[PIC GALLERY] Cars

steve

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Photograph taken on a single track road between Swinbrook and Burford one warm evening a few years ago........this car is a Bristol 405 circa 1958.......

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Interesting history too........



The names 'Bristol' and 'Frazer Nash' were closely associated in the late 1940s, when both used the BMW-based straight-six engine from the old 328. Frazer Nash was the British agency for BMW (until 1959) and then Porsche until 1988 when the Stuttgart company bought the remaining shares.

At the end of WW2, in 1945, the Bristol Aircraft Corporation considered getting into the car business. The company’s skilled workforce had spent six years building aircraft and the firm approached the Aldington brothers of Frazer Nash about a joint program. The brothers had sold BMWs under license before WW2 and the two companies agreed to collaborate. In 1945, H.F. Aldington was still in the British Army. He visited the bombed-out BMW factory in Berlin and came away with plans, engines and Chief Engineer Fritz Fiedler. The factory was in the American zone and everything was supposed to be sent to the U.S., but the plans and materials were declared war reparations, and stayed in England.


Bristol and AFN then parted company in 1947. The Aldingtons continued to build sports racers, while Bristol concentrated on road cars. The 1947 Bristol 400 was a continuation of the prewar BMW 327 coupe, powered by the 80-horsepower, 6-cylinder motor that appeared to be a twin cam but actually had an ingenious system of crossed pushrods. It was pre-war in character and BMW evolved the design into the 501 sedans, the “Gothic Angels” that almost broke the company.


The 400 had some sporting pretensions and 700 were sold in four years, until the aerodynamic 401 emerged in 1949. The wind-tunnel-tested 401 had lightweight superleggera construction, with aluminum and steel panels over an ash wood frame. The engine gained an extra 20 horsepower and top speed rose to 100 mph. A 401 also finished 3rd in the 1949 Monte Carlo Rally and 2nd in the Targa Florio. Bristol built 650 examples of the 401 and 281 of the 403 coupes between 1949-55, while there were just 20 lovely 402 dropheads. The cars were well-made and were a pleasure to drive but they came at a big price. A 1953 Bristol 403 cost about double the price of a Jaguar XK120 coupe.



The 404 2+2 coupe arrived in late 1953. Called the “Businessman’s Express”, it was shorter and lighter, with 110 mph top speed. A full-width body abandoned the aerodynamic look and the BMW engine was tweaked to 105 hp. Only 52 were sold from 1953-56, and at least one drophead was built by Abbott. Succumbing to the 4-door diversion to which all sports car makers succumb, Bristol’s next move was the interesting 405 saloon of 1954. A surprising 265 were sold by 1958, along with 56 pretty dropheads. Some saloons were also bodied by Beutler in Switzerland.



The company also supplied engines and chassis to Stanley “Wacky” Arnolt, the company’s U.S. importer, who had been selling Bertone-bodied bodied MG TDs. Arnolt had 404 chassis sent to Bertone, where they were bodied by a young Franco Scaglione. Faced with a tall chassis, Scaglione did what he could, but the result was not particularly beautiful. There were 142 built between 1956 and 1960, including five or six coupes, and at $3,995, the Arnolt-Bristol cost less than half the price of a 404.



The 406 coupe of 1958-61 took a page out of Herman Graber’s design for the Alvis TD21, with an airy greenhouse, disc brakes and overdrive. The engine was bored out to 2.2 litres, and it was fairly successful, with 174 sold. There was a handsome 406 Zagato coupe, which boasted 130 horsepower and shed 450 lbs to be the fastest Bristol so far. Only seven were built.

Steve
 
F

Fredrocker

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Gotta Get Me One...

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The fleet of performance cars that came out of the 60s and 70s with the famous Chevy bowtie stamped on them is virtually endless. From meaty muscle cars like the Camaro to streamline sports cars like the Corvette, the choices were abundant. But when it came to the meatier performance cars that went above and beyond the rest of those in the muscle car market, nothing screamed Chevy performance quite like the 1970 Chevelle SS 454 LS6. A single-year option, this bowtie beast is so exclusive, in fact, that many enthusiasts still dream of owning one today.

The Chevrolet Chevelle made its debut just as the muscle car era was getting started. Introduced to compete with the Ford Fairlane, the Chevelle, however, still carried with it some odes to the past just like many early muscle cars, like the 115-inch wheelbase found previously on the famed Chevy Tri-Fives. But Chevy’s entrance into the muscle car world was not futile and the Chevelle quickly transformed from a bulky under-powered family car in early 1964 to a more sporty muscle machine starting just half a year later, thanks to the introduction of optional engines with more cubic inches.

