The Classies: 2019 Readers' Choice Awards


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We asked, you answered. Over the summer we invited our readers to nominate and vote for their favorites-favorite brands, favorite cars, favorite events, and more. Thousands of you replied. Here are the poll results.

Best Tools

Snap-on: 36%

Craftsman: 22%

Harbor Freight: 15%

Eastwood: 10%

Best Small Club

(Fewer than 500 members)

The Tampa Bay British Car Club dominated this category, and their website explains what they’re about: “Whatever your need for your British car, we’ll help you with a solution. That’s the value of belonging.”

Best Car Care Products!

None

Meguiar’s: 38% of the vote

Griot’s Garage: 35%

Favorite Classic Sports Car

None

The MGA has been a favorite since its 1955 debut. Gone was the postwar styling that still defined the T-series. In its place was a modern, styled body that, 60-plus years later, still looks fresh and timeless.

Likewise, the Datsun Z-car, introduced for the 1970 model year, was equally revolutionary: It looked and drove like a more expensive option. And it quickly became a winner on track thanks to the efforts of Peter Brock’s BRE team. Suddenly, lower-priced sports cars didn’t have to come from Europe. A decade later, MG and Triumph, once the two British giants in the American sports car market, had closed up shop.

Best Classic Car Tires

None

Vredestein: 24%

Coker: 22%

Michelin: 17%

Avon: 8%

BFGoodrich: 8%

Best Large Marque Club

None

(More than 500 members)

The winning club’s mission statement says it all: “The North American MGA Register shall promote the preservation and enjoyment of the MGA sports car and its variants; encourage fellowship among MGA owners; aid members’ efforts to restore and preserve these cars by publishing and exchanging maintenance and restoration information.” The organization was formed in 1975 and now counts more than 8100 MGAs on their registry.

The BMW CCA, the runner up, dates back even further: 1969. Today it serves more than 70,000 dues-paying members with events like a one-marque club racing program. And, as expected, the results for Best Large Club Publication and Best Club Website mirror these results: NAMGAR first, BMW CCA in second.

Favorite Race Track

None

Road America: 21%

Lime Rock Park: 20%

Watkins Glen International: 9%

Road Atlanta: 8%

Virginia International Raceway: 7%

Best Rally or Tour

None

Closing in on its 30th anniversary, the winner is an established destination. Our own tour was second.

New England 1000: 22%

Smoky Mountain Tour: 10%

Best Facebook Group

None

The Florida Volvo Community shows how a social media activation can work, as they swept the category with 60% of the votes. The North American MGA Register received 31% of the votes to finish second.

Best Automotive Innovations

• Synthetic oil
• The HANS Device
• The wheel
• Battery-powered hand tools

Best Club Convention

None

BMW Car Club of America Oktoberfest

Top 4 Car Books

None

Ken W. Purdy’s “Kings of the Road” has been the standard since its 1952 release, recalling a time when cars meant something to the general public. Don’t have a copy? Used ones can be found for less than $20.

None

None

None

Best Race Prep Shop

None

Michael's Vintage Racing: 36%

Found between Poughkeepsie, New York, and Danbury, Connecticut, this father-and-son business has been preparing, selling and maintaining vintage race cars for more than 20 years.

Best Classic Car Dealer

None

Best Concours

None

Highlands Motoring Festival

The Highlands Motoring Festival rolls into Highlands, North Carolina, each June. There’s no charge to spectate.

Best Modern Classic Sports Car

None

(1990 and up)

Is now the time to seek a clean 1990 Nissan 300ZX Turbo? Prices on the top cars recently spiked upward, with Hagerty recommending about $35,000 for the best of the best.

Favorite Reincarnation or Replica

None

Morgan: 28%

Today’s new Morgans replicate the ones made decades ago.

Best Race Car of All Time

None

The top four finished nearly in a dead heat: Porsche 917, Porsche 962, Porsche 911 and Datsun Z-car.

Best International Event

Goodwood Revival: 49%

Goodwood Festival of Speed: 23%

Le Mans Classic: 8%

Other: 20%

Best Sanctioning Body

National Auto Sport Association: 24%

Historic Sportscar Racing: 22%

Sports Car Club of America: 20%

Vintage Sports Car Club of America: 7%

Other: 27%

Our readers’ pick? NASA, a group that has sanctioned track events, road races and performance rally events since 1991.

Best Classic Car Marketplace

Bring a Trailer: 46%

Hemmings: 34%

eBay Motors: 6%

Other: 14%

Best Transportation Company

Jay Leno’s favorite carrier, Intercity Lines, dominated the results, receiving 68% of the votes. It’s also the official transporter of Gooding & Company, the Greenwich Concours and Gas Monkey Garage. Reliable Carriers finished second.

Most Undervalued Car

Hagerty shows prices for both models slowly inching upward.

Alfa Romeo GTV-6: 18%

Datsun Z-car: 17%

None

Best Race Car Driver of All Time

None

Ferdinand Porsche said that Tazio Nuvolari was “the greatest pilot of the past, the present and the future.” Nuvolari could win nearly anywhere, from grand prix and Le Mans to the Mille Miglia and Targa Florio. During his career he drove for four of Europe’s strongest teams: Alfa Romeo, Ferrari, Maserati and Auto Union.

Best Engine Builder

None

Mark Eskuche of Ecurie Engineering: 43%

Mark’s specialty? Porsches. And, in addition, Porsches.

Favorite Car Movie

None


This article is from a past issue of the magazine. Like stories like this? You’ll see every article as soon as it's published, and get access to our full digital archive, by subscribing to Classic Motorsports. Subscribe now.

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Comments
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GLK
GLK New Reader
1/9/19 3:32 p.m.

As the owner of a rust free Alfa Romeo GTV6 (yeah, I know it’s hard to believe) I am delighted to see these great cars being acknowledged as classics. The mechanical issues that were their Achilles heel when new can be cured today with modern head gaskets, timing belt tensioner, sealants, etc. I’ve found shifting the rear transaxle is no worse than shifting gears in a Porsche 911 of the same era. My Alfa has been trouble-free and fun to drive with great V6 sounds and terrific handling. Their racing provenance is equally impressive winning multiple championships in European Touring Car and Group A Rally. On the street I’ve gotten thumb’s up from young and old alike. Its time to start enjoying these great cars before they’re gone and/or prices become prohibitive.  

Tim Suddard
Tim Suddard Publisher
1/10/19 8:21 a.m.

GLK,

 

I have spent time in GTV6's and they are very sweet cars.

crackie
crackie
1/10/19 4:15 p.m.

How about posting a picture of the GTV6 cited in the article?  Seems like everything else got a picture.

To me Alfa GTV6 is "next in line" of the Italian transaxle cars.  It handles, sounds and perfoems so well, but is really among the few (only?) affordable Italian cars with such sophisticated engineering.

GLK
GLK New Reader
1/11/19 1:55 p.m.

Here's mine. 1986. Original paint and interior. Matching numbers. 36,000 miles. Sharp eyes may notice the black rear license plate surround is missing. That's because the fiberglas deteriorated with age and I was having it restored when the pics were taken. Also, the steering wheel is a MOMO Indy, Ansa Exhaust. Things that need attention are, the air conditioning has a slow leak and the door weatherstripping by the rocker panel is a little chewed up. Beyond that it needs nothing. All necessary mechanical work was done to enhance reliability, and I've recently installed an Alpine Bluetooth Stereo exactly like the one that comes in a new Alfa Romeo 4C. Love this car!!

 

GLK
GLK New Reader
1/11/19 1:57 p.m.

GLK
GLK New Reader
1/11/19 1:57 p.m.

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