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joi, 21 august 2014

Lancia 037 Group B 1983 - World Of Classic Cars -

Lancia 037 Group B 1983

Changes to the FIA Group B regulations at the dawn of the 1980s prompted rally competitors to design purpose-built cars that required a small number, just 200 examples, of homologated road going models to be sold to the public.
Working with Abarth, which was now part of the Lancia-Fiat group, engineers created project number 037 as a replacement for the vaunted Lancia Stratos HF. Despite its less-than-auspicious name, 037 was conceived with input from some of Italy’s best: Abarth, Pininfarina, and Dallara.
Lancia 037 Group B 1983

This was a racer that was designed to recall the Lancia Beta-based Montecarlo/Scorpion, and it was bodied from Kevlar that was reinforced with fibreglass panels. It also featured a steel sub-frame that was visible when its massive bonnet and boot access panels were opened. Although it didn’t really look much like the Montecarlo/Scorpion, the Pininfarina-penned 037 featured a handful of design cues that served as a visual nod to Lancia’s past, including a unique “double bubble” roofline.
Lancia 037 Group B 1983

A 2.0-litre, supercharged four-cylinder engine powered the first 037s, and an enlarged 2.1-litre one eventually followed. The engine was supercharged instead of turbocharged in an effort to improve throttle response and to quell turbo lag, and it was initially rated at 255 horsepower. The introduction of water injection helped boost that figure to 300 horsepower, whilst the 2.1-litre variant raised that number to 325 horsepower.
The mid-mounted engine sent power to the rear wheels via a five-speed manual gearbox, making the 037 the last of its kind before all-wheel drive became commonplace in the WRC. German firm ZF supplied the 037’s robust rear end. A total of 28 examples of the Evolution 1 037 were assembled, and about 207 Stradale versions were eventually assembled to comply with FIA regulations.
Lancia 037 Group B 1983

The 037 made its racing debut at the 1982 Rally Costa Smeralda in Italy, but it wasn’t until 1983 that Lancia experienced real success with the car. Despite competition from the AWD Audi Quattro, the 037 prevailed, with Walter Röhrl and Markku Alen behind the wheel.
Chassis 210, registered as TO Y88743, was campaigned during the 1983 World Rally Championship season, and it helped the automaker capture the manufacturer’s title over Audi. The Martini Racing team used it for several races during the season. At the Tour de Corse, taking place from 5–7 May, it was driven by Jean-Claude Andruet, but it failed to finish. Later that month, at the Acropolis Rally, this car finished 5th overall, at the hands of Bettega and Perissinot. Following its impressive result in Greece, Pentti Airikkala and Juha Piironen would finish in 5th place once more at the 1,000 Lakes Rally. Finally, in early October, chassis 210 was used as a test car at the Rallye Sanremo for the Bettega/Perissinot duo.
Lancia 037 Group B 1983

After its racing career, Fiat sold chassis 210 to a noted French collector. After being driven in several editions of the Tour Auto in the late 1990s and early 2000s, it found its way to the current owner in Italy.
This 037 represents a unique glimpse into an iconic era of Italian rally history, in particular the short-lived but revered Group B rally cars.

marți, 19 august 2014

Ford Mustang 289 Racing Car 1965 - World Of Classic Cars -

Ford Mustang 289 Racing Car 1965

This notchback Mustang has had vast expense lavished on it in order to build it into an ideal historic race/rally competitor. The shell was sent to highly regarded preparer Rae Davis Racing, and main assembly and preparation was carried out by the talented men at CCK Historics of Kent, with an array of invoices for their work and the parts purchased on file.
The car has been fitted with a six-point roll cage by Caged Manufacturing Ltd., and it has a Cobra Evolution pro seat with TRS race belts, a Lifeline plumbed fire extinguisher system and ignition cut-off, and a caged cockpit-mounted Varley Red Top dry cell battery. The shifter has a Momo knob, and the period-style deep-dish racing wheel is adorned with a Stack racing rev counter, with a shift light on the dash top. The dashboard centre boasts Racetech water temperature and OIL pressure gauges, which are neatly mounted, and an ATL 120-litre boxed bag-style fuel tank is in the rear. Twin Facet pumps and fuel and brake lines have also been installed inside the car.
Ford Mustang 289 Racing Car 1965

