Preparing Your Classic Car for a Car Show

If you have a classic or antique car, you probably take great pride in your ride. Many classic car owners enjoy attending or participating in car shows, displaying their beloved classic for either fun or even competition. You also may be the owner of a newer vehicle, a modern muscle car, import, or even the latest sports car – regardless of the age of your ride, this article we will describe some of the common steps that you can use to prepare for your next car show.

close up of classic car and muscle car

Types of Car Shows

When it comes to car shows, there are various types that you can participate in. Each event is unique – from your typical car show, to a tradeshow with vendors, to even some events that require an invitation. Below is a generic list of types of events you may attend with your ride.

  • Car or Auto Shows
  • Tradeshows & Expos
  • Cruise-Ins
  • Festivals & Parades
  • Concours d ’Elegance

row of classic cars at a car show during sunny weather

Detailing Preparation

No matter the level of competition at the car show you may attend, presentation is everything and you want your vehicle to always look it’s best. The following are some car show preparation tips to get your ride ready.

  • Mechanical Checkup

Before any detailing is done, you should make sure your vehicle is in sound running condition. Although your classic ride may see limited road time, you should still make sure to conduct regular checkups to ensure when the event day comes you can arrive safely.

  • Detail the Interior & Exterior

Possibly one of the most important parts of getting your vehicle ready for a car show is the cleaning and detailing. When preparing for a car show, you can either hire a professional or do it yourself. Either way, ensuring that your ride is spotless inside and out is a must if you are interested in competing.

  • Exterior

Clean your entire vehicle, including your engine bay, undercarriage, wheels and tires, and finish with a polish or wax.

  • Interior

Clean your entire interior, including vacuuming carpets, wiping down seats and center consoles, and dusting off your gauges.

  • Prepare a Touch-Up Kit

No matter how much cleaning and preparation for a car show you may do, there is one element you will never be able to control or predict, and that is the weather. Making sure you have a detailing kit ready to go in the event a little rain or weather interrupts your show can be the difference between you and your competition.

  • Glass

While the engine bay and the exterior of the car get the most attention at car shows, a dirty window can leave a bad impression. Make sure to clean both the outside and inside of your classic car’s windows.

  • Details

A great way to score with both the crowd and the judges is to gather any history or literature you have on your classic car. Build sheets, window stickers, owner’s manuals, brochures, historical pictures of the vehicle, and even period correct advertisements can impress at any car show.

Commonly Missed Detailing Spots

When taking your classic car to a show, it’s easy to miss a few spots in preparation. The following list includes some of the commonly missed spots when cleaning your car for an upcoming event.

  • Mirrors
  • Steering Wheel
  • Gauges
  • Shifters
  • Gas and Brake Pedals
  • Fuel Filler Doors
  • Vanity Mirror

interior image of an antique or classic car

Insurance for Your Classic or Modern Sports Car

Your classic or modern sports car isn’t just a machine that you have spent hours caring for and cleaning to perfection, it’s a piece of your history, something that holds sentimental value to you. Your ride may also be an investment that want to protect and care for. Here at Cross Insurance, we can help you explore your options when it comes to insurance for your classic or modern-day car. To find out more, contact your local Cross Insurance office today.



This article is for general informational purposes only and is not to be relied upon or used for any particular purpose. Cross Insurance shall not be held responsible in any way for, and specifically disclaims any liability arising out of or in any way connected to, reliance on or use of any of the information contained in this article. The information contained or referenced in this article is not intended to constitute and should not be considered legal, insurance, accounting or other professional advice, nor shall it serve as a substitute for the recipient obtaining such advice. The views expressed in this article are that of its author and do not necessarily represent the views of Cross Financial Corp. and its subsidiaries and affiliates (“Cross Insurance”) or Cross Insurance’s management or shareholders.


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