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  Classic Cars news and reviews.

When you are thinking about a BMW Isetta, impressive output is definitely the last thing you are taking under consideration. In fact, an original BMW Isetta only delivered a total of 13 horsepower, so nothing impressive here. With this in mind it is pretty much impossible to even consider a 730-horsepower Isetta, right?

Well, as impossible as it may sound, the guys over Hot Wheels unveiled back in 1998 the "Whatta Drag" — a car that initially started as a toy. Thanks to the amazing imagination of Bruce Weiner, the Isetta Whatta Drag became a reality in 2005. As you could imagine, this cool Whatta Drag only keeps the body shell from an original 1959 BMW Isetta, because everything else is pretty much new.

Under the hood, it gets a 502-cubic-inch Chevrolet big-block crate engine mated to a two-speed manual transmission. The V-8 engine is equipped with a BDS supercharger, twin Holley 750 CFM double-pumper carburetors and Zoomies exhaust headers. The result is a pretty amazing 730 horsepower — a number that seems monstrous for the tiny Isetta.

Next to that amazing output level, this special Isetta has been specially equipped for burnouts and donuts thanks to an AP balance bar incorporated into the dual-circuit disc-brake system. The Isetta-turned-dragster also received the suspension system from an M3 and custom drag-racing wheels with a Sumitomo HTRZ II tires.

If the car caught your attention, you will be happy to know it will be auctioned by RM Auctions on February 16, but prepare to shell out about $100k to acquire it.

Click past the jump to read the press release

Porsche’s racing history is, to describe in a word, illustrious. The German automaker has produced some of the finest and most powerful race cars in the world and one of them happens to be the `70s 911 Carrera RSR.

Having participated in a number of GT-class competitions, the 911 RSR was by far one of the most storied models in the German automaker’s racing lineup, amassing three international and seven German wins in its first year of competition.

So with the 1973 RSR model celebrating its 40th anniversary, the German automaker decided to feature the car in its Porsche Museum Treasures videos.

Check out the video of the 1973 911 Carrera RSR getting introduced to a new generation of motorsports aficionados. Back then, it was one of the most feared racers in the circuit. Today, it’s one of the most iconic race cars in the Porsche Museum.

Then and now, this race car still captures the hearts of a lot of people.

Source: Porsche

It’s safe to say that major auto auctions like the recent one held by Barrett-Jackson in Scottsdale, Arizona are always a spectacle. It’s a playground for the rich auto enthusiasts to flex their financial muscles in an active bidding competition among their brethren to see who among them can scoop up their desired models.

Last weekend’s auction saw some pretty interesting models crossing the block and, while we’ve written about the final selling price generated by a number of the models being auctioned, we haven’t gone into detail on some of the more interesting vehicles auctioned off during the weekend-long event.

So we’re going to do this through a list because that’s generally how you can enumerate the models and have a rank for them based on what vehicle they are and how much interest they generated in the form of frenzied bids.

Check out our list of interesting auctioned cars at Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale after the jump.

Batmobile

Car collector Rick Champagne has every right pop open a bottle of his last name after becoming only the second owner of one of Hollywood’s most iconic cars. He had to sweat out a feverish bidding war for the George Barris’ original 1966 Batmobile , the same one used in the Adam West Batman TV series. In the end, however, his checkbook did all the talking to the tune of $4.2 million at the Barrett-Jackson auction in Scottsdale, Arizona.

The winning bid price might seem steep, but given the kind of car the ’66 Batmobile is, we presume that it was worth every last penny from Champagne’s bank account.

With the classic movie car now belonging to him, Champagne only becomes the second owner of the Batmobile after Barris, the same man who famously built the Batmobile in only 15 days in time for it to be used in the Batman TV series. On top of the car itself, Champagne also went home with number of memorabilia and documentation from Barris’ own personal collection.

Not a bad haul for Mr. Champagne!

Only the most hardened of auto enthusiasts understand the business of auto detailing. It’s a job that’s best left to those who clearly have an appreciation on the aesthetic side of a vehicle and those that don’t fully grasp that often disregard just how difficult and damaging this job is.

Larry Kosilla of Ammo NYC always wanted to be one of the foremost experts in auto detailing. And to prove his position in the business, Kosilla shows us all the details of detailing and restoration. He even picked quite a car for this: a Ferrari 288 GTO .

Despite not having the benefits of proper lighting and the restrictions on space, Kosilla managed to take us through a quick crash course on the art of detailing and restoration. It’s the kind of job that only gets its proverbial shine when people notice how it’s done. By the sheer skill Kosilla displayed in not messing up such a delicate exotic, the man certainly earned his keep as one of the finest detailers we’ve seen in a while.


