Car: Chrysler 300
What makes it special: Chrysler's 300 "Letter Series" were high-performance Luxury cars that were built in very limited numbers from 1955 to 1965. Even though '55 was the first of the letter series cars, it didn't actually bear a letter. But in truth, it can be considered the "300A." The 300 originally stood for the 300 hp engine. What made it famous: The 300 was in actuality a racecar aimed at the NASCAR circuits that was sold for the road for homologation purposes equipped with Chrysler's most powerful engine, the 331 cu in "Firepower Hemi" V8, being called "Hemi" because of the hemisperic shape of the combustion chambers, and fitted with twin 4-barrel carburetors, a race-profiled camshaft setup, solid valve lifters, stiffer suspension and a performance exhaust system.
Why I would want one: The most iconic of all Mopar engines has and will always be the Hemi. This was the Godfather of the breed. If there were a "Mt. Rushmore" of Chrysler products, the 1955 Chrysler 300 would sit in the spot where George Washington now occupies. Mopar's legendary performance began right here. Fun fact: When the 300 competed in NASCAR, it was painted to advertise that it was the "World's fastest stock car".
(1955 Chrysler 300 photo from wallpaperup.com)