Mention classic American cars and the mind is drawn back to the 1950s. The Classic Car Club of America labels cars built before 1959 as classics. That tag is certainly deserved for cars built and designed during that decade as the American automobile manufacturers revolutionised the designs and technology of cars.
Names of the vintage American cars of the 1950s resonate to this very day. The Oldsmobile Rocket 88 Convertible, the Chevrolet Corvette and Bel Air Convertibles, the Dodge B500 Hardtop, the Studebaker Golden Hawk and the Cadillac Convertible and Seville – hallmarks of luxury – remain great examples of American automobile design of that era.
The design of American cars during the 1950s was spectacular and their engines were powerful, and good example of that was the Oldsmobile Rocket. Produced initially in 1950 the vehicle was powered by a V8 engine and at the time was the most powerful automobile on the road.
Another name synonymous with classic American cars of the 1950s is Chevrolet. Chevy’s Bel Air range became one of the most popular vehicles for American motorists with sales hitting the 100000 mark during 1951. Chevrolet followed the trend for fins and chrome and by 1957 rolled out the Bel Air Convertible, which was to remain popular into the next decade.
The 1950s saw the rise of car designers with the ability to wave their magic on the drawing boards and design the cars which appealed to the American public. One such designer was Virgil Exner who led to the likes of Dodge being able to produce what are now renowned as classics from that era.
With the American motorist demanding regular change in style, companies such as Studebaker were happy to oblige. In 1957 they produced one of the all time great automobiles, the Silver Hawk.
The Silver Hawk had plenty of varieties to tempt the dollars out of the wallets of the automobile loving public, coming in the Flight Hawk, Power Hawk, Gold Hawk as well as in a hard topped range.
Mention of great American Cars of the 1950s often brings to mind the name Cadillac, a brand associated with luxury and opulence. By 1957 the Cadillac Eldorado Brougham was retailing at an eye watering $ 13000, a huge amount in those days. No wonder that the Cadillac range was associated with the stars of the era, and it will always be labelled a classic.