars is upon us.
Mainly for emissions testing reasons, here in California a car is considered classic from 1975 and back. This conveniently also marked the end of the muscle-car era, and aesthetically cars got pretty ugly after that. Monte Carlos, Mustang IIs, Novas, and Road Runners—the cars that were once panty-droppers became your creepy uncle’s grocery getter.
This was also when the import market started to boom. The oil crisis and need for more fuel efficient vehicles in the late ’70s allowed Japanese and European cars to gain a strong foothold in the U.S. where it didn’t take long for them to develop cult followings and set trends.
Why on Earth would the cars after 1975 become classics? Because like the most iconic iron of the ’60s, they all have their unique following. With the aftermarket supplying plenty of go-fast parts and certain makes and models gaining new-found popularity, these cars are an attractive prospect for those 30-45 year olds who want to cruise around in the same whip they had in high school.
A show that celebrates this era of cars from both the foreign and domestic markets is the Future Classic Car Show in Scottsdale Arizona, hosted by ClassicCars.com and Gateway Classic Cars. ClassicCars.com CEO Roger Falcione passionately endorses passing car culture on to the next generations. “These cars are a little different than conventional classics, because they came directly after the muscle-car era,” said Roger. “I am still amazed by the passion that the younger generation has for cars,” he said with a laugh. “I see the future extending.”
The most common age range seen at the Future Classic Car Show is between 30-40 because by the time these guys and gals were in high school, these were the cars they wanted and could afford. All genres are welcome here with presence from Japanese, European, and American cars. According to Roger, the most popular cars at the show from these three genres are Nissan Skylines, Datsun 240Zs, Acura NSXs, 3 Series BMWs, and Ford Mustangs.
The cars are judged on less-common criteria, due to the large variety. Automotive connoisseur Andy Reid and his hand-picked panel of judges walk the show and assess what each car is, how special it is as related to car culture as a whole, and how much effort each owner has put into modifying and caring for their car. You may have the fastest car in the lot, but you may not win if your rear quarter is covered in tire marbles.
This car show is unlike any other because it throws a bunch of car people from different generations into the same arena, where they can learn about other genres they would otherwise overlook, and appreciate different styles. The show is looking to expand to Las Vegas and even Los Angeles in the future, but for now the show will be held on January 15, at 5:00 pm on the roof of Scottsdale corner.
SOURCE: HOT ROD
AUTHOR: Zach Martin