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That other '69 Charger

When you think of a '69 Charger many of us think of the Dukes' Dodge named General Lee (who made headlines once more last week). But there is another '69 Charger that got famous on the silver screen. It's the star car in 'Dirty Mary Crazy Larry' - a 1974 film that is not as bad as it may seem. Hinting in the title to Dirty Harry (1971) it has all the ingredients of an all-American 1970s heist: two cool guys, a robbery, a girl of reproachable behaviour, a fast car, lots of police pursuit vehicles and of course: many, many screeching tyres, whether the cars are driving on tarmac or on gravel roads. Oh - and it stars Peter Fonda too. The full film can be watched online (it is in fact just one mouse click away...) but if you are interested in the Charger alone, it's good to know somebody has made the effort to edit all the Charger scenes into a five minute movie - as above. Enjoy!

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

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King Farouk’s bread and butter car

King Farouk’s bread and butter car
Dictators, despots, autocrats and totalitarians have a taste for expensive cars. Nothing new to that. And the late King Farouk of Egypt was certainly no exception. He owned a plethora of exclusive four-wheelers. Among them a Mercedes 540K that he’d received as a wedding gift from Adolf Hitler; a Figoni et Falaschi (edit: Saoutchik. Edit2: not Saoutchik but another car thean the one pictured here! see comments) bodied 1947 Bentley Mk6 that he supposedly continued to drive on the island of Capri where he was exiled to in 1952; a Ghia bodied 1952 Ferrari 212 Inter that ended up in the US after only a year and even the futuristic Dan LaLee Streamliner Special.

But there were more. Many more (just one line up here). Some more mundane ones, too. And Coys now offers another one of those. It’s an Austin A90 convertible which was first delivered in April of 1950, finished in Seafoam Green with Maize trim, and supplied with an optional radio, which is still fitted today. Unlike most of the other cars, Farouk is said to have taken the A90 on his later exile to Switzerland, where it later fell into the hands of an A90 enthusiast.

Coys: “In the late 1990s the Atlantic was repatriated into the UK and the long term of ownership of a Mr. David Wilkins, who commissioned a comprehensive restoration over the coming years. After completion the car was then shown on the club stand at the 2014 NEC Classic Car Show. A well known car in Atlantic circles, this nicely restored example, finished in Ice Blue metallic with a Royal Blue leather interior, is supplied with a file of invoices, correspondence, copies of previous title documents, a newly issued MoT certificate, original parts and service manuals and even its original Egyptian registration plate. An interesting choice for the collector, with a fascinating history.” Worth the 32- to 42,000 GBP estimate?

(Words editor, pictures Coys of Kensington)

  

Tuesday, 11 July 2017

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Thank you Volvo, for our tree-point belts

Thank you Volvo, for our tree-point belts
Remember the days that you drove off to your holiday destination without any of the passengers wearing seat belts during a hundreds of miles journey? We have come a long way since. In fact the three-point seat belt was patented on this day in 1962. That’s exactly 55 years ago. The man responsible for the invention of the saftely belt is Nils Ivar Bohlin (then and now), who was contracted to do so by the Volvo Car Corporation. Bohlin had previously worked in the Swedish aviation industry, which had given him experience with safety belts. In cars, they were mostly limited to race car drivers though, and if they did wear seat belts, they were of the two-point type.

Trouble with these was that they caused severe internal injuries in the event of a high-speed crash. Bohlin designed his three-point system with the idea to strap the upper part of the body to the seat too. He did so in less than a year and Volvo introduced it on its cars as early as in 1959. And they’re keen on it ever since. The patent was filed on July 10, 1962 at the U.S. Patent Office. Volvo was nice enough to release the system to other car manufacturers though, and the three-point system quickly became the worldwide standard. By the late 1960s most countries required them on new cars. The laws to wear them followed later, with Australia first in line (1970) and Myanmar coming as the very last (2017!).

(Words editor, pictures Volvo PR)

Monday, 10 July 2017

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Tough to crack car puzzle #162

Tough to crack car puzzle #162
This is a fascinating car. And there is a lot to tell about it. In fact there is so much to tell, you could fill a complete book with its story. Hang on, that just happened! It came out not too long ago and shows a plethora of photographs and information. And that’s exactly what we’d like from you. Please do pick out what you think is the best only, as you know, we limit your answers to one hundred words only. So come on with your facts and figures, but turn them into a nice little story for us. We’ll give you some ‘handles to hold on to’: Who were behind this project? Where were they based and what was this place’ influence on the car? What was its name and nickname? Base? What happened to the car and its builders afterwards? All can be found freely on the web, but perhaps you have the book or know even more. Click for the rules below first, please. And enjoy the weekend for now!

Saturday, 08 July 2017

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