Unless you’re an automobile historian, you’ve probably never heard about Charles Kettering. You do know some of his inventions, though. He was the guy behind such things as the automotive ignition systems, starter motors and even Freon gas. He was also the founder of DELCO Corporation, a well-known automotive parts manufacturer now owned by General Motors.
Here’s an amazing photo recently posted by actress Ashley Hinshaw on her Instagram account as she poses in a bikini next to a classic Chevy!
Americans have had a love affair with the automobile that has helped to define our culture. This love of cars has also defined many father-son relationships as dads around the country passed on their passions for great cars to their sons.
With Father’s Day approaching we’re looking back at some great cars that have inspired millions of fathers and sons over the years, and how you and your dad can relive some of that passion with the Exotic Car Collection by Enterprise which has an amazing selection of exotic cars available for rent.
Also, make sure to see the end of this post with a special giveaway!
1972 Corvette Stingray Convertible
I had the opportunity to drive this beautiful Corvette last year at an event promoting the brand-new 2014 Corvette Sting Ray. This classic beauty was the sports car everyone wanted when I was a kid, and I would always joke around with my dad that I wanted a Corvette. There have been many classic Corvette designs over the years, but the curvy design of the C3 Corvettes are a common favorite. 1972 was the last year of the chrome bumpers for the Corvette, giving the car a more classic look. The 5.7L V-8 engine didn’t have the high horsepower ratings of previous generations from the 1960s, but this 4-speed Vette still had some serious straight-line acceleration.
As I mentioned in my review, the all-new Corvette Stingray more than carries on the Corvette tradition. The car is beautiful and the performance is amazing. Driving this car is a truly memorable experience and both the coupe and the convertible are available with the Enterprise Exotic Car Collection. If you’re looking for a great gift for dad it’s hard to beat some road time with the new Corvette.
1967 Cadillac Eldorado
My dad always wanted to own a Cadillac, but he cared more about saving for our education so he went with other big cars from GM that were a little less expensive. This 1967 Cadillac Eldorado is a stunning example of the long and powerful American cars of the late 1960s and early 1970s. They were big and beautiful with huge engines and luxurious interiors and many Americans long for that era.
Lovers of big Cadillacs now turn to the huge and luxurious SUVs, and you can get an impressive Cadillac Escalade ESV through the Enterprise Exotic Car Collection, along with large luxury sedans from a wide variety of brands from Mercedes to Lexus.
We were back at Pebble Beach this year for the 2013 Concours D’Elegance at Pebble Beach, and again we had the opportunity to participate in the Dawn Patrol as the owners of the amazing classic cars drove them onto the 18th hole at Pebble Beach just as the sun was rising. We saw a stunning variety of beautiful vehicles as the drove past us during the dawn Patrol and then on the fairway at Pebble as they were on display for everyone to see.
The Best of Show award went to the owners of a 1934 Packard as cars from this time period often take the top prize. Those cars are beautiful, of course, but we’re usually most interested in the classic post-war sports cars.
This year the Lamborghinis grabbed our attention as it was one of the featured brands as it celebrated its 50th anniversary. We certainly appreciate the modern Lambos as we’ve featured the new Aventador and drove the Gallardo on a track, so it was a treat to see some of the classic models up close.
The 1976 Lamborghini Countach LP400 in particular stood out with its bright blue paint job as you can see in the slideshow above. It’s hard to compete with the elegant sports cars from the 1960s, but the Countach offered up a radical design in the 1970s with its wedge-shaped, sharply angled look that had a huge impact on sports car design for a generation. You can also see how the cab-forward design of the Countach offered a dramatic contrast to the longer front hoods of the sports cars from the 60s. We made sure to get some photos with the iconic scissor doors opened up as well.
The Countach had some excellent company at Pebble with other iconic Lambos on hand:
1969 Lamborghini Islero S
1971 Lamborghini Miura SV Bertone Coupé
1972 Lamborghini Espada Bertone Coupé
1973 Lamborghini Miura SV Berlinetta
You can see the evolution of the Lamborghini designs through the 60s into the 70s and also why these cars caught our eye. We’ll be posting more photos from Pebble Beach here and on our car site Dashboard News, but kicking things off with the Lamborghinis seemed like the obvious choice.
Restoring a classic car such as a 1970 Datsun 240z or a 1966 Pontiac GTO is a pipe dream for many men. I guess I should not limit it to men, for some women having a muscle car is right up their alley. If you are so lucky to have an old junk car cross your path, restoring it could be a great way to save money while having the classic car that catches the attention of everyone who passes it.
Unless you are an experienced mechanic, a project like this can tie up finances that you may not have. For this reason, those who have this dream often never achieve it. Tackling such a project can be overwhelming to someone with minimal knowledge. This does not mean it is impossible.
A GUIDE TO RESTORING A CLASSIC ON A BUDGET
You first need to find your car if you haven’t already. It is a good idea to look for one that has been partially restored, especially if you lack experience. This will cut down on your cost as well as your labor. Talk to other car enthusiasts, as they may have a lead on a good deal or have the connections to get you on your way. Also be sure to check the web, as you can find a lot of great deals through online resources.
Once you have found your car you need to know what parts you’ll need. You’ll need a number of parts, but you should be able salvage some of the parts already on your car. Know what your budget is and break it down according to your needs.
Look into salvage centers in your area to see if they have a vehicle that includes parts that may be interchangeable. Again, utilize the internet. There are websites dedicated to similar projects and there may be people selling the exact parts you need.
The best way to restore your car on a dime is to do the work yourself. This will require a number of tools, the owner’s manual and experience. If you are lacking in experience it is important to seek out the advice of professionals. For the parts that you are unable to locate, using resources such as The Local Book (yellow pages) will help you find auto repair to fit your needs.
I recently ran into some car trouble that could have been fixed by myself with an appropriate amount of time. However, time is something that I didn’t have. Using The Local Book, I was able to find an Middletown auto repair shop that got me up and running without breaking the bank or causing unnecessary headaches during the process.
Body work is a big part of restoration, as the final outcome is more about how the car looks than how it drives. Most car enthusiasts rarely take these vehicles out and when they do it is all about the show. This doesn’t mean that you want to focus solely on the body; it just means that is equally as important as the internal workings of the car.
Do as much of this work as you can, but don’t try to paint yourself. Put money aside for this job. Prime it yourself to save money, but leave the paint job to a professional.
Remember, that this is a project that should not be rushed. Take your time to find the best sources to save you money on parts, repair and painting. Do as much of the work as possible, and visit forums to get advice when you are stuck.