Last Call- Wings in Front, Wings in Back Edition

Whether doors or engine covers, the gull-wing never ceases to be a dramatic styling element.
Image source: [Loudpop Voyager]

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  1. dwegmull Avatar

    Speaking of cool cars, a dealership that's been vacant for many years and located a few blocks away from my house has been undergoing refurbishment…
    Just a few days ago a sign went up that reads:
    "Coming in 2011, McLaren Automobiles".
    I wonder how well I will have to dress before I can get a test drive…

    1. Robert Emslie Avatar
      Robert Emslie

      second offering. Vallelunga FTW!

    2. SSurfer321 Avatar

      Short skirt and low cut top works for my wife…

  2. longrooffan Avatar

    That Mangusto, Detomaso's first offering, is just gorgeous.

    1. JayP Avatar

      My son and I see a Mangusta at the local Brit/Euro car show every spring. It really is a fantastic looking car.

      1. Robert Emslie Avatar
        Robert Emslie

        The problem with the Mangusta is that the bell housing is only 3-inches off the pavement, making driving a dangerous proposition. In the Pantera the flipped the Z1 5-speed upside down, and raised the drivetrain so dangling participles weren't a problem.

        1. tonyola Avatar

          The Mangusta was a dog of a car in general. Poor build quality, massive chassis flex, endless electrical and cooling problems, rust, bits falling off, and the list goes on. It sure is pretty as a static display, though, and that's how they usually end up – static.

  3. Feds_II Avatar

    Mazda RX 500 says "Why choose?"
    <img src="; width=500>

  4. dmilligan Avatar

    The problem I've always seen with gullwing doors is the wide bottom sills that you have to climb over in order to enter the car. Have you ever tried to get in a an old (1955 era) 300SL? Better yet, tried to get out of one? It's a lot more complicated than you'd imagine. They look cool, yeah, but not so practical.
    Ok, you can all start beating on me now.

    1. BlackIce_GTS Avatar

      The sills are a problem with tube framed cars, which the gullwing doors were supposed to solve. I guess they didn't?
      And no, come to think of it I've never tried to get in an old 300SL. You'd think I would have, since they're so common. (/doesn't like them either but is still jealous)

      1. dmilligan Avatar

        Don't be too jealous. The only reason I was in a couple of them was because I worked at a dealership and it was part of my job. It did make one helluva impression on the punk kid that I was (this was about 35 years ago).

    2. tonyola Avatar

      I've also read that the 300SL was a miserable hothouse in the sun. There was plenty of heat soak into the cabin from the mechanicals, you couldn't lower the windows, there was a barest minimum of ventilation, and air conditioning wasn't an option.

      1. dmilligan Avatar

        I was only in a moving 300SL a couple of times, and not for very long. I even got to drive one for about a half mile on a side road, moving it from a body shop to a muffler shop. I was so jazzed! (I was about 22 then). I can say that the ones I that were in had almost zero ventilation that I could detect and were very stuffy and noisy. And they ride and steer like a lumber wagon. But they're still cool as hell.

    3. Alff Avatar

      I have a simple solution to entry and egress in the ol' SL. I simply have my man Jeeves follow me around in the Roller so that he's there whenever I need a helping hand.

      1. dmilligan Avatar

        Bah! That's new money for you. I had my man Meadows ride along to handle drinks and to navigate.

        1. Alff Avatar

          Old money doesn't fraternize with the help like that.

          1. dmilligan Avatar

            What fraternize? A footstool can't pour whiskey or fold maps and Meadows is the next best thing. I've tried those Gee Pee Ess gadgets, but they never work after I fold them up and put them in the glove box. Just a waste of money.

  5. James Avatar

    The whole reason for gull wing door on the 300SL was to accomodate wide tall sills which make for a stiff chassis, but still have door big enough for an average sized person to get in and out.

    1. dmilligan Avatar

      That's right, and also to accommodate the tube frame on the 300SLR. It was never designed to be a car for aunt Gertrüde to use to haul her plump butt down to the bake sale.