Automobília Ibérica 2017 – The Parking Lots

23 03 2017

Covering the Automobília Ibérica has become a yearly tradition for Automotive Views. The event set in the small town of Moita, Portugal takes over two pavilions which end up packed with all sorts of parts for classic cars and bikes, literature, vintage toys, aftermarket bits and pieces…if it’s automotive related, it’s in there somewhere.

However, the best part of the event isn’t the stuff for sale but the rides in which people show up in. Bare in mind Automobília Ibérica is a very “cars of the people” kind of event so there’s an abundance of Minis, Beetles, 2CVs and other small, affordable, easy to maintain European classics, but throughout the weekend more upscale rides will also make an appearance, you just gotta keep an eye out for them…

Although 2017 was a particularly slow year, some interesting rides could still be found in the event’s parking lots. Here are a few noteworthy ones.

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First, a gorgeous 4.2 XJ6 Series I. Well used, but in need of some esthetic intervention. We all know how demanding these are to maintain and how pricey they can become once troubles set in, but damn they’re worth the headaches. 

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Marking it’s second year at the event, a nicely maintained 65 Mustang coupe which always gets a whole lot of love from the visitors.

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A factory fresh Alfa Sprint isn’t something you see every day. In stunning condition for such a sensitive car, pretty amazing.

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Sticking with Alfas, a couple of interesting Spiders w/hardtops also showed up, as well as a beautifully clean, rich chocolate brown 2000 Berlina.

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A couple of pickups also found their way into this year’s honorable mentions, namely a 1953 Studebaker (with a North Carolina inspection tag still on the windshield) and a 1941 Chevy Half-Ton.

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A few Porsches also showed up at the Automobília Ibérica this year. Not being particularly extraordinary, at the same time these were just too neat to simply ignore. From a stunning 912 to a couple of Carreras, a 928S and even a 997 Turbo, Stuttgart was properly represented.  

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3 BMWs stood out: a fantastic looking 2800; one of the most underappreciated gems of the company, a 635 CSi (the 6 was accompanied by the, arguably, most iconic of the Triumphs: the TR6); and a – now – rare 700 Cabrio (next to a Series A Opel Olympia Rekord).

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Being an extremely popular event for small, popular European cars, there’s no way around a few honorable mentions for a couple of Minis (a funky gold, 2000 Knightsbridge special edition and a recently restored 1275 GT Clubman), DSs, a very cool Fiat 124 Sport and a spectacularly tiny Heinkel Kabine bubble car, a competitor to BMW’s Isetta. 

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It wouldn’t be a decent event in the classic car scene without a couple of grand ol’ Dames. Showing up for its second year, a heart achingly beautiful 1938 Buick, an ode to Art Deco finesse and aesthetic. Accompanying it, a 38/39 (?) Master Deluxe Chevrolet.

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With Mercedes models never failing to provide some of the most memorable presences in the Ibérica’s parking lots, this year’s head turners were a 220 Heckflosse, a 280SL and a 280SE 3.5. The first two, spotless. The third one in need of restoration but not less impressive in the slightest because of it. What a legitimately incredible looking car! And holy crap, that V8 sounded good…

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Finally, the belle of the ball: a Series 1 E-Type. Always an event to spent some time with one of these things. Sadly, this particular example was a late S1 2+2, which means the lines are not the sheer perfection that the 61 Coupe introduced. In fact, the owner was kind enough to discuss at length the differences between the Coupe and the 2+2, inside and out.

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Automobilia Ibérica 2016 – The Parking Lots

27 03 2016

This year’s edition of the Automobilia Ibérica went down last weekend and, as usual, it brought some interesting classics to the very small town of Moita, Portugal. The Automobilia Ibérica is, at its core, an event aimed at the parts market, with people buying, selling and trading all kinds of rusty bits and pieces needed to keep  classic rides on the road. However, the parking lots are far, far more interesting than the event itself.

Despite this year having been a bit of a weak one for sightings, some cool and interesting stuff worth writing home about did show up. Now, this is usually more a European “cars of the people” kind of deal, with plenty of beetles, 2CV’s and Fiats, but some very neat arrivals went against the trend. Let’s take a look at a few.

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Looking gorgeous in red, the DS 5 certainly brightened up the black and grey dominated lot

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Without a doubt, the star of the parking lots this year and undisputed belle of the ball, a drop dead gorgeous Aston Martin DB2 Drophead Coupé graced the Automobilia Ibérica event in glorious fashion. A garage queen until recently, the DB2 was escorted to Moita by her very young, very nice owner

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A nice 356B brought some more color to the Automobilia lot. Great shape, a very welcome addition to this year’s edition

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Hands down our favorite ride of the weekend. A stunning, charismatic and size-wise downright intimidating 1938 Buick 8 Special. Spotless, achingly beautiful and a rolling display of an endless amount of carefully crafted and amazing Art Deco details. Some really amazing stuff

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Now this is Portugal, so American classics are always scarce, even in this kind of event. That makes them real crowd-pleasers, even if a lot of people wouldn’t give them a second look in the states. That’s the case with the V6 Stangs, especially Coupes

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Minis are always popular, but of every example which showed up this year (and there were a lot to choose from), this particular one takes the cake. Cooper inspired and very tastefully modified, we just weren’t convinced by the clear taillights. Otherwise an all round home run

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Let’s take a look at a few BMWs because quite a few showed up and surprisingly, more modern models than classics. Starting with an interesting duo of E46 M3 and E38 7 Series

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A more common sight but not less impressive. In our humble opinion, the best BMW ever made, the legendary E39 M5

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Of course we’ve gotta give props to anyone rocking an 8 series, especially a V12. This 850i not being at the top of the E31 food chain (that spot is reserved for the savage 850 CSi) its still a pretty respectable – and oh so damn pretty – ride

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A cornerstone of BMW history, a 2000 (“Bavaria”) also made an appearance. Underwhelming color, fantastic car

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The granddaddy of the 3 series: the E21. Base model, base horsepower, top of the range character

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An interesting little gang: Sunbeam, MG and a very nice 220 with an almost  comedically large front grill

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A regular of the Automobilia Ibérica, this little red +2 Elan keeps looking good throughout the years

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Shouldn’t be controversial to say that the 308 is a well loved Ferrari, especially with the whole Magnum P.I. connection putting it on a lot of people’s wish list. Here we’re more partial to the 328, but the 308 is a respectable ride as well. The 208 however…that’s another story. Once the proud owner of the “slowest Ferrari ever made” title, equipped with the tiniest of tiny V8s, the 208 still turned a lot of heads and thrilled the non connoisseurs

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From Italian exotic to German workhorse. The T3 VWs are increasing in popularity and it’s not every day you come across a 4 door cab Transporter, especially not in this great  condition

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Our personal favorites, the mighty Mercedes. Since we were spoiled for choice, we picked the most interesting examples in both model and condition, starting with a stunning W108 280. It had a special flag mount so it must have been in service either with the government or an embassy at some point in its life

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A landmark in Mercedes history, the 180 Ponton is a timeless beauty and this particular example was as clean as they come (bonus pink Beetle!)

