Chevrolet Nomad – 1955

Chevrolet Nomad - 1955

In most series that feature coupes and convertibles, these are the most sought-after body styles. But one exception to the rule is the famous Chevy Nomad, described by one authority as ‘the prettiest station wagon ever made’. This may display just a trace of hyperbole, but there’s no doubting the enduring appeal of this handsome … [Read more…]

Chevrolet Bel Air – 1953

Chevrolet Bel Air – 1953

The Bel Air name appeared in 1950 but did not become a distinct series until 1953, when it was designated as Chevrolet’s premium offering, pitched at growing numbers of middle-class buyers who were migrating to leafy suburbs.

Buick Limited – 1958

Buick Limited - 1958

Back in 1942 when World War II rudely interrupted American car production, the massive Buick Limited models were the most expensive this mid-market company produced, riding sedately on the longest wheelbase and having lavish interiors. The ‘Limited’ designation was appropriate, as these exclusive limousines and touring sedans sold in small numbers.

Borgward Isabella – 1954

Borgward Isabella - 1954

Carl Borgward was an innovative German engineer who made his mark in the 1920s with the Blitzkarren (Lightning Cart) — a tiny three wheeled delivery van. Cars followed in the 1930s and production was resumed after World War II with the Borgward Hansa 1500, a striking modern saloon car that made its debut in 1949 … [Read more…]

BMW 507 – 1956

BMW 507 - 1956

After nearly going bust in the late 1950s, BMW recovered to become a giant of the international automobile industry, but it was a close-run thing. The car that did the damage and pushed the Bavarian outfit to the brink was the BMW 507.

BMW-Isetta – 1955

BMW-Isetta - 1955

In the aftermath of World War II the extraordinary Isetta made an appearance — a tiny minicar capable of meeting the need for affordable transport at a time when raw materials (and money) were scarce. This unmistakable vehicle was introduced in 1953 and with its hinged front, teardrop shape and small proportions was unlike anything … [Read more…]

Bentley S2 Continental – 1959

Bentley S2 Continental - 1959

The Bentley Continental S1 had done well for Rolls-Royce — as did the companion Silver Shadow I — but times they were a-changing. In particular, the bell tolled for the venerable straight-six F-head, for Rolls introduced a 6.2 liter aluminum V8 that immediately went into uprated Bentley S2s and Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud IIs.

Bentley S1 Continental – 1955

Bentley S1 Continental - 1955

When the Bentley marque enjoyed a healthy revival after World War II, parent company Rolls-Royce was heavily into badge engineering the Bentley S1 was identical to the Silver Cloud 1, with no more that the distinctive R-R radiator distinguishing the two luxury cars.

Austin-Healey 3000 – 1959

Austin-Healey 3000 - 1959

The ‘Big Healey’ appeared in 1956 when the 100-6 was introduced, continuing in production for a dozen years. The name was coined to differentiate between large and small Austin-Healeys after the Frogeye Sprite appeared, applying retrospectively to the 100-6 as well as the Austin-Healey 3000 that superseded it (with the number of cylinders replaced by … [Read more…]

Aston Martin DBR1 – 1956

Aston Martin DBR1 - 1956

Sliding into the car that carries the registration plate XSK 497 is to sit in (and hopefully drive) the most valuable Aston Martin in the world — the DBR1/2, which still participates in classic road races. The ‘R’ stands for Racing, and the DBR wasn’t remotely like the company’s production models, though experience gained in … [Read more…]