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SPORTS CARS OF THE 60's

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  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,564
    944s can be decent and competent cars but they aren't (to me) very much fun. Nothing like that screamin' six behind your back. And besides, they are money pits. Buy 'em cheap, and in 6 months you are buried in it unto the grave. Same with 928s. World's most expensive cheap sports cars, the 944 / 928.

    Geez, on an MBG you can take the head off with a vise grip and a screwdriver, order parts UPS delivered to your door and be on the road in two days for a couple hunnert bucks tops.

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  • jrosasmcjrosasmc Posts: 1,704
    I think you could get an early- to mid-80s Alfa Spider or a GTV6 for not that much money. They look to be pretty affordable these days.
  • My brother had a Datsun 2000 (I think that was the model number) as a teenager -- two-seater knockoff of an Austin Healy, but faster. The car would easily do 80 in 3rd gear, but had a horrible set of rattles -- like driving down the road with a couple of strands of tin cans tied to the rear bumper with string.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,564
    The Datsun 2000 had some bad problems but I can't quite recall. I think head gaskets or something. Anyway, some thought they would be highly collectible but that hasn't turned out to be the case. They are collected by a few people, and can bring a decent price, but nothing like a restored MGB. One bad thing about them is that they are very difficult to find parts for now.

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  • jaserbjaserb Posts: 858
    While you can't get a ragtop 240-280Z, it does fit into the "cheap sports car" mold even now. You can get a very nice one for well under 5 grand, parts aren't too hard to get, and it's a fun car to drive. Only problem is after '78 they got fat, ugly, and full of electronic gizmos to break. They didn't make another really desirable Z until '90, and those are an arm and a leg to insure as well as repair. Insurance is another reason no old Porsche will be a "cheap sports car".

    -Jason
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,564
    280Zs are practically give-away cars, but the 240Z is much more sporty.

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  • jaserbjaserb Posts: 858
    the 280Z isn't a bad way to go, if you can live with (or get rid of) the huge bumpers. It's a little heavier than the 240 but it also has more power from the same block, and the '77-'78 have a 5 speed available. Also the fuel injection system is much lower maintenance and less likely to be messed up than the SUs on the 70-72 Zs. We won't mention the 73-74 carbs.

    -Jason
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,564
    SUs are simple and bulletproof. Fuel injection is complicated and expensive in comparison, if you are on a budget, and especially with an old car. An SU only has 3 moving parts!

    The 280Z is one of my least favorite cars but it would be an okay beater for not a lot of money. But the "sports car" has been completely dialed out.

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  • andys120andys120 Loudon NHPosts: 16,600
    I have a thing for MGB-GTs. I wonder what a decent small bumper car with no rust would go for. Yeah it'd have to have overdrive.

    Those Alpines were nice but never achieved the popularity of the MGs TRs or Healeys (dececent Healeys now go for more than a 280SL-$30k+). Anyone remember the hardtop Sunbeam Harrington Le Mans coupe (Very rare-some did actually run LeMans ca. 63-64).

    2000 BMW 528i, 2001 BMW 330CiC

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,564
    I saw a very nice MGBGT sell for $4,000 last week and a Harrington for $10K some months ago.

    An MGBGT with overdrive in decent condition is a helluva buy right now in vintage sports cars. Alfas are still bargains but not so cheap as that. I'd guess a decent early 60s Sprint coupe would have to cost you $8k-$10K. GTVs are less but not all that much. Alpines are an acquired taste. The tail fin styling really turns a lot of people off and it shows in the resale value.

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  • andys120andys120 Loudon NHPosts: 16,600
    The E-type Jaguar, '61-'67 hands down. In either roadster or coupe form. Aside from being beautiful and fast, they were great handlers, competitive in gymkhanas and slaloms with Lotus Elans and 911s.

    BTW I believe it's incorrect to call them XK-Es
    The factory always used E-type. It did have the same XK engine as the 120/140/150 (in 3.8 and later 4.2 form)

    2000 BMW 528i, 2001 BMW 330CiC

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,564
    yes, that's correct. Historically, there is no such thing as an XKE.

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  • rea98drea98d Posts: 982
    XKE, I beleive, was a name Jaguar's North American arm came up with, much to the disdain of Sir William, et al, to link the car (at least in marketing terms) to the XK-120's, 140's and 150's. And yes, I have seen an E-Type with an "XKE" badge on the trunk, so they were sold under that name, even if it wasn't what the mother country wanted them known by. It seems that, at the time, Jaguar Cars of North America had a certain amount of autonomy from Jaguar Cars, Ltd., and could get away with renaming models. To Coventry, there was no "XKE" anywhere, but here in N. America, that's how the cars were badged. Confusing, I know. Most of the minutia about old cars is.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,564
    The XKE nomenclature came from the press, I suppose, who got tired of typing "E-Type". I've never seen an "XKE" badge on a car itself, although I've seen it in plenty of ads and literature.
    Myabe I need to look closer from now on.

    This mis-naming happens now and then, where a car that really doesn't exist is born in the media. Another is the 1964 & 1/2 Mustang. No cars were ever made by the factory with that designation. They are all 1965s, but being introduced early that's what they got named.

