The top ten vintage cars which are available on the market.
There are numerous cars around which are classed as vintage or classic, making it tough to rank the top ten classic cars which can be driven on UK roads.
The terms ‘classic cars’ and ‘vintage cars’ are differentiated in relation to when cars truly started to evolve, which occurred between 1925 and 1930.
All of the cars picked below are deserving of their place in this pantheon of greatness even if at least one model transcends the murky line between what is recognised as classic or vintage.
The car ranked at number ten in the list is the vehicle which, depending on an interpretation of the term ‘classic’ or ‘vintage’, could fall into either category. Various different designs of the Model T were manufactured from 1908 until the last Ford Model T rolled off the production line in 1927.
Ford’s Model T was in many ways a victim of its own success. Its design and model were copied and improved upon by other car companies, which in turn led to Ford producing the Model A. Such has been the influence of the Model T that it was voted ‘Car of the Century’ in 1999 – not bad for a motor vehicle which ceased production over 70 years previously.
Ninth place goes to a classic whose name can cause disputes between car enthusiasts. Chevrolet‘s 1969 Corvette model has been labelled both Stingray and Sting Ray. The shame is that the car’s name can overshadow what is one of the coolest and most stylish vehicles ever produced worldwide.
The car has appeared in countless movies due to its easily recognisable shape and had split rear suspension, a unique engine design, disc brakes, side exhaust pipes and a famed split rear window. A four speed manual gear system is another additional extra which adds to the vehicle’s popularity.
Ford’s 1967 Mustang takes eighth place and is noted for the power it generated when compared to other Ford vehicles until that point. The car was a response to the competition which Ford was facing from other American car firms. The carriage was widened and the length was increased. Both of these developments allowed for a block engine to be installed which gave the car more power.
Other alterations which made the Ford Mustang iconic included the fitting of 3 gills, vertical and horizontal bars on the grill and painted side scoops. The car could reach 60 miles per hour in 7.4 seconds when it was first released and had a top speed of 115 miles per hour.
The second classic car to emerge from Chevrolet is the 1969 Camaro SS. Like the Stingray, which also reached its zenith in 1969, the Camaro is an example of Chevrolet being at the top of their game. The final model of the first generation of Camaros does not disappoint.
Heading towards a sporty look the Camaro is complemented by its redesigned grill – the body made out of new sheet metal and headlights which are set back alongside the grill. The engine is as powerful as you would expect from a Camaro, cementing the model’s reputation as a car with one of the most powerful thrusts around.
In sixth place on the list is the 1948 Tucker, one of the few cars produced by a small independent company. Preston Tucker and Alex Tremulis designed and produced the model in a bid to break into the automotive market. Although only a few of the cars are still in use, the car made headlines for its advanced technology which caught other automotive firms off guard.
The car featured seatbelts, central headlights and a flat-six engine. Such was the car’s forward-thinking design that it eventually caused Preston Tucker trouble. Demand outstripped supply with many traders believing he was trying to commit fraud against them. Tucker was acquitted but his reputation had been irrevocably damaged and production ceased.
In fifth place is a car that gained worldwide fame through a series of films. The 1967 model of the Volkswagen Beetle was launched just in time to see its popularity rocket thanks to Disney’s movie ‘The Love Bug’ which starred a Volkswagen Beetle called Herbie.
Known originally as the Type One, the Beetle is one of the best selling cars of all time thanks to its distinctive shape which gave it the nickname of the bug or beetle. The Beetle’s 1967 model found its origins in the late 1940s following Volkswagen’s attempts to rebuild its reputation. The 1967 model was different from its ancestors. A new drivetrain was created for the model and a larger engine was built into the system. Other features such as the brakes were also improved.
The Porsche 911 cruises into fourth place. The 1964 model unveiled by the German car manufacturer is considered by many car enthusiasts and experts to be a classic of its kind. Its origins came in 1956 when Porsche looked to build a four seater model which would be larger than the 356 car.
Porsche’s original 911 had four seats, however, so small were the back seats that they were considered as almost two banks of separate seating as opposed to a four seated vehicle. The car also came with a five speed manual transmission and an air-cooled rear mounted engine.
In third place is the Maserati 3500 from 1962, which only came on the market as part of the Maserati firm’s attempts to break into the Gran Turismo marketplace. This classic model is not only powerful but also innovative for the era it was constructed in.
Although the car is Italian in design and production, it incorporated elements of British and German engineering to give it a well rounded finish. The car featured front and rear brake discs but also had power windows, leather upholstery, a six cylinder engine, a German gearbox and British front and rear suspension.
In second place is the Ford GT40. This is the anomaly on the list as the car was primarily designed for the race circuit, although there were a few made available for normal road use. The car showed its pedigree by winning the Le Mans 24 hour rally four consecutive times. It came into creation as part of Ford’s response to the failed buyout of Ferrari in the early 1960s.
Different styles of the car were produced and were imaginatively labelled Mark I, Mark II and Mark III. What set them apart from each other was the size of the engine, although the Mark III was also approximately eight inches longer at the tail end than the original GT40.
Top of the list is the Aston Martin DB2/4, which was constructed in 1953 as a saloon coupe but only 565 models were produced before the Mark II was created as the DB2′s successor in 1955. What marked the Aston Martin DB2/4 out was the hatchback rear window.
Although a successor to its sportier DB2 model, the DB2/4 differed in both asthetics and engineering. The car’s engine was stored under its elongated bonnet and gave the back wheels the power which made the Aston Martin famous. Such was the impact of the DB2 and the DB2/4 that the original model of the car was used for basic Aston Martin designs many years after.