he Porsche 911 is probably the single most recognizable car shape in the world, an instant “Classic.” For those who wanted to feel the wind in their hair while enjoying 911 motoring, Porsche manufactured for many years a “Targa” version of their immortal coupe. This “Targa” incorporated a rollover bar behind the cockpit as crash protection.
In the early 1980s, Porsche, like many other car manufacturers, believed that bureaucracy, particularly in America, would prevent a truly open car Read More
The 300 series, introduced at the Frankfurt Auto Show in 1951, was designed specifically for the export market. Germany’s postwar economy was desperate for hard currency and at the same time, the U.S. economy was booming. It was only natural for Mercedes to design a car to meet the needs of that market. Although not flamboyant, the 300 was nevertheless very attractive, with a modern wraparound windshield and flush-mounted headlights.
The 300S variant was introduced in 1952, and Read More
The Mercedes-Benz 450SLC is unusual in that a version was made as a homologation special to compete in the marathon rallies which were popular from the late 1960s to the late 1970s. Unlike modern rallies, where the leading cars are redesigned and rebuilt to Formula One standards, these marathons imposed strict regulations on the entrants and, consequently, the cars were recognizably close to showroom specification, give or take additional safety measures. In 1978, a 450SLC, driven by Andrew Cowan Read More
This superbly presented Porsche Carrera 6 began life as the Racing Team Holland car campaigned in World Championship of Makes-qualifying races by Ben Pon and fellow Dutchman Gijs van Lennep. The first time out at significant level in this 2-liter 6-cylinder air-cooled coupe, they finished seventh overall and first in class in the ADAC 1,000-kilometer race at Nurburgring. After winning a home event outright on the Dutch Zandvoort circuit, Ben Pon was asked to partner with works driver Vic Read More
The 220S Mercedes-Benz was introduced at the Frankfurt Auto Show in April 1956 and was the first model from this famous manufacturer to have a unitary construction body shell. It succeeded the 220 model of 1951 with its traditional tubular chassis frame, and it shared some of its mechanical specifications. After two years in production, a Bosch fuel-injection system was added to the basic 220S engine to create the 220SE. This not only added 15hp but also increased engine Read More
The 1976 production year brought the 930 Turbo to North America for the first time. Using developments Porsche had been perfecting for its racing cars, the 930 was the quickest, quietest, and fanciest high-performance street car Porsche had ever offered. It was also the first standard production Porsche to offer a turbo-charged system. Called “a dream car” by the press, it offered spectacular performance for a street car in the early 80s-0-60 mph in 5.3 seconds while pumping out Read More
If Thor, the God of Thunder, owned a car it would be a Supercharged Mercedes. Very few cars, before or since, have been so imposing, exclusive, charismatic and simply Wagnerian in conception.
Daimler Benz began development of the supercharged car for road and racing use at an early stage. Starting about 1919, they turned to supercharging in order to gain extra power from the slow-running engines of the period. That they succeeded is shown by a long line Read More
It would indeed have been a shame if BMW had confined the use of its first V8 engine range merely to its saloon cars of the 1950s. Had that been the case, the world would have been denied what is arguably the Bavarian marque’s finest post-war sports car-the glamorous, high-performance 507.
The V8, the work of BMW chief designer Dr. Fritz Fielder, had first appeared in 2.6-liter form in the 502 saloon of 1954, offering impressive performance and fine Read More
Having commenced manufacture with a short run of aluminum-bodied cars built at Gmund, Porsche began volume production of the steel-bodied 356 coupe at its old base in Stuttgart. The work of Ferry Porsche, the 356 was based on the Volkswagen designed by his father. Like the immortal Beetle, the 356 employed a platform-type chassis with rear-mounted, air-cooled engine and torsion bar all-independent suspension. In 1951 a works car finished first in the 1100-cc class at the Le Mans 24-Hour Read More
The merger of Daimler and Benz in the mid 1920s came at a time of acute difficulty for the German motor industry. Competition success such as Rudolf Caracciola’s 1930 European Hillclimb Championship in a supercharged SSK helped sales, which had risen to 6,000 in 1932 from a workforce reduced to 9,000 by the virtual closure of the Benz factories. The addition of smaller cars as commercial vehicles saw output rise to 25,000 in 1935, of which a mere 190 Read More