Rally Racing, part 1: Building the Car

This is the first of three articles on Rally Racing. I intend to cover car set-ups, driver training, different classes, and whatever else I may come upon. This part will show a built of an Open Class rally car, which is essentially a race car based on a production car, …

Driving Jaguar’s new XFR, on the Road and on the Track

I have recently had the opportunity to drive the new Jaguar XFR on the road and on a race track. With the XFR competing directly against the BMW M5, which I have also had the opportunity to drive on the track and on the street, it only made sense to …

Experiencing The New Diesel-Powered BMWs.

While you may have already read a thing or two about BMW’s new compression ignition offerings, you may not have heard all the details, and you may have some questions. I sure did, and I did my best to answer them here. Get coffee, go read, see huge gallery.

Cars of Paris

French cars; some say they’re ugly, some say they’re beautiful, all agree that they’re unreliable. However, there is something about them that makes you want to look. These pictures were taken in March of 2007, my wife’s and mine last trip before the birth of our daughter. Selected for your …

Recent Articles:

New 2012 Ferrari 458 Italia Spider is the new Ferrari 308 GTS

August 23, 2011 News 2 Comments

This is the convertible, also known as “Spider”, version of the Ferrari 458 Italia. And it is beautiful, but it is beautiful because it does not look like a convertible. Stand back and blur the image with you eyes… what do you see?

6366  650x400 ferrari 458 italia spyder cvr New 2012 Ferrari 458 Italia Spider is the new Ferrari 308 GTS 6365  650x500 ferrari 328 gts k2 New 2012 Ferrari 458 Italia Spider is the new Ferrari 308 GTS

… Continue Reading

Modern Classic: Volkswagen Corrado

August 22, 2011 Modern Classics 4 Comments
6354  350x400 volkswagen corrado slc 1993 800x600 wallpaper 01 Modern Classic: Volkswagen Corrado

Pegged as the replacement the long-running Scirocco, Volkswagen introduced the Corrado in 1988. The design lost the sharp edges the Scirocco was known for, but under designer Herbert Schafer the Corrado took a smoother, more aerodynamic shape. The Corrado was a mix of Volkswagen parts; the front-end used components of the Golf while the back-end used parts from the Passat.

Volkswagen used the new Corrado as a place to show of some of their technical advancements. Known as the G60, the new engine was a supercharged 1.8L inline-4 producing 160HP. Volkswagen also introduced a rear spoiler that would rise around 45 MPH to improve down-force. In 1992, Volkswagen replaced the G60 with the much-heralded VR6 engine. The narrow-angle design of the VR6 allowed engineers to easily place the motor into the space originally occupied by the inline-4.  The 2.8L VR6 brought forth 178HP and 177 lb-ft of torque. … Continue Reading

The News for August 19th, 2011

August 19, 2011 News Comments Off
6348  500x400 lexuscgdlogo The News for August 19th, 2011

This is the weekly recap of everything in the automotive industry that you should care about without all the fluff. We also throw in our opinion, just because we can. This week:

  • Lexus updates the GS350, aims for their German rivals
  • New Porsche 911 gets leaked early
  • Fiat 500 gets fashionable
  • BMW prices their new 4-cylinder models
  • Lexus F’s up the CT 200h with new F-Sort package

… Continue Reading

Quick Look: 2011 Chrysler 200, 300, Town & Country

August 15, 2011 Quick Drives 1 Comment
6323  650x500 2011 chrysler cvr Quick Look: 2011 Chrysler 200, 300, Town & Country

We have become jaded. Most people wouldn’t know a luxury car is if they got ran over by one. Car magazines are telling us that modern luxury cars need to have dynamic side bolsters, Lotus-like handling, and Corvette power.  Why? Since when does a luxury car need to be a big sports car? By big magazine standards Germans are leading the way in the luxury car wars and are defining the market by attempting to create a better BMW M5 with each new model. I say they are wrong, completely wrong.

Luxury speaks of comfort, refinement, and opulance. Once upon a time American manufacturers were the luxury car leaders. The proof of that is in vehicles driven by heads of state, celebrities, and gangsters in the 50s and 60s – they were all driving a big American sedan or some kind of eastern bloc knock off. Those cars were big and intimidating, with long hoods and huge trunks. On the inside were soft, wide leather seats and latest technological gadgets indiscernibly integrated among the wood trim. … Continue Reading

The News for August 12th, 2011

August 12, 2011 News Comments Off
6315  500x400 cx5cgdlogo The News for August 12th, 2011

This is the weekly recap of everything in the automotive industry that you should care about without all the fluff. We also throw in our opinion, just because we can. This week:

  • NHTSA sends Pagani back to the drawing board
  • Ford and Harley-Davidson partner up once more
  • Mazda gives us a sneak peak at the new, less smiley CX5
  • MOPAR catches the Fiat 500 fever
  • Toyota prices the 2012 Yaris and raises prices on other models

… Continue Reading

2011 Concours d’Elegance of America

August 11, 2011 Shows Comments Off
6280  317x240 detroit concours 20 2011 Concours dElegance of America 6301  317x240 detroit concours 41 2011 Concours dElegance of America

The end of July in Detroit brings forth a number of rare, old, expensive, and interesting vehicles to The Inn at St. John’s for the Concours d’Elegance of America. Originally held at the on the grounds of Meadow Brook Hall, organizers decided to move the event this year due to the added space it would bring. The move would turned out to be a great decision since the number of vehicles entered increased from 200 to 300.

