Hooniverse Asks: Have You Ever Joined a Marque Club, Without Actually Owning the Marque?

Do yo enjoy being at social gatherings where you don’t know anyone? Yeah, I hate that too. That hasn’t stopped me however from joining a couple of car clubs even though my entreé was a project car a long way from being participant in club events. You know what, some people go even further than that.
Most car clubs are more interested in the dues you pay than whether or not you actually own the represented marque. That has led to a great sea of wannabes and aspirants joining while not representing.  I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that, and in fact it’s a great way to determine whether or not you actually want to buy that particular marque. The question is, have you ever done that? Have you ever joined a marque club without ever actually owning that marque?
Image: focsandiego

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  1. dukeisduke Avatar

    Well, I’m still an NTCA (North Texas Corvair Assn.) member, eleven years after I sold my Corvair (I still have lots of parts).

  2. mdharrell Avatar

    I’m a member of the Northwest Citroën Owners Club even though I’ve never owned a Citroën. This is cheating the question somewhat, however, as the club recognizes all French marques and has been for years the only local club for French cars (still true the last I checked). Nonetheless, judging from the turnout at events, essentially all of the other members have either Citroëns or, as one would expect, Panhards.

    1. mdharrell Avatar

      In the interest of full disclosure I should add that I also joined the Seattle Area Mini Owners Association without ever owning any flavor of Issigonis Mini, depending on how one wishes to classify the miniMetro and its derivatives.

      1. mdharrell Avatar

        Oh, and, um, I only acquired a Skyliner some time after joining the Ford Retractable Hardtop Club of Oregon, but that’s a model-specific, not marque-specific* club, so I’m not counting it towards my self-assessment of just how odd this behavior is starting to look when spelled out in its entirety like this.
        *Mini was sometimes its own marque.

        1. Rover 1 Avatar
          Rover 1

          That’s cleared that up.
          Move along.

          1. mdharrell Avatar

            Ah, good. So I don’t have to raise the point about joining the North American MGB Register only after trading away my MGB for an HMV Freeway?

          2. Rover 1 Avatar
            Rover 1

            I knew the story couldn’t be that short.
            Go on. Fill the page.

          3. mdharrell Avatar

            I… I… In a moment of weakness at a car show I joined the Electric Auto Association even though my Lyman isn’t actually an automobile. I’m inclined to let that lapse, however, as the club’s tone strikes me as more ideological than automotive. I mean, I don’t want to come across as some sort of weirdo.
            I think that’s about it.

          4. Rover 1 Avatar
            Rover 1

            Heh he he… some sort of weirdo?
            I try not to stand out here too much either.

          5. Sjalabais Avatar

            Keep the local club economy humming!

  3. JayP Avatar

    Not exactly – I’m a member of the North East Tennessee Mustang Club but my Mustang and I live in Texas. In 2014 they wanted 50 Mustangs for the local July 4th Parade. I was in town visiting my dad… so I ended up joining.
    No dues but they ask for donations to the charity they support. May be the most active club I’ve witnessed.

    1. dukeisduke Avatar

      NTCA is very active, with dues of just $20 a year ($18 if you’re a member of CORSA (the Corvair Society of America). A monthly meeting, monthly social/museum visit/cruise activities, a 4th of July party/birthday party every year (NTCA turned 40 in July), and an annual awards/changing of the guard banquet in January.

  4. karonetwentyc Avatar

    Yes, on a few occasions – but it was typically because I was considering buying an [insert marque and model here], and wanted to speak with people who already had one in order to know what to expect from whatever it was that had piqued my interest before taking the plunge. It’s also a great way to get a feel for the club in question: some have been tremendous fun to be a part of, while others have been run (or participated in) by people who take membership or ownership of their particular vehicle far too seriously.
    There are a couple of clubs I’m still a part of despite having sold my last whatever it was that caused me to join in the first place. Some of this comes from possibly having another one some day, some of it comes from liking the folks involved and enjoying their company (and being able to live vicariously through their cars in the interim), and some of it comes from just wanting to support the club because it was an excellent resource for both myself and others.

