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Facel Vega HK500 (1958 - 1961)

Last updated 6 September 2013

 
4
Elegant styling, beautiful build quality, and ample Chrysler V8 power, Sir Stirling Moss had one
Huge thirst, some Detroit weave

Introduction

The Facel Vega HK500 may have been an update of the previous FVS model, but it was a considerably quicker car thanks to the massive 360bhp 6.3-litre engine found under the bonnet. Styling was also pleasingly tweaked, with stacked quad headlights, more angular bodywork and a lean-forward nose – and the effect was to give the car a completely livelier look. Undoubtedly, with the HK500, Facel Vega had taken a definite step forwards, and it was a truly impressive machine, especially when options like power steering and disc brakes became standard condition.

Although it was priced to compete with the cream of the Italian supercar crop, it had no trouble keeping up with any of them – sadly the handling wasn’t in the same league. Despite that, the HK established Facel Vega in the supercar league, and also set the template for countless burgeoning manufacturers of fast cars to emulate during the 1960s. In particular, both Bristol and Jensen in the UK began installing similar – or identical-sized Chrysler V8 engines to power their own coupés. Facel Vega cars were always more expensive than their European rivals, but the built quality and styling justified the premium.

Next: Specifications
 

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