If you are interested in acquiring an early Jaguar E-Type Coupe and you do a quick internet search, you will notice that you have to prepare a big check. Depending on its condition, an E-Type could cost you anywhere between $20k and $100k with the former being a very low estimate.

Now that you know that, you can imagine that it’s nearly impossible to find a model for under $10k. One lucky guy however, managed to buy such a model for just $7,601. Well, lucky on one hand, but when you will take a look at the car he bought you will start wonder if this was indeed the best acquisition?

The car you see here is a 1963 Jaguar XKE roadster that has been rolled at some point on the hills around Santa Fe New Mexico and has sat in a parking lot since 1974. According to the current owner, the engine number matches the body tag, so that in itself makes the car worth nearly $170K, per NADA. Still, will it really worth investing in this car and put it through a full restoration process? Only time will tell… Either way, under $8K is a steal and it is now the ball is in its new owner’s court.

Source: eBay

Chevrolet is preparing to unveil the seventh-generation Corvette , but the history of one of the most appreciated American sports cars began back in 1953 when the first generation was launched. The car’s 60th anniversary is the proof that it was and will remain the top preferences of many car buyers.

While we have no idea what the seventh generation will bring to the Corvette’s long history, we do know how much we appreciate the previous generations. As expected, Jay Leno also appreciates `Vettes of yesteryear, as his latest episode of Jay Leno’s Garage features a collection of vintage Corvettes.

Alongside Jay is V.P. of global design for GM, Ed Welburn, who offered a few more details on the cars, their history and features. One of our favorite models featured during this episode is that blue 1958 Corvette , which is owned by GM’s chairman Dan Akerson. This model will be auctioned for charity at Barrett-Jackson’s auction in Scottsdale, Arizona on January 18, 2013.

While modern-day Buick struggles to compete with the likes of Lexus and Acura , there was once a car with a Buick logo that muscle-car enthusiasts dream of driving. Funny as it sounds now, in its era this car used to give the Corvettes and other high-end sports cars a run for their money. This car is none other than the Buick Grand National.

With a turbocharged V-6 under the hood that helped gain quicker accelerations and a standard black paint job that made the design of the Grand National more intimidating, this car is definitely considered as one of the true muscle cars, during its heyday. To make matters worse, this car peaked in an era where econo-boxes reigned supreme and performance was an afterthought.

The Grand National, in today’s standards, is like the 2013 Shelby GT500 with both cars being a working man’s supercar. So, now you’ll get the big picture how the Buick Grand National was in the 1980s...

With rumors circling that GM is trying to revive the Grand National name for a high-performance Buick, we just hope that the rumor of will come true and spark excitement like it used to back in the 80s.

Click past the jump to read our historical review of the iconic Grand National

The latest episode of Jay Leno’s Garage features one of the most amazing Lamborghinis ever, a 350 GT , which was the first production car the company made in 1965. The model was limited to only 135 units, so the chance to actually find one in good driving conditions at this point is quite rare.

The car was brought to the garage by Andrew Romanowski of Lamborghini Club of America, whom we spoke to a few months ago , and he offers a few more details on Lamborghini’s first supercar.

The model was previewed by the 350 GTV concept and then unveiled at the 1964 Geneva motor show. It was powered by a four-cam V-12 engine that delivered a total of 350 horsepower and was combined with a four-wheel independent suspension and an aluminum body. The model was capable to hit a top speed of 158 mph. Every one of those numbers are astounding for that period.

Check the video to see what Jay Leno has to say about the 350 GT.

Between 1950 and 1954, the Carrera Panamericana — a border-to-border sports car racing event – dominated the racing scene. Ferrari took home victories in the 1951 and 1954 running and Mercedes chalked up a victory in 1952. Now that 58 years have passed since the final official running – a historical race has been run since 1988 – Gullwing America (GWA) has decided to piece together a pair of tribute cars for Ferrari and Mercedes.

The dedicatory Ferrari is dubbed the Ferrari 340M/C . The 340M/C will feature the F116C-V12, 5.5-liter V-12 engine that Ferrari, with a different fuel-injection system – likely to allow it to run on today’s fuel. Gullwing America strapped a set of headers and racing mufflers to the engine to help free up as many ponies as possible. Mating this classic V-12 to its transmission is an upgraded clutch.

Unfortunately, GWA has not privileged us with the engine’s total output, so we’ll just have to wait for that.

This Ferrari will be carried by a branded Mercedes Benz transporter in a tour around the world. It will make various F1 stops and also be seen at Goodwood and Nürburgring. Stay tuned for more details, if GWA releases any more.

Click past the jump to read the full press release.


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