Do you want to start a car business but want to go niche and be unique? If YES, here are 26 best classic cars related business ideas / opportunities for 2020.
While a lot of people have their own definitions of what they believe a classic car to be, but generally, a classic car is an old fancy car. The Antique Automobile Club of America in their own definition described classic cars to be “fine” or “unusual” vehicles, foreign or domestic, that are between 25 and 50 years old.
A certain statistics has it that 1,366,843 American classic cars have been produced in the world so far, and over half of them are Cadillacs. Even though they are old, classic cars are far from fading into obscurity.
In fact, if your classic car is old enough and has enough historical interest, it can be a collectible that is worth preserving, and it can earn you a lot of money in the market. Apart from collecting classic cars, there are several other businesses one can start in the classic cars niche, here are some of them.
26 Best Classic Cars Business ideas & Opportunities for 2020
- Start a classic car insurance company
Anyone one who has a classic car would do everything they can to protect their precious investment. That includes keeping it clean, well maintained and sheltered, and of course getting the right insurance.
It should be noted that when it comes to a classic car, truck, motorcycle, or other rare and vintage vehicles, traditional automobile insurance can’t keep pace with the values they command or the TLC they require. This then makes room for a business opportunity. If you have the capacity, you can start a classic car insurance firm to insure classic vehicles for their owners.
- Offer classic car financing
If you have an interest in classic and collector vehicles but you don’t necessarily want to be a collector, you can decide to provide financing for classic car collectors to help them own their dream cars. You can offer financing for exotic, antique, vintage vehicles and more, belonging to many different car varieties. You can offer low rates and fast closings to stand out from other financing houses.
An antique and classic auto dealership business sells a wide range of special cars that are already several years old. These cars are normally viewed as collector’s items due to its limited manufactured versions. Classic car dealership businesses showcase their cars by displaying them in a wide lot so that customers may easily assess and view the cars.
Many people are fanatics of antique and classic cars, and these people would surely patronize your business. If you are starting an antique and classic auto dealership business, then you must have enough background knowledge about classic cars.
The details you must deeply understand include their brand history, model, year manufactured, quality of the leather interiors, power and speed of the car, and many more. This wealth of knowledge can help get you a lot of customers because you sound very reliable and knowledgeable in terms of vintage cars. Knowledge can really keep you in business.
- Start a classic car storage business
Car storage is big business, especially in the northern climate areas of the united states and Canada. This is because parking cars outside under the elements hasten their deterioration. The first step to establishing a car storage business is to secure low-cost indoor storage space, such as a vacant warehouse or manufacturing building.
The next step is to simply market the business, and this is best accomplished by joining automotive clubs and associations and attending the clubs’ meetings and social functions to network for business. To succeed in this business, you have to ensure that your storage spaces well maintained with the right heating. Insurance is another vital thing for this business as you have to protect the cars under your care.
- Start a classic car restoration business
Classic car owners and enthusiasts will pay good money to professional auto shops that can restore their prized possessions. The restoration process can take months and many auto restoration shops have year-long waiting lists. If you’ve got the skills or know technicians who do and you know a thing or two about managing a business, starting an auto restoration shop has the potential to make you great money.
You should first hire ASE certified mechanics or trained auto restoration specialists experienced in custom painting and modifications. If necessary, hire a restoration specialist to come to your shop and train your mechanics on restoration techniques. Review and meet your state’s requirements for becoming a licensed auto shop. Procure metal-working tools, auto repair equipment and safety gear and start marketing your business.
- Start a classic car auction business
If you are at all interested in classic cars, you would have probably heard about the high-dollar auctions where rare and valuable automobiles are sold. You can start your very own classic car auction business. To run a classic car auction business, you have to find people who own classic, exotic, or otherwise interesting cars, and want to sell those cars.
Then you should equally find the buyers. Buyers are looking to get the best possible deal, but they are also willing to pay top dollar for the right car. At an auction, buyers have to compete with each other in a high-stakes, fast-paced environment. The auction environment is designed to be confusing and adrenaline-charged. Do not forget to add a bar to release nerves. This business has high stakes, so it is not for everybody.
- Start a classic car online rental business
Classic car rental is another profitable business one can start with classic cars. If you own classic cars, motorcycles, trucks and vans, you can rent them out for weddings, events and for use in film and television. Alternatively, you can provide an online platform where classic vehicle owners can rent out their cars, vans, trucks, motorcycles etc. to the public for various functions.
