: A blast from the past!

07-02-13, 08:40 PM
For guys like Sub and me, it brings back fond memories of the golden age of the Gran Turismo automobile. The mid 1960's saw the last of the great GT cars, still unhampered by all the safety and anti-pollution legislation that hindered the beautiful "art" cars toward the end of that decade and on into the seventies. 5 mph bumpers, smog pumps and carburetors just weren't meant to co-exist!

Sports cars didn't have power steering and automatics, and your enjoyment of a fine handling, quick automobile was unhampered by a mega watt sound system conflicting with really nice engine and exhaust sounds.

Cars like the Ferrari GTC, the Maserati Ghibli, the Aston Martin DB6 and of course the Lamborghini 350 GT and the Espada, and certainly the Jaguar E-type were usable cars meant to carry their owners at high speeds around Europe in comfort and with the real luxury of high quality materials and design. But the first quarter of the seventies these cars had become so burdened by legislation that they were just shadows of the real thing. And these companies ceased making true GT cars, but began producing toys to hand on the wall of for an occasional Saturdays drive .... but not for serious transportation from one place to another.

I ran across a few really good examples of how these cars were to drive not just back in the day but today. I am sorry I couldn't get these tapes to embed here, but if you Google "Vintage: Lamborghini 350 GT / Drive it!" you will be in for a treat. Jay Leno also has a segment driving the 350 GT and a 1963 E-type that are both fun> There is also a taste of a Lamborghini Espada being driven through the mountains of France that is great, about as close to the experience of driving the Angeles Crest Highway (Road and Track's favorite road test site).

These segments really do let a younger generation have some insight into the sight and sounds of a period of automotive history that today can only be enjoyed by a few!

Hoosier Daddy
07-02-13, 09:27 PM



07-02-13, 10:32 PM
Thanks, Hoosier Daddy, for helping me out here. I have been having trouble posting pictures on this site.

That "one of a kind" Series I/III E-type roadster is a real kick. I was never a fan of the Series III E-types, but then I never drove one with Webers replacing the stock carbs, or one the that had its' wheel base shortened. Leno's is really an impressive rendition of a Series III car!

ted tcb
07-03-13, 10:14 AM
Thanks for the videos.

Really enjoyed the shortened X Type .... boy, that dash is crying out for chrome toggle switches. Bet Jay switches out the rockers some time soon.

07-03-13, 12:30 PM
orconn, In late 1964 I had the opportunity to buy a '64 Ferrari GTO with a totally blown V-12. The car was BRG with a dark lemon leather interior and the fitted matching leather luggage. For $6500, from a repair shop in Bethesda, MD.

Google "1964 ferrari gto" and look up what one sells for right now. You will drop your teeth.

07-03-13, 01:34 PM
^^^ I know, Sub, GTO's are among the most expensive collector cars in the world! I remember when I took my #50 GT to a Kruse Auction in Santa Monica, Ca in 1978 that there were all kinds of sixties Ferraris, Maseratis and especially Aston Martins that went in the $5000. to $9000. range (depending on condition) range. Those cars are all over $100,000 even in tatty condition, and on up to over a million in restored condition. But given that it cost in the neighborhood of $100,000. to restore a Jaguar Series I E-type to concours condition today (and much more to restore a Ferrari, Lambo or Aston) the prices that these sixties cars bring at auction are somewhat justified.

When I was in Ethiopia, negotiating for the Lambo, I was offered a 1950's Ferrari 250 Mondiale race car (looked just like the more powerful "Testa Rosa" with pontoon fenders and all) that belonged to an Italian friend of mine's father. The car would have cost me around $3000. including shipping to the states. I wanted something that I could actually use every day so turned it down. That car would bring well over $2,000,000 in today's market. I am still glad I bought the Lamborghini 350 GT instead, it was a wonderful car .... a "once in a lifetime" car, especially when you were able to own and use it as a "real" car and not some piece of your collection. I feel the same sense of good fortune about owning the special Jags I was lucky enough to own and enjoy as "real" cars. My first car, the XK 150 drophead, was my favorite among these Jags, with the 1971 XJ6 (short wheel base) being second. While the E-type was all that it was cracked up to be, by even the late 1980's it was not really a daily useable car but really just a nice collector car.

07-03-13, 11:00 PM
All the more motivation for me to purchase cars (and other material possessions) that I do not need, simply because I know they are or will be worth quite a lot. Thus far in life, I have done very well at that.

Never driven a sixties Lamborghini. Driven modern ones and remain unimpressed. While sportscars are hardly my cup of tea (In fact, cars in general are not either) I greatly prefer the sixties models, as they just seemed far nicer, in my opinion. Their modern counterparts may be faster, but they have no personality, are hideous to look at (even the colours you tend to see them painted) and are so far from the thought that would pop into my head with mention of the word "sportscar". Even if they hadn't, I usually always appreciate any antique (To me, pre-1930 cars are still an acceptable daily driver and so far as my opinions go, what I expect to see on [non-Floridian] roadways. Leftover concept from my youth, I suppose. I surprise myself daily that I do not own one at this present time) and I can respect them regardless, even if they are not really the sort of vehicle I would ever wish to own. In October of last year, I was given the opportunity and the keys to a '65 Lotus Elan. Again, hardly the kind of car I would normally drive, but I jumped on the opportunity and it was fun. While hardly the type of thing I'd be interested in owning, I was rather impressed with the car for what it was (that being a well-kept antique roadster).

07-04-13, 10:27 AM
You need to drive a mid-60's McLaren/Elva/Chevy/Traco by Nickey Chevrolet in Chicago. Nowhere near street legal, but I drove one through downtown Bethesda, MD at midnight in '65 on a bet - never got stopped. The car was owned and raced by Charlie Hays who had just placed 4th in the CanAm. (I posted this 2 years ago ............. deja vu) A friend of ours from Bethesda, Bob Hurt, was in a horrible qualifying accident, severly crippled and mentally destroyed. I think he passed away a while back.