By 1970, the Chevelle had seen the Malibu nameplate move to only certain models, undergone a couple of serious design overhauls and gained transmission and engine options to include 2, 3 and 4-speed gearboxes, as well as powerplants like the Chevy 350, 396, 400 and 402.

In 1970, Chevy was also offering its exclusive 454ci big block as an option on the Chevelle.

Available in sport coupe, sport sedan, four-door sedan, convertible, wagon and the El Camino “coupe utility” models, the 1970 Chevelles stood apart even from their previous model year siblings. This was thanks to sheet metal revisions that brought a more squared style to the muscle car’s body. While base models were certainly sold by the hundreds, performance enthusiasts flocked to the SS options, available only on the Malibu sport coupes, Malibu convertibles, El Caminos and wagons. Those opting for the SS upgrade could choose from two SS options- the RPO Z25 SS option with a beefed up 402ci engine (marketed as a 396 still), or the RPO Z15 SS option with Chevy’s 454ci big block. It was under the $503.45 RPO Z15 SS option that real performance connoisseurs could get the 454ci LS6 engine option.

In standard form, the RPO Z15-optioned Turbo-Jet 454ci (LS5) engine was rated at 360hp. The LS6, on the other hand, was rated at almost 100hp more (450hp) and capable of producing 500lb-ft of torque, although many believe the LS6 was highly underrated, especially when it came to horsepower. This option came at an even higher price, however, as the LS6 upgrade cost an additional $263.30 on top of the RPO Z15 upgrade in 1970, according to Hemmings.

What is known for sure, unlike exact power numbers, is that the LS6 option brought with it a 4.25-inch bore and a 4.0-inch stroke (same as the LS5 engine), solid valve lifters, a high-performance camshaft, 4-barrel Holley carburetor, and a 11.25:1 compression ratio. The performance on the LS6 was upped even further with specialty heads, in contrast with the LS5’s cast-iron heads borrowed from the other 396ci engine, using 1.88-inch exhaust valves and 2.19-inch intake valves.

In addition to the added power and torque that the LS6 brought, all Z15-upgraded SS models (including those with the 360hp Turbo-Jet 454ci V8) received a heavy-duty suspension system complete with IFS and a live rear axle with a 4-link setup, dual exhaust with chrome tips, power front disc brakes, wheel arch moldings, a chrome rear bumper with black inserts and a black grille. This was on top of the quad headlamps, squared off headlight bezels, rectangular taillights and two-part grille design that was standard SS equipment, from the 396ci variety up.

An open 12-bolt rearend was standard on the 454ci SS cars, as were 3.31 rearend gears, although a Posi-traction rearend with the same gears was a factory option and a Posi-traction with 4.10 rearend gears a dealer upgrade. In addition to the standard Muncie M22 Rock Crusher 4-speed closed-ratio manual transmission, 454 SS models could also be purchased with options like a heavy-duty clutch or a 3-speed automatic transmission.

For an even more performance oriented Chevelle SS, the $147.45 ZL2 package was also available in 1970 as an upgrade to SS models, which included a cowl induction hood with vacuum actuated hood opening and functional hood pins, as well as hood and rear deck striping. It is this package that gave the Chevelle SS models their famed racing stripes and aggressive hood design.

Whether you wanted your Chevelle SS 454 LS6 to pop or be more on the “sleeper” side, Chevy offered many factory options to make your muscle car’s personality match your own! Of course, there was nothing really sleeper about the LS6 muscle car, but minor changes in appearance options made each and every car unique.

Factory standard Chevelle SS 454 LS6 models were reported to be able to accelerate from zero to 60mph in just over 6 seconds. Even today, they continue to break the 12 and 13-second quarter mile marks on tracks all across the country.

The LS6 engine option was intended to continue on as an option in 1971, but was dropped prior to being put in any 1971 Chevelle models. Reports state that the LS6 option was available on 1971 models but was canceled in May of that year, with just 14 LS6 engines having been produced for the Chevelle that never made it into factory cars. It is because of this that the 1970 LS6-equipped cars are that much more intriguing and collectible still to this day.

Documented as one of the greatest Chevelles ever produced, the 1970 Chevelle SS 454 LS6 model was the highest powered Chevelle manufactured in the model’s lifetime, which ran from 1964 through 1977, and was the only GM car at the time to have ever topped the horsepower rating of the Corvette.

