Pick of the Day: 1937 Ford Model 78 Deluxe Convertible Sedan

The Ford convertible looks freshly restored
The Ford convertible looks freshly restored

The four-door luxury convertible is pretty much an extinct configuration, gone by way of 1960s Lincoln Continentals, unless you count a couple of recent concept cars.

But there was a time when an open-air car with rear doors was the height of stylish transportation, such as the Pick of the Day, a 1937 Ford Model 78 Deluxe Convertible Sedan. While the Ford looks original, other than its slightly lowered stance and modern wheel treatment, the convertible packs a modern drivetrain for performance and reliability. The dual exhaust is also something of a giveaway. Continue reading

Pick of the Day: 1948 Bentley MKVI coachbuilt coupe

The Bentley is adorned with a beautiful body by the coachbuilders at James Young
The Bentley is adorned with a beautiful body by the coachbuilders at James Young

Getting a car accepted to show at a top concours d’elegance such as Pebble Beach or Amelia Island is quite a difficult endeavor to pull off. You need a coachbuilt car to start with, and you need a car from a marque that is well-respected.

Those ingredients add up to a car that can cost quite a bit of money, in the realm of many hundreds of thousands of dollars, which makes the climb to entry for these events quite steep. Continue reading

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

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

Pick of the Day: 1972 Chevrolet Corvette coupe

The Chevrolet Corvette is a restored, low-mileage car
The Chevrolet Corvette is a restored, low-mileage car

A popular activity for vintage sports car collectors is taking their cars on rallies and tours, often covering some of the most fun and scenic roads in the United States. To participate in such events, one needs to possess a vintage sports car, generally one from 1972 or earlier.

Ferraris, Jaguars and Porsches are often seen on these events, although they are expensive and sometime fragile, which can result in reliability issues that can consume a driver’s enjoyment of the cross-country tour. And parts for an exotic vintage car are hard to source in rural areas. Continue reading

Pick of the Day: 1934 Lincoln KB town car

The Lincoln KB looks clean despite being restored a half-century ago
The Lincoln KB looks clean despite being restored a half-century ago

Hollywood actor Ned Sparks is not much remembered today, but he was a popular character actor from the 1920s through the 1950s, famed for his perpetually grumpy expression and wry one-liners.

His crotchety look was so tied to his acting career that he was reputed to have taken out an insurance policy for $10,000 with Lloyds of London during the 1930s in case anyone should get a photo of him smiling and publicize it. Continue reading

Pick of the Day: 1950 Oldsmobile 88 custom coupe

The Oldsmobile's trim has been cleaned up and the chrome polished
The Oldsmobile’s trim has been cleaned up and the chrome polished

The Pick of the Day is a gorgeous cover girl, a dream machine that graced the front cover and centerfold of the November 4, 1991, edition of Hot Rod Mechanix magazine, under the headline, “My Blue Heaven.”

The coupe is painted in an attractive shade called Crest Blue
The coupe is painted in an attractive shade called Crest Blue

The 1950 Oldsmobile 88 coupe has been tastefully transformed into a period-style custom cruiser with a cleaned-up nose, grille and rear deck, and painted a luscious shade called Crest Blue. The Olds is powered by its original, rebuilt 303 cid Rocket V8 and three-speed automatic, with new brakes, tires, springs, shocks and battery, according to the Brainerd, Minnesota, dealer advertising the coupe on ClassicCars.com. Continue reading

Pick of the Day: 1964 Triumph TR4

The early Triumph TR4 appears to be in excellent condition
The early Triumph TR4 appears to be in excellent condition

The values of certain cars in the classic car hobby don’t always make a lot of sense.

Take, for instance, the Triumph TR4. The most valuable TR4 roadsters are the later TR4A cars that have independent rear suspension. On the surface, this would make sense as you would think that having IRS would be an improvement over the earlier live-axle models. Continue reading

Pick of the Day: 1961 Pontiac Bonneville

The 56-year-old Pontiac Bonneville seems to be in remarkably preserved condition
The 56-year-old Pontiac Bonneville seems to be in remarkably preserved condition

Named for the famous speed-record Salt Flats in Utah, Bonneville was Pontiac’s luxury/performance car done on a grand scale. Bonneville hit its stride in 1959 as the brand launched its big wide-track models, and it led the division for the next decade.

The Bonneville sports a 'bubbletop' roofline
The Bonneville sports a ‘bubbletop’ roofline

The Pick of the Day is a 1961 Pontiac Bonneville hardtop, with a roofline so trim and its front and rear glass so broad that it’s called a “bubbletop,” a great look also offered at the time by the other GM divisions. More than 18 feet long and fully loaded with features, the 3,900-pound Bonneville is a monumental automobile that helped launched the muscle-car era of the 1960s. Continue reading

Pick of the Day: 1969 Mercury Cougar

The Cougar has been enhanced with performance upgrades
The Cougar has been enhanced with performance upgrades

Mercury Cougar was Ford Mustang’s higher-achieving but less-successful sibling. Basically, it was a decked-out Mustang with suitable luxury trim and signature features – including hideaway headlights and sequential rear turn signals – for the more-upscale Mercury customers.

Cougar never reached Mustang’s level of sales, nor its iconic image, not by a long shot, which makes it rarer than the ubiquitous Ford pony cars, although generally not as valuable nor as high profile. Continue reading