New Car Tech: Circa 1948

Posted in Concept Cars, History, Pop Culture, Rides, Videos by MrAngry | January 15th, 2011 | 1 Response |

Davis Three-wheeler 1948

After WWII there was a great and wonderful sense of optimism in the United States. We had just conquered one of the greatest threats in history and looked longingly to the future to bring us new technologies and good fortune. Futurists would tell us about the cars and homes of tomorrow, and painted a picture of a “Jetsons” society, where we’d all have flying cars and live in anti-gravity environments. Well, things didn’t exactly work out that way now did they, but that’s not to say we haven’t made remarkable advancements in technology. Thankfully, we’re still all rolling around on four-wheels, and our gas stoves still operate the same way they did 60 years ago. Back in 1948 car builders had turned their attention to the aircraft industry for inspiration. Fins, riveted sheet metal bodies and aircraft inspired cockpits ruled. Sure, now all these things seem to be hokey, but back then this was the future of transportation. As for the next 60 years… it’s honestly hard to tell. All I know is that it had better be fun… Read More…

Marcos Mantis XP

Posted in Bizarre, Car Photography, Classic, Custom, Design, Fast Cars, Favorite Cars, Featured, History, Promoted, Racing by Dustin Driver | January 1st, 2011 | 4 Responses |

Marcos cars are madness. All have plywood chassis modeled after the De Havilland Mosquito fighter. Most run Ford engines and various Triumph suspension bits. They are lightweight, fast, and devastating on the track.  This is the fastest, most mental Marcos ever made. It’s the Mantis XP, a mid-engine monster powered by a 700-horsepower BRM-Repco V8 and styled by the brilliant Adams Brothers.

Source: Blenheim Cars

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Heads Up: Car Thieves Don’t Take New Years Day Off

Posted in Car Care, Cars, Guide, History, Legal, Newsworthy, Police by Kurt Ernst | December 29th, 2010 | 2 Responses |

One way to keep your car safe. Image: Ihasahotdog.com

According to the latest data from the National Insurance Crime Bureau, you’re more likely to have a car stolen on New Year’s Day than on any other holiday, and New Year’s Day even trumps the average daily theft rate. The NICB just released their latest analysis of car theft rates in 2008 and 2009, and it includes a handy breakdown of theft rates per holiday. In 2009, an average of 2,276 vehicles were stolen per day in the U.S. On holidays, the theft rates were:

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Bon Anniversaire, R4!

Posted in History, Old Cars, Renault by Dustin Driver | December 14th, 2010 | 1 Response |

They made more than eight million in 28 countries and during its 31-year production run it remained essentially unchanged. It’s the Renault R4, a funky little cockroach of a car that’s loved the world over, from the steamy jungles of Colombia to the arid plains of Africa. And this year it turns 50. Bon anniversaire, R4.

Source: Gizmag

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Want To Give An Epic Gift This Christmas?

Posted in Car Auctions, Cars, Classic, Collector Cars, Expensive Cars, Ferrari, History, Racing by Kurt Ernst | December 10th, 2010 | 1 Response |
1949 Ferrari 166 MM Touring Barchetta

Nothing says 'Merry Christmas' better than a 1949 Ferrari Barchetta. Photo: RM Auctions

Let’s face it: the older you get, the harder it is to be wowed by a Christmas gift. When I was a kid, an HO scale slot car track was about the best Christmas gift I could have imagined. Today, that same level of enthusiasm would require something that burns gasoline and puts out more than 400 horsepower, but unless we hit the Powerball in the next week or so, it isn’t happening this year, or next year, or the year after that. Maybe you’re in a different tax bracket than I am, and maybe you’re looking for the perfect Christmas gift for the car enthusiast. If so, I’ve got the perfect Christmas gift idea for you.

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Pininfarina vs. Bertone: Alfa Romeo TZ2

Posted in Alfa Romeo, Concept Cars, Exotic Cars, History by Dustin Driver | November 29th, 2010 | 4 Responses |

The Alfa Romea TZ2 was a legendary GT racer, a tube-framed marvel with a screaming twin-plug, twin-cam four and gorgeous curves courtesy of design house Zagato. Only 100 or so were made, most of them to race. Two, however, were handed over to legendary design firms Pininfarina and Bertone. The resulting cars are perhaps the most beautiful automotive creations ever made.

