Is owning a classic Mustang or other vintage car for you?:
We like to think just about everyone can purchase, drive and get a huge amount of enjoyment out of these incredible cars. Some simple maintenance and storage procedures can make them even more reliable once you get them home. Keeping your vintage cars battery on a charger when not in use, purchasing an electronic ignition module which locates unseen under the factory distributor cap and also making sure you get a yearly service can make all the difference in reliability. These cars are quite simple. A small amount of mechanical ability goes a long way to sorting just about any problem you can come across with these cars. About four basic hand tools can remove most parts of the car that you would need to access for normal jobs. With a small collection of approximately 10 inexpensive tools you can have the car completely apart so in actuality ownership is not going to require massive catalogue of new tools. Flat tipped and phillips screwdrivers, an imperial socket set as well as imperial spanners (we like the ratchet action type, £23 for a set on Ebay), jack stands, ramps and a small trolley jack are a great start. After a while you may want to purchase the few Mustang specific tools such as door panel clip removers and dash bezel removal tools that cost about $15 dollars each from US suppliers if you are going to tinker behind the scenes so to speak on the car.
When we receive a car, what do Classicamericancarsales do to it?:
At classic American car sales we try to eliminate potential problems customers may have with good car preparation by ourselves. When a car comes to our shop we first yard drive it to see if it has any obvious faults. We then determine what the car needs (if anything) to improve the driving experience. We then take a good look at the outside, the inside and most importantly underneath. Damaged seat covers and carpet are repaired or replaced. Damaged or missing chrome is swapped with new, poorly operating or missing parts are swapped out with good used originals or replaced with new. If the spare tyre is old or worn it is swapped for a new or good take off tyre, A jack is supplied. We check fluids and generally make sure all the systems of the car operate as they should. Of course an oil and filter change is mandatory. If the battery is not up to snuff we replace. Our most common replaced parts are, Windscreen washer system parts or whole. Front spring perches, rear leaf springs and shackles, brake components, battery, battery hold down and bolt, jack, and spare tyre, spare tyre hold down parts, carpets, mats, dash pads, gauge cluster surrounds, shifter bushings to firm up shifting….you get the idea.
Please note that when noted in a for sale listing that a car is being “sold as it arrived” at a lower price than normal that means we are offering a wholesale price on the car and it will be delivered to you in the condition we received it in with no preparation on our part. OR as much preparation as you would like at an additional charge.
Why can’t I buy a perfect Mustang off Ebay? Why should I buy from Classicamericancarsales?:
We buy many cars and most arrive with issues, we just take it for granted, Our spend normally falls between £3k and £12k on a newly arrived “show car”. This is not usual for us. We have had cars arrive that would blow your socks off visually and once inspected they throw up 2 full whiteboards of things that need sorting, some downright dangerous!
We have all purchased cars and and then been disappointed when things were not as described. With the rise in value of these cars the efforts to hide hidden damage and poor condition are great for sellers in the states. A UK buyer is the perfect person to unload such a car too. In the case of cars we bring in we deal with the issues found when the cars arrive. The cars we purchase in American car usually sold to us described as “mint” “perfect” “great runners” “excellent condition” but not surprisingly many require an investment in parts that reaches into the thousands plus labour to get the cars up to the condition we like to sell them in. We have some we have spent well over £12k without a meaningful change in their appearance. This includes cars that arrive in seemingly mint condition. Several cars purchased by ourselves have needed a complete new floor and other repairs. These cars had existing floors which appeared perfect in the sellers photos but once the car arrived it was detected that they were installed in the car with mastic and/or not welded at all. One car had a used Mustang floor pop riveted in, no welding at all! These floors were all replaced by the shops we use with one piece factory floor pans and properly welded. Another car needed complete new rear quarters, trunk floor drop offs and rear frame extensions. Sometimes you can get lucky when you buy a car long distance and sometimes you don’t. The difference is that we fix these issues when we find them. When you buy from us you get to view the car, top to bottom, up on a lift and with it right in front of you and not in some fuzzy photos that can’t be properly enlarged. If you like the car you buy it, if it doesn’t meet your expectations you don’t. Unfortunately with the vast majority of Ebay cars being in the USA, once you click “buy it now” you own it for better and for worse. And we know of several instances of people paying for cars they purchased off Ebay and Craigslist and the car didn’t exist and the money that was sent was lost.
