1. Jaguar E-Type Roadster designed by Sir William Lyons, Malcolm Sayer and William M. Heynes, 1963
No surprises here. The Jaguar E-Type is considered by many car aficionados as the most beautiful car ever made. The two-seat roadster with foldaway top was the fastest production sports car on the market in 1961. Its most prominent feature is the bulbous, never-ending hood that compliments the body structure’s subtle, swelling curves and depressions. Powered by either a 3.8-litre straight-six or a 4.2-litre straight-six (depending on model) the E-Type certainly had the power to match its exotic looks.
2. Cisitalia 202 GT Car designed by Pinin Farina, 1946
The Cisitalia’s design acumen is the epitome of post-war automobile design. Inspired by the aerodynamics of racing cars and fashioned from a single shell, it was seen as an aesthetic and technical achievement. Due to the time-consuming process of shaping aluminium panels over wooden forms, only 170 models were produced between 1947 and 1952. Each vehicle was handcrafted.
3. Volkswagen Type 1 sedan (Beetle) designed by Ferdinand Porsche and Volkswagenwerk, 1959
The Beetle is arguably one of the most recognisable vehicles in the world. Its basic form has undergone very little changes since its introduction in 1938. Its design can be traced back to Ferdinand Porsche who felt the need to produce an affordable, pragmatic car for the people. The Beetle’s design was inspired largely by aerodynamics and an economical use of steel, and a rear-mounted, air-cooled boxer engine contributed much to the car’s success.
4. Ferrari Formula 1 Racing Car 641/2 designed by Johan Barnard (body) and S.p.A. Ferrari (chassis), 1990
This specific Ferrari was raced by Alain Prost in the 1990 season. Every part of this car serves a purpose; from the engine to the wings it’s a veritable speed machine. The car’s form – from wings to wing mirrors – is inspired by the way air flows over its body – not only does the airflow keep the car from becoming airborne, it keeps the engine cool, too.
5. Jeep (M38A1) designed by Willys-Overland Motors, 1952
The Jeep is an iconic machine – the essential utilitarian workhorse. Known as the Truck: utility 1/4 ton 4×4, it later adopted the name Jeep. It was invented in 1940 when the US army issued specifications for a compact and powerful all-terrain vehicle. At the time, the Jeep was one of the most technologically advanced machines – it remained in production for sixteen years and influenced the design for future Jeeps for more than 30 years.
6. Smart Car designed by Micro Compact Car smart GmbH, 1998
The Smart car may be the odd one out in this collection but it’s actually one of the most revolutionary vehicles ever produced. Measuring in at eight feet, the Smart car is the ultimate urban transporter able to traverse the complex road system of the city with aplomb. With nearly half a million Smart Cars having been manufactured, it’s become quite a ubiquitous vehicle in Europe. You’ll sometimes see two Smart Cars occupying a conventional parking bay.