What classic car should I buy?

Hey everyone, hope to get some good ideas from you about some classic cars. Here’s the scoop:

I am starting a new job that is considerably further than my previous one. My current vehicle is great and I love it (2007 Commander) but it’s just such a gas hog that when gas hits the $3/gallon mark again I don’t want to be driving it all on my Jeep with 15 mpg average! I am looking for an older classic car, preferably domestic, that I can get for between $3 & 4k that is great on gas and reliable. I had a '67 mustang in the past with the straight 6 and was getting around 25 mpg with it, and it was a blast to drive, but I had to sell it when my little kids came along. I’ve been focusing my search on mustangs again b/c I know them pretty well from working on my own, but wondered if anyone had some other suggestions to consider.

My biggest concerns are mpg, reliability and ease of locating replacement parts. I’m pretty handy and don’t mind getting a little dirty, but if this is a daily driver the last thing I want is to be sitting around with a busted car b/c I can’t find the parts of I have to wait weeks for them to arrive in the mail!

Thanks for any suggestions, I’ll be curious to hear what you all have to say!

How far is your commute and what type of conditions do you encounter? I have several classic cars but I don’t drive any of them to work except on very rare occasions. I have to drive 35 miles with 60% expressway and the rest heavy city traffic. I want something comfortable and reliable in all weather conditions…

I doubt that you will buy any kind of desireable classic car for 3 to 4k.

As to reliability, that’s going to depend upon how much in the line of repairs and maintenance has been done to it. That is also factored into the sales price.

For that kind of money you might be able to find a half decent Fox body Mustang with some footwork. The ones with the 5.0 do go fast… :slight_smile:

I know of no vehicle that meets all your needs. Classic cars aren’t that cheap, aren’t very reliable, arent nearly as safe, and I wouldn’t want one for a daily driver.

“Classic”, “reliable”, and “great on gas” are not normally put in the same sentence unless you insert the word “not” at least once, or maybe twice.

Old cars are far from reliable, especially when compared to most modern vehicles.
While there were some fuel-efficient cars made years ago, most older cars are gas hogs in comparison to most modern cars. And, for $3k to $4k, I don’t think that are likely to find any car–modern or classic–that will be truly reliable.

I think that the OP is chasing unicorns.

I have to disagree about the reliable part. old cars can be very reliable. and when they do break the repairs can be reasonably priced and the parts easily obtainable, if you get the right car or truck.

but 3-4 grand and 25 mpg is a stretch, if you want the other stuff too

I think chasing Unicorns would be more productive than trying to find a daily driver classic car for under 12000.00 . 4000.00 , not a chance .

maybe a vw bug…

Are you going to keep the Jeep? If so, the commuter car doesn’t have to be as reliable as it would if it is your only car. To me that means you can look at older cars, but still not what most people would consider classic. My niece drives a Mustang, but it is a 1994 with a 4-cyl and lots of problems. She commutes in it, but it is a headache. It is also not a classic Mustang.

I think you’d be best off going with another Mustang 6 cyl. As you know, they’re simple, easy to work on, and you can get parts for them easily, as they’re well supported by the aftermarket. A six cylinder would probably be best, as they’re not as desireable as V8s are, and thus are cheaper. You could probably pick up a “driver” with a six for pretty cheap. If you find one that’s mechanically good, it doesn’t necessarily have to be “pretty.” Then, as time goes on, you could fix up the appearance of it as you drive it.

I understand what you’re trying to do. You want to “justify” owning a collectable again by driving it to work, and I don’t think that’s unreasonable. As others noted, on the odd day it needs work, or if you’re in the middle of a project, you can drive your Jeep for a short period of time.

Just don’t take the kids in that Mustang. Your safety is your risk. Don’t risk theirs.

To fill you all in a bit more, my '67 was purchased for $3500 and was my daily driver for nearly a year in CO. It only left me on the side of the road once and I averaged 25 mpg with the straight 6 on a mix of city/highway driving. While the car was far from perfect (some slight body damage that I never got around to fixing) I never hesitated to jump in and roll down the road. That being said, you all make some great points and I’ve begun to reconsider. Really, I need something that is good on gas but if I’m spending an hour or more per day in it, I’d like it to be something fun as well.

Thanks for all the input though, pleased to see that so many took the time to weigh in.

My price guide shows a '67 Mustang in varying decent conditions as being valued at 7 to 10 grand with additional value for certain options and a 15% deduction for the 6 cylinder.

A lifelong friend of me with who now lives in Oregon and whom I used to run around with in the younger days had a '67 Mustang coupe with the 289. More than once I’ve been with him and he’s revved that thing to 8k RPM. That car was indestructible.

Back in the mid 70s my brother in law bought a '67 Shelby GT 350, running and in excellent shape (white with blue accents) for 400 bucks and a pair of home stereo speakers. How things have changed…

I used to always love classics. After I got one (and still have it), a 1950 cadillac, I appreciate the modern stuff more when I just need to turn the key and get somewhere comfortably. Especially in crappy weather.

That being said, I think another 6 cylinder stang would fit the bill as closely as a classic could. Just be sure to stock up consumables like points, maybe a carb rebuild kit, whatever else you can think of. Keep a safety cheap set of tools with you.

Personally Id sell the jeep, buy a toyota, and also a classic that you really like and keep it as a project/weekender.

Classics are great when theyre great, and frustrating as hell some days too.

Wise words, @Fender1325

I would recomend you buy a new Mustang and keep it till it becomes a classic.

I agree with @dagosa. The new Mustang exceeds 25mpg and is much safer and allows the rest of us to breath easier with far, far fewer emissions. Even an older (2005 up) used one with a V6 should be plenty fun to drive and still exceed 25 mpg highway.

My '65 Mustang 6 was a lot more fun to look at than it would be for a daily commute.

A Chevrolet Classic, obviously!


“I would recomend you buy a new Mustang and keep it till it becomes a classic.”

Hey! I was going to suggest exactly the same thing! LoL