2014 Cars On Line CAR OF THE YEAR Finalists
We’ve been pouring over the best cars that were posted for sale on Cars On Line over the last year and have come up with 14 finalists worthy of the 2014 Cars On Line CAR OF THE YEAR Title! Now it’s your chance to decide which of them will win! Review the cars and then VOTE below! Join conversations on our Facebook page, where we’ll be posting the finalists for our fans to comment on and like.
You’ll have until 12:00 AM, December 25th, 2014 to get your vote in, then we’ll announce the Cars On Line CAR OF THE YEAR winner in our newsletter on December 26th. Click here to subscribe.
See all of these cars and more in our 2014 Year In Review!
1970 Plymouth Hemi Superbird
Plymouth built a “one-year wonder” in 1970 that is known as the 1970 Plymouth Hemi Superbird. Built to win NASCAR races, it could reach 200 miles per hour and is said by some to have been “too fast for its own good.” NASCAR introduced a rules change in 1971 that prohibited the Superbird from ever racing again and Chrysler abandoned the “Winged Warrior” program.Today their short production run makes them rare collectibles. Even more rare are the Hemi versions, as this 1970 Plymouth Hemi Superbird for sale at Exotic Classics.com in New York. It has a place in Galen Govier’s Registry and was listed with a detailed Galen Govier inspection report. It featured Alpine White paint and wasn’t the only Plymouth Superbird like it to show up in our newsletter, or on the collector car market. Another graced the Barrett-Jackson Auction block and sold for $500,000!
1965 Shelby 427 Competition Cobra
Another of this year’s Cars On Line CAR of the YEAR contenders is a real deal 1965 Shelby 427 Competition Cobra from Exotic Classics.com in Syosset, New York. It would be one of only 21 full competition cars ever built and was custom ordered by Bob Grossman, Ferrari owner and racer, after winning his class in the 1965 Nassau Trophy Races with a borrowed Shelby 427 Cobra. An incredible story like that resonates well with any car enthusiast, and our February newsletter readers were no exception. They read about this Shelby breaking the track record at Watkins Glen and taking home trophies at Bridgehampton and Limerock. It could go from 0 to 100 miles per hour and back to 0 in just 13.2 seconds, a feat even the Aston Martin DB/4 was incapable of matching. It remains for sale by Exotic Classics.com, who had it appraised at between $1.7 and $2.4 million! It’s one of the most highly sought after Shelby’s in the world.
1957 Mercury Turnpike Cruiser Indy Pace Car Convertible
Auto Investors from Dothan, Alabama posted a very rare and desirable 1957 Mercury Turnpike Cruiser Indy Pace Car Convertible for sale early this year. It featured an arrow-straight body finished in Sun Glitter Yellow, new chrome and new stainless. It was the result of Mercury’s effort to produce a new design that didn’t share a body style with the Ford line, and the convertible version was made available only after they announced that the “Turnpike Cruiser” would pace the Indianapolis 500 in 1957. Mercury also added a unique rear fender design and an ostentatious Continental kit mounted on a unique extended bumper carrier with large elongated bumpers and wide taillights. Departing from the standard 255 base horsepower 312ci V8, the Turnpike Cruisers were armed with a 368ci Lincoln motor with a 4-barrel carburetor and dual exhaust, rated for 290 horsepower at 4,600 rpm.
1955 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwing
When Mercedes-Benz decided to get back into road racing in the early 1950s, they developed what they felt was the best machine for the job: the legendary 300SL. It quickly captured the eye of sports car lovers and by 1952 the W194 model 300SL had scored wins at the 24 Hours of Le Mans at Nürburgring and in Mexico’s Carrera Panamericana. Max Hoffman, a New York Mercedes distributor thought that a tamer version would be a commercial success in an affluent, post-war America and the 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwing was introduced at the New York Auto Show in 1954. This one was special ordered the same year and changed hands three times before landing in the garage of the seller in 1973. They enjoyed it for more than 40 years before it went up for sale again in April, this time by Gullwing Motor Cars. With just 50,000 miles on the odometer, the 300SL Gullwing remained a fitting example of the first-ever fuel injected production car and once worldwide top-speed record holder. It also holds a place on the list of top ten collector cars.