Please note: Our preparation does not mean we fully restore the cars. If we did they would be £70-£100k and up. We do our best to get them running, looking and performing well. Minor items such as petrol and temperature gauges (notoriously fickle on these cars), radios (which we don’t even attempt to make work if they don’t) or other small items in the car may show a fault at or shortly after delivery. A few fluid drips on the garage floor after sitting is fairly common with these cars are small water leaks in the interior and or boot after a run in the rain or a wash. If you have owned a classic car you know and love these little habits these cars like to exhibit
When purchasing a 50 year old car of any Marque, an owners understanding that, certain items may require future fettling will make ownership a much more rewarding experience rather than expecting new car levels of reliability.
Why are old Mustangs not like a new BMW?:
Ford sold a million Mustangs in 18 months. The cars were originally designed to be used, abused and thrown away in a few years. It is a testament to the love folks have always had for these cars that a significant amount of them are still around for us to love and enjoy today. The guys and gals designing and building these cars in the USA in the 1960s has no expectation that they would be being driven by their children and grand children. So after all this time you may find a gauge may be unreliable, a few drops of fluid may find its way to your garage floor, A squeak or rattle may occur and when washing the car some water may come in around the window areas. These are just some very common issues that we have encountered in just about every vintage car we have owned over thirty plus years of enjoying these wonderful objects.
We enhance these cars to the best of our ability however we do not fully restore them at Classic American Car sales for if we did they would be un-affordable for all but the most well-to-do person. Saying that, even a fully concourse restored car, will have a year to eighteen months of owner sorting small issues that crop up with a newly built car. We are not trying to scare you away from classic ownership, far from it, We are just trying to make sure a classic is for you and that you will enjoy your purchase.
Selling you a car that will make you an unhappy customer is not our intention. We would rather you be informed before parting with your hard earned money and if you feel classic ownership is not for you then we saved both of us from an unhappy experience. Selling you a lovely car that will bring you many years of enjoyment whether driving around the countryside to grab a pub lunch, taking it proudly to a show or tinkering under the hood or dash on a lazy weekend is our number one goal.
We just want you to understand these are not new BMWs or Audis, Any good classic will require regular tinkering to stay in top form and some “issues” that have always existed with these cars are impossible to eliminate. Love their faults and they will love you back. We sell many cars to first time classic owners and we get excellent feedback from them but we feel an informed customer will be a happy customer long term and is our goal first and foremost as a vast majority of our sales are recommendations and returning customers
Internet Forums and how they can enhance your ownership experience:
We do our best to ensure trouble free motoring when a car leaves our shop but failures of parts and systems can and will occur over time and a general knowledge of automobiles goes a long way towards the customer enjoying the ownership of a classic. By no means do you have to be an expert in mechanics to own a classic. We encourage every owner to get their hands dirty and we welcome questions after purchase so we can assist you in what ever job you are trying to accomplish on the car. You are not going to ruin the car by putting your hand to it and giving most repairs a go. I find the biggest help for owners are the many forums dedicated to keeping these cars on the road. A simple question asked on one of the many US and UK based forums usually finds half a dozen posters helping to sort your issue or answer your question. I use several forums daily and am learning new things all the time. Of course a phone call to us about your baby is always answered swiftly by ourselves. As we are around these cars day in and day out we usually have experienced your specific issue before. Most common issues by far as non working fuel gauge due to a faulty tank sender and speedometer issues due to a loose speedometer cable. Both fairly simple to fix.
Our Favourite forums are:
MOCGB.Net a UK based forum with a very active membership who love to assist with issues and questions on both vintage and newer Mustangs
Vintagemustangforums.com a USA based forum which is a wonderful resource for answering just about any question you may have.
Does Classic American Car sales warrantee the cars they sell to the new owner?: We do not warrantee our cars. They are over 50 years old in most cases and we have not been privvy to their servicing or care over the decades but we do our best to make sure the cars we buy are in good useable shape for you to enjoy for years to come and it is not uncommon for us to assist you after the sale on issues you may have within a reasonable amount of time