Video: Jay Leno’s Garage 1966 Lotus Elan 26R Restoration

January 20, 2017 in English / Race Car / Restoration / Restoration Shop / Video

Now thiss is what we’re talking about! Jay Leno’s Garage just completed the restoration of an amazing ’66 26R with many trick and custom fabricated parts, but we won’t spoil the surprise of what they are by letting them out of the bag beforehand. They filmed many stages of the build and wrapped it all up in the video below, and then followed it up with an epic drive. In our (not so) humble opinion, definitely one of, if not The finest Elan existing today. Enjoy:

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1973 Brumos Porsche 911 S Current Restoration/Build Thread

January 9, 2017 in Build In Progress / Engine Swap / German / Home Garage Build / Race Car / Restoration

There’s a really interesting 1973 Porsche 911 S home garage build thread currently unfolding on, which can be found linked on the following page. For those of you who want to be caught up to date with the Cliff Notes version first, all you got to do is continue reading here for the highlights before jumping in. The project starts with a long hood which was originally built by Florida based championship race winning Brumos Porsche as their own iteration of a factory lightweight RS or Clubsport package car. It includes an actual genuine “retired” IROC 3.0 RSR engine that was first installed back in ’74, the crown jewel of this project. Since it is being rebuilt as a street car still, forum member/car owner “chriskimmelshue” is keeping it’s electric sunroof and windows, heat and carpet and is building it exactly to his spec, regardless of others are suggesting he does with the rare race engine or original Brumos history, and here’s how it is going down…

Title Photo Speaks Volumes- Just a Pair of 1968 Alfa Romeo GTA 1300 Junior Restorations

January 6, 2016 in Barn Find / Italian / Race Car / Restoration / Video

I am re-posting this story which originally appeared on January 19th, 2015 to try and entice our CBI viewership to send in their own builds and restorations. The good, the bad, the ugly, the drop dead gorgeous, the expensive, the cheap, the mega horsepower, the sewing machine powered, we want em all. And if it has a roll bar, extra brownie [email protected] “Stay tuned!”
This 1968 Alfa Romeo GTA 1300 Junior was the subject of a restoration on by its owner, forum member “donrencos”. He came across the barn find by chance in 2011 and found that it had originally been part of the 3 Autodelta-prepared race car team, Zetor Racing from the former Czechoslovakia. Research found that this example was over revved at its first race in Olomouce in 1969, then was used as a spare parts car for the other two until sold a few years later. During that subsequent ownership, it was updated with wider fenders, plastic doors with sliding windows and 13″ rims, as well some not so optimal modifications to the front air dam. He goes into more specific detail about each of the cars histories in the beginning of the build thread, but ultimately this example was put into a barn in 1982 after a strong racing career on tracks and in hill climbs, finally to be resurrected and restored over 30 years later…

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1999 Peugeot 106 to GTi Track Day Build

January 6, 2016 in Build In Progress / Engine Swap / French / Home Garage Build / Modification Thread / Restoration

I am re-posting this story which originally appeared on December 1st, 2014 to entice CBI readers to send in their own builds and restorations. The good, the bad, the ugly, the drop dead gorgeous, the expensive, the cheap, the mega horsepower, the sewing machine powered, we want em all. And if it has a roll bar, extra brownie [email protected]
This 1999 Peugeot 106 is the subject of a GTi build thread on by its owner, forum member “Marv_106”. We always enjoy checking out hot hatches when undergoing a proper street/track day treatment, especially in a scenario such as this where it’s being done very tastefully and is a bit exotic considering we never got them on our shores here in the U.S. It already had a few modifications when he bought it which included Speedline wheels, a lowered suspension (unspecified), an induction kit and 306 GTi-6 brakes, making it a good base to start even though in the end all of those items got tossed in favor of more circuit oriented gear. Check it out with us in more detail on the following page…

