Five Iconic Automobiles
On its release in 1961, Enzo Ferrari called the Jaguar E-Type "the most beautiful car ever made." The E-type evolved from the earlier XK150, XK140 and XK120 series. Discarding the styling of the 1950s, the E-type was a sleek, long sports car with a triple carbureted, dual-cam, six cylinder engine and independent rear suspension. In 2004, Sports Car International magazine placed the E-Type at number one on their list of the World's Top Sports Cars and in March of 2008, The Daily Telegraph ranked it number one on its list of the world's "100 most beautiful cars." Jaguar Motorcars made the E-Type from 1960 until 1971.
In 1953, Chevrolet introduced the Corvette to the World. It was a two-seater with a fiberglass body and a triple-carbureted, six-cylinder engine. Sales were slow at first, but in a few years, Chevrolet could barely keep up with the demand. This, of course, did not go unnoticed by Ford who released their own 2-seater, the Thunderbird, in 1955. The T-Bird also sold well, but Ford wanted more than just a pretty sports car, they wanted to win the big races, in particular, Lemans.
Given the goal of winning the World's most prestigious races, Ford approached racer Carroll Shelby and gave him the job of building a race car to do it. The first thing Shelby did was shop around for a race worthy body/chassis and he found what he wanted at AC Cars of Britain. As for engines, Ford just so happened to have a brand-new engine, the 427, which was a lightweight, thin-wall cast big-block V8. Shelby popped these engines in the AC body and called the completed car the "Cobra." And what a racecar it was. In 1963 and 1964 AC Cobras swept the top winners at Lemans and the rest is history.
Volvo was a Swedish manufacturer of boxy-styled cars that were considered some of the best built in the World. However, many people don't know that besides Volvo's family haulers, they made a sportscar too. Released in 1961, the P1800 and was a two-seater, front-engine, rear-drive coupe. The P1800 became highly popular starting in 1962 as it was the main car driven by Roger Moore in the hit television series The Saint. Like the rest of the Volvo line at that time, it also was ultra-reliable. In 1998, an 1800S was certified as the highest mileage private vehicle driven by the original owner having exceeded three million miles as of 2013.
Aston Martin DB5
Released in 1963, the Aston Martin DB5 is a British luxury grand tourer car made by Aston Martin, LTD. We learned from www.charliesdodge.com that, believe it or not, the DB5 was designed by the Italian coachbuilder Carrozzeria and the DB series was named in honor of the owner of Aston Martin from 1947 to 1972, Sir David Brown. The DB5 is a famous, highly sought-after model because it played a central role in the James Bond movie franchise. It first appeared in Goldfinger in 1964. The same car (registration BMT 216A) was used again in the following film, Thunderball, a year later.
The Riviera is a luxury car produced by Buick and was highly praised by automotive journalists when it debuted in 1949. The name Riviera (latin for coastline,) was chosen to evoke the affluence of the French Rivera. The Buick Rowwwaster offered a Riviera coupe which constituted the first mass production use of this body style and was to become extremely popular over the next 30 years. While early models stayed close to the original form, subsequent generations varied substantially over the Riviera's thirty-year lifespan. In all, 1,127,263 Buick Rivieras were produced. Its name was resurrected for concept cars in subsequent years.
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