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Aftermarket Upgrades Often Considered for Classic Cars

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There are so many things that make ownership of a classic car fun and attractive, and one of these is continuing to upgrade the vehicle with new amenities to improve both its aesthetics and its driving experience. Within this area, the use of certain aftermarket parts and accessories is a common approach.

At Andersen Restoration Parts, we're proud to offer a huge range of classic car parts, from suspension kits and bushing kits to torsion bar mounts, steering rebuild kits and more. What are some of the top areas you might consider for aftermarket upgrades to your classic car, and what sort of value do they provide? Here's a rundown.


Suspension Upgrades

One of the single most popular areas to focus on for aftermarket upgrades is the suspension system. This is because a well-designed and installed suspension system can improve both the comfort of your ride as well as the vehicle's stability and handling characteristics. In terms of comfort, better shocks and springs can take a lot of the jarring out of driving on rough roads. When it comes to handling and stability, a good suspension system will provide a lower center of gravity for the car, which can make it feel more planted to the road.

There are a number of different ways to upgrade your classic car's suspension system. One is to install air bag shocks, which can be adjusted to account for different loads. Another popular option is to convert to a coilover suspension system. This is a more involved upgrade, but it can provide even better stability and handling characteristics.

There's also the option of completely rebuilding the suspension system from scratch. This is usually only done for race cars or other vehicles that will see very high performance driving, as it can be quite expensive. However, if you're looking for the absolute best possible suspension setup for your classic car, this is an option to consider.

Brake Upgrades

Another popular area for aftermarket upgrades is the braking system. This is especially true for classic cars that are going to see any sort of performance driving, as the stock brakes may not be up to the task. There are a number of different ways to upgrade your brakes, from installing larger brake drums or rotors to upgrading to a more powerful and efficient brake caliper.

You can also upgrade the materials used in your brake pads and shoes. For example, you may want to consider switching to ceramic pads, which offer better performance than traditional pads but don't cause as much wear on the brake rotors.

Engine Upgrades

For many classic car owners, the engine is the heart of the vehicle. As such, it's not surprising that many people choose to upgrade their engines for more power and performance. There are a number of different ways to go about this, from installing a larger carburetor to swapping out the cylinder heads for ones with higher-flow intake and exhaust ports.

You can also install a higher-performance camshaft, which will improve the airflow through the engine and help to increase power. If you're really looking for a boost in performance, you may even want to consider installing a supercharger or turbocharger. These upgrades can provide a significant increase in power, but they're also quite expensive and may require some other modifications to the engine to work properly.

Exhaust Upgrades

Another popular area of focus for many classic car owners is the exhaust system. This is because a well-designed exhaust system can help to improve both the power and efficiency of the engine. There are a number of different ways to upgrade your exhaust system, from installing larger-diameter pipes to upgrading to a more efficient muffler.

You can also add headers to your engine, which can improve airflow and help to increase power. If you're really looking for a performance boost, you may even want to consider installing a high-flow catalytic converter.

Wheels and Tires

One of the most popular areas of focus for aftermarket upgrades is the wheels and tires. This is because they can have a significant impact on both the appearance and performance of your classic car. In terms of appearance, upgrading to larger and more stylish wheels can give your car a more aggressive look.

In terms of performance, upgrading to larger and wider tires can help to improve traction, especially in wet or snowy conditions. You can also choose to install tires with a lower profile, which can improve the handling characteristics of your car.

Heating and AC

Because some classic cars lack modern amenities like air conditioning and heating, many people choose to install these upgrades after they purchase their car. This can be a relatively simple process, especially if your car already has the necessary ductwork in place.

You may also want to consider installing an upgraded stereo system. This is often one of the first things that people do when they get a classic car, as the stock stereo systems can be quite basic. There are a number of different ways to upgrade your stereo, from installing new speakers to upgrading to a more powerful amplifier.

These are just a few of the most popular aftermarket upgrades that people choose to do to their classic cars. By no means is this an exhaustive list, but it should give you a good idea of the types of upgrades that are available. As you can see, there are a number of different ways to improve both the appearance and performance of your classic car. So, whether you're looking to add some new features or just want to make your car more powerful, there are plenty of options available.

For more on this, or to learn about any of our classic car restoration parts available for purchase, speak to the team at Andersen Restoration Parts today.