Top 5 Classic Cars Of All Time

Posted on 30 March 2015 by Tony Santos

The definition of a classic car varies from country to country, even from collector to collector. Generally though, a classic car is an older automobile, at least 20 years of age, and exudes an aura of exhilaration, awe, and jealousy from everyone that sees you driving one around town. Obviously, not any pre-seatbelt, pre-hybrid engine automobile fit the description of a classic car. So here, to give honor to the cream of the crop of all the classic cars out there, we give you our (best effort, albeit still subjective, as well it’s sure to be well maintained on Classic car insurance) top 5 classic cars of all time.

Mercedes_300SL_Coupe_vr_silver_EMS

Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gull-wing

First introduced in 1954 as a two-seater coupe with a distinctive gull-wing door configuration, the 300SL was widely considered the fastest production car of its day. It came into reality when a New York Mercedes distributor Max Hoffman suggested to Daimler-Benz AG in Stuttgart that a street version of the W194 Gran Prix racer has the potential to be a huge hit, especially in the United States.

Thanks to its 3.0L overhead cam straight-6 engine and groundbreaking Bosch mechanical direct fuel injection, the 300SL was rated at 215bhp, resulting to a top speed of 260 kph, making it the fastest car on the block in its heyday.

Nowadays, with its distinct gull-wing doors, ahead-of-its-time speed and low production numbers, the 300SL is one of the more collectible Mercedes-Benz models of all time, with prices ranging from $1M to $2.5M in auctions all over the world.

jaguar-e-type

Jaguar E-Type

Also known as the Jaguar XK-E, the E-Type, produced by Jaguar Cars Ltd. between 1961 and 1975, was widely revered as the icon of 1960s motoring. Upon its release, no less than Enzo Ferrari called the Jaguar E-Type the most beautiful car ever made. Surely, everyone else thought so, and combined with its ever sleek styling, high performance and relatively competitive pricing, more than 75,000 E-Type units were sold to date.

Two initial variants of the E-Type were launched to the public: a rear-wheel drive grand tourer in two-seater coupe form and a two-seater convertible. Later on, a four-seater version of the coupe with a lengthened wheelbase, was released.

Powering the E-Type was either a 3.8L or a 4.2L triple SU carburetted six-cylinder Jaguar XK6 engine borrowed from the XK150S. The 4.2L variant produced power at a rated 265bhp and a top speed of 241kph. It can go from 0 to 100kph in 7 seconds flat.

In 1996, the Jaguar E-Type became one of only six automobiles to be part of the New York City Museum of Modern Art permanent design collection. It was also named one of the top sports cars of all time in 2004 by Sports Car International and one of the most beautiful cars of all time by The Daily Telegraph in 2008.

Aston Martin DB5

Aston Martin DB5

The Aston Martin DB5 is a luxury grand tourer made through a collaboration between automaker Aston Martin and coachbuilder Carrozzeria Touring Superleggera. It is part of the DB series which was launched in honor of David Brown, the company’s head from 1947 to 1972.

Under the hood, the DB5 features an all-aluminum 4.0L engine, a ZF five-speed transmission, and three SU carburettors. The 4.0L engine is capable of producing 282bhp of power, and can reach speeds of up to 233kph and 0 to 100kph performance of about 8 seconds. Other key features of the DB5 are its reclining seats, wool pile carpets, electric windows, chrome wire wheels, magnesium-alloy body, full leather cabin trim and even a fire extinguisher.

Arguably one of the most recognizable cars of all time, the Aston Martin DB5 came into popularity when it first starred in Ian Fleming’s Goldfinger James Bond film in 1964. It has then appeared in other Bond films like the Thunderball in 1966, GoldenEye in 1995, Tomorrow Never Dies in 1997, Casino Royale in 2006 and most recently in Skyfall in 2012, making it the undisputed favourite car of the Bond series.

lamborghini miura

Lamborghini Miura

The Lamborghini Miura is a sports car launched by the Italian automaker between 1966 and 1973. Just like the 300SL, the Miura was the fastest production road car available at launch. Its claim to fame is the revolution of sorts that it started to introduce to the world the high-performance, two-seater, mid-engine sports car.

Against the wishes of founder Ferruccio Lamborghini, the company’s engineering team, led by Gian Paolo Dallara, Paolo Stanzani and Bob Wallace, developed the Miura’s prototype brother the P400 during their spare time. The goal was to develop a road car that would not only win on the track and but also able to be driven legally on the road.

Powering the Miura is a mid-mounted, 3.9L 60° 12-cylinder-V engine (four-stroke), capable of generating 350bhp. Later changes added additional 10-30bhp to the engine. Only about 763 Miuras were ever produced and sold.

1962_Ferrari_250_GTO_34_2

Ferrari 250 GTO

Last, but surely not the least, is the Ferrari 250 GTO. It is a racing GT car produced by Ferrari for only 2 years between 1962 and 1964. Originally meant to compete with the likes of the Shelby Cobra, Jaguar E-Type, and Aston Martin DP214 in GT racing, the 250 GTO was designed by a team led by Giotto Bizzarini and Mauro Forghieri.

Mechanically, the 250 GTO was designed relatively conservative, with engine and chassis components chosen based on their proven success in earlier competition cars. The chassis of the car was based on the design used in the 250 GT SWB, with minor differences in frame structure and geometry. The engine used, meanwhile, was the Tipo 168/62 Comp. 3.0 L V12, the same one found in the 250 Testa Rossa. This engine was an all-alloy design utilizing a dry sump and six 38DCN Weber carburetors. It produced approximately 300bhp and was very reliable. The gearbox was a new 5-speed unit with Porsche-type synchromesh.

Only 39 units were produced, making the 250 GT one of the rarest classic cars out there. It is so rare and valuable that the 1962 250 GTO made for Stirling Moss was sold to communications tycoon Craig McCaw in May 2012 for a staggering $38 million. Not to be outdone, Paul Papplardo, a Connecticut-based collector, sold his own GTO to an unnamed buyer for an even more staggering $52 million.

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