It’s the most expensive car ever made. The most complicated. The most overdeveloped. It’s the most alien (quite literally) a car has ever been. There’s no point dragging out this intro, you read the title; it is of course the Lunar Rover.
Four months ago, when I sat down to write about the Alfa Romeo Tipo 33 Stradale and the concepts it spawned, did I think I would ever get the chance to clap eyes on the cars, let alone four months down the track? Absolutely not. Despite so, in mid-May I had the chance to drop into the Museo Storico Alfa Romeo; in Queens English, the Alfa Romeo Museum. Situated in Arese, the outskirts of Milan, the rather unassuming building opened in 1976, undergoing renovations in 2015, the results of which is by far the best car museum I have ever been to.
Last year I brought you an article about the 10 maddest classic concept cars, and it was by far one of the hardest lists to make; not because I struggled to list ten, but quite the opposite, getting the list down to just ten concepts was exceedingly tough. With such an extensive shortlist, I thought it time to dip a toe back into the ever-crazy world of concept cars with another 10 of the maddest classic concept cars.
If ever a car company were looked to as responsible for bringing the automobile to life, it would be Alfa Romeo. There’s something you just can’t quite put your finger on with an Alfa, but their passion, romance, soul and flair is simply unquestionable. The 60’s are undeniably Alfa’s golden years, with the sublime Giulia TZ’s, the wonderful Duetto Spyder and rorty little GTA, Alfa were at the top of their game, though 1967 saw Alfa Romeo’s peak, the astounding Tipo 33 Stradale, a car that fathered a lineage of equally breathtaking concepts over the coming decade.
It’s the most recognisable car of all time. The 2nd best-selling ever produced. The first to sell 20 million units. A car which spanned a 65-year production and was even the star of a series of Hollywood films. It’s reckoned more than 1 billion people at one point or another have been in one. It is of course the Volkswagen Beetle, though with the little German darling all that glitters is not gold.
An idea traced back to the late 30’s Buick Y-Job, the concept car has for decades endured as a channel for new technology and as a way for designers to let their hair down and create something really weird. In the world of concepts, nothing is uniform, nothing is ordinary. Despite this, a small number of concepts have managed to push the envelope even further, securing a spot in history down to their sheer lunacy. To celebrate these important points in the evolution of the automobile, here are the 10 maddest classic concept cars.
Somewhere sits an automotive graveyard, filled with glorious failures. The motors of men like John DeLorean and Rust Heinz whose passion projects never managed to make it off the ground. Within this graveyard sits the car of Preston Tucker, though it’s likely the only car in this graveyard that got this close to revolutionising the automotive world.
1947 saw the First Ferrari rumble through the streets of Maranello. Today the 70-year-old company has become one of the most prolific automakers around, a company with a rich back catalogue of stunning cars. To celebrate the 70th birthday of the Man from Modena’s motors, here’s our pick of Ferrari’s 7 greatest classic cars.
Sir Stirling Moss described the 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR as “The most fantastic car in the world”. A man considered by many as the greatest driver to ever live, Moss is well versed to make such a claim, having immortalised the 300 SLR in the 1955 Mille Miglia, setting the record which will never be broken. With such a start, the SLR was bound for greatness, but the tragedy at the 1955 Le Mans forced the prototype racers early retirement. Here is the story of the Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR’s rise and fall.
Whilst the FIA’s homologation rules were at the time often perceived to be a hindrance to the evolution of automotive technology, a by-product of the regulation were some outstanding road legal race cars, usually produced in very limited numbers. To celebrate these very special motorcars, here are the greatest homologation cars ever.
For the majority, the evolution of the race car has been relatively predictable, but many hopeful engineers and designers have attempted to break the mould, some ideas catching on, others disappearing as quickly as the cars themselves; though no matter the era, there’s always a constant push for the science of going faster. In order to honour the world of unconventional motorsport design, here are 10 of the coolest experimental racing cars.
On the 5th of October 1955 at the Paris Motor Show, a car saw the light of day which would forever change the face of motoring, the first truly modern automobile. A car which struck such a chord with the public 12,000 were sold on the first day; 84,000 by the end of the show. A car which completely overhauled the automotive industry, it was of course the fantastical Citroën DS.
Through Lamborghini’s 53-year history carrozzeria’s have played a vital role in clothing some of the most charismatic chassis’ in equally charismatic bodies, with some of Lamborghini’s most beautiful supercars having been penned by coachbuilding and design houses such as Touring, Bertone, Mirazzi, and occasionally, Zagato.
Upon the invention of personal motorised transport, it was envisaged only the 1% would ever be able to afford cars. But thanks to mass production techniques, the car became available to all. Despite this, the demand for luxury vehicles still remained. To mark these incredible cars, I’ve created a list of my favourite luxury cars from each decade of the 20th century.