It’s simple math really. You take one totally awesome California raised Plymouth GTX, subtract all cares about what other people think, and end up with a bold custom license plate. Oddly enough, this car was spotted last night at a Massachusetts cruise night. Let’s throw some more math into the post for fun’s sake.
According to Google, it is about 3000 miles from California to Massachusetts, and high octane gas is around $2.97 per gallon these days. We’ll assume that this car uses high octane for today’s equation. 3000 miles divided by 8 mpg = 375 gallons of gas. 375 gallons x $2.97 per gallon = $1113.75 . Worth the drive? Heck yea, every penny.
I’ll admit that about 70% of the “car” movies out there are positively painful to sit through. Don’t give me that look. Fess up! You feel the same way as I do. The only reason we watch these atrocities is to see the cars driving at time-bending speeds, through dark tunnels, being chased, with flames out the exhaust, close ups of gear changes, and atom-bomb style explosions nipping at their rear bumpers. Of course cumulus cloud-esque burnouts everywhere also helps.
Well folks, Two Lane Blacktop is no exception to the 70% rule. It takes place around the same time that the movie debuted (1971) and stars a flat black 1955 Chevy with a mailbox looking hood scoop and jacked up suspension. The car drives around to random little towns street racing locals…… Oh did I forget to mention that James Taylor in his early 20’s is “The driver”, and Dennis Wilson of the Beach Boys is the sidekick a.k.a “The Mechanic”? What, no character names? No Sir! Throughout the entire movie, you never actually learn any of the main characters names. Bizarre? You bet it is. If that isn’t a movie with “Academy Award” written all over it, I don’t know what is. James Taylor’s quiet voice, and bad attitude make for amazing dialog during this 102 minute saga.
That being said, I 100% believe that as a car enthusiast, you are obligated to watch this movie. So be sure to hop on Netflix before everybody else does and grab this flick. Prepare some popcorn and throw on your favorite automotive t-shirt, this movie will take you on an automotive voyage that will make your brain doubt your eyes.
If you have never used Irwin brand Vise-Grips, you need to reevaluate your goals in life. They are so unbelievably awesome, that human words cannot describe them. They should be the prize that you win in every contest throughout life. Graduation from anything should get you a set of vise grips. Instead of worthless tokens & tickets, arcade games should hand kids Vise-Grips with every new high score. Birthday parties should be limited to Vise-Grip related gifts only. Every car coming off the assembly line should have a pair of Vise-Grips attached to a panel in the trunk. If aliens do really exist, they are likely just coming to earth to try to get some new Vise Grips. If something goes horrible wrong in 2012, you better hope that somebody tucked away a pair of Vise-Grips in a secret chamber. Without them, we will all be doomed.
Vise Grips Can:
– Open Vise-Grips that are so tightly gripped that the only way you can open them is with more Vise-Grips.
– Take the place of every size socket, wrench, and screwdriver you own
– Tear things off / apart
– Remove flywheels
– Hold things while you weld / grind / cut them
– Temporarily & permanently hold parts onto your vehicle for inspection purposes
– Break stuff when you want to break it
– Remove all the broken stuff that you broke
– Hammer on stuff (not recommended, but it works)
– Pinch you into submission
– Turn stuff that is stuck or not meant to be turned
– Hold up your hood / hatch
– Crush imposters that fail to grip, and always slip.
– Survive the worst that you can throw at them
– Laugh at other tools when they can’t successfully do their intended job
– Ever-so-gently grab gentle stuff
– Work forever, no matter how long your forget them in the rain.
Full Disclosure: I truly love Vise Grips this much, and even if I owned 100 of them I would still need more. Would I trade your lunch for a pair of Vise-Grips? You better believe I would. Sure we have all been bitten by them a couple times, but that is just the Vise-Grips’ way of saying “Excuse me mere mortal, my supernatural grip is mightier than all. Respect the grip or the pain of a blood blister will be bestowed upon thee!!”
