TMCP #573: ASK RICK: Its The End Of The World As We Know It, Or Is It – California Emissions Mandate, Zero Emissions by 2035

Rick Schmidt – Ask Rick:

It is April and time for another riveting Ask Rick segment where I ask him the tough questions! This is the month of change where we transition from winter to spring. Out with the old and in with the new! It is time for the winter states to start getting out your projects and making them ready for car shows and tours. I look forward to seeing you at some of these events.

Rick’s Take on the California Emissions Mandate:

Back in 2022, California released a mandate to require all new cars to meets zero emissions standards by 2035. This  would make all new cars some sort of electric or hydrogen electric  hybrid vehicle across the board. In the history of our nation, wherever California goes, the rest of the country goes eventually so this means that the new mandate would also apply to everyone soon after. This would also impact the classic car market through fuel availability, discontinuation of the infrastructure, and further mandate to eliminate older vehicles that do not meet these standards.

Rick said a major part of the problem is that legislators do not understand that the classic car hobby is a “clean” endeavor in that we are saving the environment by not throwing away the old and contaminating the environment with the trash while protecting the world from the garbage that manufacturing another new car produces. As far as fuel emissions is concerned, Rick says that compared to daily commuter vehicles, classic car do not emit enough pollutants because they are not driven enough to be a factor (i.e all of the classics combined are a tiny percentage of the total).

Rick’s Take on SEMA Brings to the Table:

With all of the changes coming in the new car market regarding emissions I know that they will most definitely affect our classic car hobby. I had the opportunity to interview Mike Spagnola, President of SEMA in an upcoming interview and I wanted to know what the venerable organization does for Rick and NPD. Rick said he tries to stay away from the snake pits that SEMA boldly goes after and keeps things simple in his product selection. He does know that they do a lot of great work that will trickle down and does affect his business. It is SEMA’s job to defend and educate us  about upcoming legislation and call us to action when something is drastically wrong in a pending law. They used to perform other functions that would gather hobbyists together to meet each other but now the main focus is on protection of the hobby and the aftermarket businesses.

Rick’s Take on Listener Questions:

Hi, Robert. had a question for your Ask Rick segment. I would  eventually  like to own an 03-04 terminator cobra mustang. What would you recommend buying, as I’d like it to be a weekend cruiser. Wouldn’t mind a modified one, given the price and mileage was right. Love the show, maybe I’ll run into ya at Good Guys.  – Paul Grey

Rick was adamant on the strategy of buying a car that has been babied and taken care of properly. He said it is worth the extra expense to get an unmolested example and love it rather than buy one that needs work and live with headaches the rest of it’s life. You should enjoy a car, not sacrifice for it constantly!

Ricks Take On Cool Summer Cars:

Which if these cars trips your trigger with the “eyeball cool” test?  Goal is to buy a car – hold it until you’re ready to let it go – KNOWING that it will find a new owner easily.

Car #1:

Pontiac GTO 1972

Car #2:

Ford Fairlane 500 1967

Car #3:

Ford Torino Super Cobra Jet 1970

Car #4:

Dodge Charger Convertible 1968

Car #5:

Ford Bronco 1984


You can find out more about NPD at the website National Parts Depot, or on social media via NationalPartsDepot or on

Thanks Rick!

-Rob Kibbe

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