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A Look at a Home Garage 1986 Lamborghini Countach 5000 Quattrovalvole Restoration Blog

January 6, 2016 in Build Site / Home Garage Build / Italian / Restoration

I am re-posting this story which originally appeared on June 9th, 2015 to entice CBI readers to send in their own builds and restorations. The good, the bad, the ugly, the drop dead gorgeous, the expensive, the cheap, the mega horsepower, the sewing machine powered, we want em all. And if it has a roll bar, extra brownie [email protected]



You all know how we love a good car restoration blog, so it should come as no surprise that when we recently ran across this 1986 Lamborghini Countach 5000 Quattrovalvole getting a thorough refresh detailed on a website dedicated to the rebuild, we felt we had hit the vintage car demigod jackpot. After two long years of Jason Jones working on his Italian exotic in his own home garage, it is finally road worthy once again with just a few minor modifications needed to be complete. Luckily a previous owner had already fronted the $70,000 bill for the 455 hp 5,167 cc V12 engine rebuild, although Jason had no certainty that it was done correctly so that was one of the biggest concerns he had to face going in. Regardless of whether critics have called these wedges nearly impossible to drive with the slightest bit of any comfort at all or not, or even capable of having any rearward visibility for that matter, we are huge fans of the Marcello Gandini design that just seems to get sexier and sexier as the years pass on. A lot of that certainly has to do with a height of only just over 40 inches (isn’t that how the Ford GT40 got it’s moniker?) to give the impression of an impossibly angular and low slung toy when standing next to it. In total, only 610 QV’s were imported to the United States between 1985 and 1988 so it’s good to see this one being brought back to life to terrorize the streets by a real Lamborghini diehard with 2 other Sant’Agata stablemates, as well. Check out a few of the highlights on the following page, where a link to the site can be found for the whole shebang…

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THE TOP 15 POSTS OF 2015: Starting with #15- 1972 BMW 2002 tii “M2” Build with 2.5 Liter E30 M3 Engine Swap

December 31, 2015 in Drivetrain Swap / Engine Swap / German / Restoration

1What’s not to love about the combination of meshing a ’72 BMW 2002 tii roundie with a bored out 2.5 liter S14 engine from an E30 M3? This “M2” can be found on, a site that any lightweight vintage car enthusiast can easily find themselves getting lost in for quite a while. It wasn’t easy to choose just one to feature here out of the bunch, but there was just something about this particular example with its…

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THE TOP 15 POSTS OF 2015: #13- 1985 Mercedes Benz 500 SEC AMG Restoration

December 31, 2015 in Build In Progress / Drivetrain Swap / German / Home Garage Build / Modification Thread / Restoration / Shared Feature Story

1 1If this Mercedes Benz 500 SEC AMG wide body were on the market for sale today, then it’s current owner/restorer would be exactly the kind of guy we would want to buy it from, and this would be the car. As a “pre-merger” AMG enthusiast and expert (the period of time before Daimler Chrysler purchased AMG in 1999 and moved them in-house to Mercedes Benz), Henric shares his 115 page-and-counting build story with us that was originally featured on The project begins with just a skeleton plucked out of an Arizona junk yard and ends with it fully complete back to the custom condition that it was in when first delivered…

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THE TOP 15 POSTS OF 2015: #10- Two, Yes 2 Lamborghini Countach Barn Finds! Be Warned…

December 31, 2015 in Barn Find / Build In Progress / Italian / Restoration

12 (two) Lamborghini Countach barn finds, you say?!? We say, bring them on! Follow along with the story of both of these as information comes up in their currently active thread on For those of you who are not yet registered there, I have included the photos of both cars on the next page, but be forewarned- both have some rather, shall I say, “funky” modifications, so proceed with caution…

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THE TOP 15 POSTS OF 2015: #7-Updated: The Unbelievable But True Full Story of 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO #3589

December 31, 2015 in Art / Barn Find / Italian / Race Car / Restoration

5Today we take an updated re-look at the story behind one of the neglected cars from one of our past “Abandoned Cars-A Sad Sad Pictorial” features. Every single car pictured in that gallery is a horrific display of abuse and deterioration, but one car in particular that stood out and caught our attention was the 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO sitting outside, dilapidating in a field. Low and behold, we have now finally run across the shocking full story of that particular car, which we share on the following page for the inquiring minds of our fellow vintage car enthusiasts who want to know….

