The car of your dreams has a vin­tage heart

Avion Luxury International Airport Magazine - - VINTAGE CARS -

You are be­hind the wheel of a sports car; the road winds be­fore you be­tween land­scapes gilded by the set­ting sun, your emo­tions stir. Swathed in im­agery, vin­tage cars make hearts beat faster. Smell the screech­ing tyres as they grip the cor­ners and straights of the tracks cel­e­brated by the cre­ators of first-class ma­chines. A flash, and you can see Collins, Gre­gory, Bates and Wash­burn, from the late 50s, in­side the cock­pit of their dart­ing 750 Monza Spy­der Fer­raris, ready to tame the rag­ing thrust of the 260 horse­power of the 3.0 litre, 4 cylin­der engine with dou­ble-body We­ber 58 DCOA/3 car­bu­ret­tors. And Ernie McAffe, be­neath the che­quered flag, vic­to­ri­ously wav­ing his hel­met be­cause chas­sis no. 0502 M as­sem­bled by Scagli­etti is only one of 30 built, with­out a head­rest. What full-bod­ied sen­su­al­ity in those en­velop­ing shapes, with its small wind­screen, and that mus­cu­lar tail which swells be­hind the doors and along the down­ward point­ing bon­net. First, sec­ond, and away: five man­ual gears to pro­pel you at great speed. The tri­umphant de­but at Monza at the Su­per­cortemag­giore Grand Prix (1954) with Magli­oli and Hawthorn, the English Tourist Tro­phy, and in 1955, the Sebring 12-Hours in Florida, the West Coast vic­to­ries: leg­endary sport­ing mem­o­ries in com­pe­ti­tion with Mercedes-Benz 300SLRs, Jaguar D-Types and As­ton Martin DB3S. And the al­lure of movie stars like Fred As­taire in­side the cock­pit, with Gre­gory Peck and Ava Gard­ner in the fu­tur­is­tic “On The Beach” (Stan­ley Kramer 1959). Up to the sev­eral changes of own­er­ship, the Mo­de­nese restora­tion and the cer­tifi­cate of au­then­tic­ity is­sued by the Depart­ment of Clas­sic Fer­raris, to cer­tify the orig­i­nal ap­pear­ance and con­fig­u­ra­tion. The es­ti­mated price of £1,550,000 to £1,800,000 for chas­sisno.

