The purpose of the Federation’s on-going research programme is to support the primary objective of upholding the right to use historic vehicles on the road without either restriction or need for modification, thus keeping yesterday’s vehicles on tomorrow’s roads.

We need to influence politicians and the media at home and in Europe so they may argue our case and thus help support and maintain our current freedoms. The best way of exerting that influence is to demonstrate the historic vehicle movement’s contribution at international, national and local levels. Our research projects are aimed at providing up to date facts and figures to do just that.

The Federation has been at the forefront of research into historic vehicle activity for over 20 years, including its quinquennial major research, next due in 2025.

2020 Research Result Headlines

2019 National Cost of Ownership Survey

  • The number of historic vehicles on DVLA database has increased to 1,241,863.
  • 9.8m people in the UK are interested in historic vehicles.
  • Average distance covered by an historic vehicle is 2,214 miles per annum.
  • 21m people see historic vehicles as an important element of the UKs heritage.
  • 11.3m people think historic vehicles should be exempt from restrictions of low and ultra-low emissions imposed on other vehicles.
  • 5.1m people are interested in owning an historic vehicle.
  • 60% of owners say owning an historic vehicle is one of the most important things in their life.
  • An owner spends an average of £1,489 per historic vehicle per annum.

The results of the 2019 National Cost of Ownership Survey have been announced by the Federation of British Historic Vehicle Clubs. The summary results were revealed at a press conference within the Houses of Parliament on 14 May with the full research document now available to download

Historically, the Federation has undertaken major research projects every 5 years, the most recent being the 2016 National Historic Vehicle Survey. Back then, the data revealed that the historic vehicle industry employed 34,900 people and generated £5.5 billion towards the UK economy. However, to gain more up-to-date insights into the attitudes and interest in transport heritage and the ever-evolving pressureson enthusiasts using yesterday’s vehicles on tomorrow’s roads, the Federation has produced its first ever ‘mid-term’ survey.

2019 National Cost of Ownership Summary

2016 National Historic Vehicle Survey

The objective of the 2016 National Historic Vehicle Survey is to provide an update to our 2011 report and to create a new and fresh valuable resource to the industry. The results of the survey have been published in two parts: the first part, a Summary Report, giving the key findings and facts which runs to 12 pages and the full Structural Report which stretches to over 70 pages and provides a wealth of detailed data

It is hoped that its findings will stimulate understanding of the sector across a range of important stakeholders including government and politicians, international partner bodies, together with historic vehicle enthusiasts and interested members of the British population.

The reports include a very detailed picture of national interest in historic vehicles, as well as an exploration of historic vehicle characteristics and owner spending patterns together with an update on employment trends and employer perspectives towards the sector.

Summary Report

Structural Survey results

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