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Nothing too crazy, but a cool pair nonetheless: a W116 280 and a R107 350. Both for sale, both fetching and both needing a fair amount of TLC

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A big surprise this year and a great way to rat rod in style. This derelict ratty W115 packed with mismatched parts stole the show

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W123s always deserve the utmost respect. Beautiful and utterly indestructible, two particular examples (300s) caught our eye: a Coupe which suffers with the ugly US spec bumpers (bonus early UMM 4×4 across the street!) and a perfect limousine. Usually the expression “you could eat off it” is an exaggeration but this W123 was so clean we wouldn’t mind setting our lunch down on the hood

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From Germany to Italy, we couldn’t help but notice a steroid pumped version of the 500: the 595 Tributo Ferrari. Is it the best you (could) get? No, but doesn’t look bad at all and 180hp in such a small package is nothing to be ashamed of

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Rivets on a Alfa 2000, what do we think? Cool racing inspired mod or heart attack inducing heresy? You decide! Ok, we know full well this is a GTAm (style, at least). Is it real, is it a replica? The latter is more certain, but without some concrete info we gotta leave the question open

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We can’t resist a well used Peugeot 404, and this one certainly looked like it had earned its patina

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How low can you go??????????

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We finish this tour of the parking lots with Japan, well represented as usual. Starting with a titan of rising sun performance, the 300 ZX Twin Turbo

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The most well cared for, clean, spotless example of an E20 Corolla we’ve ever seen! The attention to detail was amazing!

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Last but not least, a regular (this year, with extra “Tokyo” sticker in the back): a fantastic AE86 Trueno

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Because 10 wheels are better than 4

30 11 2015

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If I were to ask you to think of the term “tire testing” your brain probably wouldn’t be flooded with any kind of exciting imagery. I know mine sure wouldn’t…personally, all I could think about when I took this little exercise myself was that there’s probably a lot of very clever, rigorous and scientific machinery for the job. Update: I just Googled it and there is. You see, the problem is that we’re living in a boring time for the fascinating field of tiretstology (no, I definitely did not just make that word up, it’s been around since at least 1888, it’s on the dictionary and everything…no need to check, take my word for it…ok fine it’s fake, you happy? Sheesh!); in the 1970’s Michelin needed to put its truck tires through the paces but was concerned about safety since tall, heavy vehicles aren’t exactly graceful when their tires blow up and shred into a million little pieces at high speed. To diminish the risk, Michelin came up with a test vehicle that just happens to be one of the coolest, most extraordinary things ever put on wheels…lots and lots of wheels.

The Poids Lourd Rapide (PLR) or as it got nicknamed, the “Mille Pattes” (centipede) is a heavily modified DS. And when I say heavily modified I mean it’s a seriously out there kind of ride. If the regular DS already looks like a space ship, the PLR is the souped-up, alien F&F version of it. It took 2 years of conceptualization and one year of actual build to get the PLR on the road and that’s not surprising when you take a quick look at the specs of the thing. It measures 7.30 by 2.45 meters (that’s over 23ft 11in long by a little over 8 feet wide for our American friends); it has 10 wheels off the HY van, 6 on the back for traction and 4 at the front for steering; it carries two 90 liter fuel tanks; and, on the back of it, you’ll find two 350 Chevy engines because more of everything is always best.

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The really cool part is that as mad as the PLR is, the parts for it are stock Citroen stuff, they’ve just been set up a little differently and adapted. The overabundance of wheels in the “centipede” aren’t the ones that would actually test the tires. An 11th wheel on the inside of the vehicle was used for that particular job. The special structure set up on the PLR could apply 2000 to 3250 kilograms of simulated load to the wheel/tire combo. The test wheel was powered by the left side engine while the right one would power the 6 rear wheels of the “centipede”. For security reasons, the left engine and test wheel could be stopped in just 3 seconds should anything go wrong and the driver was, of course, isolated from the “test chamber”. The PLR could run without its side door in order to allow for direct observation of the test wheel/tire from a chase vehicle. By making something as big and wide as a truck but with a much lower center of gravity, Michelin eliminated the risks of a serious accident while tire testing, pretty clever.

The “centipede” wouldn’t run at its – limited – top speed (which would be about 170 to 180kph; 105 to 111mph) which is a shame because personally I’d love to watch what is basically a 10 ton DS Safari running at that speed, but you take what you can get. Speaking of which, here’s a video of the monster in motion for your enjoyment:

Today you can see the PLR getting some well deserve r&r at the Michelin museum in Clermont-Ferrand, France so pay it a visit if you can.

Consulted sources:
http://www.autoblog.it/post/342543/citroen-centipede-la-storia-della-macchina-a-10-ruote
http://ranwhenparked.net/2009/09/12/michelin-plr/
http://www.citroends.es/prl_michelin.html
http://www.autoblog.it/post/342543/citroen-centipede-la-storia-della-macchina-a-10-ruote

Images used:
(Archive image)
http://www.oto6.fr/6roues/millepattes/dsjubile2005_058.jpg;

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The Transporter(s)

9 11 2014

Nowadays when you need to haul you race car(s) around, you have a wide range of very modern, practical and convenient trailers and trucks that will do the job beautifully. One annoying little thing though: they all look pretty much the same. Sure, you can customize them, throw some paint on, some graphics…but the basic shape doesn’t vary that much. Gone are the days when race car haulers were truly a part of the show, properly admired by the Team/Drivers fans and coveted by kids that would pick them up as scale models from companies like Matchbox and Corgi. Today on Automotive Views, we take a trip down memory lane, back to the good old days (done with cliches, I promise) of race car haulers. Here are a few of the very best ever made.

Citroen DS Tissier Car Transporter

Citroen DS Tissier 1976

Citroen DS Tissier 1976If you don’t know about Tissier Citroens I’ve gotta say, you’re missing out on something amazing! Back in the day, Pierre Tissier had a problem. He was a Panhard agent in Paris, but frequently needed to transport cars to/from Spain as well. Tissier found that there really wasn’t anything available that he considered to be up to the job. So, following that “necessity being the mother of invention” rule, Tissier decided to come up with something appropriate himself. His amazing company was born from that decision, ending up becoming “the” expert at making the most of Citroen’s hydropneumatic suspension, building some of the most extraordinary vehicles you’ll ever see in your life. From ambulances to motor homes, carrying anything from stacks of newspapers across France to helicopters in Africa, the Tissier Citroens (DS, CX, XM…) are serious pieces of machinery in any form. You can take a look around this Otto6 page and be amazed at the sheer volume of variations, but today, we’re focusing solely on the car hauler. Now, you may be tempted to say: “but this post is specifically about race car haulers, you can load up any vehicle on one of these, not just racers”; well, you are of course completely right in that observation; but, since these did perform that task as well, I felt it was only fair to include them. Let’s face it, if you get to the track in one of these it really doesn’t matter how the weekend goes, you already won.

