Are you a real car person? Take the survey and find out for sure

Passionate car enthusiasts come in all shapes, sizes and interests
Passionate car enthusiasts come in all shapes, sizes and interests

Some say that being a car guy or gal is a blessing that makes life worth living. Others say it’s a sickness.

But whether you love the style, the speed, the camaraderie or just the smell of hot exhaust, being car people often defines who we are, and it sets us apart from people who just don’t get it. Or the poseurs who just pretend to get it.

Whatever your interests – muscle cars, sports cars, antiques, classics, customs, cruisers or something weirdly arcane –one thing is for certain: you share your passion with gearheads across the board.

So how do you know if you are a real car guy or gal? Take the survey to find out.

Answer the following questions yes or no:

1. Have you ever owned a convertible?

2. Have you ever owned a classic or collector car (not a daily driver)?

3. Have you ever bought an impractical car just because you thought it was cool?

4. Do you ever take the long way home just to spend more time with your car?

5. Do you know how to drive stick shift?

6. Have you ever been to a collector-car auction?

7. Have you ever bought or sold a vehicle at a classic car auction?

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8. Have you ever attended a concours d’elegance or other type of organized car show?

9. Do you have vintage-car pictures, posters or other car art in your home or garage?

10. Have you ever had more cars in your family than drivers?

11. Have you ever brought a car to a repair shop just to make it a little bit nicer?

12. Have you ever owned a sports car?

13. Have you ever driven on a race track?

14. Have you ever attended a major car race?

15. Have you ever named a child or a pet after Shelby, Fangio, Gurney, Enzo or another car person, make or model?

16. Do you perform any repairs on your own cars?

17. Do you own a relatively complete set of car-repair tools?

18. Do you know how to adjust ignition points?

19. Have you ever restored a car?

20. Have you ever customized a car?

21. Do you subscribe to one or more car-buff magazines?

22. Do you regularly scroll for-sale listings looking for cool cars to potentially buy?

23. Do you ever dream about cars?

24. Are cars a major topic of conversation when you gather with friends?

25. Has your significant other ever admonished you to stop talking about cars with your friends?

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Now count up your “yes” answers to learn the truth about yourself.

0-5 – You’re a bus rider

5-10 – You don’t know a Ford from a Ferrari

10-15 – You experience cool cars vicariously

15-20 – Jay Leno wants to be your Facebook friend

20-25 – You must have motor oil in your veins

Bob Golfen is a longtime automotive writer and editor, focusing on new vehicles, collector cars, car culture and the automotive lifestyle. He is the former automotive writer and editor for The Arizona Republic and, the website for the SPEED motorsports channel. He has written free-lance articles for a number of publications, including Autoweek, The New York Times and Barrett-Jackson auction catalogs. A collector car enthusiast with a wide range of knowledge about the old cars that we all love and desire, Bob enjoys tinkering with archaic machinery. His current obsession is a 1962 Porsche 356 Super coupe.


  1. 24 yes’. Missed on 15 but I did try really hard to name my first-born “Piers” in honour of Piers Courage – but my wife vetoed that one – otherwise I’d have had a perfect score!

  2. Yes, I have to say, if I only had Jay Leno$ money! I’d have a museum full of classics! My custom built garage holds 5 of my muscle cars and 2 Harleys. Its all insulated, drywall, painted and poly floors. My man cave for sure!

  3. Motor oil! They just put a stent in my heart because I didn’t change my filter every 3000 miles……..

  4. When picking out my cell phone number from the list of available numbers, I jumped on xxx-0426. That’s one phone number a car guy won’t forget.

  5. I got all but naming my child Mercedes. The wife said no and had a bat in hand. So I guess 24 out of 25 is ok

  6. motor oil indeed had more cars then drivers still and My pride is a Studebaker Daytona not a daily but has taken the long way home more then once !

  7. I have twelve vehicles and they are all hybrids, they run on oil and gasoline!
    Three Toronados (1969 / 1972 / 1974), a 1975 Riviera, two Eldorados (1985 / 2000 ETC), a 1988 Custom Cruiser, 2005 Terraza, 2006 Rainier, 1998 Aurora, 2008 Lucerne Super (Wildcat), 2001 Park Avenue. Plus a 1976 GMC Motorhome!

  8. I am a “machine freak”. Being a working man of limited means I could have a reliable daily driver or a fun car (like a Tiger or TVR 2500M)…..not both. I drove them during the week and fixed them on the weekends or the side of the road. I have worn them out and crashed them but I never sold one. My relationship with these machines is extremely personal and they function as an extension of me. I do almost all work myself. I drive them all and take good care of them as they are my family and my friends. I do not relate well with people. I do not show them or go to shows as I do not like talking about them.
    The year range is from 1930 to 1986. Nine are English and five are American. Other than my 56 140 SE OTS they are not valuable. The 140, TD, 59 Morgan 4/4, 38 Ford, 30 model-A, 74 Norton, 76 Bonneville live in humble shelters…the rest live outside. They are “time machines” that take me back to earlier times in my life and to a time when motoring was an adventure……And I love them.

  9. I started collecting in 92 . Started out with a T Bucket. Mostly street rods. Last 3 muscle car . 77 Vette , 64 Ford Galaxie 500 XL and now #9, a 65 Cobra GT350 clone. I scored a solid 15.

  10. My best cars were: a 32 ford roadster with a 265 Chevy and 4 barrel, full fenders and tuck and roll.
    51 merc, lowered to 2 inches, laker pipes and duels in rear, rebuilt eng. with 3 strombergs, ansen floor shifter, appletons and fiesta hub caps.
    56, 2 door Pontiac, pipes and raked.
    59 Chevy impaula, 348 with 3, 2 barrels, esky cam and lifters, 3:70 posi, dump tubes.
    66 mustang H.O., 4 barrel, 4 speed tranny with a 3:50 rear.
    Also many Harley’s and Triumphs, choppers and racers.

  11. I’m a car guy, but not only
    a Classic Car Guy, I’m into CARS period I am more of a Custom car guy than anything else but I appreciate the work,money, and time that people put into any kind of car.
    I had my first car (a 35 Ford coupe) at the age of 15 I built it from parts that I scrounged up around the area. I worked in a custom shop for a while, I even had a shop of my own for a couple of years before I went in to the Army. And I raced cars for several years, so yes I’m a Car Guy.


  12. I want to take the survey questions, “I AM A CAR GUY,” but can’t pull it up, can you please make it work for us.

  13. Jay Leno a draft dodger? I knew there was a reason I liked that guy. I was one of those cowards with an “defense supplier” deferment. I think we sold them aspirin or something.

  14. OK, Rob, and Jarry, et al – this is an analogue (read: “informal”) survey – nothing to click, nothing to print and frame, (except the questions themselves, oh, and maybe this part -like so –

    Now count up your “yes” answers to learn the truth about yourself.

    0-5 – You’re a bus rider

    5-10 – You don’t know a Ford from a Ferrari

    10-15 – You experience cool cars vicariously

    15-20 – Jay Leno wants to be your Facebook friend

    20-25 – You must have motor oil in your veins

    It’s kinda like a “fish” story – tell it your way.