Every year we survey more than 100,000 of our members for their opinions on everything from what types of autos they collect to why they collect them. The annual hobby survey helps gauge industry trends, checks the pulse of the collector car market and tracks hobbyist behaviors.
We like to gather this information to see who “we” are and what’s changed from previous years. Results of the most recent survey have been tabulated, and once again, there are a few surprises…
Ford Vs. Chevy – The Re-Match
The votes are in, and Chevrolet (32.6 percent) beats Ford (19.6 percent) as the most-popular make with the collectors surveyed. Pontiac runs a distant third at 6.1 percent. It’s not surprising then, that the Chevy Corvette is still respondents #1 dream car.
Garage Quality Time
Nearly one-quarter of the respondents (23.4 percent) spend quality time in their garage – even when they are not actively working on their cars. More than half of those surveyed (53.9 percent) maintain they work on their own collector cars for the enjoyment of it and to experience “hands on” fun and satisfaction.
Happy 75th to the ’32 Ford
The ’32 Ford Roadster, celebrating its 75th anniversary this year, is the car most respondents say they’d like to see brought back through a re-make. And with Ford listed as the #2 top make, it’s no surprise. We can’t forget the all-important Deuce in the model list as well.
Attendance at local car shows is up, with 81.3 percent of respondents attending at least one show venue in the last 12 months, and 49.7 percent indicating they participated in a local cruise. Interestingly, 49.6 percent of respondents do not belong to a car club, and of those who do, the greatest percentage (31.6 percent) belong to a national club.
Vintage tractor owners are more likely than other vehicle collectors to have inherited their collector, besting even antique and post-war classics. According to the survey results, tractor owners are also more likely to bequeath their tractor to another family member, citing “preservation” as their #1 reason for ownership.
A Family Affair
An overwhelming 77.5 percent of respondents believe that family relationships are at least “somewhat important” to the perpetuation of the collector car hobby, and most cite “family” as the primary reason for their introduction to the hobby. Currently, more than 60 percent of respondents have a family member in the hobby.
Truck Love on the Rise
More people surveyed this year own tricked-out, pumped up collector and antique trucks than ever, with 10.3 percent of respondents admitting to joining the truckin’ brigade.
Childhood Matchbox Collection Causes Adult Obsession
Not surprisingly, the top reason cited for getting into the collector car hobby was a history of growing up loving cars! What exactly do you love about them now? Driving older and unique cars (26.3 percent), followed by “nostalgia” (23.5 percent) and “owning something unique” (21.8 percent) were the top loves.
Hobbyists overwhelmingly reported (82.6 percent) that they will bequeath their collector car to someone as part of their estate settlement, instead of selling them or requesting they are sold. As stated above, vintage tractor owners are the most likely to leave their ride to a family member while lowrider/tuner car owners are the least likely to do so.
The 700 Club
Based on survey responses, hobbyists claim to spend an average of $780 annually attending car shows. And with most folks sticking close to home attending local shows, that’s a pretty penny.
“Reviewing the annual survey responses is one of the best ways to determine emerging car collecting trends in their initial stages and track them as they develop,” said CEO McKeel Hagerty. “Over the years, hobbyists have tipped us to their escalating interest in muscle cars, brand loyalties and developing use of online marketplaces. Here, we’ve included a sample of some of the more interesting responses from this year’s questionnaire.”
More detailed results from the 2006 Hagerty Hobby Survey can be seen in different sections of the website.