Home 2014 AACA Eastern Spring Meet

The Lake Erie Region of the
Antique Automobile Club of America

National 2014 Eastern Spring Meet - Official Vehicle Classification


by Barb Noonan

Many of our Lake Erie Region members have been asking for clarification on the AACA National Vehicle Classification List. With our LER hosted national AACA Eastern Spring Meet coming up on May 31, 2014, this is a good time to provide some information on this topic. This information is taken from the Official Judging Guidelines (2013 Revision). If the national judging system makes any changes for 2014, we will share this information as we learn it.  

There are three major categories for Vehicle Classification: (1) Competition Class Judging, (2) Historical Preservation of Original Features (HPOF), and (3) Driver Participation (DPC).  

Competition Judged Classes
The objective of AACA competition judging is to evaluate an antique vehicle, which has been restored to the same state as the dealer could have prepared the vehicle for delivery to the customer. This includes any feature, option or accessory shown in the original factory catalog, parts book, sales literature, or company directives for the model year of the vehicle. AACA accepts motorized vehicles 25 years old or older, which were built in factories and specifically designed and manufactured for transportation use of public roadways and highways.  

There are three categories of competition in the AACA award system.

1.    Junior

a.    First Junior
Vehicles are judged in the Junior category at AACA national meets until they win the First Junior award.  The highest scoring vehicle in a class and at or above the 365 point minimum is a First junior winner together with all other vehicles scoring within 10 points of the highest scoring vehicle. Upon winning a First junior award, the vehicle receives a National First Prize badge which must be affixed to the vehicle. The badge must be present to be eligible in completion for Senior Award.

b.    Second Junior
The vehicle whose score is 11 or more points below the top scoring First Junior winner and at or above the 330 point minimum is the Second Junior Winner, together with all others scoring within 10 points of the top Second Junior Winner.

c.    Third Junior
The vehicle whose score is 11 or more points below the top scoring Second Junior winner and at or above 295 point minimum is the Third junior winner together with all other vehicles scoring within 10 points of the top Third Junior winner.

2.  Senior
Vehicles that have won the First Junior can then compete in the Senior category with other Senior vehicles. The Senior award is known as the Duryea trophy. The vehicle must have the highest score in the class with a minimum score of 375 points to win this Senior award. Any other vehicle scoring within 10 points of the highest score and at or above 375 is also awarded a Senior award. In addition to the Duryea trophy, the vehicle receives a Senior Tab that should be affixed behind the National First Prize winner badge. This badge must be properly displayed to compete for the Preservation award.

3.  Preservation
When the Senior award is won, the vehicle can compete in the Preservation category with other Preservation vehicles. At the first national meet where the vehicle scores 350 points of more, it will be awarded the Preservation award. The plaque is a wood board where the Preservation award medallion can be mounted, along with future Preservation awards if achieved. The greatest advantage to this award is that as long as a vehicle is maintained to score 350 points or more, it can be driven, enjoyed, and still receive the medallion at national meets.  


The vehicles in the Historical Preservation of Original Features class represent the evolution of automobile history and depict originality over restoration. AACA established this class to encourage the saving and display of collector vehicles in their original, as manufactured, condition.

The HPOF Certification Class, established in 1987, encourages owners of vehicles 25 years old or older, retaining significant original features to allow them to remain in this original condition, and to show them at National Meets. A vehicle may be entirely “original” or it may have certain original features such as paint, chassis, upholstery, engine compartment, etc., that are essentially as delivered. These vehicles are not point judged. A vehicle, being evaluated for the first time, if certified, will receive an HPOF board, HPOF chip, and HPOF badge, which should be visibly mounted on the vehicle.

A vehicle having achieved the HPOF certification award is now eligible for certification at a subsequent meet in order to achieve the AACA “Original” award. If certified as an AACA “Original”, the owner will receive an AACA “Original” badge. If the vehicle does not certify at the AACA “Original” level, it will receive a repeat HPOF chip provided it meets the certification standards.


The Driver Participation Class was established in 2000 to promote the showing and driving of antique vehicles which are not intended by their owners to be “Show” vehicles and are described as “Drivers”. This class is for vehicles 25 years old or older that have not obtained a National first prize. This is a non-competitive or non-judged class and will not be point judged, but vehicles will be certified upon passing a visual inspection.

The DPC evaluation form must be completed and signed by the vehicle owner. Certification is based on vehicle components that have the same appearance as when the vehicle was manufactured and the overall condition of the vehicle in general appears acceptable. The exterior / interior / chassis / engine components must appear period correct per the original manufacturer. The following are exceptions that will not disqualify the vehicle: seat belts, seat coverings, turn signals, stop lights, sealing beam / halogen headlights, radial tires, alloy wheels of the same area and/or same vehicle manufacturer, radio upgrades, electrical upgrades, brake upgrades, steering upgrades, air conditioning, overdrive system and altered exhausts.  

A DPC badge is issued to each vehicle upon certification and a participation award is given at certification. The DPC badge should be visibly mounted on the vehicle.