*Photo Credit: DeansGarage.com
Since I was a kid I’ve always been intrigued with automobile design. The lines, the power and the functionality of these machines just always seemed magical to me. I picture art on four wheels and in three dimensions, not on flat canvases that hang in stuffy museums. Have you ever looked at the tail-fins on a 1959 Cadillac Eldorado, the nose of a 1958 250 Ferrari Testa Rossa, or simply just stopped to gaze at a 1961 E-Type Jaguar. These machines are simply beautiful and for the enthusiast are the stuff that dreams are made of. There have been times however when pure function has taken place over form with the byproduct being an automobile that no one ever expected. I picked out a few cars that I feel fall into that category and that should, in the end, raise a few eyebrows as well.
• Mercedes-Benz CLK-GTR
Originally intended to race in FIA GT Championship, the Mercedes-Benz CLK-GTR was powered by a 6.9-liter 612 hp V12. To comply with homologation, only 35 road cars were ever built, making these machines not only rare, but true race cars for the street.
• 1969 Dodge Daytona
Like the Mercedes-Benz above it, the 1969 Dodge Daytona came about because of strict homologation rules for Nascar racing in the late 1960’s. The Dodge Chargers built between 1968-1970 are considered to be some of the most beautiful cars ever made, so when Dodge grafted on a nose cone and 4-foot wing on to them, lets just say some people didn’t agree. You’ve got to admit though, it does have character.
• Comparo T1
*Photo Credit: DrewPhillipsPhotography.com
Even though the Camparo T1 was never intended to be a race car, it was inspired by Formula 1 design. The Comparo T1 is mid-engine, British built and is without a doubt the most outlandish road cars ever conceived.
• Ariel Atom
What we have here is a basically a engine that is bolted to a bunch of indoor plumbing. The Ariel Atom was designed purely to go fast and handle great, looks be damned. It does 0-60 mph in under 3-seconds, and if you can keep your skin from peeling off, will take you up to a top speed of 200 mph (V8 version).