Unlocking Horsepower: Your Roadmap to Muscle Car Ownership

Many people look at those who own muscle cars with an envious eye, and this is probably because they are for the beautiful echoes from a better time gone past. After all, you probably have some very fond memories of certain models and may have even had the poster on your wall.

On the other hand, others will be attracted to them and the aura of romance that surrounds them.

No matter what reason draws your eye to these fantastic manmade beasts, you should not look with envy at others but instead strive to own your very own muscle car – and experience all that they have to offer.

Learn from Others

Research Muscle Cars
Source: cnn.com

You’re likely to be on board with this, right up to the point where you feel overwhelmed due to too many choices or not having the first idea about where to start your journey. The main temptation here will be to purchase a muscle car as quickly as possible; however, this may not be the wisest move.

Instead, your first move should be to research muscle cars and even enlist the help of other muscle car enthusiasts who already have a collection you wouldn’t mind having yourself. These individuals will have in-depth knowledge of the cost of looking after the vehicles, storing them, and even renovating different makes and models within their private collections.

As an owner and collector himself, CEO, and founder of 1800 Accountancy, Michael Savage loves muscle cars and is always very keen to share his wealth of knowledge, experience, and passion.

Having an enthusiast such as Michael Savage take you under their wing could help you source your muscle car quicker – or at least open your eyes to all the pitfalls that could present themselves to the unwary.

Find Your Budget

Armed with this knowledge, you will have an idea of how much owning a muscle car will cost you – other than, of course, purchasing it in the first place. Ensuring that you have enough in your budget to cover monthly running costs and the necessities such as insurance will mean that you don’t end up with a car you cannot afford to use.

While you are working out your monthly budget, you should also think about how much you can afford to pay for your dream muscle car. No doubt, you will find that this is when the dream of owning such a car may plummet somewhat as it meets financial reality head-on.

The trick here is not to get disheartened; it may just mean that you have to compromise a little, and instead of getting one you can jump in drive, you may have to opt for one that requires love or even a whole new lease of life.

Choose Your Model

Choose Your Muscle Car Model
Source: motorpoint.co.uk

It is likely that you already have a make and model in mind, especially if it was the one in the poster on your wall. However, if you cannot or are finding it difficult to decide, your best bet is to do research into all the main factors of the different makes and models available.

Finding one that jumps out at you and suits your personality as well as your budget can give you a sense of purpose and will stop you from making the mistake of chasing after the wrong vehicle for you. Of course, your research shouldn’t just be internet-based; finding national or local meets of muscle car enthusiasts can help you look more closely at the models that you are interested in.

When talking to owners, you may even find that you are allowed to sit in one or be taken on a ride around the block so you can experience what it is like to hear the engine roar from inside the vehicle.

Roll up Your Sleeves

As touched on earlier, you may have to reign in your dreams about purchasing a muscle car that is ready to hit the road or even that looks like it might do any day soon. Rolling up your sleeves and preparing to get grips with hard work is going to save you something on the original price tag, as it stands to reason that a non-runner will be far cheaper than one that is totally up together.

Again, speaking to those who have already made this journey will help you understand the commitment that you will have to make, both financially and in time. Thinking that you will have a much faster turnaround time than is entirely likely could mean that you get frustrated, and your muscle car project either grinds to a halt or gets shelved completely.

Enjoy the Hunt

Muscle Car Dealers
Source: youtube.com

Once you know what you are looking for in terms of make, model, and price, you will be able to start your search. It may be enticing to start close to home, but do not forget that there are shipping businesses that are highly experienced in moving vehicles (including non-starters) from one place to another.

Opening up this wider search range could also influence your scope and budget in a positive way, especially if you are willing to seek out your perfect muscle car from abroad.

Besides scouring the internet, you can also enlist the help of car professionals themselves to help you find the muscle car of your dreams. Car dealers tend to know a lot of people within the car trade, and you may just find that they are approached by an owner wishing to sell quickly rather than wanting to list and wait for interested parties to come to them.

In a situation like this, the bad news is you are likely to be charged a ‘finders fee’ or at least not get it for the same bargain price as you might straight from the original owner. Conversely, the good news is it could help you get hold of your preferred muscle car that much faster.

