Passion or Obsolescence
I recently stumbled on an interesting article about vintage performance cars and the future of their serviceability. The article was centered on the Porsche marque. It starts out by asking the question: What happens to an aging Porsche race car and who would fix and maintain this complicated piece of racing machinery. Over the years the manufacturer of world-dominating machines, Porsche, has created some very sophisticated road warriors. —but it’s not like your local dealer could service the 1970 Le Mans-winning 1200 hp 917 flat 12….Or could they?
The article goes on to say that Porsche has just announced its support for the restoration, repair, maintenance, storage, and technical setup of old race cars. This would entail working with knowledgeable and reputable shops around the world and even requiring Porsche itself to often rummage into its own historical archives in order to verify and ensure that each car serviced or restored maintains its originality, functionality and legitimacy. Pondering a little further, It also makes me wonder what would happen to all those existing independent specialty repair shops and vintage track support teams.
Given that this is almost 2016 and most of the technology used on many of the vintage race cars is pre-1980, this would give manufacturers the opportunity to teach and train a whole new generation of technicians to service these special vintage street and racing cars. It also opens the door for many franchise dealerships to create a new service department for future owners of these cherished and prized vintage and specialty cars.
What this boils down to is simply the fact that car guys of my generation are in fact aging, and we are unable to contort our bodies like pretzels, much less see well enough to work on our own hobby cars much longer. So this is definitely a concern. Who is going to carry the torch?
There are generations of car-crazed kids growing up, maybe not to the extent like we were, but never the less they have an interest in cars and they enjoy diversity. It’s up to us older gents to introduce these kids to these timeless relics and emphasize how important it is for them to understand and preserve these vintage cars for automotive history. Pass on the passion so that these historic machines may be enjoyed decades to come.