Restoration of an Uber Rare John Coombs Modified (In Period) Jaguar Mk 2 Saloon

December 29, 2015 in English / Rare / Restoration / Restoration Shop

4 1This Jaguar Mk II Saloon was restored by the marque experts at Classic Motor Cars in the U.K. and certified as an authentic example that had been modified in period by John Coombs. The restoration shop is becoming a familiar name around here, as they seem to keep popping up every time a Jaguar with any sort of historical significance attached to it is brought up. This particular car was purchased off of eBay from an owner who had it stashed away in his barn since the mid 1970’s. He had plans to eventually restore it into a daily driver but finally sold it more recently when he realized that he would never get around to the project, so it’s good to see that it fell into the right hands…

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1961 Fiat Abarth 750 Berlina Restoration

December 21, 2015 in Engine Swap / Home Garage Build / Italian / Modification Thread / Restoration

58This 1961 Fiat Abarth 750 Berlina was recently the subject of a restoration on by forum member Andrew Schank. Most of the photos from it are attached on the following page along with a summary of the build since trying to find any restraint in which ones to choose proved to be helpless, but I recommend that you read the thread for all of the intricate details anyways. The project addresses the driving and reliability issues normally associated with these finicky little Italian cars with more modern and updated alternatives, which is just the type of projects that we like best since we tend to enjoy reliable performance more than being scrutinized on a lawn by a concours judge, especially since most of the modifications here retain a factory or period correct look while offering better performance….

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The One and Only 1966 Jaguar XJ13- Crashed and Rebuilt In Period

December 17, 2015 in English / prototype / Race Car / Rare / Restoration / Video

[Editor’s Note: This feature which was originally posted June 24th, 2014 has been the “Top Post of the Day” by a long shot today so we have put it back up to the top spot for those of you who haven’t seen it before.]
The subject of today’s feature is an extremely rare and equally as gorgeous 1966 Jaguar XJ13, the only of it’s kind to ever have been built. It’s story can only begin by mentioning a tragic event that occurred 11 years prior to it’s creation in 1955 when a horrific accident occurred at Le Mans, killing 83 spectators and prompting Jaguar to pull their factory efforts out of motor racing for over a decade after. It wasn’t until the manufacturer decided that they wanted to compete in international competition at Le Mans once again right in the middle of the Enzo Ferrari vs. Ford and Carroll Shelby wars that they had Malcolm Sayer design them an all new aerodynamic new body to cover it’s mid engine 503 hp 5 liter V12, the same man responsible for creating the beautiful yet fiercely effective C Types and D Types previously…

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Daydreaming Irish Green- 1970 Porsche 914-6 Restoration

December 14, 2015 in German / Restoration / Restoration Shop

35This 1970 Porsche 914-6 was the subject of a nut and bolt rotisserie restoration by the marque experts at CPR Classic Restorations in Fallbrook, California. The master craftsmen have been in business for over 40 years, restoring some of the best 356′s and 911′s in the world to absolute show winning examples, and this particular 914-6 is no exception. Whenever I am on their website, I find myself spending an exorbitant amount of time daydreaming about this particular Irish Green example, and although there isn’t any description to go with the pictures, it looks as though it is wearing the original color it left the factory with judging by the green in the engine bay. Check it out on the following page…

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Checking Out a 1966 Fiat 600 Jolly Restoration

