By Mike Atwal
3rd July 2019

That’s Not Original!

This three word phrase can be heard on many occasions where people and cars come together. Knowledgeable folk, experts on a particular marque and model, begin to go over your car with a fine tooth comb and provide you with their opinion. One you never asked for, want, nor need.

We are all entitled to maintain, enjoy and modify our cars, regardless of their age, as we wish. I for one am a big fan of keeping a car standard, however, I have had the little three word phrase thrown my way many a time when I have had a tastefully upgraded classic in my care. And my short sharp response was always this:

“Well it would have been if it existed back then.”

I am of course talking about sensible upgrades, that although can render a car as ‘non original’, allow your classic to keep up with its environment and intended use. For example, all the good stuff such as aftermarket ignition, uprated coils, modern tyres, adjustable suspension and infinitely more powerful headlamp bulbs that all make the car more predictable and convenient.


Fitting a modern stereo, perhaps neatly out of sight under the dash, while the original period unit sits in its original location looking pretty as it did from day one, well that has to make driving more pleasurable? Parking sensors. A modern day marvel. Some classic owners may have retro fitted them, hidden out of sight, but they work and are there – helping those beautiful rare chrome bumpers stay away from trouble when parking. Us adults have to keep up with forever advancing technology. Maybe our classics cars need to a little too?

I would love to hear about your own upgrades, and crucially, how they help you enjoy the car more in today’s modern world.

Care to share your modification stories with us?