- FeaturedClassic Porsche 911 - Surveys owners, repair and operation of 911 news stories and page model, sales and much more in our club fans and fans of the legendary series cars Porsche 911. All about 911-901, 930, 964, 993, 996 and new era 997 and 991-series.
If you're buying a used 911 as an investment, send me your address so that I can a...rrange a visit from the boys. Investors who never drive their 911s bring a word to mind. That word is 'pimp'. As 911 diehards, the boys don't like pimps, so when they arrive, make sure your engine is still warm, the exhaust system is making that tinkling noise and there is evidence in your tyres of some recently accomplished brisk cornering.
All 911s, from 1963 to this afternoon, share a characteristic 911 'feel', but that varies greatly in degree. Bog-standard used Coupes from the late 1970s or 1980s once delivered the goods for sensible money but they might demand some restoration work now.
Choosing a 911 is such a very personal matter. Just go for what you really want, get the best straight car you can find and look after it. Reliability is legendary but repairs can be costly.
My choice is currently the 993 Carrera 2 Coupe of 1993-98. Its predecessor, the 964, was respectable but dull. The 993's different, agile feel makes it terrific to drive and good ones go for less than £30,000 - this week, anyway.
It's the last air-cooled 911 model but so what? Later models lost nothing by being water-cooled. No, pick a 993 for its exhilarating agility, and its price.
A friend of mine paid £26,000 for a superb 1994 993 Carrera 2 in late 2013. He loves it, whether he's tootling about the shops or on a 300-mile blast through the remote Highlands of Scotland, where it truly excels. And that's no more than it deserves.
Porsche 911 Carrera RS
1973 // £500,000
The eternally great, ultimate development of the original 911 concept, it combines high performance and low weight with inch-perfect precision handling. Superb but the price of this model now, sir, is officially‘through the roof'. If you buy one, promise us you will use it.
On an autumn day in 1972 the salesman from Porsche GB came to visit our house. 'We're making a special car,' he told my father. 'Only 200 will be built, and we're offering them to our best clients first as demand is sure to be strong.' They built more than 1500 in the end, and demand was so great that, instead of management having to use them as company cars to use up unsold stock as expected, Porsche sold out the first batch of 500 immediately and had to build two more series.
Why the fuss? Because the RS is so much more than the sum of its parts. It was derived from the relatively humble 2.4S, but with flared rear arches and wider wheels (a 911 first), bored-out engine (at 2.7 litres Porsche's biggest road car motor to date), a rear spoiler (another first, and not just for Porsche, so initially illegal in some markets) and, last but not least, weight-loss that took the RS under the magic 1000kg in 'lightweight' trim.
The result: 150mph, 0-60mph in 5.0sec, handling to die for (and you would if you lifted off mid-comer) and a string of victories on every continent including rallies, Le Mans and the Targa Florio. Oh, and you can drive it to the shops.
Mine's been in the family for 42 years and has never once 'failed to proceed'. Beat that, Enzo...
Porsche 911 GT3 (997-series, generation II)
2009-12 // £80,000-120,000
The 997-series Generation II cars were terrific in their time and the naturally aspirated 997 GT3 was a hugely powerful, seriously fabulous machine, subtly better in fast corners than previous GT3 models.
A classic in waiting - bound to be a sound long-term investment.
Any brand new 911
2015 // From around £75,000
Admit it, they are absolutely brilliant. If you don’t want one, you should. Buy it, keep it, service it properly. One day, it will be a classic but, meanwhile, enjoy a few happy decades driving it. The best of all worlds.
- FeaturedLamborghini Espada Club
- FeaturedBMW E28 club The second 5 Series generation E28 featured highly refined body design, better streamlining, greater safety and enhanced motoring comfort. The range of engines was unprecedented: 4- and six-cylinder petrol engines, the 525e designed for maximum fuel economy, the 24-valve dohc power unit of the M5 and 6-cylinder diesels with and witho...ut turbocharger. 5-speed transmission became standard from 1983 (previously optional) and there now also a 4-speed automatic transmission.
