Category archives: News

Pick of the Day: 1966 Sunbeam Tiger

The Sunbeam Tiger is powered by a Ford V8
The Sunbeam Tiger is powered by a Ford V8

During the 1960s, British automaker Sunbeam was known for its cool but modestly powered Alpine sports cars that competed with MGBs and Triumph TR4s. But the Rootes company that owned Sunbeam had higher aspirations for its little roadster, so it called upon the leading expert in shoehorning American V8s into little British sports cars: Carroll Shelby.

Having just shown tremendous success with the Shelby Cobra, which was essentially an AC Ace with a small-block Ford engine under its hood, Shelby and his crew managed to coax a 260cid V8 into the engine compartment of the diminutive Alpine. The resulting Sunbeam Tiger was a roaring success, although the production cars ended up being produced by Jensen. Continue reading

Castle-found collection scores at Spa sale for Bonhams

300 SL roadster tops Bonhams' Spa Classic auction | Bonhams photos
300 SL roadster tops Bonhams’ Spa Classic auction | Bonhams photos

The sounds of Ferrari 250 GTOs, Mercedes-Benz 300SL and McLaren F1s roaring around the Circuit de Spa Francorchamps weren’t the only sounds heard Sunday at the historic Belgian racing circuit. Punctuating that mechanical symphony was the knock of the auction hammer indicating another vehicle had been sold at the Bonhams’ fourth Spa Classic auction.

The boutique sale featured an 80 percent sell-through rate with collector cars from Germany and wearing Mercedes-Benz or Porsche badging. Total sales exceeded $5.35 million. Continue reading

The King’s collection: Don Garlits Museum of Drag Racing

Don Garlits built the first truly successful rear-engined dragster in 1971 after a huge explosion in his last front-engined car | Jim McCraw photos
Don Garlits built the first truly successful rear-engined dragster in 1971 after a huge explosion in his last front-engined car | Jim McCraw photos

Don Garlits is the undisputed king of drag racing. Now 85, he has won 17 championships, won almost 150 races, and built, tuned and driven about 60 different race cars since he started racing in 1950.

He is known around the world as “Big Daddy,” and about 40 of his race cars have been called “Swamp Rat,” because Garlits was born and raised in Florida. Continue reading

Seeing Red: The Petersen’s tribute to 70 years of Ferrari

Part of the 'Seeing Red' exhibition of Ferraris at the Petersen Automotive Museum | Larry Crane photos
Part of the ‘Seeing Red’ exhibition of Ferraris at the Petersen Automotive Museum | Larry Crane photos

Red, because Ferrari continues to honor the 1906 Federation International de l’Automobile decision to establish national racing colors to facilitate a spectator recognizing racers from his country — Italian participating cars would be red.

While there have been many manufacturers who spent vast amounts of money modifying production cars to improve racetrack performance, Ferrari in its early days made very minor modifications to make its racing sports cars street worthy. Continue reading

Museums hold car shows near you

Cobra at the Museums recent Shelby gathering | Blackhawk Museum photos
Cobra at the Museums recent Shelby gathering | Blackhawk Museum photos

The Auburn Cord Duesenberg museum’s next Cars and Coffee cruise-in is May 20. America on Wheels stages its VW Fest on May 20, with a show open to all Volkswagens, whether air- or water-cooled.  The annual Corvette Homecoming and Chevrolet International car show at the National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, Kentucky, is June 1-3.

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Pick of the Day: 1968 Ford Mustang ‘Bullitt’ custom

The Ford Mustang has been restored to look and perform like the one Steve McQueen drove in 'Bullitt'
The Ford Mustang has been restored to look and perform like the one Steve McQueen drove in ‘Bullitt’

How many times have you watched Steve McQueen romping over the hills of San Francisco in the movie Bullitt and said to yourself, “I gotta get a Mustang just like that”? Plenty of times, I’d bet.

The best-known car chase in movie history – some might say the weirdest, what with the chased Dodge Charger losing about seven hubcaps and the cars roaring through the same intersection a number of times – focused lovingly on the sharp-looking Mustang, which roused longing and lust for the pony car in an entire generation of gearheads. Continue reading

Street rodders select Memphis award winners

We recently shared photos of the “Pro’s Picks” at the National Street Rod Association’s Street Rod Nationals South in Chilhowee Park & Expo Center in Knoxville, Tennessee. Here are some additional award winners from that event, which was staged in the NSRA’s hometown:

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Mustang most popular search, ClassicCars.com data reveals

Map shows most popular searches in each state for 2016 | ClassicCars.com graphic
Map shows most popular searches in each state for 2016 | ClassicCars.com graphic

There are several ways to check the pulse of the collector car marketplace. There are auction results, buyer’s guides, and expert analysis. But another is to see what cars people are searching for the most on ClassicCars.com. With more than 30,000 vehicles for sale by private sellers, classic car dealers and auction houses, the website is the world’s largest collector car marketplace.

For the 2016 calendar year, the Ford Mustang was the most searched-for car. It also led in state-by-state statistics as the most searched-for collector vehicle in 13 of the 50 states. Continue reading

Mecum goes international with vintage tractors in Canada

1920 Allis-Chalmers 6-12 is among oldest examples from the brand | Mecum Auctions photos
1920 Allis-Chalmers 6-12 is among oldest examples from the brand | Mecum Auctions photos

Mecum Auctions’ Gone Farmin’ division is adding a sale to its 2017 calendar, offering more than 300 vintage tractors July 14-15 at its first international on-site event, selling the George Nesbitt Allis-Chalmers Collection in Renfrew, Ontario, Canada.

In its news release, Mecum said Nesbitt’s is “one of the world’s most comprehensive vintage Allis-Chalmers tractor collections” and includes “nearly ever model Allis-Chalmers has ever produced from the early teens up through the 1980s.” Continue reading

Bonhams to host Surtees foundation auction

Drivers and cars at 2016 fund-raiser | Henry Surtees Foundation photos by Jakob every
Drivers and cars at 2016 fund-raiser | Henry Surtees Foundation photos by Jakob every

In 2009, 18-year-old Henry Surtees died from injuries sustained in a crash in a Formula 2 race at the Brands Hatch circuit in England. In the aftermath, Surtees’ father, the only person to win world motorcycle and Formula 1 racing championships, established the Henry Surtees Foundation.

The foundation’s goal is “to assist people with brain or physical injuries caused by accident to return to community living by the provision of support for equipment and facilities.” Continue reading