The engine bay is extremely well-presented, and it is littered with even more goodies, including a new Holley carburettor with an Edelbrock air filter, a remote OIL cooler, a Mallory distributor, and a Rainbow electric cooling fan. Lightweight Perspex side and rear windows have been fitted, along with TRS tow straps. The car rides on Koni shock absorbers and new five-spoke alloy wheels that have been shod in Dunlop Racing M-section tyres.
This car is attractively finished in period-style Ford France colours, and it is in excellent condition, having accumulated only shakedown and rolling road mileage since build completion. Interestingly, it had its first test outing at Goodwood, with former Formula One driver Rupert Keegan at the helm, and aside from a few small items, which have been tended to, it performed well and received a clean bill of health.

luni, 18 august 2014

Harley-Davidson FL Sport Solo 1952 - World Of Classic Cars -

Harley-Davidson FL Sport Solo 1952

Harley-Davidson comprehensively updated the old Knucklehead engine with hydraulically adjusted valves in 1948, creating the much more modern Panhead engine. They elected to let customers get accustomed to that and then waited a year to make more changes.
With the Panhead proven successful, Harley-Davidson reinvented their bike as a showcase around it. The look of the new 1949 E- and F-series models was anchored by huge telescopic hydraulic forks and a completely new front end. Unofficially, these Hydra-Glide forks soon lent their name to the whole line; time would show that these would be the most classic of the Panheads, and they would be the inspiration for countless other motorcycles over the next 60 years, including Harley-Davidson’s own Heritage Softail.
Harley-Davidson FL Sport Solo 1952

The first major update since the 1949 redesign came in 1952, when the optional hand clutch/foot shift arrangement was added to compete with European motorcycles that used the configuration almost exclusively. By 1953, the foot shifter outsold the hand shifter by a two-to-one margin. In general, Big Twin sales were in a steep decline, as they were off by 20% over the already down year of 1951 and only 5,554 FLs were moving off of the showroom floors. Of those, it is safe to assume that a minority retained the hand shifter, and there are a total of only 162 FLs from 1952 in the Panhead Register.
Harley-Davidson FL Sport Solo 1952

This highly collectible and easy-riding bike has had a meticulous restoration from renowned FL specialist James Beck. Since its restoration was performed, the FL was test driven for only two miles and then put on display as a show bike example. The Persian Red over white paint is lustrous, and the vast expanses of exposed metal are burnished to a deep glow. Even though it is used as a show bike, Harley-Davidson built the Panhead for the highway, and with preparation, one could see its Hydra-Glide forks work up front, living up to their name, gliding over the road, and proudly informing the world that this is a real American motorcycle.
Harley-Davidson FL Sport Solo 1952

Even more than its low production numbers, it is the retro period styling that makes a Panhead collectible today, and features such as the unique and distinctive hand shifter only add to this Panhead’s collectability. Even today, when one thinks of Harley-Davidson, the classic style of the FL Hydra-Glide comes to mind.

duminică, 17 august 2014

Alfa Romeo 6C - World Of Classic Cars - Rank 173

Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 Super Sport Coupe 1949

The Alfa Romeo 6C name was used on road, race, and sports cars that were made between 1925 and 1954 by Alfa Romeo. 6C refers to a straight 6 engine. Bodies for these cars were made by coachbuilders such as James Young, Zagato, Touring, Castagna, and Pininfarina. Starting from 1933 there was also a 6C version with a factory Alfa body, built in Portello. In the early 1920s Vittorio Jano got a task to create a lightweight, high performance vehicle to replace the Giuseppe Merosi designed RL and RM models. The car was introduced in April 1925 at the Salone dell’ Automobile di Milano as the 6C 1500. It was based on the P2 racing car, using single overhead cam 1,487 cc inline six-cylinder motor producing 44 horsepower, in the 1928 was presented the 1500 Sport which was the first Alfa Romeo road car with double overhead camshafts

6C 1500 (1925–1929)

In the mid-1920s, Alfa's RL was considered too large and heavy, so a new development began. The 2-liter formula that had led to Alfa Romeo winning the World Championship in 1925, changed to 1.5 liter for the 1926 season. The 6C1500 was introduced in 1925 at Milan, production started 1927, with the P2 Grand Prix car as starting point. Engine capacity was now 1487 cc, against the P2's 1987 cc, while supercharging was dropped. First versions were bodied by Young and Touring.