1981 – 1988 5 Series E28
BMW 518, 1981 – 1984 M10 4-cyl. ohc 1766 cc 66 kW (90 hp)
BMW 520i, 1981 – 1988 M20 6-cyl. ohc 1990 cc 92 kW (125 hp) Cat. 95 kW (129 hp)
BMW 518i, 1981 – 1987 4-cyl. ohc 1766 cc 77 kW (105 hp)
BMW 525i, 1981 – 1987 6-cyl. ohc 2494 cc 110 kW (150 hp)
BMW 525e, 1981 – 1988 6-cyl. ohc 2693 cc 92 kW (125 hp) Cat. 90 kW (122 hp) Cat. 95 kW (129 hp)
BMW 535i, 1984 – 1988 6-cyl. ohc 3430 cc 160 kW (218 hp) Cat. 136 kW (185 hp)
BMW 528i, 1981 – 1988 6-cyl. ohc 2788 cc 135 kW (184 hp)
BMW 535i, 1985 – 1987 6-cyl. ohc 3430 cc 160 kW (218 hp) Cat. 136 kW (185 hp)
BMW 524d, 1986 – 1987 6-cyl. ohc 2443 cc 63 kW (86 hp)
BMW 524td, 1982 – 1987 M21 6-cyl. ohc 2443 cc
- FeaturedJensen Interceptor and FF fans club
JENSEN INTERCEPTOR MIDLANDS MARVEL ON THE MOVE
The Interceptor suffers much the same stigma as the XJ-S and is also taking an age to truly make it as a classic – but at least it’s getting there at long last, as prices are highlighting. The Birmingham Ferrari is not only a fine GT bu...t one of the simplest super cars to maintain thanks to its old school make up which includes lusty if thirsty American Chrysler V8 engines (earlier 6.3 considered most thoroughbred plus some were manual).
Sports hatch-style makes for practicality plus there’s a rare but odd looking coupé. With good specialist support the time to buy is now before prices really start to climb but there’s a lot of dross around so beware and don’t buy the complex 4x4 FF unless you really want one.
- FeaturedCitroen SM Group, owners, foto, test drive, engine, body and other
CITROËN SM MORE THAN A DS IN DRAG
In its day the Maserati-powered Citroën SM was one of the greatest GTs around and the choice of numerous GP drivers, such as the late, great Mike Hailwood, because of their speed and comfort. But, like the DS on which i...t is broadly based, you either love or hate the idiosyncratic SM and if you’re the former expect to pay £30,000 (actual model and year makes little difference) for a cracker, although you can buy one for a third of this, especially in France. And like our XJ-S, you largely get what you pay for with a cheap ‘bargain’. More
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- Triumph GT6 1966-1973
The Triumph GT6 is a 6-cylinder sports coupé built by Standard-Triumph, based on their popular Triumph Spitfire convertible. Production ran from 1966 to 1973.
In early 1963 Giovanni Michelotti was commissioned by Standard-Triumph to design a GT version of their r...ecently introduced Spitfire 4 (also designed by Michelotti).
An unmodified Spitfire 4 was delivered to Michelotti's design studios in Italy and late in 1963 the prototype Spitfire GT4 was returned to England for evaluation. The styling of the vehicle was a success but the extra weight of the GT bodyshell resulted in extremely poor performance from the Spitfire's 1,147 cc (70 cu in) Standard SC engine, and plans for producing the Spitfire GT4 were shelved.
Michelotti's fastback design for the Spitfire GT4 prototype was adopted by the Triumph racing programme for the 1964 season, as it was deemed to provide an aerodynamic benefit over the standard Spitfire body shape. Fibreglass copies of the Spitfire GT4's fastback were grafted on to the race-modified Spitfires destined for competition. The Spitfire racing programme was successful, and in 1965 resulted in 13th overall and a 1st in class at the prestigious 24 Hours of Le Mans (beating their main rivals, the MG Midgets). The Spitfire's competitive success and the continuing commercial success of the production vehicle led Triumph to re-evaluate its shelved plans for a GT version of the Spitfire. To overcome the lack of performance inherent in the heavier body style the Spitfire's 4-cylinder engine was replaced with the more powerful 2-litre (1998 cc) Triumph inline 6 originally derived from the SC and then in use in the Triumph Vitesse (which shared a similar chassis with the Spitfire and Triumph Herald). The car was further developed and refined and eventually launched as the Triumph GT6 (dropping the "Spitfire" prefix) to emphasise its GT styling and its 6-cylinder engine.