1967 Chevy Nova Pro Max Vennom
Years ago, the person you’d want to see about having the fastest, baddest ride in town was Rich Roberts in Clinton, Tennessee. He called these special built custom street machines Pro Max Vennoms. He made them only for a short time, and you can’t get them anymore unless you happen to have your ear to the ground when one appears for sale like this 1967 Chevy Nova Pro Max Vennom did in late April. If you want to go really, really, frightfully fast, then this is the car for you. It SOLD in the days since it was listed. You can still see the ad and the video at the link above. They say the 420 Dart motor can have you flying down the road at 230 miles-per-hour in about six seconds. It featured an 871 BDS blower with 16-injector fuel injection, internals by Drodix cam and Jesel rockers, blown injection and ran on pump gas! To handle that kind of performance, Roberts carefully prepared the box frame to be the strongest on the market. He used a Moly cage, 5-speed Lenco ST 1200 transmission, 9-inch 411 Stange Detroit Lockers, coilover 4-link and Mustang II front end. There’s a lot there that will make anyone consider it worthy of Car of the Year!
1970 Pontiac GTO Ram Air IV
The 1970 Pontiac GTO Ram Air IV from Arizona Classics in Scottsdale, Arizona was an easy pick for the first newsletter in May. You may search all your life and never find another like this one. It was campaigned by Nib Johnston, a well-known Pontiac dealer, and was significant because it was one of only 804 RA IV cars produced by Pontiac that year. Of that, only 140 RA IV hardtops came with the Heavy Duty M40 Turbo 400 automatic transmission. Even more rare, it was special ordered in Starlight black with blue slate interior, and was said to have just 4,250 actual miles. It was a phenomenal find, indeed. But the story didn’t end there. Bill Paweski at Arizona Classics also managed to track down a black 1969 GTO Ram Air IV – another Nib Johnston car! Follow this link to a full report on both cars at the Cars On Line Blog!
1972 Hurst Olds Indy Pace Car Convertible
In the third week of June Cars On Line featured a Linda Vaughn era 1972 Hurst Olds Indy Pace Car Convertible – the rarest Indianapolis 500 Pace Car of all! In 1972 Hurst Performance Products stepped up to offer its Hurst Oldsmobile as a Pace Car to lead the Indy 500. According to the ad, the 455 ci big block engines were detuned down to 270 horsepower for 1972 because of emission controls and the use of unleaded gas. This Hurst Oldsmobile Pace Car featured the W-30 package and a Rallye suspension.Oldsmobile discontinued making a convertible model for the Cutlass at the end of the 1972 model year. The seller of the Olds Indy Pace Car said the vehicle had undergone a complete body-off restoration and showed less than 100 miles since its completion. Today we are pleased to report the rare Indy Pace car has been SOLD, thanks in part to the Cars On Line SLIDE SHOW ad.
1973 MOTION Corvette Manta Ray GT
Joel Rosen built only three Manta Ray GTs at his facility, MOTION Performance in Baldwin, New York on Long Island. Only one is known to have survived and Nickey Chicago listed it for sale in St. Charles, Illinois. This 1973 MOTION Corvette Manta Ray GT by Joel Rosen appeared in our July 10th newsletter. It featured modified body work, a dramatic MOTION paint scheme, Hooker headers/sidepipes, original interior and a Motion-built 350/350 Corvette small block 425 horsepower engine backed by a beefy 400 Turbo Hydramatic transmission with street shift kit. Joel Rosen’s legacy began with a career in drag racing and continued into an aftermarket empire that made MOTION Performance an internationally known name. MOTION Corvettes built by Rosen are among the most valuable of the MOTION Performance cars produced, and this one appeared in print magazines as well as television programs before showing up for sale here.
1972 Foose Dodge Challenger
One of the most watched episodes of Chip Foose’s TLC show, Overhaulin followed Foose as he built the 1972 Foose Dodge Challenger that ended up for sale on Cars On Line in July. It began as a project car purchased in Florida and was a father-son restoration effort that never took off. Years later, the son “confessed” to his father that the car had been lost in a street race. In reality, he had arranged for it to appear on Overhaulin where it received the attention it deserved from Foose and his A Team at the SEMA Convention in Las Vegas before a live audience. The resto mod demanded shaved bumpers, shaved door handles, a Bowler Racing transmission, Gear Vendors overdrive, Ride Tech Air Ride suspension, one-off Foose wheels, Baer brakes and Magna Flow exhaust. It also had a new 392 Hemi 6.4L engine, the first one released by Chrysler in 2006. It put 525 horsepower to the rear wheels!
