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The 1960s were a golden era for the automotive industry. From the first Ford Mustang to the Chevrolet Corvette and Jaguar E-type, the '60s saw the introduction of some truly iconic classic cars.
While some people see the '60s as an era of muscle cars, others consider it the golden age of sports cars. Here are the best '60s sports cars based on performance and power, as reported by Road and Track.
The E-Type is the most famous sports car Jaguar ever built, not just because of its classic looks but also its outstanding performance. The E-Type's design was revolutionary and was even named the most beautiful car by Enzo Ferrari.
It avoided traditional automotive styling, instead featuring sleek, aerodynamic lines inspired by aircraft. Inside, the E-Type featured stark, sleek minimalist styling, making the driving experience even more thrilling.
From 1961 to 1975, the E-Type was the quintessential British sports car. The Jaguar E-Type Series 1 featured two different inline six-engines and a 3.8-liter with non-synchromesh transmission between 1961 and 1964. From 1965 to 1967, the car had a 4.2-liter engine with a fully synchronized transmission.
The E-Type's 4.2-liter straight-six engine produced 265 horsepower. That might not sound like much by today's standards, but it was enough to propel the Jaguar from 0-60 mph in 8.3 seconds and achieve a top speed of 150 mph. Its styling was very much ahead of its time, and it remained so for decades, inspiring designers in other industries.
Ferrari 250 GTO
MORE: 5 Most Popular '60s Cars
The Ferrari 250 GTO took the '60s by storm. It’s one of Enzo Ferrari's earlier designs and was in production from 1962 to 1964. The car was initially conceived as a successor to the Ferrari 250 MM and was focused on the FIA's Group 3 Grand Touring Car category. It won virtually every racing competition in which it was eligible, including the 1963 24 Hours of Le Mans.
The GTO's 3.0-liter Tipo 168/62 V-12 engine produced 298 horsepower, hitting 0-60 mph in 4.6 seconds and reaching a top speed of 160 mph. It was powered by a dry-sump system, which allowed the engine to sit lower in the car, creating better aerodynamics.
Only 36 of these cars were built, and today the car is one of the most valuable and collectible models in the world. When it was first released, it only cost $18,000, but now it's worth millions of dollars. One of them sold for a whopping $70 million in 2018, according to CNN.
In the 2004 Sports Car International event, the 250 GTO was placed eighth on its list of "Top Sports Cars of the 1960s."
Aston Martin DB5
The DB5 was Aston Martin's first foray into grand touring cars, and it scored major success between 1963 and 1965.
The DB5 became popular due to its appearance in the James Bond film Goldfinger where it was driven by Sean Connery. It features a beautiful design, a plush interior, and incredible performance.
Powered by a 4.0-liter DOHC I-6 engine that produced 282 horsepower, it could do 0-60 mph in 7.1 seconds and hit a top speed of 145 mph. Aston Martin built less than 900 DB5s during the model's three-year production run, but there's no doubt that they were among the most desirable sports cars of the 1960s. Today, the DB5 is worth millions of dollars, and recently James Bond’s DB5 sold for $6.4 million, according to New York Post.
Insure your '60s sports car
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