While the car you see above looks like it belongs on the scrap heap, it has just been rescued to soon become the pride of the National Atomic Museum. The car,a stretched 1941 Packard Clipper was used as part of the Mmanhattan Project to ferry the scientist that developed the A-Bomb from the testing range around New Mexico. The Museum is looking for donations to restore this car and a 1942 Plymouth back to life, if you can help follow a link to their site below or check out the gallery over on autoblog.
We love a good story about a barn find, these are the rare cars that are often found in someones barn (or in this case a Tyneside garage) that have not seen the light of days for many years. In this case a rare Bugatti 57s Atalante, one of just 17 built has shown up in the garage at a reclusive doctor that recently passed away. His family found the 1937 car in the shed the doctor left to them along with an Aston Martin and a Jaguar E-type. The Bugatti is the most interesting not only due to its rarity but also due to the fact it has only 26,284 on the clock thanks to being parked in the shed since 1960. The Bugatti is about to go to auction and despite needing a bit of restoration is expected to fetch anywhere up to 3 million pounds, but once restored it should look similar to the one in the pic above. For the full story hit up the BBC News link below.
During the early 80’s it was pretty cool to own a Delorean, Their space age looks, stainless steel body and gullwing doors proved a car just needed to look good to attract buyers even if it didn’t perform very well. After the Delorean motor company went broke a new Delorean company was set up to supply parts to the 6500 owners of Delorean DMC-12s from a range of new old stock and reproduction parts. Recently this company has announced they will be returning the DMC-12 back to limited production using the old panels still in stock, along with a new frame and underbody, all equipped with modern gadgets and a better performing engine. The video above takes a quick tour of the facililities of the new Delorean werehouse and is worth a watch if you remember the 80’s at all.
Most Beetle owners have faced the idea of giving their beloved cars bodywork a bit of a spruce up at one point in their cars life, but this guy takes it to a whole new level. the beetle in the video above is covered with over 20000 oak tiles, that apparently took around a year to attach to the car along with fabricating other oak bits and pieces (we especially like the wiper arms). So if your more handy with a chisel than welder give some thought to creating your own wooden car. Gallery via Gizmodo.
The Tatra T603 was a Czech built car made by the 3rd oldest car maker in Europe. The T603 started life in 1956 and was built until 1975, it featured three headlights and a rear engined air cooled V8. With is rather odd styling the T603 was chosen to appear in the 2005 movie Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events, raising the profile of a car that was once not well known outside communist European Countries. Almost entirely hand-built, Tatra’s were not for everybody; normal citizens could not buy them. They were reserved for Party elites, Communist officials, factory presidents and other notables, as well as being exported to most other Communist nations as official cars. Even Fidel Castro had a white Tatra T603.
The VW Type 3 also known as the 1500 or 1600 was produced from 1961 until 1977. Called the Type 3 because it was VW’s 3rd design with the Beetle being the Type 1 and the Kombi van being the Type 2. The Type 3 shared much of its mechanical’s with its older relatives but with a few revisions. One example was the motor that despite being the same basic unit as in the Beetle and Kombi, it now featured a redesigned cooling system that let the motor sit flat under the rear floor parcel area. This was a huge marketing win at the time as shown in the classic ad above with a very young Dustin Hoffman. The Type 3 come in 3 body styles a sedan known as the notchback, a wagon known as the squareback and a coupe known as the fastback.
The Isuzu Gemini was one of the most popular of GM small cars during the late 70s and early 80s with versions produced is Japan, Australia, Brazil, and the UK to name a few. While most of these models started life as a carbon copy of each other some did get a unique from end treatment to suit their own market. As the South Korean Daewoo version progressed along its lifespan it obtained a Opel Rekord or Holden Commodore looking frontend with a dashboard that looks remarkably similar to the Holden Camira dash (that was proberbly derived from another GM J car). The Daewoo Maepsy in the commercial above is dated around 1985, it was about then Gemini’s in the rest of the world moved to an all new front wheel drive platform.
The ad above is for the 1982 Statesman by Holden, its interesting to note that the Statesman brand was a luxury marque created by Holden but most Aussies still just refered to it as a Holden Statesman even though Holden went out of their way to drop the Holden name from marketing material. We like the WB as it shows how a company (who had very little money at the time) could take an outdated model and do some clever design changes to make it into an all new model. one example is the huge rubber strip down the side that is almost hollow in some parts in order to hide the huge bulge above the guards left over from the 1970’s Kingswood.