Iconic Cars Of The 60’s

1. AC Cobra

The AC Cobra, sold as the Shelby Cobra in the United States, is an Anglo-American sports car powered by a Ford V8 engine, produced intermittently in both the United Kingdom and United States since 1962. In September of 1961, American automotive designer Carroll Shelby wrote to AC asking if they would build him a car modified to accept a Ford V8 engine. AC agreed, provided a suitable engine could be found. Ford wanted a car of their own that could compete with the Corvette. They just so happened to have a brand new engine which could be used for this project. The Windsor 221 cu in  (3.6 L) engine which was a new lightweight, thin-wall cast small-block V8, two of which were provided to Shelby.


2. Volvo p1800

The P1800 is a two-seater, front-engine, rear-drive sports car manufactured and marketed by Swedish automaker Volvo Cars as a coupe from 1961 to 1973. The P1800 first became popular as the main car driven by Roger Moore in the hit television series The Saint which aired from 1962-1969. It also featured styling by Pietro Frua and was marketed as the Volvo P1800, 1800S, 1800E and 1800ES. In 1998, an 1800S was certified as the highest mileage private vehicle driven by the original owner in non-commercial service — having exceeded three million miles (over 4.8 million km) as of 2013.

3. Buick Riviera

The Riviera is a luxury car produced by Buick from 1963 to 1999 and was highly praised by automotive journalists upon its debut. Since the early 1950’s, the Riviera name had been used by Buick  for various prestige versions of existing models. While early models stayed close to the original form, subsequent generations varied substantially over the Riviera’s thirty-year lifespan. In all, 1,127,261 were produced. Its name was resurrected for concept cars displayed during and auto show in 2007 and also in 2013 hoping the reintroducing the marque, but no plans have been confirmed.


4. Ferrari 250 GTO

The 250 GTO was designed to compete in GT racing. It was a GT car produced by Ferrari from 1962 to 1964 for homologation into the FIA’s Group 3 Grand Touring Car category, where its rivals would include the Shelby Cobra, Jaguar E-Type and Aston Martin DP214. When new, it cost $18,000 in the United States, with buyers personally approved by Enzo Ferrari along with his dealer for North America, Luigi Chinetti. In May of 2012, the 1962 250 GTO set an all-time record selling price of $38,115,000 at auction. While in October of  2013, a Connecticut-based collector Paul Pappalardo sold chassis number 5111GT to an unnamed buyer for a new record of around $52 million. In 2004, Sports Car International placed the 250 GTO eighth on a list of Top Sports Cars of the 1960’s.

5. Ford GT40

The GT40 is a high-performance racing car based on the British Lola Mk6, with the Mk I, Mk II, and Mk III designed and built in England and the Mk IV built in the United States. It won the 24 Hours of Le Mans four consecutive times, from 1966 to 1969 including a 1-2-3 finish in 1966 which Henry Ford II attended himself at Le Mans. The car was named the GT (for Grand Touring) and the 40 representing its overall height of 40 inches. Early cars were simply named “Ford GT”. The name “GT40” was the name of Ford’s project to prepare the cars for the international endurance racing circuit, and the quest to win the 24 Hours of Le Mans.


6. Jaguar E-Type

The Jaguar E-Type was manufactured by British automaker Jaguar Cars Ltd between 1961 and 1975. On its release in March of 1961, Enzo Ferrari called it “the most beautiful car ever made”. In 2004, Sports Car International magazine placed the E-Type at number one on their list of Top Sports Cars of the 1960’s and in March of 2008, it ranked first in The Daily Telegraph online list of the world’s “100 most beautiful cars” of all time. Two limited production E-Type variants were made as test beds, the low drag coupe and lightweight E-Type, both of which were raced.

7. 1961 Lincoln Continental

The Lincoln Continental is a series of luxury cars produced by Lincoln, a division of the American automaker Ford Motor Company. The Continental began life as a personal vehicle for Ford Motor Company President Edsel Ford. This generation of Continental is favored by collectors and has appeared in many movies such as Goldfinger, The Matrix, Last Action Hero, Kalifornia, Spider-Man 2, Hit and Run, Animal House, and the Inspector Gadget films. It has also appeared in television series Pushing Daisies and Entourage.


