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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
The Future of Our Cars and Hobby/Passion

Long WSJ Journal Report Wed 21 June about the demise of the car. "The End of Car Ownership - Ride sharing and self-driving vehicles will redefine our relationship with cars. Auto makers and startups are already gearing up for the change."

With the changing demographics in the population and many cited technological and social changes, I often wonder what impact that will have on our future ability to drive our old nasty unsafe polluting cars on public highways. There will be drastic changes to ownership models, car companies viability, rental and ride sharing, repair, government revenue means and public policy on competing use of highways.

With the breed also dying off, I also often wonder who will pick up the vintage car habit as well as the repair trade. This IS the market. Some of us do a lot of our own work but many not and I suspect even fewer down the road will. 180out and I discuss this often and he is non-plussed but then he is 10 years older than me and only has one Alfa. Will our heirs be stuck with a lot of rusty old crap that nobody wants, kinda like antiques are now?

No I'm not losing any sleep over this and immensely enjoy driving my old Alfas. But there will be a day when . . . . . ________________________. Fill in the blank.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-end-of-car-ownership-1498011001?tesla=y
 

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That was one of the most depressing articles I've read recently. As a 28 year old vintage car enthusiast I am terrified for 50 years (or even 20 years) from now. I am also seriously afraid of driving my irreplaceable classics on the road with computer driven cars programmed by Government Motors or the others. Maybe when the baby boomers get too old for them, prices will come down and make them more accessible to those of us who still appreciate them. I'm hoping for a Ferrari? None of it will be worth it if it's not legal for me to drive them though...
 

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Seems like Boomers (46-64) were driving the market up for a while wanting nostalgia in and hobbies for retirement, but we are reaching the mid-point in their retirement now and even with a better economy and stock market, sales have slumped for a while. Cost/price/market is one aspect, but looming larger is regs/public policy/taxation/emissions (look at European cities on "oldtimers")/usage is entirely another matter. If you look at pics of the various Alfa and other events and CNC's it is 80% plus crusty old salts. In demographic terms there is not enough replacement fodder, and further social trends are away from wrenching and fettling and looking at a car as an appliance, and this changing the market.
 

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That was one of the most depressing articles I've read recently. As a 28 year old vintage car enthusiast I am terrified for 50 years (or even 20 years) from now. I am also seriously afraid of driving my irreplaceable classics on the road with computer driven cars programmed by Government Motors or the others. Maybe when the baby boomers get too old for them, prices will come down and make them more accessible to those of us who still appreciate them. I'm hoping for a Ferrari? None of it will be worth it if it's not legal for me to drive them though...
Jonathan, I'm impressed that you joined this site when you were 16 or 17! I am 39 and feel like I am on the younger side of this hobby. I still want more cars in my garage but at current prices I think there is the chance of major price drop dependent on some major new govt policy changes that could happen. So I can't do this for money, it's more for the enjoyment. So as long as they don't stop me from driving I am ok with decreased values.
 

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I would not be concerned. There are tons of vintage airplanes that are still flying today. Granted, there are not as many planes as there are cars. Provisions have been made to accommodate these old planes. I ca see that there will be accommodations for our old cars.

It's only a matter of time before the old clunkers are taken off the road. I don't know if you have classic license plates in Texas, but we do in Colorado. For now, we don't need to get an emissions test to get the tags. I'm sure that will change in the future and that will remove some of the clunkers that smoke and pollute.

I really can't see that our government will prevent responsible vintage car owners from driving their cars, not even for safety reasons. People that have money and cars will be able to afford whatever is needed to keep their cars on the road.
 

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I see it all around me. A sixteen year old without a license was unheard in my day. Now it seems nearly half of 16 year olds don't bother. But I think the Alfa market will hold on for the foreseeable future. It's the guys that laid down bank for their dream Hemi Cuda that will be wondering wa happin...
 

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If you look at pics of the various Alfa and other events and CNC's it is 80% plus crusty old salts. In demographic terms there is not enough replacement fodder, and further social trends are away from wrenching and fettling and looking at a car as an appliance, and this changing the market.
A couple of years ago, I would have agreed that 80% plus of the participants in our local Alfa club's events were crusty old salts. Actually, the number was probably closer to 100%.

