擁有古董車的原因 ~ 活在黃金年代 | RELIVE THE GOLDEN AGE





Car enthusiast always talks about the one that got away, the dream car when they were young, the cars they couldn’t afford or the car they should have bought or even the ones their father used to drive.


People look back on the glories and decade-defining highlights of some cars or a memorable time they missed and start collecting the cars to relive the past. Was the car a smash hit at the time, historically important, and did it change the game or exert a huge influence? Or simply because the car has a special meaning to you and you alone. The reasons are countless.


If you try to figure out what the Golden Age of cars was, you will never get the answer, because the truth is that ever since World War II, we've lived in something of an endless Golden Age. Every decade, we celebrate the cutting edge of automotive design of iconic cars from the world's most admired marques.


自二戰結束後,我們已一直活在「黃金年代」,每個年代我們都會追捧一些代表着汽車工業技術尖端的作品,車迷常說他們錯過了一些年輕時的夢想之車。很多時候,人們總喜歡回顧不同年代的汽車設計和特點,希望尋回那個年代的光輝感覺。今次就跟大家細說筆者認為每個年代改變車壇的代表作。」


Published in FEB 2020 Classic & Sports Car Magazine | Written by Kenneth E Y Wong


KENNETH WONG 黃恩揚- Classic insider 創辦人,經營高級經典及跑車買賣。對處理高檔車種擁有豐富經驗。曾是香港首間經典車拍賣行的營運總監。經常參與高端古董及跑車的相關活動,貼近市場脈搏

今期就說一下人們收藏古董車的第三個原因。自二戰結束後,我們已一直活在「黃金年代」,每個年代我們都會追捧一些代表着汽車工業技術尖端的作品,車迷常說他們錯過了一些年輕時的夢想之車。很多時候,人們總喜歡回顧不同年代的汽車設計和特點,希望尋回那個年代的光輝感覺。今次就跟大家細說筆者認為每個年代改變車壇的代表作。

我們由四十年代說起,第一代 Willys Jeep 會是當時的代表作。它是一部容易保養、堅固耐勞的好車。時至今日,大家也不得不讚嘆它在形態和功能上的完美結合。

到五十年代,我會選雪鐵龍DS。它可謂象徵二戰後法國汽車工業的大復興。憑着超前衛的科技和設計,DS一直都代表法國人對汽車設計的那份獨有態度。DS具代表性的外形、先進的液壓氣動式避震、以及無數雪鐵龍獨有的設計元素,令DS成為一部真正與眾不同的經典汽車。

經濟發展騰飛的六十年代,福士 Beetle 絕對是名留青史的車款。「人民之車」是 Volks-Wagen 原本的初心和意思,亦是保時捷先生(Ferdinand Porsche)為納粹德國所創造的大眾化汽車。Beetle 捱過了二戰,成為六十年代最受歡迎的汽車。


七十年代是汽車工業發展得非常蓬勃的一個時期,當時本田則推出了改變汽車世界的Civic。當日本車初登陸美國時,底特律幾大汽車業巨頭都不斷嘲笑這些單薄且慳油的日本小車。直至Civic1973年面世時,美國人正面對石油危機,突然變得珍貴和昂貴的汽油,讓美國人反思自己一直追捧的「大牛龜」。同一年代誕生的林寶堅尼 Countach,亦是經典作品之一。儘管 Miura 是車廠第一款超跑,但只有Countach才稱得上把超級跑車發揚光大。它配備林寶堅尼傳奇的Bizzarini V12引擎,由 Marcello Gandini 執筆設計的起角車身、向上開啟的鉸剪門,令 Countach 成為經典文化象徽。


來到八十年代,日本車廠再次強攻美國,亦使凌志LS400成為代表作。其實,美國豪華車市場源於列根年代,一開始是流行美國豪華車如林肯。後來如寶馬和平治等德國車廠的出現,將豪華車的追求從質素和性能,轉移至身份地位的象徵。其後凌志的加入,豐田用了極大人力物力才能跟平治一戰。凌志LS400的出現可謂一鳴驚人,在美國市場跟平治和寶馬平起平坐。雖然本田旗下的極品才是第一家嘗試打進美國豪華車市場的日本車廠,Infiniti亦跟隨其後,但只有凌志才真正取得成功。

