1950s cars top 10

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1950s cars top 10

The modern designs and acceleration abilities were getting more and more amazing every year. After all, the 50s gave birth to the Corvette. It was announced that air conditioners would be available as optional equipment on three cars. Power steering had its use extended to five cars. Share your love for Cars in the s. The wrap-around window was a nice look though. Many striking design changes were made to the models. And for the first time in history, the US imported more cars than they exported.

The automobile industry in the United States established in a new all-time production record for the second successive year. Total production was 7, vehicles. A mild form of this control, requiring a one-third down payment with the balance to be paid within 21 months three months longer than the wartime version was restored in September.

Just how strong the demand was in each of these cases had yet to be established. Not convertible in the true sense of the word, these cars embodied the racy lines of a convertible while retaining a fixed steel top. This body style was extended to include four-door sedans in models. About half of the models offered hardtop styling. In other respects the designing differed only slightly from that ofsince most manufacturers had provided new designing for their models.

The majority of the changes were cosmetic. There was a spectacular increase in the number of automatic transmissions offered and sold during It was estimated that well over 1. Many factors hindered production in the motor industry duringthe longest stoppage being caused by the nation-wide steel strike in June and July.

The job of stepping up defense production while maintaining a profitable level of civilian output was continued in Shortage of materials was the greatest production problem of the industry. Copper and steel headed the list of scarce materials, with aluminium running a close second.

It was announced that air-conditioners would be available as optional equipment on at least three cars. Power steering, found on only one automobile, had its use extended to five cars. Brought out inpower braking was available on two models in Advertisement Automatic transmissions were introduced on one line of delivery vehicles. Prices on new cars climbed inbut taxes rose even higher. The possibilities of mass producing an American sports car were investigated by two manufacturers, the Packard Motor Car company and Buick Motor Division.

Both companies showed their versions. While immediate production was not scheduled for either model, the producers exhibited the sports cars to test public reaction and to determine the possible extent of the market for such an automobile.

Chevy also made a concept sports car that later had some success.It was very different back then with no seat belts, front-mounted engine blocks, drum brakes and a frightening lack of safety measures that led to many deaths.

To drive those early F1 cars on the limit required immense skill, huge bravery and no shortage of luck. Every driver from the first decade deserves to be remembered for putting a great sport on the map, but here are ten of the very best.

Although perhaps not the most flamboyant of drivers, Frenchman Trintignant sneaks into the top ten because of his longevity alone. Trintignant competed in F1 for an incredible 14 years from and thus had one of the longest careers in F1. He made his debut at the Italian Grand Prix and was second behind Mike Hawthorn in his very next outing in Spain. His first and only win came at the season opening Argentine Grand Prix, but his season was cut short by a crash at the Nurburgring. It is for his rivalry with Ferrari teammates Hawthorn and Peter Collins for which Musso is remembered.

Lying third in the championship standings, he was chasing leader Hawthorn at the French Grand Prix when he lost control, struck a ditch and somersaulted.

Musso succumbed to his injuries later that day and years after his death, girlfriend Fiamma Breschi revealed in a television documentary, The Secret Life of Enzo Ferrarithat she hated the English drivers. Whichever of them won, they would share the winnings equally. It was the two of them against Luigi, who was not part of the agreement.

Strength comes in numbers, and they were united against him. I had hated them both. First because I was aware of certain facts that were not right, and also because when I came out of the hospital and went back to the hotel, I found them in the square outside the hotel, laughing and playing a game of football with an empty beer-can. So when they died, too, it was liberating for me.

1950s cars top 10

Otherwise I would have had unpleasant feelings towards them for ever. This way I could find a sense of peace. He made his debut at the Swiss Grand Prix driving for HW Motors but it was not until the season and a move to Ferrari that his career really took off.

He still led Juan Manuel Fangio by a point after a second place finish in Britain but was overhauled by Fangio and Stirling Moss after a retirement in Germany and second place finish in Italy.

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But it was in F1 racing that Brooks really bared his teeth, winning four times for Vanwall in and '58 and twice during his only spell at Ferrari in when he finished second in the championship standings only four points behind Jack Brabham.

But it is for his title year that Hawthorn will be remembered although he probably owed his championship thanks to the generosity of his rival at the Portuguese Grand Prix.One of the pillars of Car and Driver —and Sports Cars Illustratedwhich was our name until —has always been recording objective performance data for a wide variety of automobiles. This tradition began inand our approach progressively became more and more scientific.

One of the very first cars we tested was the high-tech Mercedes-Benz SL Gullwing Aprilbut it missed out on making this list by one-tenth of a second. Heck, a Kia Sedona minivan would crack this list, but that doesn't make this group any less significant. To mark the fourth birthday of the Corvette, its proud parents, the Chevrolet Motor Division, have announced the model which has undergone some extensive but not too important changes on the surface and a few rather interesting ones underneath.