    It is minutiae I know. Who cares? The cars were great!

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  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    None of us kids knew it was called an E-type. If we had, I don't think we would have liked it as much ;-).
  • rea98drea98d Posts: 982
    ...We should just split the difference and call it an XK-E-type?
  • badtoybadtoy Posts: 368
    my first Alfa -- a '62 Giulia Spider Veloce -- cost me $900 (that was ni late 1965). My second, in mid-1966, was a '64 Sprint, and that cost me $2500 (from a dealer). My third, in 1967, was a '59 Giulietta Spider Normale, for $675. I purchased my fourth, a '69 1750 Berlina, in 1971, and it cost me $2700.

    Of course, cheap as they sound, wages were a tenth of what they are today, so it all evens out. New Alfas ran around $3500 back then, Corvettes about $5500, and E-types about $6500.
  • andys120andys120 Loudon NHPosts: 16,600
    Big Healeys cost about $4,000 a new Cobra went about $7,000 and a Ferrari 250GT was the incredible sum of $12,000 which sounds cheap but would have bought a small house in the midwest or South back then.

    2000 BMW 528i, 2001 BMW 330CiC

  • andys120andys120 Loudon NHPosts: 16,600
    The Mercedes 230/250/280SL. It wasn't the performer it's predecessor 300SL was but it was a real sports car, unlike the wimpy 190SL. They are still available at reasonable prices ...$22-27k (Gets you thinkin').

    2000 BMW 528i, 2001 BMW 330CiC

  • jrosasmcjrosasmc Posts: 1,704
    How about the Volvo 1800ES sport wagon?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,564
    I dunno...the 280SL is kind of a girlie car (you don't see many guys driving them). Solid as a rock, and they can perform if you really stuff your foot into them and if you have a 280. Also the standard shifter is no great shakes to use.

    On the serious downside, they are wound up so tight at 70 mph it is really annoying to drive them. The axle ratio must be like 4:56 or something.

    Fitting a 5-speed from a European model would be a great idea for this car.

    The P1800 is another rock solid sporty car from the 60s, and with fuel injection and some good IPD performance components they can move out nicely. Bone stock they are kind of a slug, with heavy steering.

    Major downside on this car is the seating position. Next time you see one go by, look at the driver and you tell me if he doesn't look like a groundhog popping his head up from his hole.

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  • jrosasmcjrosasmc Posts: 1,704
    I saw Irv Gordon (million mile man) drive by in my town with his P1800. I only saw his head, nothing else. He was sitting super-low.
  • andys120andys120 Loudon NHPosts: 16,600
    Girlie car?, that hurt! I don't recall ever seeing a majority of these cars driven by women,
    350/450/500 SLs absolutely, but not the 230/250/280SLs, not then and certainly not now when the majority of owners are middle aged professional MEN.
    To me the earlier cars were very strong looking with their wide track and squared corners. I am aware that they are not sports cars the way 911s or Lotus Elans are sports cars, more like a, ahem,
    gentlemen's express.
    The 350/450/560SLs are certainly favored by the ladies. I don't think I know a single female that doesn't like those, I'm relatively unimpressed.

    2000 BMW 528i, 2001 BMW 330CiC

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,564
    Well, no pain intended. Maybe it's my geographical location. I have never seen a guy driving one.

    If you sit in a 280SL, it really has some femininetouches. Very dainty gearshift, that big but oh so dainty Martha Stewart steering wheel. Little tiny heat and air levers, that pagoda roof letting the sun in. It's so romantic, isn't it?

    I always feel when I'm driving one that I'm for sure going to break something.

    Of course, one could argue that the neck-snapping automatic is a man's trans, that's for sure...LOL!

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  • ghuletghulet Posts: 2,628
    I do know a gay guy (rather effeminate, even as gay guys go) who owns a 250SL automatic, though I don't know if, or how, this adds or detracts from the argument here (-;
  • I haven't visited this thread in a while. I do have a comment on the Datsun Z cars. Here in the northeast they are getting pretty rare. I imagine they are more plentiful in California or the southwest where there is very little moisture and NO SALT.

    In my experience Z's tend to turn into a pile of iron oxide with an engine in the middle.

    Other than the rust problem they were great cars. The 260 and 73 240 were dogs in stock form but a few mods made them perform well. The introduction of the 280ZX pretty much took it out of the sports car category.
  • 260/289 Ford power. Cheaper alternative to some noted above with as much or more power. Shelby lineage. Great compromise.
  • andys120andys120 Loudon NHPosts: 16,600
    because Chrysler corp bought the Rootes Group and didn't have a small V-8 suitable to replace the K-code from Ford. The Tiger was quite the little rocket but it must have had problems getting power down with a live axle on such a short, light car.

    2000 BMW 528i, 2001 BMW 330CiC

  • A friend had one, He said it was really easy to smoke the tires. He also said that driving it on a wet road required a gentle right foot.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,564
    They are a handful, but fun to drive if you aren't careless and dumb. Very tight cockpit, lots of engine heat, so there's room for modifications.

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