8. Mercedes-Benz 300SL

The 300 SL (W198) was the first iteration of the SL-Class grand tourer and fastest production car of its day. Manufactured by Daimler-Benz AG, the direct fuel injected production model was based on the company’s highly successful yet somewhat less powerful naturally aspirated, overhead cam straight 6 1952 race car, the W194. With distinctive gull-wing doors, it was introduced in 1954 as a two-seat coupé and was later offered as an open roadster. Over 80% of the car’s total production of approximately 1400 units were sold in the United States, making the 300SL the first Mercedes-Benz widely successful outside its home market.

9. Pontiac GTO

The Pontiac GTO was built by Pontiac in generations from 1964 to 1974 model years, and by GM’s subsidiary Holden in Australia from 2004 to 2006. The first generation GTO was a muscle car of the 1960’s and 1970’s era. It was an option package for the Pontiac Tempest, available with the two-door coupe, hardtop, and convertible body styles. The GTO became its own model from 1966 to 1971 and was selected Motor Trend Car of the Year in 1968. The model was revived from 2004 to 2006 model years as a captive import for Pontiac.


10. Volkswagen Type 2

The VW Type 2, known officially (depending on body type) as the Transporter, Kombi or Microbus, is a forward control panel van introduced in 1950 by the German automaker Volkswagen as its second car model after the VW Beetle. The second generation of the Volkswagen Type 2 was introduced in late 1967 and was built in Germany until 1979. The Volkswagen Kombi and Panel van were produced in Mexico from 1970 to 1994. Production ended in Mexico in 1994, with models being imported from Brazil.

11. 1963 Ford Thunderbird

The Thunderbird is a rear wheel drive automobile manufactured in the United States by the Ford Motor Company and has over eleven model generations from 1955 through 2005. It was redesigned in 1961 with sleeker styling that gave the car a bullet-like appearance. The Thunderbird served as 1961’s Indianapolis 500 pace car and was also featured prominently in US President John F. Kennedy’s inaugural parade. The car entered production for the 1955 model year as a sporty two-seat convertible which Ford called the personal luxury car. The Thunderbird Country Club in California also lays claim to being the inspiration for the name of the car.


12. 1962 Lotus Elan

The Lotus Elan was first shown at Earls Court in 1962 and was the sports car by which others were judged for a decade. Lotus Elan is the name of two convertible cars and two fixed head coupés manufactured by Lotus Cars in 1962. The original Lotus Elan 1500 was introduced in 1962 as a roadster. After a short production run of just 22 cars, Lotus decided to increase the size of the engine and redesignated the car as the Elan 1600. The Elan was technologically advanced, equipped with a DOHC 1557 cc engine, disc brakes all around, rack and pinion steering, and 4-wheel independent suspension.

13. 1961 Ferrari 250 GT California Spyder SWB

In 1960 Scaglietti revealed the 250 GT California Spyder SWB at Geneva, its body pulled more tautly over this updated chassis. As the 250 GT Berlinetta SWB on which it was based, the new Spyder also got disc brakes and a 280PS variation of the 3.0 litre V12 engine. Only 55 were ever built. A 1961 250 GT California Spyder SWB that had been owned by James Coburn was sold for £5.5 million to radio DJ, Chris Evans. A barn find 1961 SWB formerly owned by French actor Alain Delon sold for US$15.9 million in February 2015. While on March 11, 2016 at the Omni Amelia Island Plantation, a 1961 SWB sold for US$17.16 million at auction.


14. Sunbeam Tiger

The Sunbeam Tiger is a high-performance V8 version of the British Rootes Group’s Sunbeam Alpine roadster. It was designed in part by American car designer and racing driver Carroll Shelby and was produced from 1964 until 1967. Two major versions of the vehicle were built: the Mark I which was fitted with the 260 Ford V8 and the Mark II, of which only 633 were built in its final years of production, was fitted with the larger Ford 289. Two extensively modified prototype versions of the Mark I competed in the 1964 24 Hours of Le Mans, but neither completed the race.

15. Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato

The Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato was introduced in October of 1960 at the London Motor Show. The DB4 GT was lightened and improved by Ercole Spada of the Zagato factory in Italy. Initially, the factory planned to produce 25 vehicles but the demand was not as strong as they had expected, stopping production at the 20th unit. The most prominent DB4 GT Zagatos, affectionately known by the registration plates they share, 1 VEV and 2 VEV which both raced at the 1961 24 Hours of Le Mans.


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Juicy: Iconic Cars Of The 60’s
Iconic Cars Of The 60’s
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