Starting right at the plastic body, the use of aluminum reinforcements in the cowl structure, inaugurated in mid-'57, has been extended to include the so-called "rocker panels" under the door openings. Bumpers are now bracketed to the frame in conventional American style, relieving the front and rear body panels of loads that are not rightfully theirs.

These two items raise the weight "less than pounds", but for racing, most of it can be unbolted and left in the pits without the SCCA batting an eye. Chances are that by the time you read this the '56 Corvette will have made a profound impression on the whole sports car world, and after having had one under me for a couple of days I will be the last to be surprised.

This very early production model showed a willingness and ability to be driven fast and hard under almost all conditions and demonstrated an even greater potential for competitive use. In my opinion, the Corvette as it stands is fully as much a dual-purpose machine as the stock Jaguar, Triumph, or Austin-Healey.

Without qualification, General Motors is now building a sports car. Response to the exhilerator pedal is always smooth even at such low revs as rpm in top gear. Our criticism of the Ferrari GT is that it seems to be still too much a special; as it were, a pseudo —road car designed to cash in on the Grand Prix reputation.

Lest anyone think the millennium has arrived, we must report that [this Ferrari] is far better suited to the race course than anywhere else. The sound of this machine, as we took off, was astonishing. The [horsepower cubic-inch] Chev It sounds precisely like what it is: a legitimate racing engine. The rear lets go very slowly and only does so under hard provocation.

This car is an absolute ball to drive. The Porsche Spyder is a fantastic machine. It is fast and fiercely powerful, one of the most successful competition sports cars in history, and it has a personality no less complex than Dr. At brisk highway speeds it is very easy to drive, docile, perfectly manageable, superbly responsive.

Top 10 American concept cars of 1950s

It is even an easy car to drive "fairly" fast, the way Ken Miles and Richie Ginther have driven it in a long series of spectacular cc-modified wins. But to drive it really fast, as fast as it's able to go—this is work for a driving genius—for a man, as Miles puts it, "with extraordinarily quick reactions and an exceedingly delicate bottom.

Starting the dual-quad car was easy, by twisting the ignition switch, though some care was needed to avoid flooding on hot starts. Once warmed up, the idle was low enough at rpm, but it was full of lumps and shook the car bodily.

This can be handed to the competition cam, which was installed in both cars and checks out as seen in the sidebar. With each annual change, Zora Arkus-Duntov, the Corvette's godfather, has emphasized performance improvements.

His theory is that to sell, the Corvette must first go. Styling has had its innings, too, but they have acted with more restraint than one expects from Detroit. Chevrolet's injection is a premature baby, but it's still alive and kicking.The s were a new kind of Golden Era in the world of competitive racing.

Following closely after WWII, many countries had automobiles on the road which predated the war and were in terrible condition. Restrictions on automobile production during the war meant that no new automobiles or parts were produced.

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But bycompanies around the world began to focus on rebuilding factories and expanding and strengthening highway systems. New technologies developed for aircraft during the war were transferred into car engines, allowing faster speeds, better handling, and durability. These were improvements which undeniably expanded the capabilities of racing cars around the world. Partially due to the Space Race, and cultures fascinated with mechanical performance, the idea of modifying engines to increase performance took hold, and the idea of hot rods became popular.

Inthe November Hot Rod magazine cover introduced the first ever hot rod to exceed a speed of miles per hour. In America, the Bonneville Salt Flats became ground zero for the tradition of land speed racing. Raw power and customization took hold as car enthusiasts embraced not only more speed but more style.

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Part of the lure of the sports car came because they were smaller and far more stylish than the typical family cars produced in Detroit. Other influences included the lure of the expensive, exotic, impractical and sheer whimsy of owning a powerful car which provided a great ride.

American and European sports cars remained competitive with ever improving performances throughout the s.

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Jaguar is one of the legendary racing cars of the s. The company began with three of its C types racing at Le Mans inwhere it was determined that with less weight and improved aerodynamics, the Jaguar C-type could be produced solely for racing. This car made the first mark for the company at the 24 Hours of Lemans, winning its very first race in at the classic French competition.

The car was designed on its ancestor, the XKand retained several of the stock parts from the landmark XK What was new, included its space frame chassis, freshly designed aerodynamic body, and newly designed suspension. The existing twin-cam 3. It is famous for the use of Dunlop aircraft disc brakes beginning with the Le Mans competition.

The brakes allowed the cars to brake straight from speeds near mph without fade, braking much later than race rivals.

The Top 10 Sports Cars of the 1950s

The Jaguars finished first, second and fourth that year. It has the distinction of racing at Le Mans in the s. The Jaguar D-Type used the Jaguar 3. It is the most expensive British car to do so, and well worthy of collecting, as it was one of the famous Jaguars, winning the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

The Chevy Corvette debuted inand is now an American legend.January in Scottsdale, Ariz. Sadly, a million-dollar car is not in the cards for most of us. But that's not to say every classic is out of reach. There are plenty of old autos the experts consider to be undervalued or just now becoming collectible, and are thus affordable—at least for now.

