111 Alpha Dr Franklin, TN 37064 615-791-9898
By Appointment Only

Preparing for Your Used Car Test Drive

Buying Franklin used cars can seem intimidating at first. Alexander Automotive takes pride in keeping the process transparent and pain-free. That’s why we encourage you to do plenty of research before you arrive, and ask as many questions as you need to once you’re here. Besides that, there’s one more thing that’s vital to buying a car of any age, which is why we’re about to tell you how to ace the test drive.

Take Notes

Your needs, from a long commute to the number and kind of passengers you expect, will dictate certain features and amenities. Your research is likely to uncover a few more. Make a list, since these details will help your dealer match you to the right fit.

  • Type of vehicle

  • Make and model

  • Trim level or options

  • Priority items (seating room, cargo space, a good sound system)

  • Special considerations (a long commute, an impending addition to the family, and the like)

Get Ready

Once you’ve settled on a vehicle or category, it’s time to prepare for your visit to our used car dealership in Franklin, TN.

  • Bring your license and proof of insurance

  • If you’re trading in, bring the vehicle title, owner’s manual, and as much maintenance history as you can locate

  • If you’ll be applying for financing, bring proof of residence, proof of employment, and any other supporting documentation

  • If you’re stuck at any point in the process, call ahead and we’ll help

Get Behind the Wheel

Now it’s time to climb in and take your car for a spin. It’s important to drive the way you would on any other day (within reason; safety first, please). As you do, evaluate the following:

  • Acceleration from a dead stop, as well as power when passing or merging

  • Steering response

  • Brake feel

  • Cabin layout and ergonomics

You may find it taking a few tries to pick the right car, but that’s fine. We understand that this is an investment, and it’s important to get it right the first time. To find out more, simply call ahead to arrange a test drive today.

Classic Car Spotlight 1950 Buick Special

One of the most eye-catching classic cars on our lot here at Alexander Automotive is the 1950 Buick Special. This stately sedan boasts superb styling and a spacious cabin for up to six people. Standout performance and design features include tapered fenders ending in a mock “jet engine,” a unique rear fender contour, and a 4.1-liter engine. Our Franklin TN classic car dealers would like to showcase the best features of this model.

History of the Buick Special

The Buick Special was a full-sized car produced starting in 1936. It was built for several decades and offered coupe, sedan, and later station wagon body configurations. In the 1960s, the Buick Special was the first GM vehicle to receive a modern V6 engine that became the core engine for GM for several decades.

While the Buick Special stopped being produced in 1970, the name would reappear as the entry-level trim of the Buick Century in the 1990s. 

Classic Car Details

Heading into the 1949 model year, the Buick Special received new bodywork that included a dramatically styled grille with nine grille bars. These grille bars also served as bumper guards and extended over the front bumper. The 1950 model on our lot has these distinctive body features, and its striking black paint job is a standout feature.

Under the hood, the Buick Special cars from this era packed a 248 cubic inch (4.1 liter) engine and a six-speed automatic transmission. The model on our lot is lightly used, with just 11,922 miles.

The 1950 Buick Special on our lot can be viewed with an appointment. Schedule an appointment online or give our dealers a call to schedule a test drive of this storied piece of automotive history, and feel free to get a head-start on used car financing.

Classic Car Spotlight 1957 BMW Isetta

Here at Alexander Automotive, we’re not just salespeople; we’re classic car enthusiasts. One of our most unique models is the 1957 BMW Isetta, an Italian-designed microcar that demands immediate attention thanks to its distinctive look. Once you get behind the wheel, you’ll be impressed with this classic car for sale, which offers tight handling and surprising fuel efficiency.

BMW Isetta History

When Germans think of the 1950s, one of the most iconic images is the small and nimble BMW Isetta traversing the streets. While today, the BMW Isetta is firmly in the classic car category, when it was first released, it was an everyday vehicle for many Germans. 

The BMW Isetta is a small two-person vehicle produced under license by the Bayerische Motorenwerke (BMW) between 1955 and 1962. Back then, the automaker called this model a “Motocoupe,” or a “bubble car,” based on a design from the Italian automaker Iso Rivolta.  The BMW typically had a door in the front and a single-cylinder four-stroke engine in the back. 

The “Bubble Car”

In 1950s Germany, the BMW Isetta was known as a “Knutschkugel” or a “cuddle coach.” It made for the perfect city car. The model was just 7.5 feet long and weighed just 770 pounds, which made it more maneuverable than just about any other vehicle. Two adults could comfortably sit next to one another in the BMW Isetta, which wasn’t true of any other microcar. All versions of the BMW Isetta featured a canvas roof, similar to today’s sunroof. 

BMW cars are unique, but this one is special even by the brand’s usual standards. Take home a piece of automotive history with the 1957 BMW Isetta, now available at Alexander Automotive. If you have another vehicle in mind — be it a classic or something more contemporary — use our used car finder to source the perfect fit!

Understanding Used Car Safety Ratings

Before visiting Franklin dealerships for used cars, some research is in order. Besides the usual items — body styles, models’ repair histories, reviewers’ and owners’ opinions — many of us are concerned with safety. While safety data is scant for many classic cars, when shopping the more recent used cars at Alexander Automotive, it’s worth checking their scores from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).

