AutoTalk: Originality is the name of the game

Zach Benedict

Zach Benedict, Beacon Blogger

I hope everyone is having an excellent semester! I know for sure I certainly am! While scrolling through the automotive news, I had a thought dawn on me that I had to write about. How many of you that drive know the true history of your car? For that matter, how original is the car? In my honest opinion, keeping a car original is the best possible thing to do for the future value of your car.
Let’s be honest, you know there are people that take off original parts like the air cleaner, dash gauges, etc. Now granted, sometimes it can often help the car perform faster, or look cooler. You might be thinking to yourself, when would my car ever be worth a lot of money? Believe me, I’ve heard that story many times, although some people just end up coincidentally being the first owner of a car since day one, and before they know it, it’s a classic. The same thing happened with my grandpa and his ’67 GS400.
He planned to trade it in after two years, but he never did. He drove it until 1974 and then parked it. Honestly, I don’t blame him. In that time, the oil embargo was taking place, and gas prices were going through the roof, and his GS400 isn’t exactly what you’d call fuel efficient. He took the car off the road and just put it in his garage. Before he knew it, he owned a classic. What was once a car worth maybe $2,000 in trade-in credit, is now worth over $20,000. Imagine if your daily driver was worth that much. Chances are, you’d want everything to be the way it came off of the assembly line. My grandpa was one of those people to do that. When he owned his Electra 225’s and all sorts of other cars that were “older”, he never did anything to them besides clean them up. He liked everything to stay original. If he was restoring a car, maybe he’d add a touch of his own, but other than that, everything stayed original.
I know when I look at the older cars that are for sale, I’m very interested when the car is a one owner, all original car. To me, that’s the perfect car. I’m very passionate about keeping a car all original, because someone will fall head over heels in love with the car that is being sold if it’s an all original car. Of course some stuff will never be original (or at least shouldn’t) like the oil, the filters, sensors, spark plugs and wires, etc. The small stuff like that doesn’t affect the car’s value. I’m talking about major stuff, like the valve covers, air cleaner, interior, shifter, transmission, even the stock engine. My Grandpa’s Buick is about 98% original, including the clutch (yes, a 47 year old clutch that’s still healthy) and a one owner car. That’s the ideal car not only to me, but a lot of other people. So next time you think about adding those gauges, or that aftermarket air cleaner, take a step back and think about the future.

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