What Is Car Restoration?

For the better part of the last hundred years, some of the best and brightest minds have dedicated themselves to creating unique, interesting, and high-quality vehicles. The history of cars is a story of human ingenuity, craftsmanship, and persistence, and this story has inspired millions of people all across the globe. They want to have a piece of this history in their home, drive it around the block, even. The demand for classic cars has been increasing steadily for the last 3 decades, and car enthusiasts around the world compete to get their hands on older models and classic cars. Sadly most of these cars are in very bad shape – some have been through traffic incidents, others have faded paint, and even older cars might have a completely unfunctional engine. You need a way to restore these cars to their former glory if you want to have the full experience of owning a classic.

Car Restoration

The Spirit of Car Restoration

To understand what’s car restoration completely, you need to understand its purpose, and what exactly makes it different from refurbishment, a regular mechanic visit, maintenance, etc. Car restorations have a very specific purpose, and they are to bring back a classic back to life as faithfully as possible. It is an attempt to preserve a piece of history while bringing it back to life: 

It is not refurbishment: it is probably cheaper and easier to get a classic car looking good and functional if you use normal car paint and throw a compatible modern engine in the car. It will likely even function better, but just getting the car to look good and running isn’t the purpose of restoration. It is purpose is to make the car look excellent and running while at the same time being faithful to the original parts and craftsmanship. That’s why the car restoration service will go to great lengths and have contacts with the original car makers to ensure they get their hands on an authentic, historically-accurate engine to put in the car.

Levels of Car Restoration 

There are multiple levels of car restoration depending on what your goals are: 

  • Restored to driving conditions: this is the minimum amount of restoration you can do in a car. The purpose of this is to just get a functioning car that you can drive around, and the person doesn’t really care that much about how the exterior of the car looks and how does the inside feels. This level is generally suitable for generic cars that are ten to thirty years old and have stopped functioning for one reason or another. 
  • Restored to showcasing conditions: the next level is for those who want to showcase their classic car. If you have a relatively rare classic car, it will give you a higher status and more stature in the business and political world. It will be an excellent vehicle to take with you when trying to close a business deal or are meeting with high-ranking officials. At this level of restoration, both functionality and aesthetics are of paramount importance, and the team working on your car has to ensure your car looks flawless to the regular person and rides smoothly without any problems. 
  • Restored to Concours d’Elegance conditions: meaning “competition of elegance” in French, Concours d’Elegance are car show competitions around the world where the best looking, most unique, and the best-kept cars participate to see who wins. Winning one of these competitions means you have one of the best looking cars in the world and it is something that will get your car and name in newspapers and magazines. The competition is fierce, and if you want your car to have a chance, it needs to undergo a special restoration. Every part of your car, whether visible or not, will be checked and judged, and even just a single blot of paint on a screw inside the hood of the car might detract points from your car. If you love classic cars, love competition, and have a lot of money to spend, this is an excellent way to do it. 

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