The Honda Civic has gotten a bit of a bad rap over the years, being the stereotype platform for “ricers”. In fact I actually just saw The Fast and The Furious, the film that single handedly started the ricer craze, shortly before writing this article. In popular culture Honda Civics are always modified in ridiculous ways, looking like something you’d find in a kid’s cereal box. However, those who really know about Honda’s history know that Honda has made some really fantastic cars over the years. There were of course the NSX and S2000, which were both rear wheel drive. But there have also been cars like the Integra Type R, which is one of the best handling cars of all time despite it being front wheel drive. The fact is that Honda really does have the proven knowhow to make a fantastic car. They have had a lot of racing experience over the years, and history has proven that when they make something good, it is usually really good. So with this in mind, I decided to try out the current Honda Civic Si to see how it fits in with Honda’s past lineage of affordable performance cars.
I found this Citroen SM in the parking lot of a hotel yesterday. The SM is a very interesting car. After Citroen purchased Maserati in 1968, they began development on a flagship grand touring car. The SM debuted at the 1970 Geneva Motor Show, and they produced it through 1975. The SM is remains one of the only true gran touring cars to have front wheel drive, with the same Maserati V6 found in the original Quattroporte and Merak under its hood, producing between 170-180hp. Thanks to its sleek aerodynamics, the Citroen SM could reach 140mph, and onwers said it had no problem cruising at a steady 120mph on the autobahn. Today the SM exudes a level of class and style rivaled by few other cars on the road, and that is why I took the time to shoot these pics. Enjoy.
The Lotus Seven has proved a popular sports car platform over the better half of the last century. Lotus designed and produced the Seven from 1957 to 1972, but since then companies like Caterham have been producing their own take on the classic sports car. Caterham has kept the basic formula of their Seven the same as the original Lotus, lightweight and simple, but offers a wider variety of engines, with power figures ranging from 140-300hp (not sure what is in the car here). Sevens offer a very pure driving experience with fantastic performance, and that is why Colin Chapman’s original design has endured over the years. Enjoy the photos.
Recently, I was reading the May 2013 issue of European Car that featured a Lamborghini Gallardo on the cover. The horsepower figure said 1200. That is a smorgasbord of power. But this wasn’t the first time I’d seen such powerful cars being exhibited. I’ve come across various YouTube videos of 1,200 horsepower Lambos, 900 Horsepower GTRs, the list just goes on; name any supercar and I’ve probably seen a 1,000 horsepower version of it somewhere.
On paper, these monstrous machines seem awe-inspiring, the type of car that has the sort of performance to make the hair on the back of your neck to give a standing ovation. But in the real world, well it’s a bit of a different story.
Those of you familiar with this site probably know that my family recently purchased Volkswagen’s new Jetta Hybrid. So far we have loved everything about the car, and it has proven capable of delivering on VW’s MPG claims. I have even seen as high as 53mpg average on some trips, and that means VW has managed to out-do the Toyota Prius. I say that because the Jetta is also an extremely competent performing car in all other respects aside from gas mileage. They’ve used a turbocharged engine in it, so it has enough squirt to get out of its own way. The Jetta Hybrid also happens to handle extremely well because it has the same suspension architecture as the Jetta GLI. Where most hybrids tend to be extremely compromised in all aspects besides fuel economy, the Jetta Hybrid manages to be extremely well rounded while also seeing the same sort of MPG as the hybrid pimp-daddy, the Prius. So now I have to wonder, what could VW do if they really decided to focus a car on fuel economy to the same degree Toyota has done?
It just so happens that VW already has all of the tools it would need to create the ultimate economy car. The answer is a painfully obvious one, yet it the bean counters have been avoiding it because it may upset their current marketing scheme. I am talking about VW making a diesel hybrid.
This beautiful Lotus Europa S2 caught my eye at the recent British Motorcar show in Lewes, DE. There were other Europas around it, but this S2′s tri-tone color scheme really set it apart from the crowd. I just love looking at Lotuses because they’re purpose of lightness and handling is clearly evident in their design. Just look at that rear camber…. o yea. Enjoy the pics.