Friday, August 9, 2013

Sunset on Wolverine Lake

We interrupt the sporadic and apparently never-ending photo-blogging of cars from the 2013 Concours d'Elegance of America to bring you last night's lovely sunset over Wolverine Lake:

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Concours d'Elegance of America: American Postwar Classics and Muscle

All right Patio Boat fans. It's time for another installment of Cars from the Concours! So strap on yer safety belts as we work forward from some post-war American classics from the 50s to the peak of the muscle-car era of the late 60s and early 70s. 

I love the sheer sense of design confidence during about this era. The American auto industry stood far atop the world during this time and it shows in almost every line of these beauties.

Let's start in 1946. I always find 1946 cars interesting because so many of them were really pre-war car designs that were pulled back off the shelf and rushed into production when World War II ended. So it makes the evolution in car design from 1946 to 1956 look especially dramatic.

1946 Chevrolet Fleetmaster

1946 Ford Woodie Station Wagon.

1948 Pontiac Silver Streak. We're starting to move forward from 1946, but aren't quite there yet.

1953 Buick Roadmaster with air conditioning by Frigidaire and 188 hp from its Fireball V-8.  Truly this was a master of the road.

1955 Chrysler 300. If you wondered what re-using the 300 name on the modern Chrysler 300 was supposed to evoke, this is it.

1956 Continental Mark II Coupe. Ford launched the Continental mark in the 1950s to be a super-high-end luxury brand to compete with the likes of Rolls-Royce, but it was folded into Lincoln shortly after it's launch.  This one really was a beauty.

Nope, it's not a pink Cadillac. It's a 1956 Lincoln Premiere Convertible.

1956 Packard Caribbean. The rather pulchritudinous protuberances on the bumper are commonly called Dagmars. They're named after Dagmar, a well known television actress of the era.

I'm sure it was because she was a fan of chrome automotive safety equipment.

1959 Cadillac Fleetwood 60 Special, a true land yacht. I would try to buy one of these one day, but I would need to build a longer garage first.  A much longer garage.

This year's Concours featured a stunning group of Jet Age convertibles. It was a tough day for them because of the rain clouds that kept threatening, but we caught quite a few of them with their tops down:

1956 Chrysler New Yorker.

1957 Ford Sunliner.

1958 Edsel Pacer, quickly putting its top up as the rain marches in.

1960 Buick Electra 225.

1959 Dodge Custom Royal Lancer.

1960 Chrysler Imperial.

1960 Chevrolet Impala.

1961 Chrysler New Yorker. Take a quick peek back to the top of our convertible group at the 1956 model to see how much the design changed in just five years.

1963 Chevrolet Impala Convertible.

1963 Studebaker Avanti 2-Door Sport. Some dude next door to our neighborhood supermarket has three of these in his driveway.

1966 Cadillac Four-Door, a land yacht for the mid-60s.

1966 Dodge Charger 2-Door Fastback. I looove the grill on this car. This car also makes a nice transition to our final group in this post, the muscle cars, since it could've just as easily been a feature car in that group, too:

Let's start off with my favorite car of the whole show, the 1970 Baldwin Motion Maco Shark Custom Convertible:

I'm not sure the photos really caught the sheer Seventies coolness of this custom car, but it got my "People's Choice" vote.

On the other hand, if your Baldwin Motion custom-Vette tastes ran to the more traditional, but very fast side of the aisle....

... the 1972 Baldwin Motion Corvette with 454 racing motor might appeal

1969 AMC Javelin XP X-Package

1969 Chevrolet Camaro Yenko S/C 427.

And last, but certainly not least, it's blue-ribbon muscle: the 1969 Pontiac Royal Bobcat GTO.

Thanks for taking the Patio Boat tour of the greatest era of American automobile manufacturing, as seen at the 2013 Concours d'Elegance of America. Which was your favorite?