Archive for March, 2010

The Ford Mustang and the 1960s

March 26, 2010

When you take a look at the changes that take place decade to decade, you generally see a rather gradual alteration of the national landscape. However, the pace of the changes that took place during the decade of the 1960s in particularly profound, and they occurred across every aspect of society. From civil rights, women’s liberation, the Viet Nam war and a shifting economy to fashion, art, and music, the sixties were a quantum leap out of the attitudes of the previous decade.

The automotive industry changed along with the times as well, and the Ford Mustang is a case in point. This car, which is one of the most successful of all time, changed the face of the industry as it ushered in the phenomena of the “pony car.” The first Mustang was unveiled at the World’s Fair in New York City in 1964, and by the time the first two model years were out the door, over one million Mustangs had been sold.

The design chief at Ford who was placed in charge of the development of the car we now know as the Mustang was Donald Frey, who worked under Lee Iacocca at the time. The company was looking for a car that would appeal to women but not alienate male buyers, and they wanted something that was vaguely patterned after the sleek and sexy European roadsters like the Ferrari and Maserati.

Words are just that and a picture is worth a thousand of them, so when you look at the appearance of a 1959 Ford versus the 1967 Ford Mustang depicted on this page, you get a very good idea of how rapidly the sensibilities of the country changed during the decade of the 1960s. And as a testament to the brilliance of the Mustang design, it is still in production today, some 45 years after its celebrated debut.

Contributed by Fossil Cars Staff Writer

Collector Cars: A Great Investment

March 19, 2010

The classic and muscle car lovers out there who are knee deep in the hobby of restoring and collecting cars that are special to them are already believers, so we don’t want to preach to the choir. But you may have reached this blog because you like to check out the cars that are out there and do some window shopping, or kind of dream about buying your dream car of days gone by. We’d like to share some thoughts with you.

There is nothing wrong with taking some of your hard earned money and buying a ’67 Mustang or a 1971 Corvette that is already restored and ready to roll just because you want to drive the car. We do what we can to create a marketplace where people can find the car that they have always wanted, and we are always on the lookout to add to our listings. But there is another very good reason to consider car restoration and collecting as a hobby.

We are into cars, not high finance, but we do have some basic common sense. The economy is crazy these days, and it’s getting harder and harder to know exactly where to put your investment capital. The stock market is vulnerable, the real estate bubble has burst, and currencies are unpredictable. It would seem as though the one investment that you can count on to increase in value over time is a commodity that is in demand. If you have some tangible item that other people would want, and that thing increases in value as it ages, you have a solid investment vehicle.

Classic cars fit this description perfectly, and there is another element that makes an investment in rare, antique, and collectible cars all the more viable, and that is the restoration aspect. If you buy a classic car that is fully restored and take good care of it, you’ve made a sound investment that is probably going to increase in value. But if you purchase a project car and continually make improvements, the long term yield on your original investment may be much higher.

This can also be an ongoing strategy that is fun as well being a smart place to put your money. You identify the additions and modifications that you’d like to make to your car and budget for them over time, so when you have some extra money you are continually investing it wisely into this desirable commodity. With each improvement that you make on your dream car, the more valuable it becomes.

So when you dive in and get involved in collecting and/or restoring classic cars, you get to enjoy the fun of working on them if you so desire. You get to drive them, which is a blast. And you are also building a nest egg while you are doing it, and that is the icing on the cake. Most hobbies cost you money…automobile collecting is one of the few that can actually make you money in the long run.

Contributed by Fossil Cars Staff Writer

1969 Camaro Z28

March 12, 2010

When you talk about late 1960s muscle cars you have to mention the Camaro Z28, and many people think that the 1969 Z28 was the best of them all. The Z28 may not have been the fastest car on the road, but it could hold its own and it sure was a beautiful looking motor vehicle.

The 1969 Camaro Z28 featured the cowl induction hood option and the Rally Sport package with the hidden headlights. The ’69 Z28 came with front disc brakes as a standard feature, and four wheel disc brakes were also offered in 1969 for the first time. This option is interesting to note because the all-wheel disc ’69 Z28s are rare–only 206 of them were sold and half of those were in full blown race cars.

The 1969 Z28 was powered by the 302 cubic inch V8 and four barrel carb, and the engine was rated at 290 horsepower but most people say it put out significantly more. These cars were known for their fantastic handling ability, and they were capable of getting a quarter of a mile at 94.8  miles per hour in just over fifteen seconds. The base price of the 1969 Camaro Z28 was $3185, and a total of 20,302 of them were produced.

Contributed by Fossil Cars Staff Writer

2011 Shelby GT350 Up For Auction

March 5, 2010

The team at Shelby decided to celebrate the 45th anniversary of the very first Shelby GT350 in January at the Barrett-Jackson Auction with the release of a supercharged concept model. Needless to say, the car made quite  a splash.

“There was a great deal of pent up demand for the first GT350 since the 1970 model year. We chose to introduce the car at Barrett-Jackson because the people who attend their events are among the most passionate car enthusiasts in the world. Thus, we will reward that loyalty by offering a very special serial number to their bidders,” said Shelby American president Amy Boylan.

Now, the serial number 350 2011 Shelby GT350 is going to be up for bid at the next big event that is going to take place at the American Expo Center at the South Florida Fairgrounds in Palm Beach on April 1-3.

2011 GT350

“Over the past several years, we’ve offered several prototypes, concepts and special serial numbered contemporary collector cars to the public, which has been a significant break from the traditional approach that car makers once followed with such important cars. At one time, it was common for these cars to be destroyed or sold to industry insiders instead of being available to the general car collector hobby. The automakers have begun to turn to us as the best, most democratic way to offer these cars,” stated Craig Jackson, who is the CEO of Barrett-Jackson.

Shelby is going to get started on the serial number 350 2011 Shelby GT350 right around the time of the auction, and it is going to get a test drive from Carroll Shelby before being handed over to the winning bidder.

Click here for more information on the Shelby GT350.

Contributed by Fossil Cars Staff Writer