Wednesday, 23 January 2013 15:01

Question of the Month: Resto-Mod or Leave it Stock?

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ACC's staff is currently working on the Insider's View section of the March/April issue, and we'd like your input on the following question:

Should you upgrade your vintage muscle car with modern wheels, tires, suspension and brakes in the name of performance and safety, or is that just a modern fad that will die out? Do you keep your car as stock as possible to be true to how they were in their heyday? Which do you think should be worth more in the market today? 

Original muscle cars were all about straight line performance. When it came to corners, well, you just sort of held on and hoped for the best.
Modern American muscle cars, like the new Camaro, Mustang and Challenger, are well-balanced performance machines. They offer great power, and they can also stop and turn very well – much better than original muscle from the 1960s.

Some argue that the appeal of a vintage muscle car includes every aspect of how it was when new, including white-knuckle handling thanks to skinny bias-ply tires and rudimentary suspension. And all-original cars do tend to bring the most value when they’re sold at auction.
But aftermarket technology has moved a long way in the past ten years. Complete modern suspension systems and huge brakes are now available for your vintage muscle car. You can now make your ’68 Charger turn and stop 100% better than it did originally. But should you?

Send your thoughts, along with your name and city/state to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , by Thursday, January 21, or leave them in the comments below. 

Jim Pickering

Jim Pickering is the Editor of American Car Collector magazine and has been the Managing Editor of Sports Car Market magazine since 2006. As proficient with Snap-On tools as he is with a keyboard, Jim began his career as a professional mechanic while still in college at Pacific University in Forest Grove, Oregon, where he earned a B.A. in Creative Writing. He can often be found at Portland International Raceway at the Late-Night Drags, behind the wheel of his 12-second big-block powered 1966 Chevrolet Caprice. He is also currently restoring a 1972 Chevrolet K10 Cheyenne Super longbed in his spare time.