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In 1951, Mercedes-Benz unveiled its premier post-war flagship sedan at the Frankfurt Auto Show, marking a significant moment in automotive history. The debut of the distinguished 300 sedan signaled a resurgence of European luxury, offering both a four-door sedan and a four-door full convertible model. Praised by critics and consumers...
In 1929, Packard made significant updates to its Sixth Series line, introducing a new 320ci engine for the Standard Eight, while reserving the larger and more powerful 384.8ci eight for the prestigious Custom Eight and Deluxe Eight models. The 7th Series, launched in August of the same year, brought incremental...
Introduced in 1954, the Giulietta marked a pivotal moment for Alfa Romeo, embodying the ethos of ‘small car, big performance’ that would define the brand. The overwhelming demand for this model prompted Alfa Romeo to reassess its production strategy, transitioning towards becoming a high-volume manufacturer. A year later, in 1955,...
The 1950s witnessed a flourishing era of Italian coachbuilding, with carrozzerie catering to a diverse clientele, from individuals to major automakers. Among these collaborations, the partnership between Zagato and Alfa Romeo stood out, tracing its roots back to the iconic 6C and 8C sports cars of the 1930s. In the...
Mercedes-Benz debuted its first post-war flagship sedan at the 1951 Frankfurt Auto Show, unveiling the distinguished 300 sedan, a symbol of European luxury. Available in either a four-door sedan or a four-door full convertible, the 300 sedan garnered acclaim from both the press and buyers for its exceptional engineering and...
The 1930s stands as a remarkable era in American automotive history, with 1932 often hailed as its pinnacle. Amidst this golden age, true super sports cars were a rarity, overshadowed by boulevard sports models like the Auburn Speedsters. Yet, Stutz, driven by a passion for sporting cars, crafted what many...
The Norman Timbs Special, constructed by renowned Indy 500 engineer Norman Timbs in Los Angeles, is a unique automobile. It’s estimated that he built the car at a cost of $10,000, a significant sum for its time. Every aspect of the car’s dimensions is remarkable. Standing at a mere 47...
After the success of the 3500 GT, Maserati enlisted Pietro Frua to craft a fresh design for the updated Tipo 109 chassis, with Maggiora tasked to construct the coachwork. The outcome was the Mistral, a sleek two-seat coupe named after the brisk northern wind of Southern France. It marked Maserati’s...
The renowned engineer Giulio Alfieri, formerly of Maserati, reengineered the Jalpa P350, building upon the Silhouette’s foundation. Alfieri extended the engine stroke to achieve a 3,485cc capacity, resulting in a power boost to 255bhp. This enhancement propelled the aerodynamically sleek Jalpa to a top speed of approximately 249km/h (155mph). With...
The Mercer Raceabout stands as unequivocal evidence of the United States’ pioneering role in shaping the sports car concept. Originating in 1911, this vehicle epitomized speed and race-winning prowess with its thunderous T-head four-cylinder engine, standard exhaust cutout, and minimalist design catering to a lone driver and a daring passenger....
Giovanni Moretti initially gained recognition for his high-performance motorcycle engines. Post-World War II, he ventured into the realm of compact cars, introducing the first model propelled by his innovative vertical twin-cylinder engine. By the late 1950s, Moretti faced stiff competition from major auto manufacturers, prompting a shift in strategy. Instead...
During the mid-1950s, automotive designer Mario Felice Boano departed from his role at Ghia, a company he had acquired following the founder’s passing in 1944. Collaborating with talents like Giovanni Savonuzzi and occasional partner Virgil Exner, Boano contributed to iconic designs of the era, such as the Fiat Supersonic, Lancia...
Renowned as a top contender for the title of ‘most handsome car of the 1960s’, Maserati’s Ghibli made its debut as a coupe at the Turin Motor Show in November 1966. Designed by Giorgetto Giugiaro at Carrozzeria Ghia and named after the Sahara Desert wind, it rivaled the Ferrari Daytona...
The Packard Eleventh Series V12 epitomizes the essence of American classic automobiles from the early 1930s. In a competitive landscape where leading manufacturers vied for supremacy in the multi-cylinder luxury car market, Packard stood out with its innovative offerings. Amidst the economic stranglehold of the Great Depression, Cadillac, Auburn, Franklin,...
Buick’s lineup in 1954 spanned from the budget-friendly Special to the luxurious Roadmaster, priced between just over $2,000 to slightly above $4,000. Total production reached 444,609 cars. Powering these vehicles was Buick’s innovative V8 engine, introduced in 1953. Available in two variants, it included the 150 horsepower 264 cubic inch...
Auburn cars originated from the efforts of the Eckhart brothers in Auburn, Indiana, creating their first prototype in 1900, though official production started in 1903. Auburns with various engines emerged until the brothers sold the company in 1919. In 1925, Cord oversaw the integration of Lycoming straight-eight engines into existing...
Designed by aeronautical engineer William Stout, the Scarab would ultimately become one of the most influential vehicles of the 20th century as it would become the pioneering foundation of the modern-day minivan. However, it wouldn’t be enough just to call the Stout Scarab the world’s first minivan, although it does...
Debuting on September 12, 1966, the Camaro came in coupe or convertible variants, with approximately 221,000 units sold, a quarter of which were convertibles and three quarters featuring V8 engines. 1969 marked the conclusion of the initial Camaro generation, which had been launched in 1967. Although a revamped Camaro was...