Ecurie Ecosse Transporter

Ecurie Ecosse Transporter

Ecurie Ecosse Transporter“Team Scotland” was a heavyweight name in racing back in the 50’s. They won the legendary 24 hours of Le Mans in both 1956 and 1957 (with their D-Types taking first and second that year). However, Ecurie Ecosse failed to perform well at La Sarthe every single year after that till 1962, when the original team was no more. Accompanying the team through good and bad times was something even cooler than the metallic Scottish flag blue D-Types: the Ecurie Ecosse one of a kind, gorgeous Transporter. Imagined by chief designer Selby Howgate, the Transporter started life as a simple Commer truck chassis. Over time, it was shaped by Howgate (and built by Walter Alexander & Co. Coachworks – Scotland) to the immediately recognizable form we know and love today. Debuted in 1960 and immortalized by Corgi the following year, the Transporter has room for two cars on top and a third one down in the back. Inside, it has a shop area as well as crew sleeping quarters. Retired in 1971, the Ecurie Ecosse Transporter lived a rough life untill it was restored to its former glory in the 1980’s. It sold in late 2013 for a whopping £1,793,500 (that’s $2,931,411). You can see and hear a bit more of the Transporter in this Hemmings Blog post.

Fiat Series 306/2 Grand Prix Transporter

Fiat Series 306/2 Grand Prix Transporter

Fiat Series 306/2 Grand Prix TransporterTalk about an illustrious career. This particular 306/2, a Fiat chassis with a Bartoletti body, started life as the transporter for the Maserati Formula 1 team during the 1957 and 1958 seasons. By 1960, the Grand Prix Transporter was in the hands of Lance Reventlow’s racing team, an American entrepreneur and car driver. For the 1960 and 1961 seasons, the Bartoletti Fiat served as Reventlow Automobiles Inc GP team hauler until being sold in 1961 to none other than American legend Carroll Shelby. Shelby added a second rear axle to the Grand Prix Transporter in order to make it more stable and to handle the weight of the Daytona Coupes better. After leaving Shelby’s employment, the Bartoletti Fiat was used by Lotus and by the racing teams of David Piper and Alan Mann before being cast in the Steve McQueen movie “Le Mans” in which it apparently needed to play several roles, being painted and repainted according to whichever team it needed to belong to on screen…so much work…After Le Mans, the Grand Prix Transporter had a couple of more owners, ending up for sale in 2011 at the RM Monterey Auction. At this point, the Bartoletti Fiat had already experienced a detailed process of restoration and that reflected on the price: almost one million US dollars. You can read more about the history and specs of the blue giant in a 2012 RM article here.

Pegaso Bacalao

Pegaso Bacalao

Pegaso Bacalao“Codfish” (Bacalao) is a weird name for…pretty much anything but the actual fish, really…however, it looks particularly out of place in a car hauler. Nonetheless, the strangeness of the name takes absolutely nothing away from how astonishing this Spanish creation is. Where did it come from? Well, bear with me: the Spanish part of Hispano-Suiza was bought by ENASA (Empresa Nacional de Autocamiones) which was in term owned by INI (Instituto Nacional de Industria), a state owned industrial holding company. ENASA built vehicles under two brand names, Sava and Pegaso. The latter made a little bit of everything really, from trucks, to buses to sports cars. Of those sports cars, I’d like to take a moment and single out the gorgeous Z102B Saoutchik Berlinetta; if you don’t know it, click here and enjoy, you can thank me later. So we already know Pegaso made a bunch of different commercial vehicles, but where does the Bacalao fit in? Well, apparently Pegaso needed something nice to haul their Z-102 race cars around, so they took one of their Z-401 truck chassis and made this one off, awesome transporter. According to Pasión Pegaso Forum member patanslot68 who did some more extensive research on the matter, the Bacalao saw the light of day in 1952, being presented to the public the following year. By 1954, the Pegaso had a slightly different front with a smaller grill and a different paint scheme; originally white, the Bacalao then wore a two tone blue paint job with a white roof. During the following decade, the Bacalao had a long career in several rallies and motoring/racing events. By 1968, it was a support vehicle for an F2 team, a job that it apparently maintained for a while until it got abandoned in Barcelona. In 1970, the Bacalao was retired in the worst way possible, being scrapped unceremoniously. A loss not only to car transporter enthusiasts, but to Spain as whole, since its now missing an extremely relevant piece of Pegaso history.

Rennstall Bunker’s VW T1

Rennstall Bunker VW T1

Rennstall Bunker VW T1Not a lot to tell here, but what a way to make a T1 pickup really special…the American Rennstall Bunker (“Racing Bunker”) team found a way to haul its Porsches in style with this extended bed T1. I can’t find much on the success (or lack thereof) of Art Bunker and his team, but they sure hit a home run with the VW hauler because to this day, it stands tall as a favorite amongst car hauler enthusiasts. The original was unfortunately lost…however, a lovingly crafted replica made its debut at the 2007 Techno Classica in Essen, causing quite a stir. Welcome back, little big Volkswagen!

Fiat Tipo 682/RN-2 Transporter

Fiat Tipo 682/RN-2 Transporter

Fiat Tipo 682/RN-2 TransporterAnother Bartoletti Fiat you ask? Yes! Most definitely! Gotta love those things…This time, Ferrari’s 1959 682/RN-2. Used by the Scuderia alongside another Bartoletti, the 642 RN-2, Ferrari’s (at the time) new toy featured slightly different looks than its predecessor. However, in my humble opinion, a few small changes added up to a huge difference. That amazing round front grill alone (the 642 had a square one with no chrome strips in the middle) makes it twice as beautiful. For 11 years the 682 safely carried some of the best, most astonishing race cars ever made from one track to the next. By 1970 it was sold to – I kid you not – a circus promoter that toured it all over Italy. After being retired from his stretch as “circus folk”, it remained stored for about 20 years, being bought in 1995 by SoCal specialists that arranged for a full restoration according to the website boldride. The 682 sold at Pebble Beach in 2011 for just under one million US dollars.

Mercedes Benz 0317 Porsche Transporter

Team Transporter by Porsche Gulf Collection Salon Privé 2012

Mercedes 0317 Porsche TransporterYou take what’s already a cool looking Mercedes bus, throw everything away but the chassis and that pretty “face” (as you can see in this amazing picture), send it off to the Schenk Company for a functional body capable of hauling 4 of the most badass race cars that ever existed and, to top it all of, you give it the incomparable Gulf livery. Now you’ve got yourself a proper, astonishing hauler. According to ClassicDriver.com’s Alex Easthope, only three 0317 Porsche Transporters were built, of which 2 remain. This particular one, the 1968 Gulf-Wyer hauler remains absolutely immaculate in terms of conservation and those beasts – also known as 917s – look right at home in it…

