Now the sad part — no one bought any. Only 412 503s saw the nightlight of garage (at about two to one, coupe to convertible). Count von Goertz and his GI buddies (thankfully) did such a good job kicking Prussian ass, that no one in the former-Fatherland was in the market for a car that literally cost more than their house (about $175,000 when new in 2006 dollars). BMW's plan to get back to its pre-war self (think luxury, think sporting, think 328) floundered and the company was sentenced to producing one-door bubbles for the next half-decade. In both design and intent, the 503 is the archetype for all subsequent 6-Series models. Think Farago will let us stick one in the Fantasy Garage? … [Read more...] about Know Thy Germans: BMW 503 Coupe and Convertible
Introduced to the world for the 1936 Olympics, the BMW 328 was an (almost) instant classic that went on to dominate the world of motor racing for the next half-decade. But like the "in your face, master race" that Jesse Owens gave Hitler and friends by winning four gold track & field medals, the 328 harbored an un-Aryan secret; it was designed by a Jew. The gorgeous 328 was in fact designed by Kurt Joachimson, a Hebrew brother from another mother who had created the first sporting BMW, the 315/1 Roadster. Credit for the 328's sporting lines went to a man who wasn't hired by the Bavarian Motorwerks until after the 328 went out of production (and other times wrongly attributed to Fritz Fiedler — only it wasn't Fritz). Despite the ugly history, the 328 is one of the most beautiful and important vehicles ever conceived and executed. More after the jump. … [Read more...] about Know Thy Germans: BMW 328 Roadster and Coupe
While there's something to be said for the Trans-European Veyron-vs.-Cessna race, and the Merak/Urraco/308 GT4 challenge is certainly a classic, our all-time favorite Top Gear competition is the "1,500-Pound Coupe That Isn't a Porsche" bit. Hammond in a BMW 635, May in an XJS, and Clarkson, brilliant bugger that he is, chose a Mitsubishi Starion. And now, via the glory of YouTube, we present it to you. What makes it so great? The trio are at the top of their game with the one-liners, the challenges are inventive, and the grass-track race at the end is simply epic. … [Read more...] about Classic Top Gear: Fifteen-Hundred-Quid Coupes
That likely would have all changed if yesterday’s 1986 Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce had been within spitting distance of me. At $3,500, I could probably swing it, I do have one of those fancy new Apple Cards after all. I also didn’t think that any of the work it needed was beyond my skill level. … [Read more...] about At $8,000, Is This R32-Swapped 1987 VW Jetta A Total Coupe De Grâce?
Now, the standard Alfa Romeo Junior was far from ugly. Giorgetto Giugiaro (then at Bertone) put a body on it for the ages when the car came out in 1963 and the car took off. By 1967, the Alfa management was so satisfied with the original shape’s success that they decided to turn to the team across town at Zagato to see what more could be squeezed out of the design from a performance perspective. The result was the Junior Z. … [Read more...] about The Alfa Romeo Junior Z Was A Kammback Kid
The 2011 Aston Martin V12 Zagato was a limited production model based on the Vantage V12 of the time,celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato. If you’re like me, it’s probably become the car you picture in your head when you think of Zagato, and I think of Zagato a lot. … [Read more...] about The Aston Martin Vantage V12 Zagato Is Back