The design scheme of the 1963 Studebaker Avanti was famously sketched out by Studebaker’s new president, Sherwood Egbert, whose doodles were sketched on a jet flight to Chicago. The company hoped the Avanti would turn fortunes around. And the car garnered attention, people flocked to showrooms, but the company did not deliver.
It was unable to ship enough cars to the sales floor, and this, in turn, led to the Avanti going out of production the very next year. If you find one, you’ll find it’s packed with a Studebaker Hawk V-8, a 289 cu. in. 290-horsepower engine, driving an automatic transmission.
1963 Porsche 911
One of the all-time great sportscars is the Porsche 911. The 1963 Porsche 911 was the first of its kind. When the company released it, it was called a 901. Peugeot had a problem with the number, so Porsche renamed it. The history of the car goes back to the fifties, when Dr. Ferdinand Porsche based his vehicle on the VW Beetle. Taking it into a sportscar direction evolved the car until Ferdinand “Butzi” Porsche, the grandson of the company founder, led it to the epic sportscar we know today.
He made it more aerodynamic and lightweight. Placing the engine in the rear contributed greatly to that end while raising the bar on handling. It also had the effect of streamlining the hood. Inside was snug, but austere. A 6-cylinder 2.0-liter engine put out about 130 horsepower. It was only the beginning of the Porsche brand.
1967 Shelby Cobra 427 Super Snake
A 4-speed manual transmission driving a thunderous 800 horsepower barreled the 1967 Shelby Cobra 427 Super Snake 0-100 mph in just 10.3 seconds. Carrol Shelby said of this vehicle, “When I built this dual supercharged 427 Cobra in 1966, I wanted it to be the fastest, meanest car on the road.” Mission accomplished. It’s one of the most extraordinary cars ever made.
In its day, Road & Track called it “The Cobra to End All Cobras.” And, in January of 2007, a Shelby Cobra 427 fetched $5.5 million at auction. All other muscle cars sputter in comparison.
1962 Porsche 356 B
The first 356 B Porsche was introduced in 1960, completely redesigned from its 356 A predecessor. By 1962, the Porsche 356 B looked similar to an elongated VW Beetle, but it had a lot more power. It was a rear-wheel-drive, rear-engine sports car available in coupe or roadster. Designed by Porsche designer Erwin Komenda, the biggest difference between the A and B was an elongated front lid, widened severely at the bottom with the addition of vertical ventilation grilles.
Also, a new tank cap appeared on the front right wing. It came with a choice of three 1600 cc. engines, the 1600, the 1600 Super, and the 1600 Super 90. Varying in horsepower from 70 to 115, there was also the option of a 4-Cam Carrera 2. Prices ranged from $4,100 to $4,300. Porsches were built largely by hand during their early days, in spite of increasing demand.
1960 Chrysler 300F
The 1960 Chrysler 300F Convertible was a big break with the 300E that came before. A stylish crosshatch grille was punctuated, front and center, with the “300F” logo. And it stood out with long conspicuous tail fins spreading out like airline wings. The unique trim gained plenty of notice.
Inside, the stylish trend continued. Four bucket seats with leather trim sat alongside a full-length console. Under the hood was an overhead valve V-8 with a 413 CID system, generating up to 413 horsies.