Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Not Hummer Too! Nooooo!

To quote this blog's best-ever comment: "What are assholes going to drive now?" Sad times indeed.

Click on the pic for the story from U.S. News & World Report

Monday, April 06, 2009

A Perfect Six: 1993 Lexus SC 300

Other engine layouts may claim prizes for ubiquity (inline-4), durability (V-8), sexiness (V-12) or eccentricity (V-4, inline-5, flat-anything), but to my mind at least, none of them can compare with the essential, Fibonacci-like rightness of the straight six. There are sound, physics-based explanations for this, but more importantly, just pause for a moment and meditate on this: how many of the coolest cars ever had straight sixes? The coolest Jags. The coolest Astons. The coolest Benzes. The coolest BMWs. The coolest Maseratis. The coolest Datsuns, coolest Toyotas, and about a billion of the coolest American cars ever, too. And what is a Ferrari V-12 – the coolest engine ever – but two straight sixes sharing a crankshaft?

And yes, by the way, I did just apply the modifier "cool" to the word "Toyota." It's easy to forget that once upon a time Toyota actually built cars that were interesting. Even if most of us failed to recognize them as cool at the time, it's undeniable in retrospect that the Celicas and Supras of the '70s and '80s were exactly that: compact, sporting, rear-wheel-drive, these were bona fide Japanese pony cars, more faithful in many respects to the original concept than many of their bloated American contemporaries. And the Supra? Straight sixes, all down the line. Never mind that the last generation was largely robbed of its dignity by basket-handle spoilers and the 2 Fast 2 Furious crowd. When you think about what cars have become, how much cooler does this seem now? Who wouldn't want to tool around in a '86 Supra, preferably in black? Who wouldn't prefer that to a 4000-pound cartoon Dodge Challenger? I would, anyway. Sorry Chrysler.

I see these early Lexus coupes as being the last of the Supras, the dignified, grown-up Supras – direct descendents of those elegant late '70s Celicas – before they took that weird turn toward boy-racism. And I'll take mine, thanks, with a five-speed and that sweet six, just like this one.

Click on the pic to check out the auction

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Lap' Dance: 1966 Volvo L3314

"The purchaser has options to leave the Puppy as is or design and restore it in any way to his or her dream." What other vehicle can you say that about? What do you mean, "all of them"? Psssh. Well, look here then: "It has undercoating, is mobile and suitable for any kind of travel." Did you hear that? It's mobile! Okay, I'm not going to argue with you. I'm also not sure that this is worth $8000 to me. It'd still be fun.

Click on the pic to check out the auction

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Damn It!

How did I not know about the J. Mascis Edition Toyota Yaris auction?

Click on the pic to see what you missed