You’ve probably heard this debate before. Car aficionados will happily rattle off all the reasons why timeless classic cars are superior to their modern counterparts. They’ll look back at the old days when cars were more art than machine.

In contrast, modern car lovers might tell you about how we need to let go of the past and embrace the benefits of modern technology.

This article lays out our analysis of the classic cars vs modern cars debate.

Classic Cars vs Modern Cars Breakdown

Here we will take a look at several factors that differentiate classic cars vs modern cars, which hopefully can give you a better idea of which one might be best for you.

A Reasonable Price?

Before deciding whether classic cars are better than modern cars, we should compare them according to cost. There is a misconception that older cars are automatically more expensive than modern cars, but the answer depends on several factors. 

With recent technological innovations, new cars (e.g., Tesla) are getting more and more expensive. A vehicle with all the perks such as Bluetooth connectivity, a start/stop button, and advanced climate control will likely cost more than an ordinary classic.

However, when classic cars are more expensive, it’s typically because of restoration costs. Bringing a vehicle into this era takes a lot of effort and money. If you decide to do it yourself, be prepared to splurge on pricey parts and spend lots of time in the garage.

If you take it to professionals, be ready to pay a hefty amount. Apart from restoration costs, maintenance is also expensive. Be prepared for numerous breakdowns and trips to the garage. 

Ultimately, the cost comes down to what kind of classic car you’re looking for. If you want an Aston Martin or Ferrari, you’re going to need to fork out a lot of money. However, there are more affordable classic options out there (e.g., Fiat).

Personal Preferences for the Driving Experience

Brands sell classic cars based on the driving experience. Classic cars focus more on how the driver feels when they’re in the car, and how other people see them. That’s why classic cars are considered “real cars.” When you’re driving one, it’s just you, the car, and the beautiful road ahead. 

Driving a vintage car can be exhilarating. It doesn’t have the electronics that usually help you out, meaning you are in complete control of the vehicle. However, not having modern perks means it can be challenging to face everyday problems such as harsh weather. But can you drive a classic car daily?

A modern vehicle is sold based on luxury and safety. The focus is on how the car makes your life easier and how effortless your driving experience becomes. This is why newer models are taking out the driving functions and replacing them with simple buttons.

If you’re a person who considers cars basic transport to move you from point A to point B, then a modern vehicle is a better purchase. 

Modern vehicles simplify the driving experience. They have handy perks that make the drive more enjoyable. Everything you need is right there, and driving feels more natural. In general, it’s easier to drive a modern car compared to a classic car. 

Lack of Technology, Lack of Reliability

Are classic cars safe? Well, modern cars are more reliable and safer than vintage vehicles thanks to the latest modern technology. Even though they have more complicated wiring, modern car engines are easier to fix. You can probably fix any problems that may arise with a well-stocked toolbox.  

Also, modern cars are more reliable because they come with guarantees and full explanatory guides. When you buy a modern car, you know exactly what you’re buying and how the vehicle will perform over its lifetime.

We can’t say the same about classic cars. You never know what you’re going to get, and you can just hope for the best. For example, do classic cars need catalytic converters? Questions like these will make you pause on your purchase. The car may present problems your local mechanic can’t fix, and you’ll be forced to look elsewhere, possibly needing to ask the original manufacturer. 

As previously mentioned, modern vehicles are safer due to features like powerful seat belts and airbags. These features might seem minor, but they could be the difference between life and death in an accident. Since modern cars are safer, owning a classic car is a luxury, not a need. Classic cars make terrible everyday cars when considering safety. 

Style of Classic and Modern Models

Classic cars are more stylish than modern vehicles. Why do classic cars look better? No matter how many newer and edgier designs car manufacturers introduce, they will never outdo vintage vehicles. Most brands built their reputations on the backs of classic cars. Here are some of the most beautiful classic cars. For example, Ford will never surpass the Ford Mustang, and Porsche will never outdo the 911. 

Classic cars are more stylish because they’re smaller and lighter. They have less complicated engineering, so the focus was on the look, which is often classy and elegant.

On the other hand, modern cars are more focused on function, efficiency, and machinery, not design. If you park an old and new version of the same model, the older version will draw more attention because it looks better. 

Another reason why the classics look better is that manufacturers used to focus on individuality. Instead of making the same car repeatedly and just adding newer features, brands used to make each car differently. You could tell each model apart, and you were guaranteed that you’d drive a one-of-a-kind machine. This is why there are so many famous classic car collectors around.

In contrast, most modern vehicles look the same. If you see one, you’ve seen them all. 


Based on our analysis, buying a classic car vs a modern vehicle is all about individual preference. It’s about what matters most to you. For example, a classic car could be a more enjoyable drive, but it’s not as safe and reliable as a modern car. 

We suggest buying a modern car for everyday needs, and then a classic car for a lovely weekend drive. A classic car makes a terrible first car, but it would be an excellent addition to your garage.

We hope you found this article helpful in trying to decide whether a classic car or a modern car is right for you. If you’re interested in similar articles, please check out the other content on our site.