Cheetah

Cheetah Transporter

Cheetah TransporterNorman Holtkamp, a fabricator who was also a Porsche and Volkswagen dealer at Inglewood California, looked at Mercedes’ “Blue Wonder” (we’ll get to that beauty in a minute…) and thought “Hmm, that’s kind of amazing”. So, he decided it was worth giving a shot at building something as cool as the astonishing blue Mercedes. Staying true to his inspiration, the Cheetah is based on a Merc, a wrecked 300S to be exact. Holtkamp then raided a few parts bins looking for stuff to bolt on the salvaged 300’s chassis. The engine for the Cheetah is a small block Chevy V8 coupled to a 3 speed Vette transmission; the “cab” came out of a 59 or 1960 El Camino (depending on which source you consult; in an article for Barnfinds.com, Tom Cotter, author of the popular book “The Cobra in the Barn” states that Holtkamp bought the 1960 Camino cab straight off GM’s Truck Assembly Plant in Van Nuys); the headlights and front bumper belong to a 1960 Corvair and the rear bumper looks like it was taken off a 59 El Camino as well (correct me if I’m wrong, Chevy experts). The one of a kind hauler was then taken to LA’s Troutman-Barnes (popular race car body builders in the 50’s and 60’s) where it got its sleek aluminum shape. The Cheetah Transporter was ready to work by 1961 and according to this Hemmings Blog article, Holtkamp planned for a limited production run that would carry an asking price of 16 grand per transporter. However, that was a particularly high price at the time and as such, the Cheetah ended up being a one off. After 3 years in service, this second Hemmings article tells us that Holtkamp messed with the dimensions of the Cheetah, discarding parts of the stunning Troutman-Barnes body in the process. He ended up selling the Transporter to builder/racer Dean Moon who, while in the process of updating the brakes from drums to disks, saw the 1971 San Francisco earthquake destroy the building in which the Cheetah was being worked on. Despite not suffering major damage, the occurrence was enough to let the Transporter sitting on jack stands in Moon’s shop till his death in 1987. It’s unclear why he never completed the work prior to his passing. The Cheetah was then purchased by car collector Jim Degnan who in turn, sold it to Geoff Hacker in 2006. Who is Geoff Hacker you ask? Well, it’s complex to explain but he certainly looks like someone with a fun job…finding and bringing back to life the unique and the obscure. You can read more about Hacker here. As far as I can tell, Hacker still owns the Cheetah; at least he did 4/5 years ago, can’t really find any information or pictures after that. I hope one day the unique Holtkamp Transporter will be brought back to its former glory and, I don’t know if at any point this complete body shown in Cotter’s article was actually on the car or if it never left the concept/sketch stage, but if the Cheetah looked like that it would be about 10 times even more stylish/cool/pretty than it already is.

Mercedes Benz Rennstrasnporter (“Blue Wonder”)

Mercedes Benz Rennstrasnporter (“Blue Wonder”)

Mercedes Benz Rennstrasnporter (“Blue Wonder”)As usual, I saved the best (what I personally feel qualifies as such anyway) for last. Mercedes already had pretty astonishing machinery for the track; the Silver Arrows (W196s) were a force to be reckoned with. However, they needed a hauler that could match their superb cars…it wasn’t an easy job, but I’d say they pulled it off beautifully. Brainchild of Alfred Neubauer – Mercedes Grand Prix Team racing manager at the time – the “Blue Wonder” Rennstransporter was based on a 300S, but it was powered by the same inline-six that was providing the SL Gullwing with the grounds for its claim as the world’s first supercar. As a result, the “Blue Wonder” was the world’s fastest race car hauler of its day, capable of doing 105 mph! The amazing Mercedes Transporter served the company for over 10 years until its life ended far too violently and abruptly. Born in 1954, by 1967 legendary Mercedes engineer Rudolf Uhlenhaut had it scrapped for unknown reasons. What an absolute senseless tragedy! Luckily, Mercedes attempted to undo Uhlenhaut’s horrendous and incomprehensible mistake by building an as accurate as possible replica in 2001. The Blue Wonder is reborn, thank you Mercedes.

Images used:
Tissier DS

http://www.gopixpic.com/1024/description-citroen-ds-002jpg/http:||upload*wikimedia*org|wikipedia|commons|a|a3|Citroen_DS_002*jpg/
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Citroen_DS_Tissier_000_1970_backright_2010-03-13_U.jpg

Ecurie Ecosse Transporter

http://www.hdwallpaperbackground.com/PCWallpapers/CarWallpapers/carwallpapers-984_3_2560x1600.html
http://toplowridersites.com/mille-miglia-photos/
Fiat Series 306/2 Grand Prix Transporter
http://www.wallpaperup.com/130117/1956_Fiat_306-2_Bartoletti_Grand_Prix_Transporter_towtruck_retro_f.html
Pegaso Bacalao

http://autoescala.blogspot.pt/2010/08/pegaso-bacalao-hispania-models.html
http://oldvan.exblog.jp/page/63/
VW T1 “Rennstall Bunker”

http://www.356speedsterclub.nl/forum/viewtopic.php?f=16&t=714
http://www.forum.mdiecast.com/topic/8944-renntransporteri/
Fiat Tipo 682/RN-2 Transporter
http://www.wallpaperup.com/130121/1959_Fiat_682_RN2_Bisarca_Bartoletti_towtruck_retro_ferrari.html
http://www.gopixpic.com/1024/fiat-682-rn2-fot-ape-fight/http:||s2*blomedia*pl|autokult*pl|images|2012|03|Fiat-682-RN2-fot*-Ape-Fight*jpg/
Mercedes 0317 Porsche Transporter
http://www.soloporsche.com/showthread.php?p=965600
http://www.talkmorgan.com/ubbthreads.php/topics/208422/all/Le_Mans_Classic
http://forums.autosport.com/topic/63980-transporters/page-39

Cheetah

http://barnfinds.com/cheetah-transporter-chase/http://www.undiscovered-classics.com/cars-in-the-que-awaiting-restoration/

Mercedes-Benz Renntransporter

http://en.autowp.ru/mercedes-benz/car3181/exact/pictures/
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Mercedes-Benz_Renntransporter_1954_%289655917253%29.jpg

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.





A Milestone

16 01 2014

Just before the end of last year, Automotive Views (AV) reached an important landmark; well, it’s important to a blog of this nature anyway…one hundred thousand visitors, a small number to popular blogs, but considerably relevant to me. I rarely get to update AV, once a month is usually all I manage. I keep wishing I had more time to spend here but so far, that hasn’t been a possibility. Still, I love keeping AV and I won’t quit, so this number is definitely cause for celebration.

I dug in the archives and thought a bit about what would be appropriate to post in this occasion; these are what I came up with: factory/production pictures. Nothing seemed more fitting than a few pics of the birth of legends, so here they are, for your enjoyment.

Thank you very much to everyone who stops by, happy 2014 people!