九十年代,車壇出現了一部前所未見的汽車,它就是麥拿侖F1。它可謂象徵整個九十年代汽車業科技的尖端,這部英國超跑不但成功開展碳纖物料運用的進程。新車當年以81萬美元(即現在約120萬美元)的身價,成為世上最昂貴的新車。更甚的是,F1使用的寶馬V12引擎,輕鬆爆發出627匹馬力,387km/h的極速紀錄更幾乎保持了足足十年。由於F1實在太厲害,它參加199524小時勒芒耐力賽時,只需作輕微改裝便已勝出,更壟斷了頭五名位置。


進入千禧年代,豐田Prius也許紀錄了時代的趨勢。雖然首代Prius1997年誕生,但它在千禧年代大幅流行起來。豐田用了多年時間、耗資數十億元去開發一部配備Hybrid Synergy Drive的平實四門家庭房車,是全球首款商業性油電混能車。一夜之間,顧客終於可以擁有一部極度慳油的豐田,大大減低碳排放。


這個年代第二部影響世界的車是保時捷Cayenne。近代SUV雖以九十年代後期推出的寶馬X5奠定基礎,但保時捷將自己的造車哲學融入SUV之中,強調SUVSsport),證明SUV也能像跑車一樣。當時很多人相信保時捷造SUV會做垮自己的品牌,但Cayenne的出現,並沒有令保時捷蒙羞,它很快便獲得車主的愛戴和認同。

說到我們剛送走的二零一零年代,代表作一定是Tesla Model STeslaCEO Elon Musk透過車廠首部車Roadster,向世人證明電動車不一定是美化版本的高爾夫球車,它們可以是速度和性感的化身。Model STesla首部完全自家設計的作品,不少外國車媒如《Motor Trend》都將它評為2013年度風雲車。多年來Tesla一直為Model S更新馬達性能和續航力。現行的P100D,起步時間可輕鬆跑贏傳統超級跑車,可見其厲害。


Why we collect car? Reason #3 Collecting cars from different Eras that Defined Each Decade


For every decade, new cars have been incredible: gorgeous, innovative, powerful, and more reliable and affordable.


If you try to figure out what the Golden Age of cars was, you will never get the answer, because the truth is that ever since World War II, we've lived in something of an endless Golden Age. Every decade, we celebrates the cutting edge of automotive design of iconic cars from the world's most admired marques.


Car enthusiast always talks about the one that got away, the dream car when they were young, the cars they couldn’t afford or the car they should have bought or even the ones their father used to drive.


I thought I would like to discuss another reason why people like to collect cars: People look back on the glories and decade-defining highlights of some cars or a memorable time they missed and start collecting the cars to relive the past.


Was the car a smash hit at the time, historically important, and did it change the game or exert a huge influence? Or simply because the car has a special meaning to you and you alone. The reasons are countless.


Let’s explore some games changed and decade defining automobiles from each decade.

The 1940s: Original Jeep


Willys Jeep is one of the vehicles that is simple, easy to maintain, tough, ready for action. It was used by the military as a scout car, so it saw front-line duty. Study it today and you can't help but be impressed at its perfect combination of form and function.

The 1950s: Citroën DS

The Citroën DS marked France's automotive comeback after World War II. Ahead of its time in both technology and styling, the DS has and will always be considered a pinnacle of the peculiar Gallic aesthetic attitude toward cars: sleek, suave, worldly. It's iconic styling, advanced hydropneumatic suspension, and numerous Citroën design quirks made the DS truly unique. 


The 1960s: Volkswagen Beetle


The "people's car," as the Volks-Wagen was originally defined, was created by Ferdinand Porsche at the behest of Nazi Germany for a cheap vehicle for everyone. Porsche went on to found that other company that bore his name, while the Beetle survived the German World War II defeat to become one of the most popular cars of the 1960s.

Eventually, the VW Beetle would go out of production — 2003 was the final year — but not before 21 million had been sold.


The 1970s: Honda Civic


Detroit ridiculed the teeny, fuel-sipping Japanese cars when they first started to arrive in force in the US. But by the time the first Honda Civic landed in 1973, Americans had experienced something shocking and new: a gas crisis.

Suddenly precious and, for the time, pricey petrol made Americans look twice at their gas-guzzling roadgoing boats, stylish and roomy though they may have been. The groundwork for smaller cars had already been laid by the VW Beetle and Ford Falcon, but the Civic offered something else: impressive reliability.

It was the opposite of planned obsolescence, the notorious Detroit game of making sure customers craved a new car every few years. The Civic promised high MPGs and would run until the wheels fell off. No wonder it's been in continuous production ever since and has been one of the most popular vehicles of all time.

