We take a look at the top ten American classic cars to ever hit the road.
Over the years America has produced it's fair share of terrible cars. But, for every flop produced came something innovative, ground-breaking or simply beautiful. Looking back on North America’s illustrious history of motoring, we’ve compiled our top ten of America’s best classics. Looking for something more Check out our favourite American muscle cars here
More affectionately known as the ‘T-bird’, the vehicle was marketed as a ‘Personal car’. In essence, the T-bird was released in 1955 as a sporty two-seater, as a rival to the Chevrolet Corvette. Three years later it gained a second row of seats, whilst maintaining its simplistic and lowly-sprung American demeanour. Eleven generations later, and the T-bird stands to be one of the best selling cars of all time, with most of them in North America. Find Ford Thunderbirds for sale in the classifieds
Made famous by its Hollywood roles in Smokey and the Bandit and Hooper, the Pontiac Firebird was the Chevrolet Camaro’s famous brother produced by GM. The Firebird was produced for a lengthy stint of eleven years, with the later models featuring turbocharged V8’s that produced 200bhp. Trans Am editions have gone on to become the most coveted (identifiable by the Firebird decal on the cars bonnet), with a good one priced at £12,250. Find Pontiac Firebirds for sale in the classifieds
Released in 1992, the Viper reinstated America as the muscle car capital of the world after a lengthy lay-off. Its slippery body and electronic injection V10 engine helped it go from 0-60 in just 4.5 seconds, whilst introducing a dash of modern technology to the quarter mile drag-race scene. Complete with racing stripes, it stands to be the car that reminded the world that America really is the muscle car capital of the world. An excellent one nowadays can be sourced for £35,000. Find Dodge Vipers for sale in the classifieds
The El Camino was the perfect compromise for those that needed the practicality of a pick-up truck but wanted the aesthetic coolness of a low-rider. Introduced as a rival to the Ford Ranchero in 1959, the ‘coupe utility vehicle’ (as it was marketed) was an instant hit. Gone were the wooden floors and in came the steel loading bay, which made the El Camino more capable of carrying duties than previous low-rider pick-ups. That, along with the exterior taken from the pretty Bel-Air of the time, allowed Chevrolet to well and truly plug the hole in the American market. Find Chevrolets for sale in the the classifieds
The C-300 was in many ways the genesis to America’s muscle car craze. It was released in 1955, a decade or so prior to the launch of the fully-fledged muscle cars from Ford and GM, with a 300bhp Hemi (hence the name) under the hood, which itself was elegantly styled much like the rest of the car. Chrysler spent a reported $100 million on development of the C-300, which is a lot- especially for a car that enjoyed production for just one year. An excellent one now can be picked up for around £45,000. Find Chrysler C-300s in the classifieds
The GT40 was Ford’s greatest hit, thanks to its four-year run of victories at the Le Mans 24 Hours in the 1960’s. Initially produced in 1964, the GT40 came about thanks to a business dispute between Henry Ford II and Enzo Ferrari, resulting in the former becoming determined to take it to Ferrari at Le Mans- something he duly did. The car was designed in Britain but powered by an all-American V8. Brandished in the Gulf Racing colours, it stands the test of time as perhaps the most iconic race car ever produced. Find Ford GT40s for sale in the classifieds
It may not sound it, but the Studebaker Avanti is quintessentially American. Sherwood Egbert drew the first sketches of the car on a jet plane, shortly after becoming president of American company Studebaker in 1961. The final product was launched a year later, after a 40-day crash course taken out by the Studebaker designers. It isn’t a looker, but at the time it was innovative; the Avanti was the first American car to feature brake discs, and the first to ventilate its 240bhp V8 via the underside of the car, something that became a period-feature on the majority of 1960’s American cars thereafter. Studebaker shut down in 1963, but its legacy lived on. Find a Studebaker Avanti for sale in the classifieds
Born in 1964, the Mustang rode the wave of muscle car-frenzy to perfection, and thus sold a million units in less than two years. Variation in coupe-preference, trim options and engine-choice meant that Ford were able to cater for all with the ‘Stang. Beefed-up editions from Shelby and Ford themselves and furthered the appeal to the Mustang, which remains the epitome of the American muscle car. One can be found in good nick nowadays for £15,000. Ford Ford Mustangs for sale in the classifieds
Well, you can’t mention a Mustang without a Charger, can you? The Charger was Dodge’s headline act when it came to muscle cars, and has been consistently likened to the Mustang since it came about in 1966. The first generation Charger lasted just two years; with the second generation featuring a revamped exterior and interior, although it did still have the 5.2-litre V8 featured in the first model. Put simply, the original was a star on the ovals, yet its sale figures failed to impress, hence the revamp. Later versions were softer and throttled by emissions regulations. Find Dodge Chargers for sale in our classifieds
The Model T was the very first car put into mass production, and thus deserves a mention on this list of classics. Released in 1908 and produced for another 19 years, the Model T had the market to itself, and earned Ford the worthy reputation it enjoys to this very day. Henry Ford himself stated that he would ‘build a car for the great multitude’, and that he did. Find Ford Model Ts for sale in our classifieds
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