How old does a car need to be to be considered classic?

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A car is considered a ‘classic’ if it is over 40 years old. This is in line with the rolling tax exemption, which applies to vehicles constructed more than 40 years before January 1 of the current year. However, not all cars that are over 40 years old are necessarily seen as valuable classics.

Moreover, for insurance purposes, age classifications in the UK may vary. Some insurers may consider vehicles as young as 10 years to be classic for policy purposes. Typically, though, a vehicle would have to be between 20 and 30 years old to gain classic car insurance.

The Veteran Car Club of Great Britain refers to veteran cars as those built before the end of 1904. Cars built from 1905 to 1918 are known as Edwardian cars, even those built in other countries during World War I.

Anything newer than that, up until around 40 years old, is often considered a ‘classic’ car. After 40 years, they are considered ‘historic’ and are often exempt from vehicle tax.

As with other countries, the condition of the car also plays a major role in it being classified as a classic. The fewer changes made to its original condition and functionality, the better.

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