In 1928, a 6C Sport was released, with a dual overhead camshafts engine. Its sport version won many races, including the 1928 Mille Miglia. Total production was 3000 (200 with DOHC engine). Ten copies of a supercharged (compressore, compressor) Super Sport variant were also made.

6C 1750 (1929–1933)
Alfa Romeo 6C 1750 GS Testa Fissa 1930

The more powerful 6C 1750 (1752 cc actual) was introduced in 1929 in Rome. It was produced in six series between 1929 and 1933. Base model had a single overhead cam; Super Sport and Gran Sport versions had double overhead cam engine (DOHC). Again, a supercharger was available. Most of the cars were sold as rolling chassis and bodied by coachbuilders such as Zagato, Touring and James Young. In 1929, it won every major racing event it was entered, including the Grands Prix of Belgium, Spain, Tunis and Monza, as well as the Mille Miglia was won with Giuseppe Campari and Giulio Ramponi, the Brooklands Double Twelve and the Ulster TT was won also, in 1930 it won again the Mille Miglia and Spa 24 Hours. Total production was 2635.

6C 1900 (1933)

The last derivate of original 1500 version the 6C 1900 with an 1917 cc engine was introduced in 1933, now with an aluminium head for the first time. With 68 brake horsepower this version could achieve top speed of 130 kilometres per hour (81 mph). The 1900 version is very rare as only 197 copies were made before it was replaced by 6C 2300.

6C 2300 (1934–1937)
Alfa Romeo 6C 2300 B Short Chassis Spyder 1937

The 6C 2300 (2309 cc) was designed by Vittorio Jano as a cheaper alternative to the 8C. In 1934 Alfa Romeo had become a state-owned enterprise. This year was presented a new 6C model with a newly designed, larger engine. Chassis technology, however, had been taken from the predecessor. One year later, a revised model, called the 6C 2300 B was presented. In this version the engine was placed in a completely newly designed chassis, with individual front suspension and rear swing axle, and hydraulic brakes. The 6C-2300 was produced in 760 copies with rigid axles and 870 copies of the B-model.

6C 2500 (1938–1952)
Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 Super Sport Coupé 1948

Introduced in 1938, the 2500 (2443 cc) was the last 6C road car. World War II was coming and car development was stopped, but a few hundred 6C 2500s were built from 1940 to 1945. Postwar, the first new Alfa model was the 1946 6C 2500 Freccia d'Oro (Golden Arrow), of which 680 were built through 1951, with bodies by Alfa. The 2500 had enlarged engine compared to the predecessor model, this Vittorio Jano designed double overhead cam engine was available either one or three Weber carburetors. The triple carburetor version was used in the top of line SS (Super Sport) version. The 2443 cc engine was mounted to a steel ladder frame chassis, which was offered with three wheelbase lengths: 3,250 mm (128.0 in) on the Turismo, 3,000 mm (118.1 in) on the Sport and 2,700 mm (106.3 in) on the Super Sport. Various coachbuilders made their own versions of the 2500, but most of the bodyworks was made by Touring of Milan.
Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 Sport Cabriolet 1947

The Tipo 256 was a racing version of 2500 made eight copies between 1939 and 1940 for Mille Miglia and the 24 Hours of Le Mans.[11] It was made as Spider (convertible) and Berlinetta (coupe) Touring bodystyles. With power of 125 bhp (93 kW) it could achieve top speed of 200 kilometres per hour (120 mph).
It was sold to wealthy customers like King Farouk, Alì Khan, Rita Hayworth, Tyrone Power, and Prince Rainier. One was also featured in The Godfather in 1972.

The 2500 was one of the most expensive cars available at its own time. The last 6C was produced in 1952, and was replaced by the 1900.

vineri, 15 august 2014

Porsche 356 B 1600 Super Cabriolet by Reutter 1961 - World Of Classic Cars -

Porsche 356 B 1600 Super Cabriolet by Reutter 1961

The American fascination with Porsches took off when importer Max Hoffman brought 15 Special Roadsters to the U.S. in 1954. The spartan construction of the Speedsters meant that the introductory price was only $2,841, and 4,144 of them were sold in the U.S. between 1954 and 1958. The accompanying Cabriolet offered creature comforts to 3,367 more practical buyers.
The Porsche 356 Roadster, Cabriolet, and Speedster debate is never-ending. While the Speedster has the dashing profile, the Roadster and Cabriolet are far more usable. For those more practical, or those who live outside of the Sun Belt, a real top and roll-up windows make more sense. If you want a truly weather-proof convertible, the insulated Cabriolet is the best choice. Likewise, it can extend your driving pleasure into the colder months.
Porsche 356 B 1600 Super Cabriolet by Reutter 1961

