Tag Archives: Classic Cars

Woodward Dream Cruise: VW Beetle Rat Rod

This incredible rat rodded Beetle was out for the Woodward Dream Cruise in Michigan. It is an entirely custom built car with the engine actually hanging off the back. I have seen many customized air-cooled Beetles over the years, but nothing quite like this car. One really cool feature is the car’s shift lever, which is actually a titanium hip replacement that has been repurposed for changing gears. I was assured the artificial hip was not a used part, but one of those usually costs around $14,000 when being used for medical purposes. Among the thousands of cool cars in the area during the Cruise, this Beetle was one of the ones that stood out the most to me. This is a very different kind of slammed car for the Volkswagen community. Enjoy the gallery.

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Klub Vintage: Getting rolling

Klub Vintage is a shop near Hopewell, NJ that is owned by my friend Adam. Those of you who follow the site closely may remember my review of Nick C’s BMW E21 Alpina clone, Adam is Nick’s brother and the E21 was a product of Klub Vintage in its earlier stages. Adam has been building cars and bikes for over 15 years now, and has recently procured a much larger, more prominent space on RT 518 near Hopewell. He has some big plans for things to come in this new location.

Lots of effort is being put into developing the space, so please realize that what you see in these photos is a work in progress, and the finished product will be featured here later on. That said, it did make for a nice setting in which to shoot Adam’s BMW 2002. The car is quite rough around the edges at the moment, and a full restoration is in the works, but honestly there is something about the car, as it sits, that just pushes all the right buttons for me. It has a patina to it that is irresistible, and of course those turquoise wheels help quite a bit. To me it looks like a 2002 rat rod, the likes of which is not often seen and I think it suits the car quite well. I guess I’ll have to see what I think when the car is finished though, before I can truly compare.

Adam has a lot planned for Klub Vintage, far more than just BMWs. He works on all makes of vintage cars and motorcycles, with experience in minor fixes, full rebuilds, engine swaps, modifications, and all sorts of other custom work. I am looking forward to seeing Klub Vintage progress, and I look forward to sharing what they are doing with all of you. Enjoy the pics, this just the beginning.

Visit their website at Klubvintage.com
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Radnor Hunt CDE: 1931 Cadillac V16 452A All-Weather Phaeton by Fleetwood

This is the height of what made a Cadillac a Cadillac. These V16 powered land yachts were the epitome of style and status during Prohibition-Era America. Everyone’s favorite movie stars and gangsters had flashy cars like this, and this Caddy the 452A was the pinnacle of the Cadillac lineup. This specific car features a full sedan convertible design, something far too cool to be allowed today, and looks to have all the bells and whistles available at the time. The owner was very proud of the car and had restored it himself. He told me he had changed the color, and while that won’t help the car win at a Concours, I like the look of this dark blue a whole lot more than the car’s previous black. Even with all the curvy Italian cars just up the hill, this Caddy really caught my eye at the show. When I think of Cadillac, this is what I think of. I just wish the people actually running Cadillac even knew cars like this were once built under the Cadillac nameplate. This truly was “The Standard Of The World” at its time.   Continue reading Radnor Hunt CDE: 1931 Cadillac V16 452A All-Weather Phaeton by Fleetwood

Obscure Auto: Lamborghini Miura Jota/SVJ

The Miura Jota is one of those unicorn cars, one that everyone who knows about it wants, but that none will ever have. The Jota is a legend because it was the most extreme example of Lamborghini’s beloved Miura, the car that really put the marque on the map. The Jota has a particularly interesting story though, because its fame began with its own fiery death in 1972. The Jota had been a side project of famed Lamborghini test driver, Bob Wallace, and it was the news coverage of the car’s destruction that informed people of the project to build a faster, more racy Miura. The original Jota was damaged beyond repair, never to be rebuilt, but it did peak the interest of several Miura owners, and six Miura SVJs were created. These SVJs are probably the most valuable Lamborghinis around at this point, and they carry on the legacy of their doomed predecessor.