But we had a few 21st Century Alfas show up at our last club event. And the demographics of those owners is definitely younger. So perhaps there is hope - these people may not disassemble their gearboxes for fun, but they are going to participate in shows and drives.

ossodiseppia said:
It's only a matter of time before the old clunkers are taken off the road. ...we don't need to get an emissions test to get the tags. I'm sure that will change in the future and that will remove some of the clunkers that smoke and pollute.
That is exactly the sort of thing that would appeal to the slimebag politicians here in California. Take the cars off the road that are driven the fewest miles per year, in return for several thousand more votes. Accomplishes exactly nothing for air quality, but sounds good to the electorate.
 

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Unless parts, fuel, and insurance become cost prohibitive, it's difficult for me to see this dying off for quite a while. I'm 37. But I will need to keep up to make sure my kids can keep pace with things.

It's just tough to see the roads becoming traveled only by self driven cars or ride shares. Contractors and other service, police, certain heavy equipment. Travel through rural areas. I just don't see certain things going away easily without some major restriction on our current freedoms.
 

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It may be even more difficult to swallow the loss in certain trades involving human interaction, hand craftsmanship, etc.

This adds to the comment below. It's hard to see us giving up certain skills and the desire to keep history alive.

I think certain things will live on for some time.
 

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With the changing demographics in the population and many cited technological and social changes, I often wonder what impact that will have on our future ability to drive our old nasty unsafe polluting cars on public highways. There will be drastic changes to ownership models, car companies viability, rental and ride sharing, repair, government revenue means and public policy on competing use of highways.
I believe the future is not as bleak as that.

I've said this before, but people once predicted that automobiles would cause the horse as a species to become extinct. There have certainly been a lot of changes (nobody daily drives a horse to work anymore) but there are also multi-million dollar industries dedicated to the use and enjoyment of horses, in many different ways.

And, from a legal standpoint, riders on horseback still have the right of way on most public roads and trails around here. So I would have to believe that "legacy" automobiles will also have some rights grandfathered in when new rules are made up, at least in rural areas. I can see congested urban areas banning them completely in the near future.
 

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It's only a matter of time before the old clunkers are taken off the road. I don't know if you have classic license plates in Texas, but we do in Colorado. For now, we don't need to get an emissions test to get the tags. I'm sure that will change in the future and that will remove some of the clunkers that smoke and pollute.
It already has changed. You can get collector plates on any vehicle 32 years old or older. However, for cars 1976 model year and later, you need a smog test before you can get the collector plates and at every 5 year renewal.
 

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25 years in CT and the car is emissions exempt.

Again, a lot of things have to change rapidly to prevent us from driving those cars.
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
I believe the future is not as bleak as that.

I've said this before, but people once predicted that automobiles would cause the horse as a species to become extinct. There have certainly been a lot of changes (nobody daily drives a horse to work anymore) but there are also multi-million dollar industries dedicated to the use and enjoyment of horses, in many different ways.

And, from a legal standpoint, riders on horseback still have the right of way on most public roads and trails around here. So I would have to believe that "legacy" automobiles will also have some rights grandfathered in when new rules are made up, at least in rural areas. I can see congested urban areas banning them completely in the near future.
I really don't know if the future is bleak but there are a number of ominous signs and it depends on who is king and their priorities. Cities in Europe are starting to limit and ban older cars in their ever increasing "crackdown" on smog (but not terrorists). Is just that handful of oldtimers cars that causes smog? I doubt it. But they get the rap even with 80% particle emitting diesels there. It would seem that CA's repression of TTL'ing newer (68-76) older cars, and newer import cars, the OR '76 cutoff, is a sign of creeping exclusion. Having to title 60-70's Giulias in Vermont for God's sake and figure out how to re-register them later in CA is not a smoke signalt? I also wonder how much longer premium fuel will be in significant demand and widely available and then still produced? Like Ethanol-free fuel limited to av/marine/farm areas.