Most of the vehicles featured at the concours were built before World War II; Cord, Lincoln, Mercedes-Benz, Duesenberg, and Cadillac to name a few. Those vehicles wouldn’t capture my attention because I don’t know much about that time. However, what caught my eyes were vehicles built in the postwar period; a Buick Century Caballero Estate Wagon, Hudson Hornet, Lincoln Continental Mark II, and Dodge Challenger R/T to name a few. … Continue Reading

HPDE 101, Passat fails tech, gets replaced with Ariel Atom

August 8, 2011 Stories 2 Comments
6244  660x500 passat track car HPDE 101, Passat fails tech, gets replaced with Ariel Atom

Some may remember the original article where I had purchased a 1991 VW Passat, a.k.a. Pissant, for $400. It ran great, and even came with a trunk full of parts. The interior was trashed, but I figured that the interior was just weight on the track. My plan was to strip the interior, sort out the loose strut and a bad CV joint, brake job, and head out to my first National Auto Sport Association (NASA) High Performance Driving Event (HPDE) event in May of 2011.

I had zero spare time through the winter, and there I was, sitting on April with hardly anything done on the car. I spent a few nights a week on it, after the kids hit the sack, and met most of my objectives. Got the struts figured out and string-line aligned the car. Changed out the CV half shafts, rebuilt the brake calipers, and changed all the fluids. The motorized seat belts were broken, but I found some four-point harnesses that were advertized as bolt-in on a random web page. … Continue Reading

Movie review: There’s Something Wrong With Aunt Diane

August 5, 2011 Product Reviews 2 Comments
6234  650x400 something wrong aith aunt diane Movie review: Theres Something Wrong With Aunt Diane

Taconic State Parkway is a scenic road, not unlike Connecticut’s Merritt Parkway, which meanders through New York’s wooded Hudson Valley.  On an early Saturday afternoon, during the summer of 2009, it became a site of a terrible accident. A minivan traveling at 70mph, in the wrong direction, in the left lane, collided head-on with an SUV. The accident claimed eight lives, including four children. The driver, a mother and an aunt of the children, was found to be drunk and stoned. The movie looks at the events leading to this tragedy and tries to answer the many questions.

… Continue Reading

Pointless Comparison: Corvette Grand Sport vs. Porsche 911 Carrera

August 3, 2011 Quick Drives 3 Comments
6226  660x450 2011 porsche 911 corvette grand sport Pointless Comparison: Corvette Grand Sport vs. Porsche 911 Carrera

Every time a new version of the Corette or the 911 comes out, which happens pretty often, every automotive magazine comes out with their big “Corvette versus Carrera!” comparison. To me, and to actual buyers, such comparisons are pointless. I have yet to meet anyone who actually cross-shopped the two cars; you either want a ‘Vette or you want a 911, performance numbers be damned.

That fact could not be more true for the convertible versions of each. These are both street cars and they appeal to potential buyers through style and image, not performance. No track junkie would consider either of those two convertibles, just as none of the convertible buyers would eye the Z06 or the GT3.

The Corvette and the 911 have been around for a very long time. In their own way, both remained true to their roots and evolved since their introductions. Current generations of both are nearing the end of their life cycles which means that soon there will be more pointless Corvette versus Carrera comparisons. Before that happens however, I got one last chance to drive the C6 and 997.2 which allowed me write this pointless comparison. … Continue Reading

Toy Keys with Remote Recalled by Battat Due to Choking Hazard

August 2, 2011 News Comments Off
6222  350x400 battat b keys choking recall Toy Keys with Remote Recalled by Battat Due to Choking Hazard

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and Health Canada, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed. It is illegal to resell or attempt to resell a recalled consumer product.

Name of Product: Toy keys with remote

Units: About 1,080,000 in the United States and 3,600 in Canada

Importer: Battat Inc., of Plattsburgh, N.Y.