Enlist Professional Help

Regardless of what state your muscle car happens to be in when you finally become the proud owner, you should always enlist the help of a professional mechanic to take a look under the hood. This will ensure that the car is fit to drive and that you are made fully aware of any up-and-coming issues that the previous owner may not have known or been entirely honest about.

Of course, if the muscle car you have purchased is a non-runner, your mechanic will need to do an inventory of all the work that needs to be done, which you should not attempt yourself. Don’t be put off by any hefty price tags, as you will probably find that the mechanic will be able to do the work for you as an ongoing project.

This means that it will be fitted in when they have time rather than a regular work-until-it-is-completed set up. You may also find that they will be able to tell you what work you can do yourself in order to keep the costs down to a minimum, which will also mean that your sense of achievement and pride in the finished article will increase.

Choosing Your Finish

Choosing Your Muscle Car Finish
Source: tradeheroaustralia.com

Of course, when you have the motor humming away nicely and the mechanic has done their part, it is time to start thinking about how your new ride will look to others. Choosing the color of your muscle car or any design that you may like to have on it is a very personal decision. As getting this done will not be cheap, you will probably want to get it right the first time.

In years gone by, you would have had to opt for a paint sprayer to work their magic – and if you want to get authentic results, then you will probably want to follow suit. However, nowadays, you can choose to get your muscle car vehicle wrapped instead. Although you could possibly do this yourself, you will find that you get a much better end product by engaging the help of a professional vehicle wrapper to do this for you.

You can choose to have graphics, pictures, or standard block colors in matt, satin, or high gloss finishes; some of the most attractive and fetching modern pearlized colors are available in this way. It is a good idea to do your research into what is available and how your muscle car’s bodywork will need to be prepared before booking it in, and any wrapping company will be pleased to talk to you about this.

Interior Tech Touches

While you are thinking about the exterior of your muscle car, you should spare a thought for the interior as well. Most color schemes of the exterior and interior will go hand in hand either to complement or to add vibrancy to the mix.

Door trims, dashboards, seating, and carpets will all have to be thought about. Again, getting a professional upholsterer to stitch your car seats, door trims, and dashboard trims will give your vehicle a much better finish than trying to do it all yourself.

Checking out photos will give you an idea of the traditional look for the make and model you have brought if you want to keep it in line with that. Of course, you have the ability to take it in a new direction completely and personalize it to your specific tastes and preferences – therefore making it totally unique to you. The same goes for the carpeting of the footwells and in the base of the trunk.

You may also want to add some modern tech to the interior of your muscle that may not have been standard or even in manufacture when your model was first made. This could be strip lights for your footwells, a stereo system for entertainment, and even navigational tech for when you are driving around. The addition of a rear parking camera would also be beneficial and can be less than conspicuously placed so as not to draw attention from the rest of your vehicle.

Driving with Pride

Driving with Pride
Source: viator.com

Once you have your muscle car working and looking great, you are going to want to show it off. As you will have already been made aware of the different meets that happen in your area and possibly even registered with a few owners’ clubs, you will find that there is no end to the socializing and driving trips that you can attend.

However, you shouldn’t just stop there. Your impressive accomplishment deserves to be seen and viewed by many, and you will only manage this by taking as many road trips as you can. Taking your dream muscle car on cross-state vacations (or even a bit further) should certainly be on your calendar and can be made even more fun if joined by other enthusiasts so that you can travel in convoy.

Share Your Experience with Others

Another way you can show your pride and get others interested is to share your experience. Writing your own blog (or creating a video diary) about how your muscle car went from a wreck to a masterpiece will be an inspiration to all who read and see it.

This will be especially true if you include lots of photos showing its journey through each and every stage of its transformation, so you will be able to captivate the hearts and dreams of others wanting to follow in your footsteps.

Lots of people – even those who may not be interested in doing the journey themselves – will be interested to hear your struggles and celebrate your accomplishments. In fact, your followers, readers, and viewers will look forward to the next project that you will ultimately want to undertake, which could well be another non-running wreck of a muscle car in need of love and attention.

A Few Final Thoughts

Muscle Car Ownership
Source: carhub.ca

Once you have made this transition yourself, you will be well-placed to pass on the lessons you learned just as others have done for you. Taking each step carefully not only means you get exactly what you want, but it also makes it easier for novices to have a go at owning their own muscle car and, like you, living the dream that they never thought would be a reality.