Best Review - Top 10 Classic Sports Cars Of All Time


very motoring enthusiast has his or her own list of classic sports cars that were the best ever made. Almost by definition these cars must have been fantastic to drive, gorgeous to look at, with a great pedigree. Here is my selection of the best classic sports cars of all time. The only criteria were that they must be open two-seater roadsters or convertibles; be rear wheel drive; only one from any manufacturer. Purchase price, of course, was immaterial.

Some people might be surprised that there is no Ferrari, no Aston Martin, no Corvette or Mustang in this list. I have my reasons for excluding these, and also many others that could have qualified. My excuse is that this is a Top 10 list and, therefore, many were considered but only a few could be chosen. So here goes with my choices for the best classic sports cars ever.

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Top 1

Jaguar E Type Series 1

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Surely the most beautiful and evocative sports car of all time? This car could do 150 mph even when standing still! Yes, it rusted away before your eyes but, even so, it was the most sought-after, lusted-after and swooned-over car of its day. Even today these machines have a charisma and a presence that is hard to ignore in any car collection.

Top 2

AC Cobra 289

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This was the ultimate muscle car besides being a really exciting sports roadster. I prefer the 289 to the heftier 427s because I think its shape is just beautiful. It was great on the road and on the race track, making it a good all-round sports car for the (wealthy) enthusiast.

Top 3

Bugatti T35

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Bugattis were exquisite engineering masterpieces, with a price tag to match. They had a unique engine sound at high revs, often compared to ripping a sheet of silk! Many were raced successfully by their rich owners, and the T35 was the best of the breed.

Top 4

Porsche 356 Speedster

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James Dean made this car famous, but it was a great sports car in any case. The open Speedster was the best version, which is why I chose it. It was built to be driven fast on twisty roads, and it did this very well.

Top 5

Mercedes Benz 280SL

I think that the mid-Sixties versions were the best. This car was the film stars' favorite. Grace Kelly was my idol and she liked it, so it must have been good! It was almost too pretty, but it was built as solid as a tank, it had a great engine and it went like the wind.

Top 6

Alfa Romeo 8C 2300

The archetypal late-Twenties supercar, with those wonderful flared wheel arches, aeroscreens and large steering wheel held close to the driver's chest. These cars entered (and won) many races in the 1920s and '30s.

Top 7

Bentley 4½ Litre Blower

The supercharged 4½ litre Bentley of 1929 was the ultimate muscle car of its day. Its slow-revving engine punched the huge car through the air to immensely impressive speeds. It was built for only one purpose - winning Le Mans, which it did more than once. Later it became THE choice for any wealthy young man-about-town whose arms were strong enough to steer it.

Top 8

Austin Healey 3000

The Series 1 was probably the best sports car of its day for mere mortals who didn't have the bank account of a Rothschild. It was low and swoopy, with a lovely engine that burbled and roared whenever the driver's right foot demanded. The car was raced and rallied very successfully.

Top 9


All MGs were good sports cars for the enthusiast with a limited budget, and the TC was probably the best example of the breed. It still had a late-Thirties feel about it but could be thrown around corners and hammered along the straights. What else could a sports car lover want? Oh yes, it looked wonderful as well, with its flared wheel arches and spindly wire wheels!

Top 10

Morgan 4/4

Any Morgan of any vintage could qualify for this list, but I think that the 4/4 of the mid-Fifties combined the right balance with adequate power to keep any sports car enthusiast happy.

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So there it is. My best classic sports cars ever. Why no Ferraris? In my opinion the best ones were closed coupes, so could not be considered here. The same applies to Aston Martins, Ford Mustangs and GT40s, Corvettes, Maseratis, Lamborghinis and many more. Having said that money was not important I think that I unofficially eliminated some relatively cheap cars like the Lotus Elan from this list. Unfair? Perhaps, but it is MY list and I had a lot of fun making it. Why not do the same for your favorites?

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