Lamborghini Miura

Lamborghini Miura assembly line

Lamborghini Miura factory

Lamborghini Espada

Lamborghini Espada Factory

Lambroghini Espada assembly line

Dodge Charger

Dodge Charger assembly line

Charger Assembly line

Ferrari 250 Le Mans

Ferrari 250 Le Mans factory

Ferrari 330

Ferrari 330 factory

Porsche 356

Porsche 356 factory

Porsche 356 assembly line

Porsche 356 factory

Ford Mustang

Ford Mustang assembly line

Ford Mustang assembly line

Ford Mustang assembly line

Ford Mustang assembly line

Ford Mustang Boss 429

1969 Ford Mustang Boss 429 factory

Citroen DS

Citroen DS assembly line

Jaguar E-Type

Jahuar E-Type assembly line

Alpine A110

Alpine A310 assembly line

Shelby Cobra – GT350 – GT40

Shelby Factory

Volkswagen Golf MkI

Volkswagen Golf Assembly line

Land Rover Series 1

Land Rover Series 1 assembly line

Jeep CJ – Wagoneer

Jeep CJ and Wagoneer assembly line

Lotus Elan

Lotus Elan assembly line

1959 Cadillac lineup

Cadillac factory 1959

Mini

Mini assembly line

Mini assembly line

Chevrolet Corvette C1

1953 Corvette assembly line

1953 Corvette assembly line

1953 Corvette assembly line

1953 Corvette assembly line

Chevrolet Corvette Stingray

1963 Corvette Stingray factory

Mercedes Benz 300 SL Gullwing & Roadster

Mercedes Benz 300SL assembly line

Mercedes Benz 300SL assembly line

Mercedes Benz 190 SL

Mercedes Benz 190SL assembly line

Mercedes Benz W123 Sedan & Estate

Mercedes Benz W123 assembly line

Mercedes Benz W123 assembly line

Mercedes Benz Ponton

Mercedes Benz ponton assembly line

Volkswagen Beetle

Volkswagen Beetle assembly line

Volkswagen Bus

Volkswagen Bus assembly line

(Note: as I mentioned, these are archive pictures. They were gathered over the years from all kinds of different sources so, in case of any ownership issues, please contact me and I’ll address the situation.)





The List

11 07 2012

[Updated, May 2016 – Click here for part II] If you’re truly a car guy/girl, you have a list somewhere…I know I do…When you have a lifelong love affair with cars you’re bound to experience affection for a lot of different models, but there are always a few special ones with which you just fall for so hard that no matter what, you’d jump at the faintest, most immediate, impractical, disastrous opportunity to get one. These specific, burning passions might not be for the greatest cars out there, for the ones with the best performance or even the highest price, but they’re the ones on your List, your dream rides, the key pieces to your perfect garage.

Now, your list may be hopelessly long, ludicrous and unreasonable like mine (which would make even the – formerly – absurdly wealthy Sultan of Brunei shiver in terror when thinking of the overall cost of gathering up and maintaining everything in there…) or it may be a down to earth actually achievable goal of a couple of cars that truly speak to your heart. Today, after some painstaking consideration crowned with a lot of blood, sweat and tears…fine, I exaggerate…I managed to cut my Encyclopedia Brittanica of a list down to just 20 little gems (trust me, it’s a huge achievement) which I’ll now share and justify. Well rationalize anyway.

After more than a year and a half writing for Automotive Views (and having already done some articles on a few of these models) it felt right to pay a tribute to the all star team. (Note: the years in the titles refer to the ones I’d choose, not the year in which the models were first launched and the prices are an average for each of these specific models being sold at the moment in good or very good condition by private seller or dealerships; no auction style sales were used for reference)

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Aston Martin Lagonda (1985)

1985 Aston Martin Lagonda

1985 Aston Martin Lagonda (rear)

Why this car?

Why this car indeed…there is no reasonable, sane justification anyone can ever come up with for wanting a Lagonda. For all practical intents and purposes they’re horrible, horrible cars…hopeless in every single way. They were badly made, completely relying on an electric system that never worked at all and that you need a tricorder to even attempt to figure out…just a complete overall waste of space and Aston badges…or are they? True, it would cost a small fortune to get a Lagonda in proper working order but in the end, it would be so worth it because these are stunning looking machines, unappreciated masterpieces in automotive design history. And hey, there would be one properly working Lagonda in the world, so yay for that! Nothing has ever looked like a Lagonda and nothing will ever look even remotely like it again. They’re a truly unique creation. It’s big, weird, and devilishly appealing at the same time. You sure as hell ain’t gonna loose it in a parking lot! Despite all its tremendous flaws, I have always loved the Lagonda and I’ll continue to love it. (Click here to see my previous post on the Lagonda)

What’s the damage?

US – $45.000 to $70.000 (The one in the pictures is being sold by the good people of Hyman Ltd. Classic Cars at Saint Louis Missouri for $57.500)

UK – £25.000 to £50.000

Why not…a decent Aston? Well there are plenty of good ones to choose from, many of which are extremely impressive and beautiful machines. I certainly wouldn’t say no to a DBS it it were given to me…we may just have to go back to that one. However, in terms of character it’s tough (not to say impossible) to beat one of these. Not everyone will be able to put up with it, but the ones that do are in for a treat (somewhere in there, in the midst of all the bitterness that is…).

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BMW M5 (E39) (2000)

2000 BMW M5 (E39)

2000 BMW M5 (E39) rear

Why this car?

One of – if not – the best BMW’s ever made, a perfect machine which keeps withstanding the test of time as far as looks and performance go. The M5 has a lineage, it’s been refined over the years to become the ultimate covert weapon of choice for the people who want a family size rocket for the road and a practical way to scare their children to death. The 400 bhp V8 engine is wrapped up in an inconspicuous package that will take people by surprise every time. Beautifully made, beautifully balanced and probably the closest shot at actually coming up with (as BMW says) the ultimate driving machine. I love the E39 because…well, click here to see my previous post on the M5 and learn all about its magnificence.

What’s the damage?

US – $12.000 to $20.000

UK – £5.000 to £10.000

Why not…a modern M5? It’s all fine and dandy getting a firecracker of a V10 under the bonnet but a more recent M5 doesn’t really have the same charm as one of these babies. The current style is debatable, and BMW has made it pretty obvious so there’s very little chance of sneaking up on anyone and that alone almost defeats the whole point in getting an M5. Plus, the whole M brand is going downhill fast in terms of credibility…fake engine noise via the car stereo on the new M5…really BMW, really???

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Buick GNX (1987)

1987 Buick GNX

1987 Buick GNX (rear)

Why this car?

Renewed hope for American muscle, the Grand National was nothing short of extraordinary in its time and it’s still a highly desirable piece of automotive history today. It made a V6 engine feel more interesting than a V12 and it put European performance machines to shame. A straight forward car, but also a seriously evil and sexy looking thing. Atrocious interior quality but hey, 80’s American car so you can’t  expect much…I certainly wouldn’t care about that. The thing is, the Grand National wasn’t the ultimate Regal, not by a long shot. That title was reserved for the epic, savage, extraordinary GNX. 547 made, 0 to 60 in 4.5 seconds…America’s unforgettable “Humiliation-Palooza ’87” of the European thoroughbreds. The GNX is automotive magic and one of the ultimate glove slaps to Ferrari and Lamborghini. Click here to see a previous article on the stunning GNX and learn more about its sexy, sexy self.

What’s the damage?

US – $55.000 to $110.000

UK – Currently not available

Why not…a regular Grand National? That’s a great question isn’t it? And the answer is somewhat tricky. Ok, of course I wouldn’t say no to a GNX…however these are rare and considerably pricey. For the purpose of having something beautiful to look at and fun to cruise with, a basic Grand National is a great choice and it will do a beautiful job. Sure the GNX is up there on top of the food chain, but the regular Grand National has nothing to be ashamed of! It’s a great car on its own and it will always have a special place in my heart as well. Plus, if raw power (or lack of it) becomes a big deal, a Grand National is tunable to the nth degree, so no worries there. My choice for the GNX is based solely on the fact that this list was made assuming money wouldn’t be an issue.