Erwin Komenda’s T5 body style arrived in 1960 and was designated the 356 B. Both the Convertible and Coupe were equipped with 15-inch wheels, heavier and taller bumpers, a revised slope to the hood, and a larger chrome-plated hood handle. The steering wheel and knobs were black plastic, with a “mushroom” knob for the shifter. The headlights were moved to the top of the fenders, with amber parking lights below them and brake vents below the bumper. There were four stages of engine tune, including the 75 horsepower 1600 Super that this example features.
Porsche 356 B 1600 Super Cabriolet by Reutter 1961

The car shown is a 1600 Super Cabriolet in its original, handsome color of Aetna Blue, with a Light Grey leather and corduroy interior. It’s known to have been in regular use as late as 2003, in the Washington, DC, area, before being placed in storage. The vendor bought the Porsche in 2010 from Robert Blair, who had inherited it from his father. At the time, it indicated 77,600 miles, which are believed to be original.
The Cabriolet was sent to Porsche 356 expert Bill Hamilton, of Martindale, Texas, who commenced an extensive $50,000 body-off, rotisserie restoration, which was recently completed this November. The high-point restoration was photo-documented and supervised by two national PCA judges.
Porsche 356 B 1600 Super Cabriolet by Reutter 1961

Additionally, the engine was rebuilt and bored from 82 millimeters to 86 millimeters, and larger pistons were installed. The owner states that the displacement has been increased to 1,750 millimeters and the horsepower was raised to an estimated 84 brake horsepower.
This Porsche is matching numbers, with original colors, paint, and interior. According to its Certificate of Authenticity, it was equipped from new with an exterior mirror, a Cabriolet cover, and Michelin tires. Both the paint and bodywork are exceptional, the chrome is excellent, and the lights and badges are immaculate. The interior is refinished in the original Light Grey leather with corduroy inserts, and it has the correct square-weave carpet.
Porsche 356 B 1600 Super Cabriolet by Reutter 1961

The engine compartment features correct equipment and decals. The original motor and transmission have been rebuilt, the engine has a big bore kit, and the electrics have been converted to 12 volts, with a new wiring harness.

marți, 12 august 2014

Mercury 'Custom' Coupe by Charles Marr and Gerry Huth 1940 - World Of Classic Cars -

Mercury 'Custom' Coupe by Charles Marr and Gerry Huth 1940

Many today think of a California custom as something born out of necessity: a used car that has been carefully rebuilt by skilled amateur artisans into something fast and beautiful. However, Charles Marr bought this 1940 Mercury Convertible new in November 1939, and within two weeks, he and his friend Gerry Huth, of well-known Huth exhaust systems, had chopped the windshield three inches and added a removable Carson padded top. Note the date: the Marr/Huth Mercury is one of the very first California customs, perhaps the first customized 1940 Mercury in the Los Angeles area, and it is one of the few surviving to have intact customs built prior to World War II.
Mercury 'Custom' Coupe by Charles Marr and Gerry Huth 1940

The car was acquired in 1962 by Carl Morton, the renowned customizer who had just prior taken over the former Valley Custom Shop of Burbank. Morton recognized the car as one of the first Southern California customs, and he had known both Marr and Huth to be a part of the early kustom kulture. He stored the car for some four decades, and unusual for someone who built custom cars for a living, he appreciated its originality. Thus, not only does this car retain to the present day all of its original customized body panels, including the fenders, doors, hood, and trunk lid, but it also has such prized small trim pieces as the window frames, vent windows, dashboard, and window trim.
Mercury 'Custom' Coupe by Charles Marr and Gerry Huth 1940

In 2005, the Mercury was finally sold to its third owner from new, along with a horde of original and new old stock parts that had been accumulated for a long-awaited restoration. That restoration was undertaken to correct standards between 2008 and 2009, with great care taken to use only authentic trim. The car was totally disassembled and stripped, with the bodywork lead-finished, primered with epoxy, and painted with custom Sikkens Autcryl green metallic paint, replicating a hand-rubbed, multi-coat lacquer finish. The original Carson top was recreated by Paul Reichling of Cedardale Upholstery, and the two-tone interior, with its 1940 Buick steering wheel, was restored by Guy’s Interior Restorations of Portland.
Mercury 'Custom' Coupe by Charles Marr and Gerry Huth 1940