You can run this business to provide an elegant platform for those who want to make a bit of extra cash from a beloved car, bus, motorcycle or other classic vehicles. To be successful in this business, you must have a viable and user friendly website, then you have to market the business very well.
- Become a classic car collector
You can equally become a collector of classic cars. You can look for classic cars that are in good condition or you can look for classic cars that need a bit of restoration. Some of the places you can go for great bargains are eBay and other online car dealerships and online classifieds.
You can also check newspaper listings, car magazines and online classic car forums. These usually have numerous listings of all kinds of classic cars with different conditions. As you look at cars to buy, make sure to read all the given details and specifications which could help you assess their value. Car collecting is rewarding in many ways, starting with the fact that a prized vehicle can last a lifetime.
- Open an online classic car forum
A classic car forum is a place where classic car enthusiasts gather to chat about any veteran, vintage or classic car. Because classic cars are not so popular, so their owners are always looking for how to get expert advice on how to handle the cars.
You can open a classic car forum online where classic car owners and enthusiasts can gather to talk about how to handle their cars, how to go about restoration, how to get the best mechanic, how to get good price on sale, and general talk shop. You can earn you pay via adverts, Google AdSense, affiliate marketing etc.
- Run a classic car blog
Similar to running a classic car forum is running a classic car blog, but the difference is that in a blog, you get to do most of the writings. To run a classic car blog effectively, you have to be very knowledgeable about classic cars and how they operate. You have to stay on top of the news and events that happen around classic cars and in the industry. You should also be able to run adverts and classifieds to enable you earn some profit while also informing people.
- Sell classic car parts
Launching an antique and classic auto parts business is your ticket to owning a good, stable business. This is because classic cars are old, and so they would always need to have some essential parts changed if they must continue to run on the roads.
Since most classic car models went out of the market a long time ago, so their parts would also be out of the market too. You can source classic car parts from their manufacturers and sell them to classic car restoration shops or mechanics. You should research the business adequately before you start, if not, you would stock parts that you may not be able to sell.
- Manufacture classic car parts
Another lucrative classic car business is the manufacturing of classic car parts. You could dedicate your workshop to just manufacturing different parts for various models of classic cars. This business would prove very lucrative because there are very few people that are into the business thus making the parts quite expensive and also profitable.
If your parts are quite authentic, and mechanics do not complain about it, you would make a name for yourself in the industry. Extensive marketing is your key to success in this business.
Auto detailing is the act of performing thorough cleaning, restoration, and finishing on a motor vehicle, to produce a show-quality cleanliness and polish. Because classic cars are old, and may have gone through a lot of restoration, so they need something more than just washing with soap to restore it back to new.
If you have some artistic flair, you can start a classic car detailing business where you help classic car owners restore the original shine of their cars. You have to set of this business where people are keen on classic cars.
- Become a classic car valeter
Car valeting is the process of cleaning, polishing and waxing an auto-mobile in order to achieve an as-new look and enhance the resale value. This usually includes cleaning the wheels and shuts, washing, polishing and waxing the bodywork, dressing exterior plastics and tyres, polishing brightwork and polishing the glass.
The cleaning process should also include the use of a clay bar to remove unwanted contaminants from the paint such as iron filings, industrial fallout, tar spots and tree sap, which all cause the paint to feel rough and dull in appearance.
Classic vehicles can be expensive to fix and maintain, and it even takes a lot of expert motoring knowledge to be able to fix classic cars. If you have this knowledge, you can start flipping classic cars. To start this business, one has to buy classic cars, especially those that need some work so that the buyer can get it cheap.
After you buy the car, you get to work and get them fixed up as new. You should also fix up paint chips and get the car thoroughly detailed. Ensure you use quality parts in fixing your car, if not, you would find it difficult to get buyers as nobody wants to buy a liability. You can start with one car before expanding. If you are not able to get buyers, you can take your cars to the nearest auction.
- Become a classic car speculator
Rather than sink money into brick and mortar stores, or stocks and shares, you can do just the same business, but with classic cars. This business involves knowing the right time to buy cars, and the right cars to buy, and as well knowing when to sell your cars.
