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History The 1959 Stingray

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by Ryan, Jan 9, 2019.

  1. Ryan
    Joined: Jan 2, 1995
    Posts: 18,676

    from Austin, TX
    Staff Member

    Ryan submitted a new blog post:

    The 1959 Stingray


    Continue reading the Original Blog Post
    Shadow Creek, toolz, robber and 12 others like this.
  2. hrm2k
    Joined: Oct 2, 2007
    Posts: 3,601


    I saw it at the Museum 2 years ago. What a beautiful car...……..Nice writeup Ryan
    kidcampbell71 likes this.
  3. AngleDrive
    Joined: Mar 9, 2006
    Posts: 673

    from Florida

    Brings back a lot of good memories, Thanks Ryan
  4. Jeff Norwell
    Joined: Aug 20, 2003
    Posts: 12,741

    Jeff Norwell
    Staff Member

    "Fraaa gee Leee......Must be Italian"

    Great Editorial.
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  5. bowie
    Joined: Jul 27, 2011
    Posts: 2,006


    robber, catdad49, heavydumper and 3 others like this.
  6. blowby
    Joined: Dec 27, 2012
    Posts: 5,891

    from Nicasio Ca

    Very interesting, thanks for posting. With all the crazy things that have been done to Corvettes I'm surprised it hasn't been cloned. Or has it?
    Joined: Jun 3, 2005
    Posts: 7,720


    Like Ali vs Frazier, this could go head to head with a Scarab and create equally dramatic discussions. Ferarri GTO? Well, it too could create drama in a purely aesthetic sense, and frankly I find all 3 mentioned to be as sexy as a car can be. Sexy. Now doesn't that conjure a thought or 10? If this felt like it was going somewhere else I commend your intuition. You mentioned it being in your clubhouse at or near the top and I agree, almost totally. The best ever? It came 3 years later and took another 3 to prove it's position in a dramatic 1-2-3 fashion. Yeah, that one. GT40. One of the 3 original developers of that masterpiece is a friend of mine living the good life in FL.

    But back to the car in the topic, I seem to have some cobwebbed recall of it advancing over time to bigger and better things, and maybe it was a 2nd version of the Mitchell Stingray through other or maybe peripheral channels. Capable of tremendous top speeds (go figure) it's glamorous body work created serious lift in the front, enough to be dangerous which required some reconfiguration for safety's sake. Maybe others well researched could shed light. At the end of it all one could hardly argue that Bill Mitchell was as genius to automotive style as old Hollywood was to creating leading ladies. Good stuff Ryan. Happy New Year.
    Thor1 and loudbang like this.
  8. mr.chevrolet
    Joined: Jul 19, 2006
    Posts: 6,352


    I'm old and can't swear to this, but i'm pretty sure i saw this car in Don Yenko's home garage.
    kidcampbell71 likes this.
  9. Rolleiflex
    Joined: Oct 25, 2007
    Posts: 881


    Coolness factor off the charts right there!
  10. Baumi
    Joined: Jan 28, 2003
    Posts: 2,163


    The stuff that legends are made out of. Cooler than cool. I'd like to hear that 315 hp 283 scream through open side pipes at 8 k , being shifted up and down, round after round, chased by Ferraris, Jags, Aston Martins and showing them who's Boss.
    I need to see that Museum in Bowling Green one day.
  11. jimdillon
    Joined: Dec 6, 2005
    Posts: 2,762


    Pretty good read and when you place it next to the 59 Vette it is really a remarkable design. In spite of the stodgy old suits upstairs, the "New" Corvette design was a no brainer. It is a beautiful car to study up close. As much as I like it though I would have a tough decision turning down a spot for a 62 GTO Ferrari in my barn.
    kidcampbell71 and loudbang like this.
  12. alfin32
    Joined: Jun 20, 2006
    Posts: 1,305

    from Essex, Ma.

    WOW, after seeing these pics, I think I might have to agree.
    My short list: this, GTO, MB 300SLR Coupe, MASERATI A6GCS PF Coupe, Scarab.
    This is just Post War mind you.
  13. Is that @porknbeaner manning the pump?
  14. Such a gorgeous car, saw it (or a replica?) at the Petersen museum almost 3 years ago. Was able to get really close to it and take some photos.

