marți, 3 mai 2016

In Celebration Of The Slow Sports Car - World Of Classic Cars -

Modern life is all rush, rush, rush. Everything runs on high octane. Moving at full pelt just to start work in the mornings, things then speed up until you finally hit the pillow at the end of the day. We’re obsessed with speed. This is truest when we’re talking about sports cars. It’s a sea of stats and figures. The new Ferrari is one tenth quicker to sixty than the new Porsche. Numbers that mean nothing unless you earn your living on the racetrack. But we obsess about it. How the thing looks is almost immaterial. Here at the club we take a different view. We prefer a car that looks so good you want to drive it slowly. Here are some of our choices of the finest cars to eventually hit 60mph.

The Austin Healey Frogeye Sprite

We run one of these bug eyed beauties at the club. It is a car that is FUN. An open topped sportster that doesn’t hit 60mph until around the twenty second mark and tops out at just over 80mph. So you might be left for dust by a salesman in a Ford Focus ST, but you’ll have a smile on your face for about a week afterwards. The joys of a slow sports car have never been more seductive.

The Mazda MX-5 

Not the slowest car on the road, but you won’t be worrying any Porsche Speedsters anytime soon. What it lacks in grunt it makes up for in charm. A modern day Lotus Elan if you will. Only it will be easier to live with day-in, day-out. This is summer on four wheels.

VW Karmann Ghia 

Another club classic. The seductive combination of Italian styling and German engineering means you’ll look good without getting to know AA drivers by their christian names. There is little danger of losing your license in this beauty, but this isn’t about speed, this is about enjoyment. The Karmann turns the world into a better place. People let you out into traffic, strangers wave at you from pavements and you always have change from your visit to the petrol station. We love this car.

Volvo P1800S 

This would have been a zippy little car back in the day. But figures of 0 – 60 in eleven seconds put it into the same league as a modern day super mini. But once you’re behind the wheel of the Volvo you won’t care a bit. You won’t care because you’ll feel as cool as Simon Templar. This is the kind of car that gets under your skin. Roger Moore bought one as his daily driver when he worked on the Saint. Paul Bailey, the supercar collector we caught up with recently, restored one because he loved them so much. These cars also tend to go round the clock with ease. One is even in the Guinness book of records for covering over 3 million miles. What more could you ask of a car?

The Alfa Romeo Spider 

When Steve McQueen reviewed the Alfa Spider for Sports Illustrated in 1966 he felt it was underpowered (a regular criticism of Alfas to this day). What won him over was the handling and the style. He could picture himself driving it across the narrow, mountainous roads of Italy. The Spider was and is a car that takes you to another place and if it’s good enough for McQueen, it’s good enough for us.