Whether you’re a sucker for the lines of an E Type Jag, or can’t get enough of the sheer lunacy of the Lamborghini Diablo, everyone’s got a dream car. But is it great? Have a look at these five superb vehicles and see if you can add your own favourite to the list…
The Jaguar E Type
It looks like a fish, it moves like a fish and steers like a cow… The E Type Jaguar (or Jaguar E Type) was the brainchild of Malcolm Sayer, a long unsung hero of car design whose backroom boy style meant he was never really acknowledged for the most famous car shape ever while he was alive. The E Type was hailed by Enzo Ferrari, a man who knew about these things (and whose own Dino appears in this list) as the most beautiful car in history – and that long nose still excites today.
The Ferrari Dino
Interestingly, the most desirable Ferrari ever was intended to be an affordable alternative to the upmarket sports cars produced by the brand. Initially a Fiat designed mid engine racer, the final production model was developed by legendary Italian designer Sergio Pininfarina, and now enjoys fame as one of the most sought after Ferraris in the classic car market. The Dino 246 GTS combines extraordinary looks with manageable handling, and still turns heads even in the company of more modern two seaters.
The Volkswagen Golf
While modern incarnations of the Golf are fat and sluggish, the original had everything the average driver wanted from a car: space enough for a small family, lean good looks and reliable power. The classic incarnations of the Golf GTI still attract a loyal following and command spectacular second hand prices. The most recent Golfs are starting to move back towards the design and engineering successes that marked out their predecessors, though the larger body size of the Golf Plus disturbs the purist. Still the flagship VW despite the popularity of other models, and one of the best-loved hatchbacks ever built.
The Audi Quattro
The first production car to feature four wheel drive, the Audi Quattro enjoyed a resurgence in popularity thanks to the BBC series Ashes to Ashes (the follow up to Life on Mars), in which Gene Hunt drove an immaculate red one. There have actually been a bunch of different Quattro models, because the word simply refers to the 4WD capability (it’s Italian for “four” – though why Audi, a German car brand, chose to use the Italian rather than the German is anyone’s guess!) – the original and best is the chunky monster from the TV series, which now fetches astronomical second hand prices.
The Honda Civic
Routinely voted in the top cars for reliability and cost effective driving, the much-loved Civic has undergone a number of facelifts in its life. Classic shapes include the boxy 80s model and the Rover doppelganger in production from the late 1990s to the early 2000s. The Type R Civic is still seen as one of the hottest hatches ever built. Drive it to its full capabilities regularly, though, and you’ll be needing a cheap tyre comparison site almost every week!
The Author is a professional motoring journalist, who used to work behind the scenes at one of the most famous motoring TV programmes ever made. Now a fulltime online and print writer, his articles have been published on hundreds of high authority sites (including the homepages of the aforementioned programme!). He drives a Honda Civic.