Classics By The Beach – May 2013

It’s the first Sunday of the month and that means Classics By The Beach. It started as a cold day, but that didn’t stop some hardy classic car owners from gathering under blue skies down at Sandy Bay once again. A few of the old stagers were there, but there are always new cars to see. Here are the best of them for this month.

My personal favourites from today were the Ferrari Dino and the Porche 356 Super 90. The Dino, especially, simply oozed class. Its curves were magnificent and my only regret is not being able to hang around long enough to hear it start up.

My favourite image is of the Porsche Spyder replica’s dashboard, with what has to be the prettiest tachometer ever made. Just outstanding. It was an unintended bonus to end up with 3 Porsches in that photo.

My apologies for the sub-standard photos. The conditions weren’t great for the compact camera I was using. And also apologies for not knowing all the names and models. I’ll do better next time, I promise. Enjoy!

Classics By The Beach – April 2013
Classics By The Beach – March 2013

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  1. I liked seeing the pic of the Fiat X1/9 after almost 30 years. I test drove one when I was in my teens but didn’t buy it. I think they were asking $500 at the time. It would have been an interesting option except that it needed a clutch and had lots of wiring hanging under the dash.

    I also like the red Jaguar. It is surprisingly similar to the modern S-Type. A nice looking car. I also noticed that the seats in the red Jag looked almost identical to those in my XJ40. Did the owner say anything about transplanting seats from another car? Or perhaps they just kept the same style all these years?

    1. Didn’t get to chat to him, Andy. Nice Jag, though. There are always a few nice Jags there.

  2. I think that Tasmania’s version of a “cold day” differs from Canada’s version.
    Always good to see a nice DS.

    1. It’s a change of seasons, I guess. I’m feeling it at the moment. Cold mornings leading into nice days. The DS was nice. I wish he’d left the window open so I could get a photo of the inside.

    1. Special Interest plates mean you’re restricted to 52 logged drives per year (the assumption being one day per week). Special Interest plates also mean cheaper registration, which is good.

      Generally speaking, the car has to be more than 30 years old to get SI plates. I think there are some other criteria that can get a younger car plated as an SI car, but I’m not sure what the rules are (probably rarity, LHD and importation).

  3. An X1/9 that did not rust away? How did that happen?

    Had a 1975 X1/9 that barely lasted 5 years, before the suspension mounts and quarter panels rusted through. Patched the car up just enough to get USD$500.00 for it towards my 1980 900 Turbo purchase.

    An extremely fun car to own and drive, but those Fiats back then were made from the worst steel I have ever seen usen in a car.

    1. A college friend had an X1/9 that lasted through to 1987 (at least), but it was a Southern car. Tasmania would be about the same climate, with more salt air.

      I agree that the French and Italian cars in the 1970’s were particularly prone to rust. One day I’m going to find the time to figure that out. My current theory is that stamping technology was getting more sophisticated and the OEMs either used softer metals to make stamping even easier or that the metal used in the newer stamping process was prone to stress cracking which would lead to interstitial corrosion, a particularly insidious destroyer of plate steel.

      1. Metal quality was famously an issue for Italian cars in the 1970s, but I think that a bigger problem is that early unibodies were not designed with proper drainage. Some hidden areas weren’t even painted.

        Japanese cars of the era were just as bad. A few more survived because they were more popular on the west coast, whereas French, Italian and British cars were more popular on the east coast.

        1. Another factor for sure. Once again, it maps back to the stamping technology that allowed for unibody construction in the first place.

          Once again, is the metal quality BEFORE or AFTER the stamping? That’s the question that I’m asking.

          One day……

        2. Should have mentioned that American unibody cars of the era also had terrible rust issues. Ford Pintos and Chevy Vegas were famous for rusting away after a few winters.
          Unibody issues have mostly been solved, but not completely. For instance, all 1st-gen Imprezas will rust where the rear wheel arch meets the bumper. GM minivans have worse door sills than 70s Alfas did, etc.

  4. Very good collection of vehicles, yes. You know that the Jensen is probably still my favorite, but I do love the Jaguar E-Type. What a motoring icon.

    Throw in the 1959 Cadillac, which is about as Cadillac a Cadillac that ever Cadillacked, and you’ve got a great group of cars, no doubt about it.