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The 2012 Radnor Hunt Concours d’ Elegance

Ferrari 250TR, 500TRC, 250LM, and others

This is the 3rd year in a row we have attended the Radnor Hunt Concours, and it continues to blow us away each time. For me this year was especially interesting because Ferraris and pre-war Cadillacs were being featured. What you see above was the view as we entered the show, a row of Ferraris worth tens of millions of dollars alone. Most of these cars will be getting their own specific features later on so just let this be a nice preview of things to come. Enjoy.   Continue reading The 2012 Radnor Hunt Concours d’ Elegance

Spotted! 1959 Ferrari 250GT California Spyder LWB, Greenwich, CT

While at the Greenwich Concours this June, I walked around the hotel across the harbor and came across this unrestored California Spider in the front parking lot.  It is number 1581GT, the 41st of only 50 made.  According to Hemmings Motor News (in their December 2011 issue), the current owner, Thierry Morin, has had it since 2002, when he was the high bidder at Christie’s Pebble Beach auction in 2002, for over $1.2 million–it had less than 26,000mi when he purchased it from the previous owner, William Ruger Jr. The first owner, Alfred E. “Erwin” Goldschmidt, was a successful amateur racer, but Ruger took it off his hands when the car was about six months old. It is still a completely unrestored car and won Best Preserved at the 2005 New York Concour.  It was shown as well at the  2008 Greenwich Concours and the 2011 Fairfield Concours.  This is one find I will not soon forget.   Continue reading Spotted! 1959 Ferrari 250GT California Spyder LWB, Greenwich, CT

Obscure Auto: Alfa Romeo Tipo 33 Stradale

Alfa Romeo Tipo 33 Stradale

This is the Alfa Romeo Tipo 33 Stradale, and I’m sure your eyes have already informed you that it is one of the most beautiful cars ever built by anyone. The word “Stradale” of course means that it is street version of a racing car, and it is indeed. The Tipo 33 Stradale was made in 1967 as a road going version of Autodelta Alfa Romeo’s Tipo 33/2 racing car. Only 18 Stradales were ever built, making it one of the rarest, most sought after cars in the world. One that just gets more and more interesting with every new detail you uncover.    Continue reading Obscure Auto: Alfa Romeo Tipo 33 Stradale

Dan Valanzola shoots a Lotus Europa at TWR

It has been a long time in the works but we are pleased to announce the official addition of my long time friend, Dan Valanzola, to the Mind Over Motor team. Dan takes beautiful pictures, and his work has been featured on the site a few times in the past. With this new category we will be featuring Dan’s work specifically, starting with this gallery of a Lotus Europa racing car at Thomas Walko Racing in NJ. We met some of the TWR guys at a recent event and they were very cool, inviting us to come see their shop and maybe attend some events. Dan went to the shop and captured their Europa that we had heard so much about from the guys. It has some of the widest fender flares I have ever seen, really menacing on a car so small. Looking forward to more in the future for sure. Enjoy the pics.

-Nick

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Spotted! 1963 Chevrolet Impala Convertible, New Brunswick, NJ

While taking a walk around the Rutgers University campus in New Brunswick, NJ, I ran into this very tasty ’63 Impala drop-top sitting in a parking lot behind the College Avenue Gym.  I’ve seen it around town a few times since I started here in 2008 and this is the first time I’ve ran into it in at least a year. More pictures after the jump. Continue reading Spotted! 1963 Chevrolet Impala Convertible, New Brunswick, NJ

1936 Auburn 852 Boattail Speedster at Concours

Auburn boat-tail speedsters like this one are among some of the world’s most collectible prewar American convertibles, owing to their extremely low production, high price tag, and (for the era) blistering performance.  This flawless black example showed up to the Pebble Beach Concours this summer, and I was fortunate enough to grab a few pictures of it.  This one in particular is a 1936 Model 852, the final year of production for not only this car, but the Auburn name as a whole.  It is a breathtaking car, and with only 1850 sold during 1936, this 100mph-plus roadster was a treat on the street in its day, and still is today. Continue reading 1936 Auburn 852 Boattail Speedster at Concours