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Collector Car Watch: Iso Lele

Posted in Chevrolet, Collector Cars, Design, History by Dustin Driver | November 10th, 2010 | Leave a Reply |

Back in the ’60s car magnate Renzo Rivolta assembled an Italian automotive superhero team: Ultimate engineer Giotto Bizzarrini, supreme designer Giorgetto Giugiaro, and legendary chassis builder and design house Bertone. The League of Extraordinary Automotive Awesomeness then grabbed one of the most legendary power plants on the planet: The Chevy v8. Iso Rivolta cars had Italian style in spades and American muscle and reliability by the ton. By the early ’70s, however, the company was facing bankruptcy. One of the last cars it made was the Iso Lele, a Gandini-designed 2+2 GT car powered by either a Chevy 327/350 v8 or a Ford 351 Cleveland V8.

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Hey Ford, Remember This?

Posted in Classic, Compact Cars, Concept Cars, Ford, History by Dustin Driver | October 25th, 2010 | 2 Responses |

“Ford Mustang” is synonymous with front-engine, rear-drive coupes. But the car originally had a mid-mounted four cylinder. The Ford Mustang I concept was designed and built in 1962 as part of Lee Iacocca‘s initiative to create a radical sports car to compete with the successful Chevrolet Corvair Monza coupe. The team, which included designer John Najjar, engineer Roy Lunn, and designer Gene Bordinat, completed the fully functional concept car in just 100 days. The Mustang I had a steel tube chassis with an all-aluminum body riveted to it for maximum rigidity. It also had fully independent suspension, disc brakes, and a mid-mounted Ford Cardinal 1500cc 60-degree V4 engine good for about 109 horsepower. The car was feather light, wickedly fast, and drop-dead gorgeous. Unfortunately, Ford never put the car into production citing prohibitive production costs. But I can’t be too hard on Ford, considering the Mustang it did produce (and produces today) is kick ass. And, yeah, there’s the original GT40. And the GT. And the SHO. And the Focus RS. Still, who wouldn’t love a lightweight mid-engine sports car wearing the Blue Oval?

1980 Beckons: Lamborghini Athon Concept

Posted in Concept Cars, History, Lamborghini by Dustin Driver | October 24th, 2010 | Leave a Reply |

In 1980 the Raging Bull was being put out to pasture. Lamborghini went into liquidation and many doubted it would recover. Still, the super car manufacturer dropped a stunner on the 1980 Turin Motor Show, the Athon. Designed by Marc Deschamps of Bertone, the Athon was the epitome of clean, futuristic design. The topless wedge looked like it beamed down from the mothership, complete with multiple vents that seemingly fed a hyperdrive system and forcefield generator. And unlike most concept cars, it was fully functional, built on a Lamborghini Silhouette. The automotive press went wild when they saw it and many believe it drummed up enough interest in Lamborghini to save the company. The Athon currently resides in the Bertone museum in Rome.

Original Nissan Style: 1964 Silvia

Posted in Classic, Collector Cars, History, Nissan by Dustin Driver | September 8th, 2010 | Leave a Reply |

You’re looking at the sexiest Nissan ever made. That’s right, this 1964 Silvia represents the pinnacle of Nissan design, and it was made almost 50 years ago. And it was designed by a German. The Silvia was penned by the famous Albrecht von Goertz, who designed the famously seductive BMW 507. You can see bits of the 507 in the Silvia, the telltale long bonnet and forward leaning front end, the large wheels and skinny bumpers. The Silvia is undeniably one hot car. Unfortunately, Nissan only made about 580 of them between 1964 and 1968. Each one had hand-formed body panels and at the time cost $4,390, more than twice as much as a Datsun Bluebird coupe and almost as much as a contemporary Mercedes. Few original Silvias survive today and the ones that escaped the tinworm and time are worth serious bucks. Hit the jump for more pics of this beauty.

Source: Silvia History

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