Even with up to a reported 4,475 LS6 models said to have left the factory floor for the 1970 model year (reported production numbers are inconsistent at best), LS6 Chevelles remain highly sought-after collectors items. Even those that are undocumented LS6 models have been known to sell for over $150,000 like the convertible sold this year at the Barrett-Jackson Las Vegas Auction for $178,200. Others that sold at Barrett-Jackson auctions in 2013 ranged in price from $88,000 to $258,500. Even clones can go for big money, with some selling well within the $80,000 to $90,000 range at premiere events.

We can go on and on about what any particular car brings to the table compared to its competition, but when it comes to performance Chevys born in the muscle car era, the 1970 Chevelle SS 454 LS6 is definitely at the top of the influential list. Not only did it make history with its power numbers and available options, the car still remains an icon some 40 years later. And if that’s not a key to deciding muscle cars you should know, we don’t know what is!
 
F

Fredrocker

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1967 Chevelle SS - I had me two...
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1966 saw a complete restyle of the Chevelle on the previous frame that included smooth contours, a broad new grille and bumper treatment, and curved side windows. Bulging rear fender lines and a "flying buttress" roofline (tunneled into the "C" pillar) were highlights of the '66 hardtops, shared with other GM "A" body models. The new body reflected the "Coke bottle" body shape that became the fad for American cars in the mid-1960s. A 4-door hardtop-styled Sport Sedan joined the Malibu series. It was an attractive car and was offered through 1972, but never achieved the high-production figures as the pillared sedan. Chevelles continued in 300, 300 Deluxe, and Malibu trim. Available engines were a 327-cubic-inch V8 instead of either of the sixes, or the mid-level option, a 220-horsepower 283-cubic-inch V8. Judicious attention to the options list could add a tachometer, mag-style wheel covers, and sintered-metallic brakes. Four-way power seats, a tissue dispenser, and cruise control were optional.

The 1967 models got some styling tweaks that resulted in a longer, more straightforward appearance. Large wraparound taillamps went into a new rear end with standard backup lights. Otherwise, visible change was modest. "What you'll see inside," claimed the sales brochure for the 1967 Chevelle, "will probably bring on a severe compulsion to go driving." Front disc brakes were available on all models, and a new dual master cylinder brake system incorporated a warning light. Chevrolet also added 14" wheels and a three speed automatic transmission to their line of transmissions An entire host of new safety equipment became standard, including a collapsible steering column making the 1967 models safer cars. The SS396 continued as its own series with both sport coupe and convertible body styles. The 375-horsepower 396-cubic-inch V8 was dropped from the options list until late in the model year and returned with little fanfare resulting in only 612 being sold. Buyers selected from no less than seven transmissions: two manual three-speeds, two manual four-speeds, an overdrive three-speed, and two automatics. The manual-shift feature of the Turbo Hydra-Matic transmission was touted in advertising. Options included Superlift air shock absorbers, Strato-ease headrests, and special instrumentation. Although Chevy's big news for 1967 was the introduction of the Camaro, Chevelle offered a more traditional sort of sportiness.
 

Louis

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The V8 Hotel in Stuttgart is a car-lover’s heaven, it´s a theme hotel with a design clearly inspired by the car world. The Hotel is located in an auto museum called Böblingen’s Meilenwerk in Stuttgart. The hotel features themed rooms fit for both mechanics and car enthusiasts alike, it has four single rooms, 19 double rooms, tower suite and 10 theme-based rooms designed to impress visitors.
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steve

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My first car was one of these, same colour........... total piece of crap.......

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steve

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That Triumph Toledo of mine......passed my test on a wednesday, bought the car on saturday (impetuous youth!!)
Soon discovered that the back doors would fly open if you went round a bend with any vigour (not that this thing could pull the skin off a rice pudding), and that the speedo would bounce anywhere between 20mph and 80 mph whenever you rode over a little bump in the road.
Had it 6 months when the head cracked - left it parked at work and had arranged for it to be taken away for scrap - guy that picked it up told me it had been broken into ......nothing stolen, and they didn't even try to drive it away.......they just filled it up completely with snow!!

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Louis

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Hey @mTk forget the Jaguar!
Here is the solution for you and your wife: a steering each!!

Roni Gunawan, a 71-year-old Indonesian mechanic welded two cars together to fulfil his dream of having a ‘two-faced car’.
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steve

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Took this photo in Canada in 2014......

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steve

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TR6, photo taken in Preston on Stour, Warwickshire........

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steve

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MG T Type, produced between 1936 and 1955.......photo taken nr Swinbrook.......

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