The Goodguys Rod & Custom Association will expand eligibility for its car shows to 1987 or earlier vehicles starting in 2018.
Those events previously were limited to vehicles produced in or before 1972.
“The move is inevitable as the years peel off the clock and will open endless new debates countrywide as to exactly what a classic or collector car is,” John Drummond of the Goodguys wrote on the association’s Fuel Curve website.
“The reality is – the early ‘80s stuff was fugly with hideous and liberal amounts of plastic, god-awful bumpers and some suspect designs. It was a weird time in American automobile manufacturing as the gas crunch and K-Car syndromes began to ease. But with a drop, big wheels, upgraded suspension and some more ponies, any hot rodder worth his lug nuts can take a late ’70s or early ’80s ugly duckling and make it fly.”
He added that companies such as RideTech, Detroit Speed and others already produce Pro-Touring style suspension upgrades for the later-model vehicles.
“We could talk for hours about all of the Malaise-era models suitable for modding,” Drummond continued. “The possibilities are endless really, especially when you throw the trucks, vans and grocery getters in the mix.
“For Goodguys, the move is a calculated risk, one they’re willing to take,” Drummond wrote.
“We carefully considered all aspects of a year bump,” said Harry Daviess, Goodguys vice president of events. “Over a period of two years, we discussed it with prominent car builders, manufacturers, Goodguys members and event participants. We asked our 152,000 Facebook followers for their input.
“The resulting flood of feedback and collective input suggested nearly 70 percent of Goodguys social media followers, association members and attendees were in favor of the bump.”
The last time the association changed its eligibility age was 23 years ago.
“Seeing 20- and 30-year-olds, longing for a chance to show off their hot cars welcomed with a nod and a smile might sound like utopia but it isn’t so farfetched,” Drummond added. “Their passion for cool cars, like everyone else, will shine through.”