December 11, 2015 in Build Thread / Restoration / Restoration Shop

This 1966 Fiat 600 Jolly was the subject of a restoration thread on by  “zingercustoms“, the shop who apparently performed the work of the finished product seen above. If you watch Chasing Classic Cars with Wayne Carini with any regularity at all, then you probably already know a bit about these oddball Italian beach cars that were originally built for the rich and famous to tout around in as their yacht tenders and estate runabouts. We particularly like this example which made in the last year of their production run (1957-1966), painted in an elegant and so befitting Coral. They were built by Ghia, using Fiat 500, 600, Multipla and Giardiniera as the platforms for their conversions and feature wicker seats, a nice item to help air dry your wet bathing suits as you drive to pick up your light Mediterranean lunch (or have the help do it). Check out its full restoration process on the following page and be sure not to miss the video at the end…
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1968 Matra MS11 Restoration

December 3, 2015 in French / Race Car / Restoration / Restoration Shop / Video

During the winter of 2006, Zul Racing in the U.K. took on the restoration of this 1968 Matra MS11 Formula 1 car for a customer, which arrived to their shop apart in boxes and missing some small pieces. Over the course of the next few months they were able to complete the car back to it’s former glory, although the car was never an overwhelming success when raced during it’s day. But before we get onto a bit of Matra’s history, I thought that this would be a good time to listen to the glorious soundtrack produced from the French V12’s claimed 390 hp to put things into perspective. After all, even though Matra only raced for one season with the MS11 before calling it quits, this is F1 we are talking about so there are no losers. Listen for yourself on the following page…

An Abandoned 1967 Maserati Ghibli’s Show Winning Restoration

December 3, 2015 in Barn Find / Italian / Restoration / Restoration Shop

1This 1967 Maserati Ghibli (Tipo 115) was the subject of an award winning restoration by Classic Invest in Englewood, Colorado. Before they got their hands onto it, it had been the cliche example of the old-broken-down-Italian-car-sitting-in-a-barn-for-30-years story, although the circumstances of what happened to its owner remains a bit mysterious to this day. It was found just outside of Lincoln, Nebraska just 8 years ago and thankfully finally rescued, but before we embark on why and how it ended up there, maybe a little bit of the model’s history is in order first…

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Updated! Velocemoto’s 1971 Alfa Romeo 1750 Spider Restoration

December 1, 2015 in Home Garage Build / Italian / Restoration / Video


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12/1/15: Peter Hughes (“Velocemoto”) has just sent us some updated photos of his recent engine rebuild as a follow up to our original story about his gorgeous Alfa Spider posted below. We are huge fans of his clean work and tasteful mods, as well as the videos he produces- definitely don’t miss those. Check it all out below and then find the engine rebuild pictures on the following page after catching up. 

From April 20th, 2015:

We previously featured a pair of videos showing this tastefully restored and improved-upon 1971 Alfa Romeo 1750 Spider here and have since contacted its owner, Pete Hughes (aka “Velocemoto”) in hopes of finding out a little more about it. He got back to us shortly after, informing us that his father purchased it in 1978 with 50k miles on it, having hopes to fully restore it after the original owner had unfortunately wrecked it.
By the 90′s Pete took over the stalled project, additionally putting on a new top, interior, brakes and clutch to make it a runner. It has since been given a much more thorough restoration which can be seen in part on the following page, along with a link to a site he created where the Alfa’s whole history is outlined. The latest upgrades have been a recent Alfaholics suspension package earlier this year, along with a stainless steel exhaust.
We have always been big fans of the earlier boat tails, but this Series 2 (1970-1982/3) has us questioning whether we now prefer these Kamm tails, as this is one of our favorites we’ve ever seen. Other than the original design’s rounded tail gone in these later S2 editions, other smaller changes included a slightly different grill, new door handles, a more raked windshield and top hinged pedals.
Check out the photos and video on the next page and judge for yourself whether you’re a Kamm tail convert now too…
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