You know how sometimes your eyes are bigger than your stomach when you’re at a restaurant? Well I have that problem with old rusty junk cars. I see a car that looks like it was likely deemed unrestorable in the early 1980’s, and I decide I need to save it. UGH. I then drag it out of a ditch, trailer it’s dead body home and unload it into its final resting place in my yard. Around this moment is when my brain is released from ambition prison, and I say “oh crap, what have I just done?!” Before long I am knee deep in sandblasting sand, MIG welding wire and receipts for sheetmetal. Rather than spending a grand on a solid car from Arizona, I spend 10,000 hours restoring a rot box from the north east. What the heck is wrong with me? Do other people make bad decisions like this or am I alone here?
This car needs to be talked about more, because it is something very special. It is the 2011 Ford Focus Rs 500. It comes with 345 horsepower and 339 ft lbs of torque that will likely fry the tires off on command. The engine is a 5 cylinder turbocharged 2.5L. Thats 2.25 horsepower per cubic inch folks, otherwise known as absolutely un….real from a factory engine. For reference, the new Corvette ZR1 makes 638 horsepower from 378 cubic inches, which is just shy of 1.7 horsepower per cubic inch. So yes, this Focus is special. It is a limited production car, with only 500 being produced. Unfortunately for the American enthusiasts, we won’t be receiving any of these. None, zip, zilch, zero, nadda. They are all being sold in European markets, and many of them are already spoken for. So you will never get to wash those 19 inch wheels, or feel the smooth vinyl coating. All you are able to do is watch Focus RS Youtube videos in your pajamas and dream of the ungodly fwd burnouts that you would be doing in your neighbors driveway if you owned one of these. Dream on.
I pride myself in knowing random automotive trivia, but recently I was hit with a question that has left me confused.
The question is: “When looking at the back of a car, how do you know which side of the car the gas filler door is on?”
The “answer” is: “The opposite side of the car as the tailpipe” (obviously this doesn’t work for cars with dual exhaust).
Now I thought the answer was all together was crazy, but after a day or so of observing random cars, I think there may be some truth to it. The cars that I own all seem to fit this “mold”. What the heck is going on here? Do car manufacturers actually plan to do this? If so why? You should never leave the car running at the gas pump, so the exhaust should have nothing to do with the gas filler door. Am I right or am I right?
If you have read any of my previous blog posts, you may have noticed that the GM LS series engines make me as happy as a new pair of socks (VERY happy!). So naturally when I saw some pictures and video of this Boss Hoss “Berzerker” motorcycle, I knew that I had to bring it to the forefront of the 1A Auto blog.
In my strange world, I imagine the birth of this bike began like this:
Guy 1: “Hey man, I wanna go fast, like super-space-ship fast. I think I want to ride an actual laser beam, or maybe like a missile or something. ”
Guy 2: “Maaaan, you know you can’t put a seat on a laser beam, and handlebars would look ridiculous on a missile! You’re talkin’ crazy bro!”
Guy 1: “Ok, what if we take an LS2 engine, bore it to 430 cubic inches, strap it to a 2 speed transmission, crank out 700+ horsepower, and put a seat on it?”
Guy 2: “Wheels?”
Guy 1: “Oh yeah, we’ll use those too, but no more than 2! If I am traveling super-space-ship fast, I don’t want rotational weight crowding my peoples.”
Guy 2: “That’s what I’m talkin’ ’bout! What we need is more “Berrrrzerker“.”
Now the conversation probably didn’t go like that, I really have no idea. One thing we do know is that the bike exists now, and it apparently makes ludicrous power. Judging by the violent symphony blaring out of my over-treble’d computer speakers and the NHRA decals all over it, I would bet the 706 hp numbers are legit. Does it go super-space-ship fast? Probably…
I will be the first on here to say “I would like a second helping of Berzerker Please….”