1936 Bugatti Type 57 Atalante

The 1936 Bugatti Type 57 Atalante was the fourth body style created for the Type 57 series. It served as an interpretation of the 1935 Aérolithe Coupe upon which the Type 57 Atlantic was heavily based on. The expensive and time-consuming methods used to create the Atlantic’s unusual body prompted the company to create a revision of sorts that was somewhat more practical for series production. Nevertheless, only 17 of these vehicles were ever made with no two Atalantes the same, making them extraordinarily rare and extremely valuable.

The Type 57 Atalante is easily distinguishable thanks to its unique styling cues, many of them visually separating the Atalante from its fellow Type 57 body styles. The Atalante makes heavy use of the two-tone paint scheme favored by Jean Bugatti, a feature that serves to further accentuate the prominent French curve on the side of the vehicle. The most distinctive feature of the Type 57 Atalante is its single-piece windscreen, kidney-bean side windows, split rear window and its unique drop head-style roofline. A rare version of the Atalante featured a roll-back roof for open-air motoring.

1936 Bugatti Type 57 Atalante Roll Back RoofThe first batch of Atalante bodies was built on the regular Type 57 chassis. Later Atalantes were built on the Type 57S (Surbaisse) chassis, featuring a lower ride height than other Type 57 variants. Out of necessity, the rear axle passes through the chassis, supported by reversed quarter-elliptic leaf springs for improved ride compliance. The Type 57S also made use of self-adjusting DeRam hydraulic shocks at the front and rear. The Type 57S Atalante further distinguishes itself with an ovoid radiator with a deep v-shape at its bottom.

Bugatti made use of naturally aspirated 3.3-liter straight eight-cylinder engine. Fitted with dual overhead cams and a Stromberg carburetor, the 3.3-liter engine produced 135 horsepower and 181 pound-feet of torque. The use of a Roots-type supercharger helped push engine output to a more sporting 170 horsepower. This engine sits on rubber bushings in the Type 57S chassis, whereas the original Type 57 featured the engine as a stressed member of the chassis.

The Type 57 Atalante is by far one of the rarest and most exquisite of the vehicles produced under Bugatti. Four examples of this unique vehicle currently sit at the Cité de l’Automobile Museum in Mulhouse, France.

1936 Bugatti Type 57 Atalante Photo Gallery

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1960 Porsche RS60

1960 Porsche RS60

Porsche has always been associated with speed, power, and performance. When the racing industry modified its requirements for auto design, Porsche quickly complied with the 1960 Porsche RS60. The FIA requirements mandated more interior room, a more pronounced windshield, and bigger doors. These requirements resulted in the RS60, which incorporated a longer and wider wheelbase. The expansion of the steel chassis created a heavier vehicle, so to compensate for the added weight, a smaller tire diameter was incorporated.

The RS60 was available in 1.5, 1.6, and 1.7 liter engines which made it adaptable to the Formula Racing. The most common engine type utilized was the 1.5 liter Type 547/3 engine. This was a quad cam engine normally aspirated with 5 speed manual transmission. The Twin Weber 46IDM1 carburetors helped to maximize peak fuel flow for blistering times of the day. The aluminum body sits atop a steel spaceframe with alterations made to minimize excess weight.

The double wishbone suspension was very popular among racing vehicles of the time. The RS60 also featured front and rear magneseum drum brakes. With close to an 87 inch wheel base, this little power house gave everything expected of a Porsche in terms of performance. The top speed reached by this beautiful racing machine is 143 mph, which for the time period was considered to be fast.

Racing and auto enthusiasts can truly appreciate the magnitude of a performance machine with the status of Porsche. The name itself embodies automotive excellence. The Porsche RS60 encountered such success that it was later modified further and offered as the RS61. Though it did not offer much in the way of new or innovative technology to the automobile industry, it is a successful advancement in the world of racing. The 1960 Porsche RS60 provided serious competition to the Ferraris and Mazarattis it competed against.

1960 Porsche RS60 Photo Gallery

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1932 Auburn V-12 Speedsteer

1932 Auburn V12 Speedsteer

The 1932 Auburn V-12 Speedster was a classic beauty that was people of the time were afraid to buy because there was a thought that the low sticker price meant less quality. This was not at all the case as this perfection of machinery weighed in just below 5,000 pounds and could reach a top speed of 99 mph. What was even more incredible about this beauty was the fact that it was built for high speed cruising. Indeed the purchasers were receiving an excellent value for the $975 investment.

1932 Auburn V-12 Speedsteer Hood OrnamentBuilt for speed and comfort, the 1932 Auburn V-12 Speedster was designed for fast acceleration and incorporated a number of features distinguishing the car from its competitors. The steel body was built on top of a type x ladder frame. Semi-elliptic springs with hydraulic shocks and a rigid axle maintained suspension.

The speedster boasted a Dual ratio three speed manual gearbox. A lever at the dash allowed the driver to switch from a low to high ratio in each of the three gears. The gears were able to be changed when traveling at speeds below 40 mph. This differential of 4.5 and 3.0 allowed the car to operate more efficiently and burn less fuel and oil. Close to 6.5 liters were displaced by this massive engine, and with 160 bhp at 3500 rpm, the ride was sweet.

This automobile was a symbol of speed, elegance, and forward thinking. It took the best of features available in the automotive industry and combined them to give a stunning vehicle. The production of this classic is just over 2000 in total, but in every aspect, it is deserving of the classic label. It incorporated ideas before their time, and kept the needs of the driver in view. From sleek design to outstanding performance, this machine is something to marvel at.

1932 Auburn V-12 Speedsteer Photo Gallery


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