The car boasts numerous 1940s custom touches, including the 1937 DeSoto “ripple” bumpers, which were so widely used on period street rods that they are almost impossible to still find on a 1937 DeSoto today, as well as 1941 Studebaker taillights, teardrop skirts, and “flipper” hubcaps. Dual Appleton spotlights were a “must-have” back in the day.
Under the hood is a correct 1940 flathead V-8 that had been bored and stroked to 276 cubic inches, running a hot Isky three-quarter cam and sporting a Weiand dual-carburetor set-up and modified Lincoln-Zephyr V-12 dual-coil ignition.
Mercury 'Custom' Coupe by Charles Marr and Gerry Huth 1940

The engine breathes through dual exhausts and exits in an unusual fashion above the rear bumper. As every hot-rodder worth his salt did, the owner had the transmission fitted with Lincoln-Zephyr gears, which ran to a Zephyr two-speed rear axle. The frame was “C’d” above the rear axle, and a Zephyr hypoid differential moves the car lower without necessitating modifications to the driveshaft tunnel. All of this means that the car will cruise comfortably down the highway at proper modern road speeds, and it will also come nicely to a stop, thanks to Zephyr hydraulic brakes.
Mercury 'Custom' Coupe by Charles Marr and Gerry Huth 1940

Since its restoration, the Marr/Huth Mercury has been displayed at the 2009 Sacramento Autorama as part of a special display honoring 70 years of Mercury customs, of which this is arguably the progenitor.

luni, 11 august 2014

Alfa Romeo 2000 Spider by Touring 1962 - World Of Classic Cars -

Alfa Romeo 2000 Spider by Touring 1962

It’s difficult to say why the Alfa Romeo Tipo 102 2000, the “old” 2000, wasn’t more successful in its day. Certainly, it was not a hot little lightweight like its stablemate the Giulietta Spider, and if compared head-to-head, the larger and much more expensive 2000 didn’t necessarily look like a good deal. Actually, it clearly didn’t look like a good deal, as production of the 2000 Spider averaged less than 1,000 annually, with only 3,443 being built between 1958 and 1962.
The 2000, also known as the 2-Liter, was designed for luxurious long-distance touring, which can be interpreted to mean the American market.
Alfa Romeo 2000 Spider by Touring 1962

The Spider, or Roadster, received an uprated Sprint engine that had 8.5:1 compression and dual carburetors, resulting in it producing 115 horsepower at 5,900 rpm. While a Giulietta could outperform the 2,596-pound Spider in most conditions, the 2000 offers a completely different driving experience. Many drivers that were familiar with only the smaller Alfa Romeos of the era have remarked at how solidly constructed the Touring body feels. A full 10 inches of additional wheelbase opens up the cabin experience to one that resembles a Ferrari 250 Cabriolet of the same era, and indeed, there is more than a passing resemblance to the two cars overall.
Alfa Romeo 2000 Spider by Touring 1962

While it was reportedly sold new in California, this car has the widely spaced hood intakes and double chrome side strips that are usually associated with the European market. It also has gauges in English measurements, with a Blaupunkt radio that has European markings and delightful Italian wording on some of the secondary controls; perhaps this could be a mystery for a future owner to investigate. The notoriously troublesome Solex 44 PHH carburetors have been replaced with much more dependable Weber carburetors, and the original airbox has been preserved in the event that the car’s future takes it to concours participation.
Alfa Romeo 2000 Spider by Touring 1962

Prior to its current ownership, this car was in the long-term collection of noted Alfa enthusiast Ken Shaff, a co-founder of the California Mille rally. More recently, the consignor embarked on a comprehensive refurbishment of its older restoration, including having the car fully stripped and painted and the chrome partially replated. The interior is in excellent condition, and the top is new. Driving condition has always been a priority for the consignor, so, along with the cosmetic work, the engine has been freshly detailed, and the car runs and drives wonderfully. A leather satchel of tools in the freshly recovered trunk completes a car that is ready for stylish touring at speed.
Alfa Romeo 2000 Spider by Touring 1962

Many of the same factors that made the Tipo 102 2000 Spider unpopular 50 years ago are now creating just the opposite effect. The combination of low production, a knockout Touring body, and great driving dynamics make it a highly sought-after choice for Alfa Romeo lovers today.