Contemporary Triumph marketing advertised the GT6 as being developed from the "race winning Le Mans Spitfires" to capitalize on their aesthetic similarities, whereas the Le Mans Spitfires and the GT6 were actually two entirely separate development programmes (the GT programme pre-dating the racing programme). However, the marketing spin was so successful that many people erroneously believed the Le Mans Spitfires to actually be GT6s. More
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- Maserati 3200 GT (Tipo 338) 1998–2002
- First generation 1963-1965 Buick-Riviera
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- Vauxhall Carlton MkII / Opel Omega A
Opel chose to name its 1986 replacement car in this segment Omega rather than Rekord. Vauxhall stayed with the Carlton name. On its launch in November 1986 the Vauxhall Carlton / Opel Omega saloon and estate range earned itself the accolade of European Car of the Year - th...e second Vauxhall/Opel product to achieve this distinction, two years after the Astra/Kadett won the accolade.
Relationship with other models
Again there was a lengthened version of the Carlton (and Omega), this time known in both Opel and Vauxhall forms by the same name: Senator.
Vauxhall scrapped the Carlton nameplate in early 1994, but the name of its Opel equivalent, the Omega, lived on, as it was applied to the Carlton's replacement. At which point the Vauxhall equivalent adopted the name change (a drive towards uniformity was taking place throughout the range) and so the Carlton's replacement was sold as the Vauxhall Omega.
Mark II engine line-up
All of the 4-cylinder engines available in the Carlton Mk II were the GM Family II units in 1.8L and 2.0L capacities. The Opel Omega A was offered with a large 2.4L Opel CIH engine in certain European markets, but this variant was never offered in the Carlton. New to the Carlton's line-up with the Mark II were two straight-6 engines with 2.6 and 3.0–litres. These were both 12-valve engines, again from the Opel CIH family, but later 3.0-liter models were offered with 24-valves, producing much more power and torque. As well, Vauxhall used the "Dual-Ram" intake manifold, which lets the car breathe as two separate three-cylinder engines below 4,000 rpm, but changes the intake manifold profile at 4000 rpm to increase the runner length, thus increasing total engine output.
In addition to the straight-6 engines there was a range of straight-4s. Starting with GMs popular 2-litre family 2 engine, the C20NE, with 115PS and 125lb.ft torque. There was also a 2.3 turbo diesel available with 100PS and 160lb.ft torque.
Special Lotus version
Main article: Lotus Carlton
In 1990, Vauxhall launched a high performance 377 bhp (281 kW) Lotus Carlton in collaboration with Lotus Cars. (An Opel version was also produced as the Lotus Omega.) It was built with a 3615 cc six-cylinder twin-turbo engine (designated C36GET) capable of over 176 mph (283 km/h), making it officially (for the time) the fastest full four-seater that had ever been made. It cost £48,000 – well over double the price of a standard Carlton. As a result, Vauxhall's original plans to sell about 1,000 in the UK ended in 440 UK cars being sold. For those with less money there was the 3000GSi 24v, with a top speed of 146 mph (235 km/h).
GSi 3000 & Diamond
Prior to the Lotus tuned version, the range topper was the GSi 3000 upon which the Lotus Carlton was based. At launch in 1986 it had 177 bhp (132 kW; 179 PS) giving it a top speed of 134 mph (216 km/h). In 1990, power was increased by going from 2 valves per cylinder to 4 valves per cylinder, creating a 24-valve engine, resulting in 204 bhp (152 kW; 207 PS) which allowed 0-62 mph to be dispatched in 7.6 seconds and increased the top speed to 149 mph (240 km/h). It was also available with an Automatic gearbox, which reduced the top speed to 146 mph (235 km/h) and increased the 0–62 mph time to 8.6 seconds. The Carlton Diamond 3.0 24v Estate was also made. Identical to the GSI but with an estate body shell, it sold in much more limited numbers (90) and so is a much rarer sight.
Guinness World Record
In June 1992 two teams from Horley Round Table, Surrey, UK, set a Guinness World Record time of 77 hours 34 minutes, driving a total 6,700 km across the then 12 EC countries in two Vauxhall Carlton 24V 3000 GSi's (J870 FFM and J751 DYC). The Carltons were provided by Vauxhall Motors and the record attempt was also supported by Mobil Oil and the Royal Automobile Club.
By February 2016, just 468 examples of the Carlton were still on Britain's roads, with most remaining examples believed to be the high performance 3000 GSi and Lotus versions of the MK2 model.
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