Best British Car Of All Time To Be Revealed At Classic & Sports Car – The London Show


June 4, 2015 By Mike Lee
Last updated on August 2, 2015

Jaguar E-type

  • Global poll launched to find the best British car ever with the winner revealed at Classic & Sports Car – The London Show this autumn
  • Top ten shortlist includes icons as varied as the Austin Seven, Jaguar E-type, Mini Cooper S and McLaren F1
  • Unveiling of the best British car of all time will be just one incredible story at this new London celebration of all things historic in motoring
  • Classic & Sports Car – The London Show will feature more than 300 of the world’s most prestigious classic cars from world-famous collectors and world-renowned classic car retailers
  • Held at one of London’s most majestic venues, Alexandra Palace, the event will run from 30th October to 1st November
  • To vote for your favourite British car and to buy tickets for the show simply visit www.classicandsportscarshow.com

What’s the best British car of all time? Mini Cooper S or McLaren F1? Jaguar E-type or XKSS? Range Rover or Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost? There’s only one way to find out: visit Classic & Sports Car – The London Show this autumn.

That’s because Classic & Sports Car is conducting a worldwide poll to find the British car that people hold closest to their hearts – and the winner will be revealed at the magazine’s new historic motoring show, held at Alexandra Palace from 30th October to 1st November.

Classic & Sports Car magazine has already polled 100 key figures in the classic car world to establish a top ten shortlist and now wants all enthusiasts to have a say in which car should come out on top.

The criterion for the shortlist was straightforward: the car simply had to be recognised and acknowledged as British, so it didn’t matter whether it was an Italian-designed Aston Martin or an American-engined Jensen. And selections could be made for any reason, so cars such as the original Mini and Austin Seven sit alongside technological tours de force such as the McLaren F1 and road-going racers such as the Jaguar XKSS.

Led by the expert editorial team from Classic & Sports Car – the world’s best-selling classic car magazine – key players tasked with producing an overall shortlist included McLaren F1 designer Gordon Murray, Lotus Head of Design Russell Carr, Pink Floyd drummer and classic car collector, Nick Mason, Dire Straits front man and classic car enthusiast, Mark Knopfler, plus motor racing author and commentator, Simon Taylor.

They debated a long list of cars with strong cases made for much-loved classics as varied as the Aston Martin DB5, Bristol 405, Ford Escort Mexico, Jaguar D-type, Rover SD1 and even the Gordon Keeble.

Lotus had the most models on the longlist, but only one – the Seven – garnered enough votes from the panel to make the final top ten. The models ranked 10 to 20 were Lotus Elan, Elise and Elite (type 14), Land Rover, Jaguar XJ6 and XK120, Bentley Continental R Fastback, Ford Transit, Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato and the MGB.

The final top ten shortlist is as follows:

Austin Seven
Bentley Speed Six
Ford GT40
Jaguar E-type
Jaguar XKSS
Lotus Seven
McLaren F1
Mini Cooper S
Range Rover
Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost

Contenders for the crown will be on display at Alexandra Palace alongside the eventual winner. Speaking about the contenders, McLaren F1 designer Gordon Murray singled out the Mini: “It’s the work of a genius – a true game changer. Fantastic packaging and styling, a front-wheel-drive pioneer with brilliant handling and motorsport success as well. The true success story is that the Mini was absolutely classless.”

A big proponent of the Jaguar E-type was Lotus Head of Design, Russell Carr: “Its projectile styling must have looked staggering when compared to the Austins and even Ferraris of the day. Its design has real speed and sophistication. The dramatic long bonnet and cab rearward proportion combined with delicate intakes and chrome detailing still get kids to gawp.”

Commenting on the Austin Seven, Simon Taylor said: “There were cheap cars before, but they usually had fewer wheels and fewer cylinders than a real car. The miracle of the original Austin Seven was that it really was just like a proper car, but smaller. It paved the way for all the successful small cars that followed, from Great Britain and overseas.”

Classic & Sports Car is calling on all enthusiasts to rank the shortlist of cars. To cast your vote, simply visit www.classicandsportscarshow.com before the closing date of 1st August. A random draw will select 25 participants to receive a pair of free tickets to the show.

“It’s enormously exciting that we will be crowning the best British car ever at Classic & Sports Car – The London Show,” said group editor, James Elliott. “There’s no doubt that this shortlist has been the subject of some debate – but we’ve arrived at an amazing top ten, chock full of icons and pioneers. I cannot wait to see what people vote as their number one, a car we will reveal with all the pomp and ceremony it deserves at Alexandra Palace this autumn.”

Tickets for Classic & Sports Car – The London Show are now on sale, visit www.classicandsportscarshow.com or call 08445 811275 to book yours.