The 1970s: Lamborghini Countach

Holy Cow! It's what Countach means in Italian slang. It's also the expression people made the first time they set their gaze upon this glorious machine at the 1971 Geneva Motor show. 

While the stunningly beautiful Lamborghini Miura may have been the original supercar, it is the Countach that put the supercar on the map. No car in the last 40 years can match the Countach for sheer star power. 


Armed with Lamborghini's legendary Bizzarini V12 engine, a sleek wedge-shaped body by Marcello Gandini, and its iconic up-swinging doors, the Countach was a cultural phenomenon. 

The 1980s: Lexus LS400

Toyota already had a stupendous reputation in the US for building cars that always started, lasted forever, and were easy in the wallet at the fuel pump.

The company could have stuck with that paradigm forever, but it thought: What if we bring the "Toyota Way" to the luxury market?


The luxury market itself was largely an invention of Reagan years; before, American simply traded their way up to the finer automobiles made by Lincoln and Cadillac. But the Germans — BMW and Mercedes — transformed from being about quality and performance to being about social status.

Enter Lexus, Toyota's effort at using its vaunted manufacturing prowess to compete with Mercedes. It was a huge risk. But it paid off. The Lexus LS400 was so good that it almost immediately created a top-tier of US luxury brands that consisted of Mercedes, BMW, and

Toyota's new prestige marque.

Honda's Acura was actually the first Japanese carmaker to take the plunge in 1986, and Infiniti followed with Acura. But Lexus achieved the gold standard in 1989 — and in the process saw Toyota hit its US peak.

The 1990s: McLaren F1

The McLaren F1 represents the pinnacle of 1990s automotive technology. The British supercar helped pioneer advanced carbon fiber construction and delivered performance no other production car could approach for more than a decade.

In the 1990s, the F1 stood alone atop the automotive universe. It's $810,000 price tag made it most expensive car in the world. Its BMW V12 effortlessly produced 627 horsepower at a time when 500 was tough to come by. And it's 240 mph top speed would remain unchallenged for nearly a decade. 


The McLaren F1 was so good that a lightly modified version of the road car went racing at the 24 House of Le Mans in 1995. The F1 didn't just win, it dominated the most grueling sports car race in the world by finishing first, third, fourth, and fifth. 

The 2000s: Toyota Prius

It's ironic that the first Priuses hit the market during a period of peak SUV. Toyota spent years and billions developing an anti-SUV: a relatively modest, homely four-door with a secret weapon under the hood. 

That was the Hybrid Synergy Drive, the first commercially viable gas-electric hybrid. Almost overnight, consumers had a vehicle — and a Toyota, no less — that could deliver elevated fuel economy and cut down drastically on emissions. The now-infamous Prius profile, thought by many to be the ugliest car in the road, but for Prius owners, a thing of beauty.

Toyota has sold over 6 million Priuses and although hybrids have given up mindshare to electric vehicles, the impact of the Prius can't be overstated. Like the Ford Model T almost 100 years earlier, it changed everything.

The 2000s: Porsche Cayenne

Just what the world needs: a slow Porsche!

That the kind of thing Porsche's sport-car loving loyalists said when the company announced its SUV plans. The widespread assumption was the Porsche would make a fool of itself.

It so didn't. The Cayenne swiftly garnered both the respect of Porsche-philes and the admiration of owners. Porsche set out to build the greatest SUV on Earth — and succeeded. Sure, the Cayenne wasn't a 911. But with the brilliant new SUV, Porsche created a new market for high-performance luxury utes and raked in the spoils. 

Fast forward to 2017 and every other major luxury brand save Ferrari has an SUV in its lineup. And Ferrari is preparing to take the plunge. Thanks to the Porsche Cayenne for taking the risk and leading the way.

The 2010s: Tesla Model S

If there's a car that could plausibly be argued more important that the Model T, it's the similarly named Model S. Tesla and CEO Elon Musk had, with the company's original Roadster, proven that electric vehicles didn't have to be glorified golf carts; they could be fast and sexy.

The Model S was Tesla first all-Tesla design (the Roadster had been based on a Lotus). It was fast, comfortable, stylish, and luxurious. Motor Trend named it Car of the Year for 2013. Tesla, desperate for cash, could sell it for $100,000.


Over the following years, Tesla would upgrade the Model S's range and performance, culminating in the P100D, which can outrun supercars from 0-60 mph. The Model T was monumentally important. But the Model S was monumentally dazzling.

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