When claims arose that Rolls Royce were falling behind their main rivals, the British manufacturer responded in the best way possible – by releasing a vehicle that would go on to be the company’s best-selling model of all time. When it launched in the mid-1960s, the Silver Shadow signified a step away from earlier models (such as the Silver Cloud) as the company looked to secure its future in what was rapidly becoming an evolutionary automotive industry.
Morgan Plus 8
Built in 1968, the Morgan Plus 8 has often been credited as the car that saved the British manufacturer from going out of business. With its long bonnet, vintage styling and four-speed manual box, this two-seater roadster has become something of a firm favourite among track-day enthusiasts and classic car hunters alike. Boasting a 0-60mph speed shorter than an iPhone’s battery life, the Plus 8 has maintained its iconic status through the years and well into the modern era.
Following criticism of the 348’s somewhat bulky, rigid and uncompromising aesthetics, when the 355 arrived in 1989, admirers of the prancing horse knew that Ferrari had re-established their ability to combine both performance, speed and ferocity with stunning good-looks. Subject to rigorous testing in wind tunnels and Italy’s winding roads, the 355 has long been thought of as just one of the stand-out motors in Ferrari’s exemplary back catalogue of V8 performance cars.
Aston Martin V8 Vantage
Capable of racing from 0-60mph in just 5.3 seconds while boasting a top speed of 170mph, the Aston Martin V8 Vantage will forever go down as one of the greatest eight-cylinder machines ever made. Produced in the UK between 1977 and 1989, the Vantage’s rugged good looks eventually landed it a place in John Glen’s James Bond film, The Living Daylights – and while some argue that it was Maryam d’Abo who stole the show, for others, Bond’s Vantage will forever remain the film’s brightest star.
Originally designed to replace the 911, Porsche’s 928 drew huge praise when it launched in 1978. Innovative in design and superb in practice, the emissions from its V8 were managed by an on-board ECU, while four seats enabled Porsche to market the 928 to a much wider audience. In the years that followed, several improvements in the car’s aerodynamics, engine size and power took the 928 to a whole other level – and even though the 911 may have outsold this particular motor, for many, it remains one of Porsche’s greatest triumphs.