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Author: Automotive History

November 24, 2006 – Lewis Hamilton is announced as new McLaren F1 driver
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November 24, 2006 – Lewis Hamilton is announced as new McLaren F1 driver

On this day in 2006 McLaren announced it had selected 21-year-old to be its next Formula One driver. As a rookie, Hamilton would race along side F1 World Champion Fernando Alonso. Lewis Hamilton's first F1 win would come at the 2007 Canadian Grand Prix, which was only his sixth race. The very next year he would secure his first F1 World Championship. It came down to the last race of the season, truly the last lap, when Hamilton was able to move up to fifth place to secure the championship by one point over favorite Felipe Massa. In all, Hamilton has won 103 races of 310 starts (he has won 1/3 of all Grand Prix races he has entered!), earning himself seven Driver's Championships. Beyond his 2008 win with McLaren, a move to Mercedes in 2013 would net him wins in 2014, 2015, 2017, 20...
Winter is Coming! Conquer the snow with this International Scout
Cheap Classic Cars

Winter is Coming! Conquer the snow with this International Scout

First introduced in 1961, the International Harvester Scout hit the market as a direct competitor of the civilian Jeep. Building trucks was nothing new for IH; they'd been manufacturing them since 1907 and had even introduced the truck-based Travelall in the early 1950s. However, most of their market was heavy duty, making the Scout a standout product for the company. The early SUV took aim at the daily driver who also needed a go anywhere kind of rig. The result would live on from 1961 through 1980. This 1966 International Scout for sale (link below), is chock full of patina but runs well and can be yours for just $5,500. Let's take a look. While the first 3,000 or so 1966 Scouts would be first generation Scout 80s, later in the year it would become the Scout 800. While the se...
November 23, 1951 – The first postwar Poles: FSO Warszawa begins production
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November 23, 1951 – The first postwar Poles: FSO Warszawa begins production

Today, automobile manufacturing makes up a whopping 11 percent of Poland's industrial production, an industry that can be traced back to 1893 in the the nation. That first company, Ursus, remains headquartered in Poland today and is well regarded for its modern tractors and other agricultural equipment. Car making began to take off once Poland regained its independence following World War I when its government took a stab at the auto industry with the establishment of Centralne Warsztaty Samochodowe. Privately owned automakers existed at this time too, but production numbers remained relatively low in the interwar period. That would change following the end of World War II, which began in 1939 with the German invasion of Poland. For it was on this day in 1951 the first Fabryka Samocho...
November 22, 1963 – JFK is shot while riding in Lincoln Continental
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November 22, 1963 – JFK is shot while riding in Lincoln Continental

President John F. Kennedy was shot on this day in 1963 while riding through the streets of Dallas in the presidential 1961 Lincoln Continental. In 1961, that car would have cost about $7,300 without any upgrades. However, to be fit for presidential service the car did receive many custom touches. However, these upgrades did not offer much protection for the president or other occupants of the car. According to The Henry Ford, the customizations included: Removable steel and transparent plastic roof panels Hydraulic rear seat that could be raised 10½" to elevate the president Massive heating and air conditioning system with auxiliary blowers and 2 control panels Dark blue broadcloth lap robes with gray plush lining and hand-embroidered presidential seals in special door p...
November 21, 1953 – Italian race car driver Felice Bonetto dies during the Carrera Panamericana
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November 21, 1953 – Italian race car driver Felice Bonetto dies during the Carrera Panamericana

Despite getting a late start in auto racing, Felice Bonetto, born in 1903, proved to be a force in the driver's seat. While he gained early experience on motorcycles, it was at age 28 that he made the switch to four wheels. In 1933 he put himself on the map with a third place finish at the Gran Premio di Monza. However, that race is not as well remembered for his bronze, but for the death of three of Europe's greatest drivers. Giuseppe Campari, Mario-Umberto Borzacchini and Count Stanisław Czaykowski all crashed and died within hours of each other. Despite being surrounded by death early in his career, Bonetto continued to race. Unfortunately, he too would eventually die behind the wheel. Felice Bonetto His career took off in his 30s, earning him national fame in Italy. And he c...
The first car with a touchscreen is from 1986
Features

