Retiring the Rotary?

There is talk now at Mazda, as in the past, about discontinuing development of rotary engines for use in production cars. At this point the only model to still use a rotary is RX8, which will cease production after this year. However, the rotary power plant has been the staple of Mazda’s flagship RX sports cars all along, so there is a bit of identity issue at play here as well.    Continue reading Retiring the Rotary?

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EVO: Roadsters in the Italian alps

Video from EVO Magazine from their test in the Italian alps. The contenders are the drop-top versions of the Audi R8 4.2, Aston Martin V8 Vantage, Alfa Romeo 8C, and the Porsche 997 GTS. They ask which car sounds the best, and which one you’d have if you were to pick. While the Audi or Porsche are almost certainly the fastest, I would pick the Alfa Romeo hands down because it speaks to my soul. What would you pick for a blast through the Alps? Tell us in the comments.

-Nick

Spotted! Dodge Viper GTS, Randolph, NJ

I was surprised to discover that it ended up in a handicap spot. And he's not a jerk because he's got the sticker.
So I’m walking out of a local bank and I see a fire-engine-red Viper swing into the A&P lot across the street.  I follow it…and it has a handicap sticker sitting in the windshield?  If this guy is handicapped and driving a Viper GTS (which is a challenge even if you’re perfectly healthy), he deserves a medal.  It was a little scratched up, so it certainly didn’t look like it sat in a garage constantly.

Spotted by: Al

Secondhand Saint: BMW 335d

BMW 335d

It would likely seem “too good to be true” if someone told you about a car that can get a hybrid-rivaling 40MPG, while still being able to go 0-60 in about 5 seconds flat. It isn’t though, because the BMW 335d will do just that while giving you everything you would expect from a normal Bimmer.    Continue reading Secondhand Saint: BMW 335d

Test Driven: 2007 Honda S2000 (9.5/10)

Honda S2000 (AP2)

When the S2000 came on the scene it was hailed by much of the media as being one of the best affordable sports cars money could buy. Having tried one out, I would have to agree wholeheartedly. The S2000 offers everything you would want from a pure roadster, a lot like a Mazda Miata, but it is a much more serious performance car all around. Honda has a long history of racing and when they decide to really make a proper car, it shows. It is just a shame they don’t make more cars like the S2000, and that they stopped its production altogether in 2009, with no successor yet planned.     Continue reading Test Driven: 2007 Honda S2000 (9.5/10)

Main Street in Motion: What I think.

Cars lined up for Mainstreet in Motion (in NJ)

In a related article, Nick talked about his experience at Main Street in Motion, an event created by General Motors, in order to show off their lineup and all the improvements they’ve made (or in some cases, not made) over the past years.  It’s worthy to note that, after a quick talk with another patron, that GM used to do these events often, and this was the first time they’d done this in quite some time.  Knowing that, I took some drives and a few observations.  For example, they attempted to get lower-optioned versions of competitor vehicles at any chance they could, with some notable exceptions, which I will get to later.  Also, like Nick said, the entire event was free of charge. Continue reading Main Street in Motion: What I think.

Pagani denied by US over child hating airbags

Horacio Pagani and his creation, the Huayra

I am kind of heated over this. Pagani has done so much work to make the Huayra US legal, and has even put airbags in it for goodness sake. However, because these airbags are not “passenger weight sensing” the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has denied the car for road use in our country. Keep in mind this is a seven figure hypercar of which only a small handful are made per year. Pagani says between 6 and 12 Huayras would have been sold to American customers per year. This is not some huge production car that will affect many people at all, and exceptions have been granted for other such “special case” cars; one of which being the Tesla Roadster which has already sold more units than the amount of Paganis in existence. Clearly if they can make an exception for Tesla then is just plain hypocritical of them not to grant a much smaller company a pass as well.

Continue reading Pagani denied by US over child hating airbags

Obscure Auto: Alfa Romeo 164 Pro-Car

Things aren't always what they seem--looks like a 164...goes like hell.

Most, if not all, car nuts know what the 164 was.  When it was introduced, it became the last non-roadster that Alfa sold in the USA.  However, it has a dirty secret hidden under its bodywork, one that turned this unassuming little Italian sedan into a fire-breathing monster.  Only one was ever built, but it survives to this day–the Pro-Car. Continue reading Obscure Auto: Alfa Romeo 164 Pro-Car

VW is a Bulli

Bulli

The original Volkswagen Bus was the icon of a generation dedicated to peace, free love, and rebellion against the establishment. The Bus served as a fitting mode of transport for such people with its unique design and usability, it served the counter culture lifestyle well. VW’s new concept, the Bulli has a similar appeal to it for modern times.    Continue reading VW is a Bulli

Secondhand Saint: Lexus IS300

IS300 (Front)

Back in 2001, Lexus got a lot more serious about competing with the likes of BMW and Audi, by increasing its model range.  The new IS, on sale in Japan for a period of time as the Toyota Altezza, ended up in the United States as the Japanese answer to the BMW 3-Series.  On the surface, it is structurally very similar to the German, with an inline-six at the front, rear-wheel-drive, and sporty personality.  However, these cars are fast becoming something far greater than Lexus imagined a decade ago. Continue reading Secondhand Saint: Lexus IS300

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