NHTSA Safety Ratings

The NHTSA is a part of the US Department of Transportation that investigates safety issues, underwrites car safety research, suggests best practices for vehicle safety, and tests vehicles for collision survivability. It’s a broad mandate, but this agency helps keep us safer in new and used cars.

A car’s NHTSA rating aggregates scores in the Frontal Crash, Side Crash, and Rollover safety categories, among others. For now, NHTSA testing doesn’t score on active safety technology, although they recommend that drivers take advantage of these features when available.

IIHS Safety Ratings

The IIHS is an independent nonprofit organization funded by the insurance industry with two goals: keeping cars safe and insurance premiums low.

The IIHS tests five different criteria:

  • Small overlap front

  • Moderate overlap front

  • Side

  • Roof strength/rollover

  • Head restraints/rear crash

Look for cars with top “Good” scores in each category. A Top Safety Pick is awarded when a car gets “good” marks on all tests, while the Top Safety Pick Plus is awarded to vehicles with the most advanced — and effective — driver-assist aids.

How Does This Figure Into Used Car Research?

Rating criteria change as vehicle construction changes, so a car from 2000 wasn’t tested quite the same way as one from 2017. The ratings aren’t infallible (especially since they don’t cover classics), but they’re still a good guideline to use before you pick your next used car. If you have questions about any of our used cars for sale, feel free to email, call, or simply stop by Alexander Automotive!

Do Classic Cars Need Inspection in TN

If you haven’t kept up with Tennessee state law regarding car inspections, you may wonder whether you still need to find a car inspection near me. On August 17, 2021, the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation announced that emissions testing in several Tennessee counties, including Williamson County, ended. While classic cars do not need official inspections in TN, we still suggest inspections by qualified technicians, followed by regular maintenance, to preserve their value. 

Your Cars Emissions System: An Overview

Emissions problems are one of the primary things identified through a motor vehicle inspection and are still worth checking for even if they’re not mandated. Your car’s emission control system limits the amount of noxious gas released from your vehicle into the environment. Your classic consists of several different components that release various gases into the air, including:

  • Carburetor

  • Fuel tank

  • Crankcase

  • Exhaust

These components are essential elements for your classic car to run smoothly and efficiently. Many vehicles have what’s known as an EVAP system, which controls and isolates the gases within a closed system. This system consists of:

  • Fuel fill cap

  • Fuel tank vapor control valve

  • Evaporative canister purge valve

  • Fuel tank pressure sensor

Signs of Emission Trouble

There are many signs that a classic car needs emissions work. Symptoms of issues with your car’s emissions system include:

  • Emissions control light illuminated

  • Performance loss

  • Consuming more gasoline than normal

  • Smell or fuel inside or outside your car 

For answers to all your classic car questions — buying, selling, maintenance, parts, and more — visit Alexander Automotive. In addition to our carefully curated inventory, we can refer you to trustworthy professionals who will give your classic the care it deserves.

What Do You Need to Register a Classic Car in Tenn

When you visit Alexander Automotive, it's hard not to be swayed by our classic cars for sale near Nashville, TN. Who doesnt want to own an eye-catching set of wheels? Were outlining everything you need to know about registering a classic car.

What is Considered a Classic Car? 

Before considering the requirements to register a classic car, you should determine whether your car is a classic. In order to qualify, your vehicle must meet each of the state’s requirements:

  • Must be over 25 years old

  • Cannot have had its body or engine modified

  • Can only be used as a collectors item for exhibits, clubs, parades, etc.

  • Not for general transportation, excepting Saturdays and Sundays

Do You Need to Register a Classic Car? 

Owners of a classic car in Tennessee can apply for antique tags. Youll have to get an application, which will be reviewed to ensure the vehicle is applicable. If approved, you will receive a license plate with the word ANTIQUE” in capital letters across the bottom and the traditional uniquely identifying numbers. 

How Often Do You Register a Classic Car? 

Registering a classic car is unlike registering a new vehicle. Once you receive an antique tag for your car, the registration is valid as long as you own the vehicle, so renewal is not required. Its important to note that if you violate any of the antique tag requirements, you will forfeit your antique motor vehicle registration and will not be able to reapply for five years from the date of the violation. 

Do you still have questions? Wed love to answer any questions you may have. Reach out to our car dealership in Franklin, TN, today – we love talking cars! 

How to Care for a Classic Car

As a valuable investment, a classic car must be taken care of properly to maintain its worth. Whether you’re utilizing the classic car as a purely financial investment, have a personal attachment to it, or bring it on the auto show circuit, it needs to be in tip-top shape. Here at Alexander Automotive, our team of mechanics at our classic car dealership serving Nashville are happy to share their tips on classic car care. 

Keep it Clean

Don’t let dust or dirt build up on your car. Keep it clean year-round, even when you have it parked. Seemingly small things like dirt and dust can cause many issues, such as impaired performance, chipping paint, and rust. After washing it, rinse well and use a soft rag to dry it thoroughly. If you must store your car outside, keep it covered.