The first car with a touchscreen is from 1986

1986 Buick Riviera (Streetside Classics) There's a good chance that you are touching a screen right now as you scroll through this article, unless you're now in the minority of people who still use a computer to browse the web. Double or nothing, when you get in your daily driver, you jab at some sort of touchscreen to find your favorite jams or set the cabin temperature. Well, the latter is certainly true if you drive a Tesla or any car newer than about 2016. Or, if you happen to drive a specifically equipped 1986 Buick Riviera, you also fall into the category. Wow, 1986. While GM was launching its new finger workout screen that year, Oprah debuted, the Mir space station went into orbit, Chernobyl and the Challenger spacecraft incidents occurred and Richard Branson set a new record fo...
November 20, 2011 – Famed Ferrari designer Sergio Scaglietti dies
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November 20, 2011 – Famed Ferrari designer Sergio Scaglietti dies

Scaglietti, left, in his body shop Sergio Scaglietti opened Carrozzeria Scaglietti, an auto repair and body shop, in 1951 in the small town of Maranello, Italy. It just so happened to sit across the street from another young business, Ferrari. Scaglietti and Enzo Ferrari, the founder of the sports car company, had an existing relationship prior to Scaglietti opening his shop. Though the ease of access made the new facility Enzo’s first choice for body repairs for his race cars. Soon, Enzo would be asking Sergio for full bodies, and Sergio delivered on a grand scale. Ferrari 410 Spider, designed by Scaglietti By the mid-1950s Scaglietti was a primary body designer and fabricator for Ferrari race cars. He would go on to design and build some of the company’s most elegant and succes...
November 19, 1959 – Ford announces the end of Edsel
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November 19, 1959 – Ford announces the end of Edsel

Too much money. Too much hype. Too much of the same old thing. Designed to ride alongside Mercury between Ford and its luxurious Lincoln line, Edsel debuted with high expectations on September 4, 1957. Despite all the glitz and glam, including an hour long TV special featuring mega celebrities of the era, the car failed to hit its mark. The press and the public were quick to shrug it off, many left gawking at its odd vertical grill. Above: 1960 Edsel Ranger. By Fletcher6 - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0. Sharing numerous cosmetic and mechanical components with other Ford models, Edsels did little to stand out. Aside from their pillarific front end, that is. The 10 years of development and $250 million spent on planning, marketing, manufacturing and distribution did nothing for Ford but...
November 18, 1960 – End of the line for DeSoto
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November 18, 1960 – End of the line for DeSoto

1961 DeSoto Less than a week after Chrysler acquired Dodge Brothers, it debuted its new mid-priced DeSoto line for 1929. The two brands gave Chrysler two makes aimed at the same consumer, resulting in a back and forth flip flop in terms of price seniority. The original plan had Chrysler at the top, followed by DeSoto, then Plymouth as their entry level ride, but buying Dodge threw a bit of a wrench in things. Ultimately, DeSoto faced identity problems as executives tried to figure out where it sat on the Mopar totem pole. At its introduction, DeSoto rode below Dodge and above Plymouth. In an attempt to boost Dodge sales, Chrysler reversed the Dodge and DeSoto pricing models in 1933. This resulted in DeSoto receiving a futuristic new design that mimicked top-of-the-line Chrysler cars. U...
November 17, 1986 – The Assassination of Renault CEO Georges Besse
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November 17, 1986 – The Assassination of Renault CEO Georges Besse

Georges Besse (Renault) On this day in 1986 Georges Besse, the 58-year-old CEO of French automaker Renault, was gunned down just steps from his Paris home. Besse had become head of the company in 1985 when it was not profitable. Under his aggressive actions, Renault reported gains for the first time in years, just two months before Besse's assassination. In addition, Besse invested heavily into American automaker AMC, of which Renault was a major stockholder. While many executives saw AMC as worthless, as it too was losing money at the time, Besse forecast Jeep to be among the most profitable brands in North America. He did his part to make that happen. 1986 Renault advertisement The quick turnaround of Renault was not without significant loss for the French people. To become pro...

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