If you own or are buying a classic or vintage car you will know they need more attention than an everyday vehicle. Often classic and vintage cars in various states or repair (or disrepair!) and cannot be driven by the owner. This guide will walk you through all the steps necessary to transporting your car.
Service Type
When transporting a classic car, you have 3 types of courier services – each of which will be examined in more detail below.
1)    The car is driven to its destination on trade plates
2)    The car is transported on a single car trailer
3)    The car is transported on a multi-car trailer
Having the car transporter drive it to its destination on trade plates can be the cheapest option – but there are disadvantages. It is more likely to be damaged en route, as it is actually being driven on the road (although a good car transporter will of course be insured). In addition the mileage of the car will be used, which can be hefty when the trip is especially long.
Hiring a transporter who uses a single car trailer will be the more expensive of the options because the cost will not be shared amongst other customers. However, you will be more likely to find a car transporter on short notice, so this is the suitable option for urgent deliveries. If your vehicle is irreplaceable or particularly valuable, you may choose to have an enclosed trailer, but this option is more expensive.
Using a multi-car trailer should be the cheapest option, as the cost can be divided between many customers. Cars are transported around the UK and Europe daily, making this a good option. However, door to door delivery will be unlikely – with this method, the car transporter will generally deliver the car to a nearby hub, from where you can collect the car.
Preparation is key when transporting your classic or vintage car – the better the preparation the better the chances of avoiding damage during transit. Always keep in contact with your transport provider so that you can finalise the details of the delivery. Your chosen car transporter should know everything about your car, from its make and model, to age and faults
Make sure the transporter is aware that the car is a classic, vintage or antique. Anything that makes them more careful when moving your car! Leading up to its transportation, you should document all the existing damage and problems with the car that might affect its transport and handling.
Remove any personal items from within your car as most transport provider’s insurance will not cover their loss or damage. Always give the car a wash if you have time. Head lamps should be
Take dated photographs with a written record of any damage (and of course lack of damage) the car may have. If your car is not mot’d or particularly old it may be risky to have it towed.
For the lucky few who get to impress the ladies with their classic convertible, they will need to seal the roof properly to stop any debris and moisture from entering the car interior. Tarp or heavy duty tape will able to cover any breaks in the seal.
Avoid having your mirrors clipped by folding them down, in addition the antennae should be retracted. If something that sticks out can be taken off, do so and transport it separately.
You should create an inventory of all the parts of the car, so that if any go missing or are damaged in transit you will know on its arrival.
Transporting your classic car
Before handing over your vehicle, ensure any damage is catalogued as described above. The car transport company will do the same, so make sure any damage is noted down and timestamped.
Check the mileage of your car to see if there has been any irregular changes, bearing in mind there may be slight changes accounting for loading and unloading.
Upon delivery, inspect the vehicle meticulously. Never sign off a job completed without giving the car a once over. Check for any additional damage, and remember to make sure there is none on the roof or the bumpers. If there is, make sure the driver or company sign a document acknowledging the damage, or recourse will be much more difficult.
Should damage in transit occur, you should follow the normal procedures with the transport company, to ensure the fastest possible resolution. Give your insurance company 24 hrs before you have the car delivered.
Post Delivery
Damage to the car during transport is rare, but it is still essential to check the car on arrival. Legal action or similar recourse should always be a last resort and should always come after attempts to resolve the issue with the transporters themselves has failed. If worst does come worst then authoritative agencies such as the Trading standards will help you out.