How Do I Get My Classic Car Ready for a Car Show?

How Do I Get My Classic Car Ready for a Car Show?

If you’re like most classic vehicle enthusiasts, you probably ask yourself “How Do I Get My Classic Car Ready for a Car Show?” But where do you start? There are many things to consider, from cleaning and polishing the vehicle to ensuring it’s mechanically sound. We will walk you through the process of getting your vehicle ready for a show. By following these tips, you’ll be able to make your vehicle look its best.

What is a Classic Car?

This is any vehicle that is at least 20 years old. This can include everything from muscle vehicles and hot rods to vintage trucks and even some modern vehicles. If you own such a vehicle, chances are you take pride in its appearance. After all, these vehicles are a reflection of our style and taste.

A car show is an event where vehicle enthusiasts can come together to admire each other’s vehicles. These shows are usually open to the public, so anyone can come and take a look. The shows typically have different categories for different types of vehicles. There may also be awards for the best-looking vehicles in each category.

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Whether you’re buying or selling investment grade restomods, the Elite Performance Center team of professionals offer next generation service, and we have an inventory of fully sorted investments. Guaranteed.

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So how do you get your car ready?


Ensure Your Vehicle Is Clean

This one seems like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised how many people try to take their classic car restomod to a show without giving it a good cleaning first. Not only do you want the outside of your vehicle to look its best, but you’ll also want to ensure the interior is clean and presentable. A quick trip to the vehicle wash and some elbow grease should do the trick. However, if you want to clean the vehicle, below are some tips.

Fill a bucket with warm water and vehicle soap. Start by mixing up a bucket of warm water and vehicle soap. This will be used to clean the exterior of your vehicle. Next, use a hose to wet down the vehicle. Make sure you get all of the nooks and crannies.

Now it’s time to start scrubbing. Use a soft-bristled brush to clean the wheels and tires. Then move on to washing the rest of the vehicle. Be sure to pay extra attention to areas that tend to get dirty, such as door jams and around the headlights.

Once you’re finished scrubbing, rinse off the soap with your hose. Finally, dry off your vehicle with a clean microfiber towel. And that’s it! Your vehicle should now be clean and ready for a classic car restomod show. Just remember, if you’re driving your vehicle to the show, give yourself plenty of time to clean it. You don’t want to be rushing around at the last minute.

If you’re not in a position to do it yourself, you may want to consider hiring a professional detailer. They will know exactly how to make your vehicle look its best and can even help protect it from the elements.


Check Your Tires

Your tires are one of the most important parts of your vehicle, so it’s important to ensure they’re in good condition before you take your vehicle to a show. Inspect your tires for any wear and tear signs, and ensure they have enough tread. You should also check the air pressure in all four tires. If you’re unsure how to do this, consult your owner’s manual or ask a professional mechanic.

Investing in a set of performance tires is also a good idea if you plan on taking your vehicle to the track. Performance tires will help improve your lap times and make your vehicle look more aggressive.


Make Sure Your Vehicle Is Mechanically Sound

This one is important! You don’t want to break down at the show, so be sure to have your vehicle checked out by a mechanic before you go. They can tell you if any issues need to be addressed.

While you’re at it, it’s also a good idea to have your oil changed and top off all of your fluids. This will help ensure your vehicle runs smoothly and prevent any issues from popping up while driving. Also, check your breaks and make sure they’re in good condition.

Another thing to check to ensure your vehicle is mechanically sound is the battery. You don’t want your vehicle to die in the middle of the show, so ensure the battery is fully charged and there are no loose connections.


Check the Trunk

The trunk is often one of the first places people look when judging a vehicle. Make sure your trunk is clean and presentable. This means removing any clutter and ensuring there’s nothing loose.

You should also consider investing in a trunk liner to protect the paint from scratching. Trunk liners are relatively inexpensive and can help keep your trunk looking its best.

Another thing you should consider investing in is a set of trunk mats. Trunk mats will help protect your trunk from dirt and stains. They’re also easy to clean, which is a huge plus.


Consider Upgrading Your Vehicle

If you’re serious about winning a show, you may want to consider restomodding your vehicle. Restomodding is the process of modernizing a vehicle. This can involve anything from installing a new engine to upgrading the suspension.

There are many things to consider when restomodding a vehicle, so it’s important to do your research before starting the process. You may also want to hire a professional restomodder to help you with the project. Restomod Academy is one of the leading professionals in the restomodding industry.

Elite Restomods is another great option if you’re looking for someone to help you restomod your vehicle. They offer a wide range of services, from engine swaps to suspension upgrades.


Wax and Polish Your Vehicle

This step is important for making your vehicle look its best. Waxing and polishing your vehicle will help to make the paint look shiny and new. It’s also a good way to protect your paint from the elements.

If you’re unsure how to wax and polish your vehicle, there are plenty of online tutorials. You can also ask a professional detailer for help. Waxing and polishing would come in handy in catching the judges’ and spectators’ attention.