  15. porknbeaner
    Joined: Sep 12, 2003
    Posts: 40,996


    @Sancho That could be me in the service station, I was born old according to my old man. LOL

    @Ryan cool read man. I am not aware if you ever saw it but there was a red Stingray running around town here for a while that was patterned after that car. The proportions were a little different because the original car is a little longer in the flanks and the front quarters, and the windscreen was a little more swoopy, but it sure brought that original car to mind.
  16. Beautiful car! But, I think if I were limiting it to cars driven by the King, I think I'd have to go for John Athan's well preserved AV8.
    R2.jpg FullSizeRender.jpg 3-Hot-Rods007.jpg
    robber, catdad49, heavydumper and 4 others like this.
  17. If I could afford a Vette, this would be the one,,, too bad no one splashed a mold off it at one time,,,
    Rolleiflex likes this.
  18. DDDenny
    Joined: Feb 6, 2015
    Posts: 12,040

    from oregon

    Not clear on the full lineage of the car but I can't believe Mitchell had a hand in that hideous snorkel hood scoop, though there has been talk of it being tied to the big block transplant in later years, maybe some clueless movie executive thought it was a good idea.
  19. Ryan
    Joined: Jan 2, 1995
    Posts: 18,676

    from Austin, TX
    Staff Member

    Although I like the car's initial styling best, I do like the hood scoop in a fun sort of way... It was used to make room for the injection on top of the BBC and I love how the plexiglass shows off the injectors themselves. That being said, this hood would look like shit in a very short period of time if the car was ever used as intended....

    For the movie though? Totally boss.
  20. Tom davison
    Joined: Mar 15, 2008
    Posts: 5,236

    Tom davison
    from Phoenix AZ

    Best looking sports car ever in my opinion. And those studio shots....Wow!

    He should have left well enough alone though, in my opinion. The re-do reminds me of too many classic customs that were unadvisedly "restyled" for whatever reason later. Red does match Technicolor Elvis better than silver, though!
    kidcampbell71 likes this.
  21. jimdillon
    Joined: Dec 6, 2005
    Posts: 2,762


    This past summer I was able to photograph the Stingray at St John's and I came back several times to look it over once again. Another car though that I photographed that I would love to own and drive is one of the SR2s. This which I believe is the second and is a late 56, I believe, is hard to beat for good looks as well. Would be a different animal to drive but it still would be a hoot more than likely. SJ-18 013s.jpg
    SJ-18 039r.jpg SJ-18 040.JPG
  22. 42˚18'N 83˚09'W
    Joined: Jul 29, 2008
    Posts: 131

    42˚18'N 83˚09'W

    Back in the late 50's either GM or Fisher, I can't remember which, held contests every year for auto design. When you enter you would receive a set of wheels and axles. There may have been more parts ??? You would build a car of your choosing out of plaster of paris scaled to the wheels. The contests were judged and winners would receive cash prizes. One of my friends, Bill McKeil, entered in 1958 and 1959. The first car was a roadster and the second a coupe. Both years he won either $50 or $100 dollar prizes. The promoters kept the designs but the models were returned to the builder. Bill passed away 10 years ago but his brother still has the models. The whole point of this rambling is the first model was almost a dead ringer for the '63 Stingray and the coupe was awful close to the '67 Camaro. His brother is in Florida for the winter and the cars are in New England. If I can find some pictures I'll post them. I have wondered for years if this is where those two designs were born...
  23. AmishMike
    Joined: Mar 27, 2014
    Posts: 371


    ^^^^^ would love to see those models. Ictures from various angles please
  24. satan'schariot
    Joined: Aug 27, 2009
    Posts: 103


    Back in the early 60's my dad was taking his 27 t roadster to a lot of car show across the country and at one of them they were pushing the stingray into the show floor and they needed someone to steer it they looked at dad and said hey man could you hop in and steer , He said I sure can ! so he got to drive it just not under power LOL
  25. SicSpeed
    Joined: Apr 23, 2014
    Posts: 602

    from Idaho

    IMO, that is the best looking sports car ever built
    And 2nd is Reventlow’s Scarabs

    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
    kidcampbell71 likes this.
  26. BrerHair
    Joined: Jan 30, 2007
    Posts: 4,248


    Good god, what a video (the crash, not Elvis.) Damn Boss if you don't have motor oil in your veins. Great story, gorgeous car!
  27. Rckt98
    Joined: Jun 7, 2005
    Posts: 856


    I had never seen the film of the crash before (thanks for the link).
    Hard to believe the race pretty much carried on around the carnage.
  28. Found some more photos of the Stingray… and a Mercedes that ain't half bad.

    robber and kidcampbell71 like this.
  29. jimdillon
    Joined: Dec 6, 2005
    Posts: 2,762


    As much as I like the car all nice and shiny there is something I like about this picture. It appears there may be a bit of dust here and there on the car. I assume that is the flying dentist behind the wheel. STR7.JPG
  30. bbobster
    Joined: Apr 14, 2006
    Posts: 10

    from Oklahoma

    Best lookin' ever discussion you gotta include '61 XKE.
    rpm56 likes this.

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