CCCA finally expands criteria for Full Classic candidates

This 1916 Pierce-Arrow could become a Full Classic under new rules | Arizona Concours d’Elegance
This 1916 Pierce-Arrow could become a Full Classic under new rules | Arizona Concours d’Elegance

The Classic Car Club of America is a great organization and has accepted dozens of marques of distinction into their ranks as Full Classics, including Duesenbergs, Maybachs, Stutzes and Mercers. Not every high-end vintage car makes the designation of Full Classic, and now the CCCA has changed a major part of its criteria to bring more of them into the fold.

The CCCA has used the cutoff year of 1925, which meant that any cars built before then were automatically excluded, with a few narrow exceptions. Over the years, this has created heated debate over what exactly constitutes a Full Classic.

This year, that criteria will soon change after the CCCA’s directors agreed to accept select cars built as early as 1915.

This recent amendment to the Full Classic rules happened at the club’s annual meeting earlier this month in Savannah, Georgia. While not every important car built from 1915 to 1925 will become a Full Classic, these cars will now be eligible for consideration under the same guidelines as the existing Full Classics.

According to CCCA President David Johnson, the change “connects our Full Classic automobiles with the true beginning of the coachbuilt era and will bring scores of remarkable automobiles into our registry.”

What does this mean for the classic Hobby? Well, some cars that have deserved to be thought of as full classics will now carry that distinction. This will satisfy owners who have always thought of their cars in that way and likely will increase the market value of those cars.

Now, it would be good for the CCCA to look in the other direction. Very few post-World War II cars are included, and then only up to 1948. Hopefully, the latest decision signals that more changes are coming and that post-war cars that many of us have thought of as Full Classics will finally receive the distinction that they have long deserved.

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