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Chevrolet Impala Sport Coupe (1967)

1967 Chevrolet Impala Sport Coupe

1967 Chevrolet Impala Sport Coupe (rear)

Why this car?

Because of reasons. Ok, ok, fine…While female viewers got addicted to “Supernatural” because of the lead actors, I watch it because of the Impala. On the show, a 67 (best year ever for these) sedan is the star but for my list, I’ll go with a different body, the slick Coupe. On paper, there’s no particular reason to set the Impala apart from other similar cars from the late 60’s but it just feels special. It’s one of the most aggressive looking cars I know (although the “badass” vanity plate on this one is just a bit much, in principle I have to agree…) and I love it to no end. I love this thing so much I wouldn’t even need to go for the top of the range SS version, I’d be a happy camper with the basic one just as long as it’s black and I get to rev that V8 all the time.  (Click here to see my previous post on Supernatural’s 67 Impala)

What’s the damage?  

US – $10.000 to $40.000

UK – Approximately £15.000

Why not…a 69 Chevelle for instance? Plenty of beautiful, fire breathing coupes from this period. As I said before, nothing quite has the presence of the Impala and although there are mighty fine cars that could leave it in the dust, I’d still rather have it over anything else because nothing else from back then is even half as menacing…well, other than the monster 2nd gen. Charger of course. We’ll get to that one…

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Citroen DS (1969)

Citroen DS

Citroen DS (rear)

Why this car?

How could I not want one? Scratch that: how could anyone not want one ? For 20 years the DS was the pinnacle of car design and I’m not at all convinced that it has ever been surpassed. Alien looking, forever futuristic, the DS is still used all the time as a prop in sci fi. Featuring a revolutionary hydraulic suspension that made it ride along just fine in 3 wheels if needed, the DS was the choice of Presidents all over Europe when it came to selecting an official ride and it’s not hard to see why. Striking, overflowing with brand new technology, unique. Citroen’s greatest triumph.

What’s the damage?

US – $18.000 to $45.000

UK – £2.000 to £20.000

Why not…the question doesn’t apply here. There’s nothing the DS can be compared to. Hands down, in every single aspect, one of the greatest cars ever made.

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Citroen SM (1975)

1971 Citroen SM

1971 Citroen SM 2

Why this car?

Couldn’t very well have Citroen’s finest moment without mentioning a very close second…After a weird love affair, Citroen and Maserati gave the world one of the weirdest, most wonderful sports cars ever. Featuring the DS’ revolutionary suspension and good old Italian passion under the hood, the SM ended up being a bit too complex for its time, stuff of nightmares for mechanics in Europe and the U.S. alike. However, it remains as one of the most remarkable car designs ever conceived. A favorite of mine since childhood, this List had to have a spot for the SM.

What’s the damage?

US – $65.000 to $85.000

UK – £30.000 to £40.000

Why not…again,  question doesn’t apply because, like the DS before, there’s nothing to compare it to.

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Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat (2015)

dodge challenger hellcat black

hellcat-mecum-houston-13

Why this car?

The Challenger has always been a won bet for Dodge. Another American Muscle revival project, the Challenger has been getting better and better with age; 2008 was a good first year, by 2012 these were already mind-blowingly good and in 2015…well, in 2015 all hell broke loose. A hellcat actually…at 707 bhp and 650 lb·ft of torque, the 6.2L Hemi SRT Hellcat is the pinnacle of Challenger evolution. People lost their minds when the final bhp figure was revealed and it’s not difficult to see why. The old American Muscle learned new tricks and it’s now more powerful than  a Ferrari 599GTO, more powerful than a Lamborghini LP 700-4 Aventador, more powerful than a Pagani Huayra! Exotics, run and hide. Ok, you may be thinking – justifiably – that it ain’t all about being fast in a straight line. But the Hellcat has the corners basically covered as well. Dodge took the Hellcat on a German holiday, running the ring with a passenger and stock tires; the time: 7 minutes and 51 seconds. As good as the exotics I just mentioned? Nope. Do I care. Absolutely not. Still a very respectable time for what it is, faster than a Nissan GTR or a 997 Turbo. Still, the ring isn’t prime Hellcat territory, light to light and quarter miles are and at that, it absolutely excels. Hilariously powerful, obvious without being over the top (as far as looks are concerned), this is one of the best products Uncle Sam has to offer.

What’s the damage?

US – $60.000 to $70.000

UK – Approximately £65.000 – but it’s a very narrow sellers market

Why not…a classic Challenger? Well speaking of which…

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Dodge Challenger 426 Hemi R/T (1970)

Hemi Challenger

1970 Dodge Challenger 426 Hemi  R/T (rear)

Why this car?

Well just take a look at it in all its (surprisingly for a 70’s muscle car, once you ignore this particular banana yellow) discrete magnificence…can you hear me Kowalski!? I love the original Challenger and I personally think it’s unfair to compare it to newer models like some people do. You wouldn’t compare a 70’s Ferrari to a current one for instance, so why do it with muscle cars? Makes no sense. The Challenger is one of the great icons of the 70’s muscle culture and no one is left indifferent to it; you’d have to have a heart of stone in order to not feel a thing for this cutie. Plus it’s the star of “Vanishing Point”. In the movie, a regular R/T is the weapon of choice and not the 426 Hemi but still, an epic car doing what it does best in what may very well be the ultimate chase movie (I think so anyway). If you haven’t seen it do so, now! Well after you finish reading the article anyway…

What’s the damage?

US – Whatever someone will take, but it will be a lot…to $300.000

UK – Not currently available

Why not…a different model? Because Hemi + Shaker = a happy me. This is it, the ultimate Challenger.

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Dodge Viper R/T 10 (1994)

1994 Dodge Viper R/T 10

1994 Dodge Viper R/T 10 (rear)

Why this car?

Well if someone were to actually ask me this question, I’d know it would be pointless to discuss. Hate to sound like a snob/fanboy, but if you have to wonder, you don’t get the car. The Viper is one of the most hardcore, straightforward, no nonsense rides ever to see the light of day. It’s an engine with some wheels attached and…and…no, actually that’s pretty much just that, engine and wheels. Perfect! Well there’s that pesky practicality issue, you can’t really leave it anywhere because, you know…no roof, no windows, no lock so…it won’t be there when you come back. But do I care about such details? Meh. I only plan to stop at gas stations anyway and I’ll be sure to leave a particularly ill-tempered Rottweiler inside just in case…The Viper is one of those cars that would just be impossible to get away with today; idealized back in ‘89 and sold from ‘92 on, the lack of any safety features or driver aids assured that one of its main missions is to kill the driver as fast and as efficiently as it can but heck, everyone loves it anyway! Side exhausts? Check! Killer looks that are still spring fresh 20 years later? Check! Monster V10 that you don’t so much rev up but poke with a stick and hope for the best? Big check! I really need one of these…Even among favorites, it still pretty much tops the list.

What’s the damage?

US – $27.000 to $31.000 (The one in the pictures is being sold by the good people of Steve Harris Imports in Salt Lake City Utah for $29.900)

UK – £25.000 to £35.000

Why not…a recent model? Because the original Viper is an icon, a very slightly domesticated axe murderer that you can’t help but fall for in a big way. Over the years it became slightly more driver friendly, still savage but the rawness of the original is absolutely irreplaceable. Plus the original ones (‘92 to ‘95) are stunning pieces of design that has only (quite frankly) been messed up further and further ever since.