It already has changed. You can get collector plates on any vehicle 32 years old or older. However, for cars 1976 model year and later, you need a smog test before you can get the collector plates and at every 5 year renewal.
Depends on the state and sometimes even county if it is a EPA non-attainment area. In TX it is 25 years rolling for limited use "Antiques" that require no inspections or smogging and reg only every 5 years (perhaps smogging in NA area?). That means that 1992's are antiques now. Same as Fed import requirements. But none of this means that this exemption will last in the quest for environmentalists perfection and further that fuel, mechanics and right-of-way will be granted. Ask 180out about intolerant social movements; old cars are a sign of an old decadent culture, yatti, yatti, ad nauseum.
 

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That's a better law than here in Las Vegas (Clark County... not the entire state is the same) Over here, "any" car newer than 1967 needs to get smogged unless you get classic vehicle tags but that still doesn't get you off the hook. The stipulation is that you have to go to DMV each year to show them how much mileage was put on the vehicle. Only then do they waive the smog check. Other than my 71 Alfa spider (still being restored... so not registered yet) I have a 59 Corvette ((thankfully older than 1967) but unfortunately my 1968 Camaro SS is just one year too new. Drat!
 

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Discussion Starter #16
25 years in CT and the car is emissions exempt.

Again, a lot of things have to change rapidly to prevent us from driving those cars.
Look how quickly and firmly we got ethanol additive crammed up our arses even though it makes no sense unless you are a corn farmer or agribusiness. And despite all the data and cons, we still can't get rid of it.
 

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I believe the future is not as bleak as that.

I've said this before, but people once predicted that automobiles would cause the horse as a species to become extinct. There have certainly been a lot of changes (nobody daily drives a horse to work anymore) but there are also multi-million dollar industries dedicated to the use and enjoyment of horses, in many different ways.

And, from a legal standpoint, riders on horseback still have the right of way on most public roads and trails around here. So I would have to believe that "legacy" automobiles will also have some rights grandfathered in when new rules are made up, at least in rural areas. I can see congested urban areas banning them completely in the near future.
If they (the government) does that, I'd rather be dead. LOL I don't think most guys can live without cars. At least I can't. Because of cars, motorcycles, etc., it's the only means for us guys to think for ourselves on our own term in our garages and to simply get away from other nagging "annoyances" in our lives. Technology is good only up to a certain point but thereafter has become very detrimental. Sorry, I just won't do electric cars (too quiet... too weird for me) and especially won't do self driving cars... Think of a computer crashing... Brings a new meaning to the famous blue screen of death... Yikes!:surprise: Yeah I agree that this would definitely have to be grandfathered in as are horses today. :smile2:
 

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Look how quickly and firmly we got ethanol additive crammed up our arses even though it makes no sense unless you are a corn farmer or agribusiness. And despite all the data and cons, we still can't get rid of it.
This isn't a combative question. I would like to understand more. Has this stopped you from driving classic cars?
 

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Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
If they (the government) does that, I'd rather be dead. LOL I don't think most guys can live without cars. At least I can't. Because of cars, motorcycles, etc., it's the only means for us guys to think for ourselves on our own term in our garages and to simply get away from other nagging "annoyances" in our lives. Technology is good only up to a certain point but thereafter has become very detrimental. Sorry, I just won't do electric cars (too quiet... too weird for me) and especially won't do self driving cars... Think of a computer crashing... Brings a new meaning to the famous blue screen of death... Yikes!:surprise: Yeah I agree that this would definitely have to be grandfathered in as are horses today. :smile2:
But Comrade, for the good of the collective you will have a man-bun and wear metrosexual flannel (and a manskirt) and crush you old noisy polluting culturally oppressive and mysoginistic icon. :surprise: Working in the community garden will bring you peace from your annoyances. You can meditate and perform self-improvement in the self-driving cars in town and on light rail to avoid pollution, noise and congestion downtown and commuting into town. In fact getting a small apartment near your work with no parking (building in Austin) will avoid commuting and you can use public transit (Agenda21) without even the need to own a car. . . . :surprise:

You get the point. But this would never happen, right.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
This isn't a combative question. I would like to understand more. Has this stopped you from driving classic cars?
No not me, but it has done immeasurable damage in the marine industry and small gas-powered appliances. I imagine it is causing more need for carb rebuilds and FI work. I see white deposits all over my fuel system when I break it apart. We live with and adapt to the craziness and pay the farmers. Andf we pay more for our food. Corn for ethanol for votes in the mid-west.
 
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