1962 Ferrari 250 PF Cabriolet
The 1962 Ferrari 250 PF Cabriolet from Exotic Classics.com in Syosset, New York was an easy pick for the first newsletter in September. 2014 saw the demand for classic Ferraris on the rise, so it was a no-brainer to feature this elegant exotic sports cars when it rolled into the Cars On Line listings. The dealership told us the deep black 250 PF Cabriolet had been restored to Platinum-level standards by renowned experts and was awarded the Best Ferrari trophy at the 2012 Greenwich Concours. The 250 PF Cabriolet is often mistaken for the Ferrari California Spider, because they look so similar. Mechanically they’re identical with Ferrari’s famous 4-liter V12, 4-speed manual transmission and electric overdrive. Click the link above to learn more!
Dick Landy 1964 Dodge 330
In October the famous Dick Landy 1964 Dodge 330 was listed for sale in Cars On Line’sMopar Section. This is the car Pete “Mr. Hemi” Haldiman called “The First Funny Car”because champion drag racer Dick Landy tinkered with the wheelbase, making it the first altered-wheelbase car that was called a “Funny Car.” Since then many Mopar historians have referred to this old Dodge as the First Funny Car, including the National Hemi Owners Association in “HEMI NEWS” April 1989. The Dick Landy 1964 Dodge 330 factory lightweight Super Stock with aluminum front end and 426 Hemi is one of about 55 such cars produced for top level racers such as Landy. Click here for more history on the historic Dick Landy 1964 Dodge 330 on the Cars On Line Blog.
1969 AMC Hurst SC-Rambler
The first Cars On Line Newsletter in November featured a 1969 AMC Hurst SC-Rambler from American Muscle Cars in Crystal Lake, Illinois. Documented as “fully restored” in the 1512 Registry, the “A” scheme Rambler Scrambler we featured in November was rare beyond belief! The dealership told us it was one of only 26 “A” paint scheme Rambler Scramblers listed in the 1512 Registry in fully restored condition. And fully restored it was! The ad reported the vehicle had been fully restored to concourse condition, including the undercarriage. Today collectors are paying more attention to the Rambler Scrambler, because it’s a rare piece of muscle car history.For a more comprehensive report and history on this incredible muscle car, click this link to the Cars On Line Blog.
Mr Norm’s 1965 Dodge A990 Super Stock
November also introduced our readers to Mr Norm’s 1965 Dodge A990 Super Stock from a collector out of Boca Raton, Florida. It was not a clone, but a beautifully restored real deal W051 A990 race car that was ordered by and delivered to Mr Norm’s Grand Spaulding Dodge in Chicago. As car collectors know, a Mr Norm delivered car adds over $10,000 to the value on any Mopar. But with the 1965 Dodge Coronet A990, the value was inestimable. It was a true museum quality, factory built lightweight race car whose sole purpose in life was to win the NHRA Super Stock Drag Racing. It came with a legendary A990 Race Hemi, equipped with aluminum heads, magnesium cross ram intake and a pair of Holley Carburetors topped with velocity stacks that mated to the hood scoop. We were told this particular example was one of the very few surviving ’65 A990s fully restored to as close to factory original as practical.
1953 Buick Skylark Convertible
During the early post-war 1950’s GM’s Buick Division decided to introduce a bold new design for their 50th Anniversary. Buick premiered the all new 1953 Buick Skylark Convertible and the world has never been quite the same since. Legendary Motorcar Company offered this 1953 Buick Skylark Convertible for sale from the esteemed Triple Crown Collection in December. It was presented in Majestic White exterior paint and luxuriously fitted with “soft-tanned choice cowhide” in a two tone black and white pattern. The 1953 Buick Skylark Convertible had tremendous appeal to the American car buying public. Even those who couldn’t afford one had to admire its progressive features. This one had a 322 cu. in. 188 horsepower Fireball V8 engine with an airpower carburetor under the hood. Buick’s new Fireball Eight had the largest-bore engine in the past 25 years. It was, however, the most expensive of GM’s luxury car lineup that year, more expensive even than the Cadillac Eldorado.