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Ford GT (2005)

2005 Ford GT

2005 Ford GT (rear)

Why this car?

550bhp. Oh I have to continue? Right…hmm…let’s see…well this is Ford’s nuke which very efficiently blew back in ‘05. Inspired by the legendary GT40 which owned Ferrari’s ass at Le Mans from ‘66 to ‘69, the GT is an amazing piece of engineering and it looks perfect! I wouldn’t change an inch of this car even if I could. Bursting with mind-boggling power and yet perfectly capable of being civilized, the Ford GT is one of those rare, larger than life creations. What a way for Ford to commemorate 100 years in business! Sure some critics whined over stupid reasons, but those are the kind of people that just love the sound of their own voice, it doesn’t matter what they say as long as they get to say it.

What’s the damage?

US – $170.000 to $240.000 (The one in the pictures is being sold by the good people of Ford GTs for Sale of Fresno, California)

UK – £126.000 to £145.000

Why not…an original GT40 or a replica? Because the original GT40s are museum pieces that cost more than bricks of platinum wrapped in gold decorated with diamonds. Even if I could afford one easily one day (let’s say for the sake of argument I’d make Trump look like a tramp), they’re hopelessly impractical for my height…there’s no way I could fit in there without smashing my skull as soon as I tried to close the door…and replicas, well a short time ago I’d have told you those are the devil’s work, but now…I’m pretty ok with stuff a few good companies do. The CAV GT40s seem particularly nice.

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Ford Mustang Mach 1 S Code 390 (1969)

1969 Ford Mustang Mach 1 390

1969 Ford Mustang Mach 1 390 (rear)

Why this car?

1969 marked the peak of Mustang design. 1965 is good, ‘68 is even better (fastback – Bullitt!) but ‘69…there’s just something about that year. Ford was kind enough to mess everything up in the mid 70’s, but for one glorious year the Mustang was absolutely perfect! There was plenty to choose from since the basic stuff to the high and mighty (ill received at the time) Boss 429. It and the Boss 302 are fetching obscene prices nowadays. However I’m a more devoted fan of something much more…middle range. The Mach 1 was a very nice compromise: not as basic as the plain fastbacks (or “sportsroof”…silly name) but still a long way from being track worthy, the Mach 1 is just plain cool. Achingly beautiful, perfect from any angle you look at it, full of great little period details like the graphics and the rear window louvers (I wouldn’t dream of getting one without those!). Equipped with a respectable 390 V8 and carrying around character by the bucket load…this is another favorite among favorites.

What’s the damage? 

US – $20.000 to $50.000 (The one in the pictures is being sold by the good people of Mainly Muscle Cars at Monroe, Washington for $33.950)

UK – Not currently available

Why not…a modern one? Altough current Mustangs are pretty damn impressive and so good looking…there’s no substitute for a classic.

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Jaguar E-Type (1961)

1961 Jaguar E-Type Series 1

1961 Jaguar E-Type Series 1 (rear)

Why this car?

The E-Type is widely acclaimed as the most beautiful car ever made. It isn’t. Don’t get me wrong, it is beautiful, truly beautiful, it was even praised at the time by the (let’s go with) difficult Enzo Ferrari himself but it isn’t “the” most beautiful. It’s on the top 5at least though, that’s for sure. A massive victory for car design, back in the 60’s the E-Type chewed up and spat out the rule book; it became more than a car, it turned into a symbol for a whole decade. Modern, fast, and costing a fraction of anything that even came close to it in terms of looks and performance, the E-Type was as appropriate for the time as hippies. A massive step forward in automotive history.

What’s the damage?

US – $44.000 to $130.000

UK – £35.000 to £100.000

Why not…a convertible one? Yeah, why not…? Beautiful car as well, I’ve actually always been a little bit divided between the two (he said, with 0 prospects of ever having to make the choice for real). The important thing with a E-Type is to get a Series 1 because this Jag was like an explosion, it marked history with a huge bang, it burned bright for a while and then with Series 2 and 3, when Jaguar messed it up beyond belief by putting in ugly as sin headlights and front grills and creating the 2+2 swollen aberrations, it faded out.

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Mercedes Benz 560 SEC AMG Wide body (1988)

1989 Mercedes Benz 560 SEC AMG Wide Body

1989 Mercedes Benz 560 SEC AMG Wide Body (rear)

Why this car?

My List could never be complete without an AMG, a classic one! Mercedes is (well should be anyway) all about luxury but one does not simply overlook AMG’s sorcery when it comes to turning heavy as continents cars in pavement tearing, mildly homicidal machines. And this…this is a special one when it comes to AMG displays of “hey! look what we can do!”: the 560 SEC AMG wide body. That wide body bit is really important because although you may think a body kit is not all that significant, here it is, big time! It gives a character to this thing that regular SEC AMGs simply don’t have. Just a big pile of triple black coolness, this 6.0L V8 powered menace to society doesn’t show up for sale that often so here’s to hoping I can snag one someday .  (Click here to see my previous post on the 560).

What’s the damage?

In both markets (US and UK), prices are extremely subjective. This thing can go for anything up to 150 grand (US)

Why not…a brand new AMG? Nothing AMG can throw your way nowadays is this cool. I wouldn’t trade the 560 for an SL65 AMG Black Series and I freaking love the 65 Black…

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Mercedes Benz 600 W100 SWB (1966)

Why this car?

Back in the 60’s and 70’s you couldn’t possibly be a big shot without riding in one of these. A W100 was a must for every magnate and 3rd world dictator out there, it was the ultimate status symbol, the greatest of the great Mercedes, the pinnacle of comfort and of course, the most important thing about it is that it had a big booth which was extremely useful to carry the bodies of all your oppositors. This particular massive 600 in which I’d very much like to indulge my delusions of grandeur is actually the baby”of the family, the short wheel base. The big kahunas were all about the Pullman, the limo version of the W100, pretty much a fortress/palace on wheels…not even I am that much of a megalomaniac, the basic 2.5+ tons 16.5 feet long is plenty for me. You can read all about the amazing 600in a previous AV post by clicking here.

What’s the damage?

US – $70.000 to $125.000 (The one in the pictures is being sold by the good people of Hyman LTD. Classic Cars at St. Louis, Missouri for $125.000)

UK – £44.000 to £80.000

Why not…a modern, super powered Mercedes? Because the German brand is (or, again,  should be) first and foremost about luxury, and it doesn’t get more luxurious than this.

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Porsche 911 S (1969)

1969 Porsche 911S

1969 Porsche 911S (rear)

Why this car?

The one who truly got the Porsche saga on its way, the original 911 stands in a class of its own when it comes to automotive icons. The 911 was launched in ‘63 and from that moment on, right up until one generation ago (they kind of messed up the new one after over 40 of positive evolution…), it has been continuously improved. Not everyone can handle a 911, especially the older models. You have to remember the thing is essentially a huge pendulum so no monkey business in the corners…You forget to treat it with the popper respect and it will turn on you like that! I’m especially fond of the ’69 S because first of all, it was the top dog (although the E would give it a pretty good run for its money) and master of cool Steve McQueen owned one (the 911 in the pictures is actually the one owned my McQueen and sold at auction back in 2011 for almost 1.4 million dollars); second, ‘69 was the year in which a number of significant changes brought greater stability to the nervous 911, making it much more driver friendly.