To wax and polish, you only need a good quality wax and polish, a few soft cloths, and some elbow grease. Start by washing your vehicle and make sure it’s completely dry before you start. Then, apply the wax or polish to one section at a time and use a circular motion to buff it into the paint. Waxing and polishing your vehicle is time-consuming, but it’s worth it if you want your vehicle to look its best.


Do Not Forget the Essentials

You’ll need to bring a few things to the show, so make sure you have them all before you leave. Things like a first aid kit, jumper cables, and a fire extinguisher are essential. You should also bring a folding chair and some snacks in case you get hungry while at the show.

And, of course, you’ll need your vehicle registration and proof of insurance. Make sure you have these things in an easily accessible place so you can grab them quickly if you need to. These things should not be forgotten because you may be fined for not having them or even disqualified from the show.


Keep Your Windows Open

Opening the windows of your vehicle is one of the most important parts of the show because it is almost impossible to see the interior when the windows are closed. Not only will this give the judges a better look at your vehicle, but it will also allow them to see how clean the interior is.

Keeping the windows open also allows people to see your vehicle’s engine. This is important because it shows how well-maintained your vehicle is. A clean and well-tuned engine is a sign of a good restomod.


Make Sure You're Prepared to Answer Questions

People will probably ask you about your vehicle, so it’s important to be prepared to answer their questions. Know your vehicle’s make, model, year, and any modifications. Having a business card or two on hand is also a good idea so people can contact you if they’re interested in your vehicle.

In addition, be prepared to talk about the show circuit. People will want to know where you’ve been and how you’ve done. This is a great way to promote your vehicle.


Wash the Engine and Under Carriage

Many people forget to clean the engine and undercarriage, but doing both is important before taking your vehicle to a show. The engine should be free of dirt or grime, and the undercarriage should be cleaned so that the judges can see how well-maintained your vehicle is.

When washing your engine, you should be careful not to get any water on the electrical components. You can use a degreaser to clean the engine, but be sure to rinse it off well afterward. (Click here to see a world-class engine bay in a 1969 Chevrolet Nova Restomod)



Do Not Forget the Little Details

Make sure you do not forget the little details. This includes ensuring your tires are inflated, your windows are clean, and your mirrors are polished. These small details can make a big difference in your vehicle’s appearance, so take care of them before heading to the show.


Choose the Right Show For Your Vehicle

There are dozens of different shows to choose from, so it’s important to pick one that’s right for you. If you’re not sure which show to attend, ask around at your local vehicle club or do some research online.

Once you’ve found a few potential shows, look at the entry requirements and ensure your vehicle is eligible. Some shows may only allow certain types of vehicles, or they may have special regulations regarding modifications. Also, ensure to read the rules and regulations so that you know what is expected of you.

In addition, pay attention to the location of the show. You don’t want to drive for hours just to get there. Make sure you pick a show close enough to get to it easily.


Plan and Be Organized

The key to having a successful show experience is to plan and be organized. This means you should start getting your vehicle ready well in advance of the show date. This will give you plenty of time to take care of any last-minute details and ensure your vehicle is in tip-top shape.c

It’s also important to be organized on the day of the show. Make sure you know where you’re going and how long it will take you to get there. Arrive early so you can find a good spot to park, and don’t forget to bring any supplies you might need, such as snacks and drinks.


Do a Final Walk Around

Before leaving for the show, do a final walk around your vehicle to ensure everything is in place. This includes ensuring your windows are open, your mirrors are polished, and your tires are inflated. Once you’re satisfied that everything is in order, you can head to the show and enjoy yourself.


Follow Up After the Show

Follow up with the people you met when the show is over. This includes handing out your business cards and staying in touch with the people you met. If you made any promises, be sure to keep them.

For example, if you promised to send someone pictures of your vehicle, be sure to do it as soon as possible. And if you said you’d help someone find a particular part for their vehicle, make sure you follow through on that too. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How often should I clean my classic car before a car show?
A: It depends on how often you drive your car and how dirty it gets. However, it’s a good idea to give your car a thorough cleaning at least a week before the car show, and then touch it up on the day of the show.

Q: What should I bring with me to a car show?
A: In addition to your classic car, you should bring any documentation you have on the car, such as the owner’s manual or service records. You may also want to bring cleaning supplies and detailing products in case you need to do some touch-ups at the show.

Q: How can I make my classic car stand out at a car show?
A: Adding accessories such as floor mats, seat covers, or a car cover can help enhance the appearance of your classic car. You may also want to consider customizing your car with a unique paint job or other features that will make it stand out from the crowd.

Q: What should I do if my classic car breaks down at a car show?
A: If your car breaks down at a car show, don’t panic. Most car shows have a designated area for broken-down vehicles, so move your car there if possible. If you need help, contact the event organizers or a towing service.



Taking your vehicle to a show can be a fun and rewarding experience. But it’s important to remember that there’s more to it than just showing up. It would be best if you took the time to prepare your vehicle and yourself so you can make the most of the experience. Following the tips above, you are more likely to have a successful experience.

Whether you’re buying or selling investment grade restomods, the Elite Performance Center team of professionals offer next generation service, and we have an inventory of fully sorted investments. Guaranteed.

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