When I was in middle school, probably around 16 years ago, a Jaguar XJS showed up in a parking lot near my friend’s house. It made a lasting impression on me because at the time, it was an absolutely beautiful car with exceptionally rich black paint, a low roof line, sleek body contours, and I’m quite confident that it had a V12 emblem on the back. It proudly announced its luxury and prominent heritage to any car that parked next to it. “Hey Chevy Cavalier, look at me, I’m a fancy Jaaaaguar… Did I mention I have a V12?…. meowww…..” There was something very odd about this car though – it never, ever, ever, moved! It sat in the middle of this big newly paved parking lot, waiting for somebody to drive it home. First it was waiting for weeks, then months….then years….and now decades? The only time that I saw it move was when it landed in the dirt corner of the parking lot. At the time, I remember thinking “that car looks like it was dragged there with force -ouch!” Was it abandoned? Was it just being stored there until the restoration could begin? For 17 years? Who knows. The only confirmed fact that we have to work with, is that each winter it becomes the bottom of a very, very large snow pile. (more…)
During the Nascar All-Star Race on May 21st, Mark Martin will be sporting a red Chevy Impala sponsored by Farmers Insurance. Farmers Insurance will be a primary sponsor for five races during the 2011 season.
Mark Martins car for the All-Star Race will be a throwback to 1986 when Hendrick Motorsports fielded the Folgers Monte Carlo driven by Tim Richmond. In 1986 Tim Richmond had Harry Hyde as his crew chief, which proved to be a potent combination. Tim Richmond won seven races and eight pole positions during that season.
Mark Martin has been with Farmers Insurance for over five years and stated that it was a great deal for the fans to bring back this paint scheme, and that he was pretty excited to be a part of it.
Picture borrowed from http://www.hendrickmotorsports.com
While looking for a delicious place to eat dinner last week, I stumbled upon this “100+ MPG” Prius with an “OILFREE” license plate. I immediately thought to myself “no and no”, and quickly snapped a picture. Now for the last few days this car has been haunting my brain. I just can’t wrap my brain around how they add 50 more miles per gallon because it is now able to be plugged-in. I feel like it is false advertising. Maybe I just don’t understand hybrid technology or maybe it’s the hybrid language that I don’t speak. The one thing I do know is that I have many more questions now than I did before I saw this thing. Here are a few of the questions that I can’t stop thinking about:
- Did that car really get 100+ mpg? Really?
- Do electric/gas hybrid owners count fully electric-powered miles as “miles per gallon“? Is that fair?
- If the above statement is true, can I build a fully electric vehicle, and put a sticker on my car that says “infinite MPG” ?
- The kits to convert these cars to be a PHEV (Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle) are about $3000 on eBay not including labor for installation. To keep things simple, we’ll just assume that owners install it themselves. At $3.85 per gallon for regular unleaded gas, you could buy yourself 779 gallons of gas with that money instead and drive yourself about 38,950 miles. This also means that at 12K miles per year on average, it will take 3 years for the PHEV to pay for itself, and that is assuming that you get free electricity at your house to plug the car in to. Car math is fun.
- I bet I could find oil inside that car.
This Mercedes S65 AMG was spotted recently, and these pictures of it made their way to me because of my slight obsession of everything turbo related. According to the Mercedes Benz website, this car goes for $209K brand new. That is a fair amount of cashola to say the least, but this car is not just another leather filled Cavalier with V12 badges. It’s a bit more exciting than that, and the technical stats may even surprise you.
Let’s get right down to it – under the hood of this sleeping beauty sits a Bi-Turbo V12 with 621 horsepower and 738 ft lbs of torque. Need I say more? Okay fine, I will. “Twin turbo” is obviously not elegant enough gearhead terminology, so MB brought the euro-style “Bi-Turbo” to the table. That’s 100% fair game if your customers are spending this kind of cheese though. Now, when owners aren’t ripping away at the paddle shifters in attempt to get to 60 mph in the advertised 4.2 seconds, they may notice the S65’s amazing stopping capabilities. This 5000 pound rolling supermodel is capable of adjusting its brakes 30 times per second. While hummingbird wings do flap faster, I’d still consider that fairly quick. Sorry Mercedes, nature always wins.
The interior surrounds you in comforts that make you feel as important as you probably are. When in the driver’s seat, the dashboard prominently displays that you are at the helm of a V12 Bi Turbo AMG, just in case you forget. There is no question who the boss is, it’s you. The speedometer calmly suggests that 220 mph could be had, but who would be able to see you if you were traveling that fast? When you are driving automotive jewelry like this, you need to keep it like a lowrider, low and slow.
Keep up the great work Mercedes, I like where your head’s at, you’re doing one heck of a job out there.
*Bonus points for anybody that can post up the name of the person who owns this car (yes, I do know).
I’ve always been a fan of these fast little cars. It seems as though all of the best cars were built in 1969 and 1970. For those of you that are wondering what the heck this car is, it’s a 1969 AMC Scrambler. For those of you who encountered one at a stop light back in the day, you’d better tighten up on that belt because these little cars came with a 390 and would rip off a 14.3 in the quarter mile, which was pretty darn fast in 1969.
American Motors and Hurst got together to introduce the SC/Rambler. The plan was for at least 500 units to be built that would enable the Rambler to qualify for stock classes in drag racing. The car was fitted with a 390 V8 engine, a functional ram air hood, and had 315 HP coupled with 425 LBS of torque!
1,512 units were eventually built and about 1,200 of them sported the red, white and blue color scheme as pictured above. AMC had a pretty limited advertising budget, but the car did a great job of screaming “I’M HERE!”
Images borrowed from:
This stuff amazes me every time I see it. People buy a new car, and stuff it away in a time capsule for a few decades without every enjoying it. Then, the future happens, they blow the dust off the car, and tada! it’s 1985 again Michael. Who has the money to do this you ask? I have no idea, but it’s fascinating to me, so I recommend that wealthy people continue to do so.
As for this specific car, it is basically old news, but I apparently missed it. I guess about 2 years ago this car was “found” in a trailer. In the video it appears to be sitting behind a 68-70 Chrysler B-Body (at 1:37-1:55 ish), which is actually what I personally would rather have, but alas, nobody seems to care about that car. Anywaaaay…. The 2 or 3 guys break out the video camera, and record the entire removal of this car from the trailer and onto the ramp truck. From there, it lands on eBay and grabs something like $20K. While this is technically a profit based on the original purchase price of $16K, I’m not convinced that it was a great “investment” per se. There are a whole bunch of pictures of this car from 2 years ago on AutoBlog, but who needs pictures when you have video amirite? We are in 2011 after all, and we are totally Y2K compliant. So without further adieu, I give you, the “barn find” 4.3 mile 1985 Camaro Z28 video.
Can’t see the video? Here is the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qCK7N2SgJjE
Let’s imagine for a moment that a genie popped out of your coffee this morning and said that he is magically acquiring you one of the three vehicles pictured above in the next 24 hours. You must take them as show, not knowing anything other than what you see in this picture. All are brand new, drivable cars, with zero miles.
The builder of these beauties can be found at transamdepot.com