What’s the damage?

US – $40.000 to $125.000

UK – £30.000 to £80.000

Why not…something that packs a bit more punch, let’s say the ‘73 2.7 RS? Although I’d be tempted, I’d have to go with the ‘69 S. It’s clean, simple, gorgeous and raw. The first incarnation, the original, the birth of the legend.

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Porsche 911 993 Turbo (1998)

porsche_911_turbo_3.6_coupe_40 copy

porsche_911_turbo_3.6_coupe_41copy

Why this car?

The massive, gorgeous whale tail. Simple as that. The last of the air cooled 911 turbos, this thing wasn’t just respectably fast, it stands still today as one of the Stuttgart greats (which reflects on the price tag…). Ever since I first saw one of these I was impressed for life with that fantastic rear end and I’d honestly buy one just so I could look at that thing every day. Plus, check out the front, isn’t this one of the friendliest looking cars you’ve ever seen? Reminds me of a puppy.

What’s the damage?

US – $70.000 to $110.000

UK – £60.000 to £125.000

Why not…let me stop you right there. Whale tail. That is all.

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Rolls Royce Silver Spirit Estate (kinda) (1984)

1984 Rolls Royce Silver Spirit Estate

1984 Rolls Royce Silver Spirit Estate (rear)

Why this car?

Why indeed…this one…oh boy, this one is hard to explain…I love wagons (estates) and I inexplicably love the Silver Spirit, so this is a perfect combo for me. On the downside, this might have had a slight career as a…hearse. It’s best if you read the whole story here, along with some info on other cool, rare estates/wagons.

What’s the damage?

US – Currently not available

UK – (Europe, actually) anything from 20 to 35 thousand Euros when they show up, but these are rare as hen’s teeth.

Why not…a plain Silver Spirit if I like them so much? Who knows, I might have kids one day, a wagon will be useful! They don’t need to know it carried dead folks around.

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Shelby Series 1 Supercharged (1999)

1999 Shelby Series 1 Supercharged

1999 Shelby Series 1 Supercharged (rear)

Why this car?

Most of the times completely overlooked, the Series 1 is the brainchild of the late racing legend Carroll Shelby, the only car he designed and engineered from scratch. The Series is the definition of unique; there isn’t another supercar (and make no mistake, this is a supercar) that looks anything remotely like it. Visually it’s beyond impressive, a beautiful machine which is also a lasting testament to Shelby’s constant will to throw together random bits and pieces and come up with something special. The Series 1 had a seriously difficult birth (and life). Back in the late nineties, quality issues plagued the legendary Shelby name. People were getting cars that were nothing but trouble and they were naturally pissed off, hell if I had coughed up that much cash for a brand new Shelby and it turned out to be lousy, I’d be pissed of as well, big time. Luckily some much needed cash flow was injected in the company and things started to run much more smoothly. However, what you have to understand about the Series 1 is that the car is a puzzle, made from a ton of different parts and it remained a work in progress even after it started being sold…so these ended up with a bunch of (pricey) problems that had to be taken cared of. But when they finally started to run smoothly, boy oh boy! Powered by an Oldsmobile (that’s right, Oldsmobile) V8 originally developed for Indy Racing, the Supercharged version of the Series 1 will do 0 to 60 in 3.2 seconds. Let me put that into perspective, that’s faster than the Corvette ZR1, the Ferrari 599 GTO, the Porsche Carrera GT, the Ferrari 430 Scuderia, the Lamborghini LP640, etc, etc, etc…Sure the Series 1 had some serious glitches, but this modern interpretation of the Cobra deserves serious attention and TLC because it really is something extraordinary! If I could afford one of these (and don’t think that just because it has problems it’s any cheaper!) I’m sure I’d still have to pay Shelby bucket loads of cash to get in perfect working order but I know that in the end it would be worth every cent…

What’s the damage?     

US – $110.000 to $189.000

UK – Not currently available

Why not…a classic Shelby? Scroll down…

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Shelby GT500 (1969)

1969 Shelby GT500

1969 Shelby GT500 (rear)

Why this car?

I’m a sucker for Shelby cars, I really am and the ‘69 GT500 is a serious obsession. It’s unique and most importantly it shows where Mustang design could have gone to instead of heading down that bland road that was the mid 70’s look Ford ended up slapping on the pony; this is especially puzzling after Ford having fought Carroll Shelby to get this particular style on the ‘69 GT500…go figure! The ‘69 GT500 isn’t as popular (or to be honest, as good) as the all might ‘67, but it is a damn gorgeous ride.

What’s the damage?

US – $84.000 to $175.000 (The one in the pictures was recently sold by the good people of the International Auto Group at Pompano Beach, Florida)

UK – Not currently available

Why not…a brand new GT500? Modern GT500s are awesome, but vintage is cooler. There’s no competing with 60’s design.

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Shelby GT500 “Eleanor”

1967 Shelby GT500 Eleanor

1967 Shelby GT500 Eleanor (rear)

Why this car?   

We saved the best for last”…I’m not going to get too much into the history of “Eleanor” because I’m planning a full article dedicated to her later on. Sufficed to say that I believe this the most beautiful car ever created, no discussion, no competition, it is quite simply perfect. Created by legendary hot rod artist Steve Stanford and brought to life by master designer Chip Foose, “Eleanor” was idealized to star in the 2000 remake of the movie “Gone in 60 Seconds” and ever since I saw her…I was hooked, love at first sight! Presented as a 1967 GT500, “Eleanor” was actually built over 1968 fastbacks chassies/bodies. 12 were made, 7 survived Bruckheimer’s torture and since then, countless clones have been created, some very good, other atrocious. To be completely honest, if I absolutely had to, I’d be willing give up the whole list for one of these, that’s the level of attachment I have for it. Ellie is is #1

What’s the damage?

Very, very hard to say. As I mentioned, there are plenty of replicas around and just because they’re expensive, doesn’t mean they’re any good. An original movie car (the one in the pictures) sold back in 2009 for $217.000 at auction. A good looking replica is somewhere in the neighborhood of the 120 thousand bucks mark; an “Eleanor” made by the ill faded “Unique Performance” might cost about 40.000 more and I’ve seen a few done by “Classic Recreations” who are pushing the 300.000 mark. In the UK, I saw a clone for £80.000 but it left much to be desired. If like me, someone is aiming for absolute authenticity and perfection, there’s always the chance of making one yourself, but be ready for a challenge that makes Ulysses’ voyage seem like a lazy Sunday walk in the park. I’d actually consider it if I had the bank account to back it up because after 12 years looking at this car every day, I wouldn’t settle for anything less than perfection.

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Image credits

Lagonda

M5

GNX (+)

Impala

DS

SM (Archive)

Hellcat (+)

426 Hemi R/T

Viper

GT

Mach 1

E-Type (+)

600


560

911S

993 Turbo

Silver Spirit

Series 1

GT500

GT500 E

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