Keep it As Original As Possible

With few exceptions, keeping components original is best when preserving the value of a classic car. Whether you’re repairing or maintaining your vehicle, use period-correct manufacturer parts when possible. Although it may be tempting to make modifications, doing so can make a car lose its classic status. 

Dont Skimp on Regular Maintenance

Every vehicle needs to be maintained regularly to remain in top condition, and classic cars are no exception. Simple maintenance catches minor issues before they require more expensive repairs. 

Because most classics aren’t daily drivers, it’s important to remember different components’ ages. Tires can rot, batteries can die, and items like hoses and brake lines become brittle as time passes. Account for this as you maintain your vehicle.

If you want to expand your collection of classic cars, utilize our classic car finder tool. Otherwise, our dealers at Alexander Automotive are happy to help answer any questions you may have about classic car upkeep and care. 

Top Reasons to Invest in a Classic Car

Buying a classic car is an investment for many drivers and car enthusiasts. While most vehicles would be considered poor investments due to depreciation, the opposite is true of classic cars. Here at our classic car dealership in Franklin TN, our dealers know a thing or two about investing in classic cars. These are the top reasons to invest in a classic car. 

What Makes a Classic Car

Before discussing why you should invest in a classic car, it’s essential to understand what exactly separates a pre-owned from a classic. For the most part, it comes down to age. Most people consider classic cars to be historically significant vehicles that are at least 15 to 25 years old. They possess a quality that makes them interesting to collect, such as unusual designs or limited production runs. The rarer a car, the more valuable it is likely to be. 

Starting Out is Easy

Classic car investing is not limited to individuals with a high net worth. For instance, we have an inventory of classic cars in the $20,000 to $30,000 range. Our dealers are happy to explain what makes our inventory unique and why they are great investments. 

Classic Cars Can Appreciate in Value

Value appreciation is a must for any good investment. Luckily, many classic cars gain value over time due to rarity, performance, or other special attributes. The data bears this out. According to the Historic Automobile Group International, vintage collectible cars from certain automakers increased in value by 33.78 percent in 2019, 6.19 percent in 2020 (unaffected by the pandemic), and 2.73 percent in 2021. 

Classic cars make for excellent investments. Begin your investment journey today by visiting Alexander Automotive and checking out our selection of vintage classic cars. 

Do Classic Cars Depreciate

Depreciation, defined as the gradual loss in value of an asset over time, is one of the realities of owning a car. However, classic cars follow a different set of rules regarding depreciation. Because of their collectible nature, classic cars can be treated more like investments that may appreciate over time. Here at Alexander Automotive, our dealers understand the ins and outs of classic car investment and depreciation and are happy to explain how they work. 

What is Depreciation?

Depreciation refers to the rate at which your car loses its value from the first year you purchased it. When you buy a new car from a dealership, its value begins to drop from the moment you first drive it off the dealership lot. 

The Market for Classic Cars

One way to diversify an investment portfolio for the automotive enthusiast is to start collecting classic cars. Any financial analyst will recommend against using current vehicles as an investment, as most lose a good portion of their value within the first few years of ownership. However, the rules are flipped upside down with classic cars. 

Not only do most classic cars not depreciate, but within the past decade, the market for classic cars has outperformed other collectibles like stamps and coins and has even matched the stock market at times. 

One of the groups that measure the collector’s car market is the Historic Automobile Group International. It tracks vintage collectible cars from automakers like Porsche, Ferrari, and more, and it has been found that the value of these vehicles has increased 6.19 percent in 2022 and 2.73 percent in 2021. 

Here at our Franklin TN classic car dealership, we carry a wide selection of classic cars that appeal to the head and heart alike. Stop by to discover the classic car of your dreams. 

The Benefits of Trading in Your Car

When it’s time to purchase a pre-owned or classic car from Alexander Automotive, you’re likely wondering what to do with your existing vehicle. While some buyers may attempt to sell the car themselves, which involves a lot of effort and hassle, most prefer to trade their cars at our dealership. If you’re looking to trade in your car to a dealership, these are the benefits of doing so at Alexander Automotive.

Get a Tax Break

There is a tax advantage when you trade in your car instead of selling it yourself. Here in Tennessee, tax laws allow your trade-in value to be deducted from the total purchase price. The state of Tennessee does not tax the value of your trade-in vehicle.

Let the Dealership Handle the Advertising

One of the biggest hassles of selling a car on your own is the time and money invested in advertising. You’ll find that many who respond to your ad will not turn up or will give you a lowball offer. Instead, we’ll handle selling the vehicle when you trade in your car at our dealership.

Simple and Convenient

Compared to selling a car on your own, trading in is a much simpler option. All you need to do is bring your vehicle into our Alexander TN car dealership, and we’ll give it a spin, then make you an offer that can be applied toward purchasing one of our vehicles. Alternatively, you can walk away with a check if you prefer not to buy from us.

We’ve only started to explain the many advantages of trading in a car at the dealership. Stop by Alexander Automotive, or fill out the trade-in form to find out the value of your vehicle.

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