Every one of our five senses are easily applied to vintage vehicles.
We even have a sixth sense (like the kid in the movie of the same name) because car guys can also see dead cars.
However, we at MyStarCollectorCar will stick to the standard five senses to show how they influence the experience for car guys.
The most obvious sense is sight because an older vintage ride will always stand out in a sea of new rides in that one-of-these-things-is-not-like-the-others manner. The distinctive look of an old car is a major giveaway that immediately draws a car guy to it.
Their reasons may vary from the inherent cool factor found in the distinctive retro style of a vintage vehicle to nostalgia from a bygone era when the car guy was young and the vehicle was fresh out of the dealership and purchased by a significant person in their life.
The visual attraction of a vintage ride is one of the primary reasons for cars guys to be attracted to the retro vehicles in a big way.
Another sense that influences car guys is a sense of touch. This sense involves both the exterior and interior of a vintage ride. The interior of an old car is unlike the interior of a new car in many ways that range from the material in the seats and panels to the placement and feel of old school window cranks and door handles.
The exterior on a vintage vehicle reflects the style and engineering from a bygone era. For example, a blindfolded car guy can literally touch the fins on a late 1950s vehicle and determine the era in a heartbeat, while knowledgeable car guys will be able to determine the make and year of the finned beauty.
We at MSCC believe that retro car style has a unique series of curves and angles that can be felt and translated into a reflection of an automotive period from a bygone era.
The sound of an engine makes ample use of a car guy’s sense of hearing. They can hear everything from a small lawnmower-like engine from the very early days of the automobile to a beastly big block from the muscle car era under the hood of a vintage ride.
The unmistakable sound of a vintage internal combustion engine fires up a car guy’s soul every time they encounter an automotive blast from the past on the street.
A sense of smell is also an important component of a vintage vehicle. The odor of unburned carbon components like engine oil and gas are a noticeable part of the car guy experience that brings them right back to a bygone era every time they breathe in the air-borne molecules.
The original interior of an older vehicle also has a distinctive odor that is definitely a reminder of the many years since it left the factory.
Additionally, the aroma of race fuel is a strong indicator that an owner has a take-no-prisoners monster under the hood of his vintage ride and the vehicle in question will melt tires upon request.
The last sense in the mix is taste. A sense of taste can be a valuable way for a car guy to determine the exact nature of the vintage ride’s leaking mystery fluid that cannot be determined by any of the other senses.
Regular use of the taste sense is not recommended by MyStarCollectorCar unless the car guy has an immunity to poisons, but sometimes taste may help solve the mystery of the unknown fluid on the garage floor.
When all is said and done, the car hobby provides a generous supply of cues to all five senses. A car guy’s job is to make good use of them.
BY: Jim Sutherland
Jim Sutherland is a veteran automotive writer whose work has been published by many major print and online publications. The list includes Calgary Herald, The Truth About Cars, Red Deer Advocate, RPM Magazine, Edmonton Journal, Montreal Gazette, Windsor Star, Vancouver Province, and Post Media Wheels Section.