Rack and Pinion Demonstrator – 1963 Shelby Cobra 289

1963 Shelby 289 Cobra

Like most any such car, the Cobra had teething problems to contend with before becoming an immense success and a household name. One of the most important issues was found in the worm and sector steering that had come over from the AC Ace. It was felt that a new steering system was needed from very early on in Cobra production, but the change to rack and pinion didn't come into effect until well into 1963, after 125 Cobras had already been built. … [Read more...]

Sunroofs are Sexy – 1964 Porsche 356C

sunroof coupe

By 1964, the 356 had been in production for sixteen years and the age of the 911 was on the horizon. But the 356, the car to which Porsche owed everything, went out with a bang in the 356C of '64 and '65. In typical Porsche fashion, the changes were subtle but they added up. They included deeper seats for more improved headroom, standard armrests, tweaks to the suspension,  disc brakes on all four wheels and a revised wheel and hubcap design … [Read more...]

Fetching Feline – 1938 Jaguar SS 100

swallow sidecars 3 1/2 liter roadster

With its huge Lucas headlamps, deep-set grille and sharply curved fenders, the SS 100 is undoubtedly one of the prettiest prewar sports cars, but it is also one of the most potent. With a 3,485 cc straight-six, the 2,600 horsepower SS 100 had 125 horsepower on tap and, as its name implies, could reach the then magic number of 100 miles per hour. Long before the glory days of the XK's and C/D-Types in motorsport, the SS 100 was making the … [Read more...]

Prewar Prize – 1939 Aston Martin 15/98 Short Chassis

open sports roadster

Named in the common designation denoting Britain's "taxable" vs. measured horsepower, Aston Martin's 15/98 road car of the 1930s featured the company's 2-liter straight-four that had been developed for Le Mans. Aston's initial focus was on touring configurations like a closed saloon and a drophead coupe, but the short chassis version introduced later and bodied by Abbey Coachworks of London is considered the most pleasing. Introduced at the first … [Read more...]

Ready To Exercise – 1949 Jaguar XK120 Alloy Roadster

1949 Jaguar XK120 Alloy Roadster Main

While most contemporary observers of the Jaguar XK120 would be certain that it was born for greatness, it is surprising to consider that it was conceived and born as a limited-edition stopgap model. William Lyons assumed that the post-WWII fortune of his company, the recently re-named Jaguar Cars Ltd., would be made on the saloon cars that would sell so well in export markets, especially in the U.S. To that end, a new dual overhead-cam, … [Read more...]

Seductive in Silver – 1958 Porsche 356A Cabriolet

1958 Porsche 356 A Cabriolet

Porsche introduced the 356A at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 1955, and in typical Porsche fashion it sported subtle but significant improvements over its predecessor, the most significant being the new 1,582 cc motor. With the A, Porsche saw a big increase in production, and over 20,000 examples were sold before it was replaced by the further improved 356B in late 1959. Like almost anything by Porsche, these cars are highly prized and usually … [Read more...]

Mid-Engined Magic – 1961 Porsche 718 RS 61 Spyder

1961 Porsche 718 RS 61 Spyder

To many manufacturers, motorsport victories are essential to commercial success. The adage of “race on Sunday, sell on Monday,” was never more true for Porsche during the late 1950s and early 1960s. The mid-engined Porsche Spyders were still attempting to establish a foothold in the United States, and it took to the track in the hands of factory-supported racers and privateers alike, dicing with the likes of Ferrari, Aston Martin, Jaguar, and … [Read more...]

Four Seats, Six Cylinders – 1959 Austin-Healey 100-6

roadster bn4

The relationship between Donald Healey and BMC had already enjoyed several exciting and profitable years when Austin-Healey introduced their new and improved version of the "Big Healey" in September of 1956. Called the 100-6 (or 100-Six, or BN4), it had numerous significant changes over the original 100, and most obvious was the engine. Gone was the four-cylinder unit, and in its place was the six-cylinder BMC C-Series unit from the then new … [Read more...]

Healey Needs Healing – 1954 Austin-Healey 100M

project bmc rhd

When the BN2 version of Austin-Healey's 100 came out in 1955, it featured some small improvements over the BN1 that had been launched in 1953. There was now a four-speed gearbox, eye-catching two-tone paint and other detail changes, but otherwise the car had the same good looks and lively feel. 1955 was also the year that Healey decided to give the customer a hotter version of the 100 for the road. They had already built fifty examples of the … [Read more...]

Two-Owner Project – 1955 Porsche 356 Speedster

1955 Porsche 356 Speedster

Marrying into money has got to be pretty nice, but marrying into an original Porsche Speedster isn't so bad, either. That's just what the seller of this car, located in Kila, Montana, has done, and even if the car is a bit of a mess, he'll still be getting plenty of dough out of the situation. His wife's father first got the car from the original owner in the early 1960s. Somewhere along the way a 1600 from a 1959 356 was mated to the original … [Read more...]