0502 M at the Oc­to­ber 2011 auc­tion, il­lus­trates this gem’s in­cred­i­ble value. Star­dust, the very same that brushes the dé­modé but in­no­va­tive lines of the 1929 Cord L-29 Spe­cial Coupe, the un­know­ing heir of the as­cent and de­scent of the Cord E.L. (Auburn, Cord, Due­sen­berg), the realm of the most el­e­gant and price­less cars ever de­signed in the US in the Twen­ties. The unique in­ter­pre­ta­tion of a one-off coupé, de­signed by Count Alexis de Sakhnoff­sky for the Hayes Body Com­pany of Michi­gan, with an un­usual can­vas hood, con­nected to a charm­ing boot sur­mounted by a small el­lip­ti­cal win­dow, arched front and rear fend­ers and a low­ered chas­sis that houses the 125 horse­power, 298.6cc, 8 cylin­der heart. Un­derneath the veil of the Mist Blue Moun­tain paintjob, with blue woollen cloth up­hol­stery, the front and spare tyres are hid­den by ta­pered run­ning boards that cover the spoked wheels. Et voilà! Glam­our wor­thy of the Ziegfeld fol­lies. A wave of en­thu­si­asm that an­i­mates even the 1957 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Road­ster. A su­perb re­work of the Gull­wing, the road­ster glides as silently as rustling silk, be­hind the ver­ti­cally de­signed head­lights and along the sleek sides with tra­di­tion­ally open­ing doors in place of the gull wings. If the tubu­lar trel­lis frame seems to have been strength­ened, the 225 horse­power, six cylin­der engine en­sures a suf­fi­cient trans­fer of power to the as­phalt. If a “stars and stripes” ad­ven­ture is pre­ferred, cue the Chevro­let Corvette, the 1954 “bub­ble top” road­ster. With its long fin-like rear fend­ers, a dog­fish shaped nose and caged head­lights, all en­closed in a fi­bre­glass chas­sis and a clear plas­tic bub­ble top. It boasts a two gear au­to­matic Pow­erglide trans­mis­sion, 150 horse­power, and six 235 cu­bic inch straight cylin­ders, ready to make the an­tique af­ter­mar­ket chrome wire wheels sparkle. Chas­sis Num­ber: E54S002189. Es­ti­mated at $105,00 to $135,000. A spher­i­cal bul­let whizzes past, with a duck-tailed spoiler, over­sized rear fend­ers, mod­i­fied sus­pen­sion, and able to re­lease 210 horse­power from its 6 cylin­der, 2.7 boxer. It’s the Porsche 911 Car­rera 2.7 RS Light­weight (1973), an evo­lu­tion of the first gen­er­a­tion 911, dis­play­ing multi-coloured 7-inch Fuchs al­loy rims, pro­gen­i­tors to the “Renn Sport” mod­els. Equally el­e­gant, the com­pelling BMW 507 Road­ster (252 mod­els from 1956 to ’59), a gor­geous model with curv­ing lines and black fin­ish, green in­te­ri­ors that con­ceal a mis­chievous spirit, proudly dis­play­ing the sin­gle cen­tral bolt on the Rudge al­loy wheels in white and sil­ver. Dream car of the stars, from Ur­sula An­dress to John Sur­tees and Bernie Ec­cle­stone. Es­ti­mated be­tween $900,000 and $1,200,000. With­out for­get­ting leg­endary Elvis Pres­ley’s white model, with its fe­ro­cious 3.2 litre V8 engine. How­ever, the Jaguar EType re­mains “the most beau­ti­ful car ever cre­ated” ac­cord­ing to Enzo Fer­rari, and the re­cently re­stored 4.2 litre model, 1 of 59 Se­ries I mod­els that ap­peared in 1964, is a per­fect ex­am­ple. Fin­ished in a se­duc­tive Car­men Red with red in­te­ri­ors seal­ing its glo­ri­ous sport­ing past and recog­nised by New York City’s Mu­seum of Mod­ern Art for its sig­nif­i­cance in en­gi­neer­ing and de­sign. The vi­sion of its spin­ning spoked wheels of­fers only the no­tion of a fleet­ing dream, an­chored to a prom­i­nent snout with a tiny mouth, framed by cov­ered head­lights, and above, a re­mov­able hard-top, and cen­tral ex­hausts be­neath the li­cence plate. All, very Bri­tish. A thrill. Mo­ments. Be­cause emo­tions are faster than de­sires. In aper­tura/ Open­ing. 1929 Cord L-29 Spe­cial Coupe by The Hayes Body Cor­po­ra­tion. In questa pag­ina/ On this page. 1954 Chevro­let Corvette "Bub­ble­top" Road­ster. Lunghi parafanghi pos­te­ri­ori a pinna, muso a pesce­cane e fari ingab­biati, rac­chiusi da una car­rozze­ria in vetroresina sotto una bolla-top in plas­tica traspar­ente. Cam­bio a due marce au­to­matico Pow­erglide, 150 CV, 235 cu. pol­lici in linea a sei cilin­dri, pronti a far sfav­il­lare i cer­chi cro­mati af­ter­mar­ket filo d’epoca. Long fin-like rear fend­ers, a dog­fish shaped nose and caged head­lights, all en­closed in a fi­bre­glass chas­sis and a clear plas­tic bub­ble top. It boasts a two gear au­to­matic Pow­erglide trans­mis­sion, 150 horse­power, and six 235 cu­bic inch straight cylin­ders, ready to make the an­tique af­ter­mar­ket chrome wire wheels sparkle.

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