1954 Kaiser-Darrin Roadster

There have been many great automobile designers who have left their mark on the motoring landscape. Among these greats would have to be the contributions of Howard “Dutch” Darrin, whose design talent was favored among many of Hollywood’s elite. Quite simply, if you were famous and you wanted a car with a bit more flair, Howard Darrin was the man to see.

Toward the end of his career, Darrin formed an alliance with Kaiser-Frazer, and it was a contentious relationship Read More

007 Lotus Esprit Submarine Car

The 007 Lotus Esprit Submarine Car from “The Spy Who Loved Me” (1977) commonly tops the polls when multiple generations of movie fans are asked to pick their favorite film cars of all time. Like all the best Bond cars, the Lotus was a veritable war chest of weaponry and gadgetry that was designed to fox and foil the enemy while helping Bond to another hard-won victory for Queen and Country.

The Giorgetto Giugiaro-designed Esprit was launched in October 1975 Read More

1966 Gurney-Weslake Eagle Mk 1

Despite his success in almost every category of international motor racing, many consider Dan Gurney’s incomparable Eagle race cars to be his moAst significant contribution to American motorsports.

Designed and built in Southern California, the original Gurney-Weslake Eagles raced with success on the world’s stage and were among the most memorable machines built during the golden age of Formula One, before the purity of Grand Prix cars was forever tarnished with aerodynamic aids and corporate sponsorship.

Driven by some Read More

1967 Ferrari 275 GTB/4S NART Spyder

Luigi Chinetti recognized the viability of sporty open cars in the American market. The 250 GT SWB California Spyder in particular proved itself a resounding success. But whereas the 4-cam’s predecessor — the 275 GTB — offered a Spyder variant, the wind-in-your-hair alternative to the 275 GTB/4 was a 330 GTS.

As such, the 275 GTB/4S NART Spyder was born of a direct request from Luigi Chinetti to Ferrari. NART stands for North American Racing Team, the Read More

1914 American Underslung Model 644 Touring

The innovative American Motors Company of Indianapolis, IN, is best remembered for their famous “Underslung” models. These striking designs placed the frame rails below the axles, giving a significantly reduced center of gravity along with a sporting profile. Significantly oversized wheels remedied the problem of ground clearance. This design innovation resulted in a chassis with remarkably sure handling while still retaining the necessary clearances to handle the poor road conditions of the day.

The effect of the underslung chassis, with Read More

1931 Bentley 4½ Litre Supercharged Le Mans

The “Blower” Bentley is one of the most masculine, muscular and sporting motorcars ever built. While some companies hid their superchargers behind the radiator grille, the Bentley wears it right out front, and that statement alone says it all about the car and its creators.

First shown at the 1929 London Motor Show, it was developed as a private venture by “Bentley Boy” Sir Henry “Tim” Birkin in order to extract more performance from the proven 4½ Litre model, which Read More

1948 Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 Competizione

Built in the Alfa Corse workshops between 1946 and 1948, this 6C 2500 Competizione, chassis number 920002, was originally sold to Franco Rol of Torino, Italy. An Italian aristocrat turned successful chemical manufacturer, Rol was an avid sportsman who successfully raced a variety of automobiles during the late 1940s and early 1950s.

On May 2, 1948, 920002 made its competition debut at Italy’s most famous road race, the grueling Mille Miglia. But the new Alfa Romeo’s first appearance at Read More

A Boy Racer for the Ages

At first glance, the first-generation BMW M3 looks like a boy racer’s dream. You see a big air dam, a big spoiler and big wheels rolling under big flares.

You have to get into this car, start it and roll it down the road before you know exactly what the E30 (BMW’s internal designation for the car) is all about. In its first four years of production, it won more races and titles than any other BMW ever — and it is still the most successful racing saloon of all time.

The 1988–91 M3 represents a purity of purpose that BMW had not shown before — or since. The car was developed in reverse order of most — if not all — of the production cars of today. BMW first developed the race version of the M3 and then made it into a saleable homologation. Some will argue the M1 also fits this, but the E30 M3 was designed to go racing first, then became a road car. The M1 was developed as a sports car and then as a racer.

1962 Ferrari 400 Superamerica SWB

As the echoes of World War II austerity faded in Europe, it occurred to Enzo Ferrari that his wealthiest clients were ready for a super-fast, road-going gran turismo. The result was a series of exclusive Ferraris built with especially powerful engines wrapped in elegant bodies from the finest Italian coachbuilders. Each car was individually tailored to its owner’s requests, blisteringly fast, and sophisticated enough to transport a royal. One model in the series was the 400 Superamerica.

Read More