The name Pininfarina has become synonymous with luxurious and stylish Italian sports cars, exemplified by iconic models like the Maserati GranTurismo, Alfa Romeo Spyder, and a prestigious lineup of Ferraris including the 365 GTB/4, Enzo, F40, and Testarossa. In a departure from convention, the Pininfarina X stands out as one...
From 1901 to 1938, Pierce-Arrow established itself as a paragon of automobile quality, mentioned in the same breath as esteemed brands like Packard, Auburn, and Cadillac. However, by 1928, financial constraints plagued the company, despite its reputation and a production capacity of 15,000 cars annually. The formidable T-head six-cylinder engines,...
Debuting in November 1935, the Cord 810 earned a coveted spot in the Museum of Modern Art, becoming an iconic American car. Designed by Gordon Buehrig and conceived as a miniature Duesenberg, its distinctive features included a louvered “coffin” nose, streamlined wings, and concealed gas filler. The hand-cranked headlamps and...
In the early 1950s, Ferrari prioritized manufacturing competition cars, but the 250 Europa marked the brand’s initial foray into limited series production alongside the 375GT America. Unveiled at the 1953 Paris Salon, the Europa shared a long-wheelbase chassis and a 220bhp V12 engine with the 375GT. The Lampredi-designed engine, with...
Citroën’s classic cars are renowned for their extraordinary designs, often defying conventional norms. The French automaker consistently pushed boundaries, resulting in vehicles that not only exhibited peculiar exteriors but also ventured into unconventional interior layouts. Even within the realm of Citroën’s unique creations, the 1980 Karin stands out with its...
Aston Martin’s pinnacle ‘DB’ series, culminating in the DB6 from 1965, is often deemed the ultimate expression of true Astons. Departing from the Superleggera tubular body of its predecessors, the DB6 adopted fabricated sheet steel while keeping aluminum outer panels. Despite ‘Superleggera’ badges persisting until supplies ran out, the DB6...
The Franklin, engineered by John Wilkinson and produced by Syracuse-based die-casting manufacturer Herbert H Franklin, stands as America’s most enduring and prosperous air-cooled automobile. Originating as a prototype for the New York Automobile Company, the Franklin debuted in June 1902 with its first sale, a runabout, followed by a dozen...
Planned for over three years, the Cadillac V-16 aimed to elevate GM’s luxury brand to global acclaim. Unfortunately, its launch in December 1929, just after the “Black Thursday” stock market crash, proved to be ill-timed. While Cadillac’s V-8 line successfully catered to the wealthy, the V-16 targeted the most powerful...
Originally conceived as a project with the goal of developing a high-performance off-road military vehicle, the ultimate iteration, named LM002, was unveiled for the first time at the Brussels Motor Show in 1986. Upon its launch, the LM002 distinguished itself as a departure from other vehicles in the market, showcasing...
In 1906, the inception of the Lagonda car company took place in Staines, Middlesex, courtesy of American entrepreneur Wilbur Gunn (1859-1920). The company derived its name from a river near Gunn’s hometown of Springfield, Ohio. Initially, Gunn had delved into motorcycle manufacturing in the garden of his Staines residence, achieving...
When the name Dean Jeffries comes up during automotive conversations, most car enthusiasts instinctively nod in agreement, recognizing him as a true connoisseur of stylish customizations, vibrant flames, and meticulous pinstripes. Indeed, these were Jeffries’s specialties when he emerged as a significant figure in the custom car scene during the...
In 1959, General Motors (GM) unveiled the Firebird III, the third iteration in its series of concept cars, at the GM Motorama event. Boasting a futuristic and aerodynamic design, the Firebird III featured seven short wings and tail fins, along with a distinctive double-bubble canopy. Despite its conceptual nature, the...
Founded in December 1914 in Bologna by Alfieri Maserati and his brothers Ettore and Ernesto, the Società Anonima Officine Alfieri Maserati initially focused on enhancing Isotta-Fraschini for racing. In the early 1920s, a collaboration with Diatto prompted Alfieri’s design of his inaugural Grand Prix car, serving as a precursor to...
In 1954, BMW introduced its cutting-edge V8 engine in the opulent 501 saloon, signaling its prowess as a potential sports car powerhouse. The visionary Max Hoffman, an Austrian import tycoon in the United States, fueled BMW’s ambitions. He enlisted Count Albrecht von Goertz, a versatile industrial designer renowned for collaborating...
The introduction of the Sting Ray in 1963 sent shockwaves through the North American sports car market, causing a sensation that far surpassed expectations. The overwhelming success of the model prompted the St Louis factory to implement a second shift, yet the demand for these cars remained insatiable. Crafted under...
Chevrolet’s 2003 SSR (Super Sport Roadster) was an ambitious venture, aiming to produce a factory-built hot rod with a retro design and superior driving dynamics. However, the outcome fell short of expectations, marking the SSR as a significant failure for Chevrolet, leading to its discontinuation after just three years. The...
With an unrivaled sporting heritage, Abarth initially focused on manufacturing induction and exhaust systems before expanding its scope to offer performance kits, primarily for FIAT production cars. Subsequently, the company diversified its portfolio by crafting aerodynamically striking sports prototypes and limited-series production vehicles, often in collaboration with Carrozzeria Zagato. Carrozzeria...