Hazard: The metal toy keys and the plastic key ring can break, posing a choking hazard. … Continue Reading

The News for July 29th, 2011

July 29, 2011 News Comments Off
6221  600x400 c63 car guy dad news The News for July 29th, 2011

This is the weekly recap of everything in the automotive industry that you should care about without all the fluff. We also throw in our opinion, just because we can. This week:

  • Mercedes reveals the C63 AMG Black Series

  • BMW shows off the M3 DTM Concept racer

  • Shelby Super Cars names their Veyron SS fighter

  • Scion prices the iQ

  • Maserati prices two new Gran Turismo models

… Continue Reading

24 Hours of Lemons – Boston Tow Party & Overhead-Cam Bake

July 27, 2011 Opinion 2 Comments
6204  317x240 2011 lemons boston 62 24 Hours of Lemons   Boston Tow Party & Overhead Cam Bake 6160  317x240 2011 lemons boston 22 24 Hours of Lemons   Boston Tow Party & Overhead Cam Bake

Last weekend I attended my second 24 Hours LeMons race as a spectator. Not much has changed since the New Hampshire race: fewer cars, higher temperatures, smaller track. I snapped a bunch of pictures, chatted with a few people, and couldn’t help but think… … Continue Reading

Modern Classic: Volkswagen GTI Mk1

July 25, 2011 Modern Classics 4 Comments
6132  320x240 1984volkswagengti frontangled Modern Classic: Volkswagen GTI Mk1

The Mk.1 Golf/Rabbit GTI started off as a project by a small group of Volkswagen engineers. Codenamed “Sport Golf”, the engineers raided VW/Audi parts bins to build up the car. Engineers took a Golf body, a 1.6L fuel-injected 4-cylinder engine from Audi 80/Fox GT, and other components to create their masterpiece. To help differentiate the GTI from pedestrian Golf models, the body got minor tweaks with a blacked out grill and stripes running down the side.

When it was shown at the 1975 Frankfurt Auto Show, the car was producing 110 HP and weighed around 1800 lbs. That combination gave the GTI a 0-60 time of 9.0 seconds and a top speed of 110 MPH. While that may not see like a great achievement, the GTI was nearly as fast as the muscle cars and exotics of the day. … Continue Reading

This is the greatest LeMons racecar EVER!

July 24, 2011 Motorsport 2 Comments
6138  640x500 lancia monte carlo toyota mr2 lemons size 1 This is the greatest LeMons racecar EVER!

This week’s Boston Tow Party & Overhead-Cam Bake 24 Hours of Lemons race at Stafford Motor Speedway, in Stafford CT, just off I-84, featured the typical LeMons jalopies, weather changes, and drama, more on which later. There was, however, one car that stood out from the crowd. Among a Fiat 131, a dunked donked (yea, like you knew the difference between “dunked” and “donked”. STFU, please. icon razz This is the greatest LeMons racecar EVER! ) Pontiac, Peugeots, and Alfa racers, there was  – a mid-engined Lancia Montecarlo. … Continue Reading

Atypical Spyshots – Lexus LFA LeMans racer

July 20, 2011 Other 1 Comment
6130  317x240 lexus lfa gte 1 Atypical Spyshots   Lexus LFA LeMans racer 6131  317x240 lexus lfa gte 2 Atypical Spyshots   Lexus LFA LeMans racer

Generally, I find so-called “spy shots” just plain dumb, but these are not your typical spy shots. What you see here is Lexus’ prototype (I think) racecar for next year’s LeMans (supposedly). Well, it looks cool. Probably has a V10 engine derived from the road car, is probably lighter, and… well, I don’t know, it’s a race car, so it has racecar suspension, racecar brakes, no interior, and various safety equipment. Not surprisingly, it looks a lot like their 24 Hours of Nuerburgring racer.

Go Lexus go, Mazda could use some company.

… Continue Reading

Featured

Rally Racing, part 1: Building the Car

Bill_Bacon_Evo.jpg

This is the first of three articles on Rally Racing. I intend to cover car set-ups, driver training, different classes, and whatever else I may come upon. This part will show a built of an Open Class rally car, which is …

Driving Jaguar’s new XFR, on the Road and on the Track

Jaguar_XFR

I have recently had the opportunity to drive the new Jaguar XFR on the road and on a race track. With the XFR competing directly against the BMW M5, which I have also had the opportunity to drive on the track …

Experiencing The New Diesel-Powered BMWs.

BMW_diesel

While you may have already read a thing or two about BMW’s new compression ignition offerings, you may not have heard all the details, and you may have some questions. I sure did, and I did my best to answer them …

Cars of Paris

french_cars

French cars; some say they’re ugly, some say they’re beautiful, all agree that they’re unreliable. However, there is something about them that makes you want to look. These pictures were taken in March of 2007, my wife’s and mine last trip …

Cars (and other vehicles) of Cuba

Cuba_cars

Do you think your ’02 Chevy Tahoe with 170k miles is at the end of its life? Try driving a ’55 Suburban that you inherited from you father. This is a gallery of car pictures from Cuba, where the only way …

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