To profit in this business, you have to be quite knowledgeable about classic cars. Though the profit margin may not be too wide, but you are still not going to make a loss, that is if you plan it well. Timing is everything in this business.
Everything in life can benefit from the right software program, and it is the same with classic cars. You can set up a software that helps in classic car rentals, one that can help you track the market, or one that can help people know where to get parts and the right mechanic for each car model. You can make money for this by marketing your software effectively.
- Organize classic car shows
An auto show, also known as a motor show or car show, is a public exhibition of current automobile models, debuts, concept cars, or out-of-production classics. It is attended by automotive industry representatives, dealers, auto journalists and car enthusiasts. You can start a car show where you contact classic car owners to attend and showcase their vehicles. You can also organize car auctions here.
- Open a classic car garage
Classic Car enthusiasts will often travel miles and willingly go off the beaten track to visit a classic car garage. If you own a property with a large enough piece of land or a spare building, you can start a classic car garage… that is if you have enough experience with fixing classic cars. You can start by buying up a few old cars that are not worth repairing, so you can harvest their parts to use in fixing other cars.
You can get headlights, bumpers, arm indicators, steering wheels, hub caps, door handles, radiator grilles, car manufacture emblems, etc. You can collect some pictures of vintage cars or old racing pictures with the racing drivers standing by their veteran cars for inspiration. If you cannot get these pictures, then you can consider buying classic car magazines.
A classic car magazine is a magazine with news and reports on classic cars and the automobile industry. These magazines provide a reliable source for any antique and classic car and auto enthusiast. You can start printing a classic car magazine where you should aim to provide vivid photographs and well-written and informative articles that showcase antique and classic cars that have gone through miraculous restorations. You should also provide classified sections where people can see classic car sales, event calendars and much more.
There are two major challenges people face when restoring vintage vehicles, firstly is the scarcity of certain spare parts as they are no longer in production; and secondly is the speculation in the spare parts market. These problems and more are what led entrepreneurs to seek easier ways to get classic car spare parts, and they came up with 3D printing.
These days, 3D printing is used to create new parts on-demand, thus reducing restoration costs. If you are very familiar with 3D printing, you can start looking into printing classic car parts in 3D to make for easier and cheaper restoration works.
The idea of hiring out classic cars is not a new one but as the value of these cars continues to go through the roof, the reality of owning one becomes less and less tangible for most people. It is this desire and increasing inaccessibility that makes classic car hire business a very promising Business model.
If you have a couple of classic vehicles like cars, vans, motorcycles, trucks, etc. you can start hiring them out for weddings, proms, school shows, movies, photo shoots, you name them. This business can fetch you more than a decent income in a short while. But the big concern and pressure is to make sure that customers do not cause more damage to the car than the insurance can cover.
- Set up multiple affiliate websites around classic car products
You can start a comfortable affiliate business with your blog. If you run a classic car blog, you can start advertising classic car parts or other things on the website or blog and you get to have a percentage when you make a sale from your blog. You just have to ensure that you have good followership and your blog or website ranks well in Google.
- Use your classic car as mobile billboard
People often see ads on taxis, buses and other common vehicles but less so on a classic vehicle. If you drive your car and park in public places, you are a good candidate to offer advertising space. Because classic cars are not a common sight, they usually attract a lot of attention when they pass, or wherever they are parked. You can either make the custom vinyl graphics yourself or let someone else pay you a monthly fee to advertise on your car.
- Open a classic car club
A car club or automotive enthusiast community is a group of people who share a common interest in motor vehicles. Car clubs are typically organized by enthusiasts around the type of vehicle, brand, or similar interest. Joining a car club provides the convenience of owning a car without the hassle or costs of repairs, servicing or parking. You can set up a classic car club for classic vehicle enthusiasts.
Here, members can book peoples classic cars, van or motorcycles locally for just an hour, up to a whole weekend, or longer for a certain fee. Members can also have the flexibility to increase the booking period to anything from an hour up to a whole weekend, or longer by arrangement. Members should be made to pay a renewable membership fee to belong to the club.
One way to make good use of classic cars is to show them off. This is what is basically done in a reality show. If you have good knowledge of the showbiz industry, you can start a reality show that centers on classic cars. If your show has a great theme and you give it good publicity, you may even affect the classic car market quite positively, and not to talk of making a good name and profit for yourself.