  5. Alff Avatar

    No. I briefly considered joining the local Alfa Club (a marque I do own) but don’t have time to participate in their activities. Perhaps someday, they’re a nice group.

  6. nanoop Avatar

    I joined the national P-club a few weeks before I actually owned that car – but it was already reserved for me. Joining the club gave me access to the forums, which is important for figuring out where to get parts and services (I am a stranger here).
    The interesting experience are the people: by far no snobbish behavior, they are all “go ahead and sit in it, it’s not the fucking Mona Lisa” (I want that sticker, too, Brad). Proud owners, yes, and I am by far the poorest with the shabbiest car, but that was never the issue. The contrast in wealth has some strange effects, though: I asked if someone could lend me an engine suspending beam, because these are 150+USD here, and shipping is another 50 – they just didn’t understand why I didn’t just buy one.

  7. Principal Belding Avatar
    Principal Belding

    I joined a local BMW owners club in Oklahoma City back when I had a Lotus Elise and wanted to go on fun drives, talk with gear heads, and have someone to wrench with. It ended up working out great when I bought a 1986 BMW 325e as a beater to compliment the Elise.

  8. sunbeammadd Avatar

    I was in the MG Car Club of Queensland for a while because I needed to be in an FIA-affiliated club for competition licensing purposes, and they fitted the bill. I’ve never owned an MG though.

  9. Rover 1 Avatar
    Rover 1

    I helped form the NZ NSU Owners Association because I was trying to establish some sort of parts supply for my RO80. By the time the whole thing was organised , including being virtually GIVEN the local agent’s stock of spares, I’d sold the car to someone who waved cash in my face and paid me more for the car than I had paid originally. I remained a member.

    1. Sjalabais Avatar

      Being given the local stock of spare parts sounds like a story worth telling…? Also a solid choice of illustration above – beautiful car in a great colour!

      1. Rover 1 Avatar
        Rover 1

        I do believe that ‘s the RO80 owned by the person who ended up as club president. Picture taken when it was finally sold a year or two ago. It got painted that (actual Ro80) metallic brown after a parking brake failure accident twenty something years ago. Many coats of paint with much hand-rubbing and it was (is) a lovely car.I can’t remember what the original colour was, it may have been (non-metallic) cream and with the standard steel wheels seen in the other pictures. The alloys were brought over from England, second hand by a sailor friend of the owner. Still with it’s original NSU Wankel rotary engine and Fichtel & Sachs semi-automatic transmission the car with it’s carefully applied repaint has held up very well over the years.
        The RO80 that I owned was written off by an engine fire. Then I was living in Auckland, our largest city, and I met the other owners by following up cars for sale and leaving notes under wipers and when I met up with others, it turned out that some of them had had the same idea as me and also had lists of names. As I had just started my first degree at University, I quickly dropped out of contact as I was very busy.
        There aren’t many RO80s in NZ -maybe 30 to 50, but there aren’t very many NZers either. The owner of this car also had an NSU Wankel Spyder and a wide variety of other cars, Aston Martin DB2, Fiat 130, Renault 17 Gordini etc
        When I was later in England I owned another Ro80 but it was very rusty and had been converted to a Ford V4 which pretty much ruined the car. I sold it on when I left as I came back through the States and bringing a vehicle was not cost effective. The next owner dismantled it for parts as the trim and interior were in good condition. And, as I stated. I will get another one, oneday. At the moment I don’t have enough room with my four W124s, Lancia Gamma Coupe, Rover 800, Renault Espace S1, Honda Civic Shuttle and Citroens BX & CX. I have been informed that this is more than enough vehicles for one person and I find it easier not to argue.

  10. spotarama Avatar

    yep, joined the “Harley Club of Victoria” many years ago solely for the reason of getting my racing licence to go and race vespas………

    1. Vairship Avatar

      People race Harleys? They’re overly large, overweight, unreliable, loud and spew noxious gases. And that’s just the owners 😉