The Z was one of the first popular Japanese sports cars in America, offering performance, comfort, style, and reliability. The Z had gorgeous styling, with a smooth six-cylinder engine, and it went as fast as it looked.

Because it's a Ford and not a Shelby, collectors have largely overlooked this car, and it is certainly undervalued. That's plenty of money but only half what you'd pay for an equivalent Shelby GT Despite the demise of Pontiac, there has been no discernible bump in the value of these cars.

Lucky you. The powerful GT is widely credited as defining the muscle-car era.

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With massive big-block engine choices, it delivered up to hp that was mated to a floor-mounted four-speed manual transmission.

Powered by a hp 2. TR6s are easy to maintain and look terrific, and parts are readily available, making them an excellent first collector-car choice. Underrated, mostly unappreciated, and certainly undervalued, the Porsche is important for what it was not: a Porsche Here's a whole group of overlooked classic cars that are finally starting to gain attention.

As they get older they'll get more desirable and more expensive. Try to find one in a fun color, like yellow, red, or blue, and be sure it has a luggage rack. Cool trucks such as the Ford F Ranger with a short bed, massive chrome grille and bumpers, and two-tone paint combinations have universal appeal and never go out of style. These are design mistakes, cars that were unloved or misunderstood for most of history, so out of place they're underrated as classic cars.

1950s cars top 10

Because many of these cars started out as cheap, mass-market transportation, good examples are rare. Be certain you buy a car in top condition, and know that the value may never increase. Limousineshearsesand ambulances are all undervalued. Most of these have been professionally maintained, and when you find one, they're almost percent original. They're not for everyone, but they can be a lot of fun and always stand out at a car show or party. Type keyword s to search. Today's Top Stories.

1950s cars top 10

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below. Rockymintskier at Wikipedia. More From The Showroom.Well, Larry, you wrote the book on concept cars, so what are your top 10 favorite concept cars?

Whoa, there, Nellie. Do you realize how many concept cars there are from which to choose? And you want me to pick just 10? Eventually, I might consider an overall, all-time top 10 list. Ford unveiled the long, low but sharply finned Futura in The car featured a twin-bubble cockpit cover. After Ford was done showing the car, George Barris converted it into the original Batmobile for the s Batman television series.

This was the first collaboration between Chrysler design chief Virgil Exner and the Ghia coachbuilding works in Italy. The concept also introduced the Forward Look that would characterize Chrysler production cars in the coming years.

There were four Firearrows — two roadsters, a coupe and a convertible — and all of them were and still are gorgeous. General Motors did a series of three futuristic and gas-turbine-powered Firebirds. Though it never grew larger than a small, scale model, the Nucleon was a very interesting concept. The Norseman was among the cargo that went down to the depths when the Andrea Dora sank.

General Motors introduced the Corvette as a concept car at the Motorama. But the original Vette would be just one of only four concepts based on the same platform. The others were the Corvette hardtop, the Nomad wagon and perhaps my favorite, the Corvair, a fastback coupe.

How disappointing that your doing an article about concept cars, and not showing any photos of them. Thank goodness for Steve Coonan and his mag. Who is wrong but I did see it and it was not a UFO approx.

No Pictures? No Studebakers or AMC? No answer to Avanti?In Cars. Towards the end of the s, car makers decided that they wanted their cars to fly. Well, they wanted to make it look like they could fly. America was air-bound with passenger planes, and on the verge of space travel. And, in fact, GM designer Harley Earl gives credit to a plane for inspiration to the tail fins he created at the end of the previous decade.

Which cars had the biggest, most extravagant tail fins?

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While obviously not the first finned car, it certainly is one of the most iconic that the automobile industry ever produced. However, the fins on the Bel Air are more of a mid-sized set of fins, than over the top, in your face and humongous. This is one of the most sought after America car models on the market in 2-door trim. The Electra is absolutely stunning.

The Top 10 Luxury Cars of the 1950s

It had nose fins, too, which actually makes it look like it was made for underwater use. Big and beautiful cars, with big, extravagant fins.

The Eldorado has some of the biggest fins ever placed on a car. To make that ass even more fine, they placed dual-quad tail lights inside the fins to make it look like an afterburner lifting a jet off the ground. For the Blue Oval Company, the Thunderbird was really starting to make some strides following some changes. Somewhat flying under the radar, was the big-bumper Lincoln Premiere.

1950s cars top 10

The only reason it should ever be included on any list is because it had fins. Much in the same way that the infamous mullet was business up front and party in the rear; the Buick Roadmaster was Bel-air up front and Buick in the rear. The menacing car of the bunch, is the 57 Caddy Eldorado Brougham. Those fins look like they belong on a hearse. Or the Batmobile. Anyway you slice it, those are some mean looking fins, Batman!

However, in a world of lackluster performance, Dodge stands out with an early generation Hemi that produced a wicked-for-the-time horsepower.


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