I think my car may someday be a classic but I'd really love to drive it now. Should I use it or store it?

Dear Car Talk

Dear Car Talk | Apr 01, 1995

Dear Tom and Ray:

I have recently acquired one of my favorite cars, a 1977 Cutlass Supreme. This car has 17,000 actual miles, has always been kept in a garage, and needless to say, is in perfect condition. It is currently appraised at $5,000. My question is, will the value of this car significantly increase enough to justify storage/non-use of the car, or should I just use it (it's truly a pleasure) and not worry how the mileage will reduce its value.

TOM: You should drive it, Jim. I don't believe in saving stuff. You could spend years carefully protecting it and nursing it in your darkened garage, and then you could die without ever having enjoyed it. How happy would you be then?

RAY: He wouldn't be happy. He'd be dead!

TOM: You say that this car is a pleasure to drive and you obviously think it's one of the greatest cars ever built. Well, since you are one of a very limited number of people on the planet who feel that way, it may never be worth as much in monetary terms as it is to you when you're behind the wheel with that smug grin on your face.

RAY: Besides, the car will probably be in better shape if you DO drive it, and don't let parts seize up and dry out. So if you're really planning to keep it in "collectible" condition on the hope that it will increase in value, then drive it judiciously, and leave it home when it snows, or when my brother is on the roads. But I wouldn't just let it sit in the garage, Jim. Get out there and live it up.

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