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The Latest News And Reviews
Throughout The Car Industry



Categories: Classics

Mecum Set To Offer 400 Corvettes, Five Of Which Are Here. Hooray For Playing Favorites!

On: Mon, Jun 13, 2011 at 3:53PM | By: Andrew W Davis


KNEEL BEFORE ZODVETTE! test 2

I would like to say that I’m an expert in all things automotive (or at least be able to say it with a straight face and/or in public), but just like categories involving popes and kings are my Jeopardy kryptonite, Corvettes—and their myriad configurations—kill me every time.

I could probably learn a lot visiting St. Charles, Illinois, and if I do it June 23-26 some of that learning would undoubtedly involve Corvettes, thanks to the 2011 Bloomington Gold show—self-billed as “America’s Original Corvette Show”—at the nearby(?) Pheasant Run Resort.

Problem is I usually equate “good” with “expensive,” so in order to know how good a particular Corvette model is—or how much better it is than another—I need to know what it’s worth.

Enter the folks at Mecum Auctions, and their “Corvette Exclusive” Bloomington Gold auction event nestled into the same time (June 24-25) and space (the show grounds) as the Bloomington event with which it shares its name.


Find Cool Cars For Camry Money At Mecum's St. Paul Sale

On: Mon, Jun 6, 2011 at 9:35AM | By: Andrew W Davis


2000 Lotus Exige LHD coupe test 2

If there’s one thing that you learn as a long-term automotive writer it’s this: math and science—no matter how bad they sucked—were worth working at as they seem to be the key to affording the automotive baubles you only get to borrow.

Sure, having a new car or two just appear clean and full of fuel in your driveway every week is great, don’t get me wrong. But when what I call “Seventh-Day Disease” kicks in—named for the last day you have a car you REALLY wish you owned and don’t want to give back—you start wishing that you’d have checked the “Doctor” or “Lawyer” box on the “What do you want to be when you grow up?” form instead of “Writer/Pauper”.

There is an antidote that works most of the time, though: a “cheap-yet-cool” set of wheels you can call your own. (With your spouse’s permission; DO NOT forget that part. I CANNOT stress that enough. Trust me on this.) And one of the best places to find that vehicle is at one of the smaller “local” automotive auctions, like Mecum's upcoming St. Paul sale.


Classic Car Cultist: Volvo 240

On: Sat, May 28, 2011 at 12:16PM | By: Chris Salamone


Volvo 240 test 2

Many cars are popular because of their brawn, and some cars are popular because of their looks. The Volvo 240 has neither. And yet, since the 240’s inception and ultimate release into the North American market in 1975, the Volvo 240 has received an unusual following in the dark and mysterious underground of car enthusiasm. For example, while you might find a classic Sting Ray on the cover of every motoring magazine worldwide, you will also find articles, blogs, fan websites, videos, and accessories for Volvo 240s—all without the glitz and glamour of front-page notoriety.


Haunted Highways: A Series Exploring The Ghosts of Cars Gone By (Quickly)

On: Thu, May 26, 2011 at 10:52AM | By: Lou Ruggieri


Haunted Highways: A Series Exploring The Ghosts of Cars Gone By (Quickly) test 1-1

Everyone remembers the first time they saw it. It instantly captured the imaginations of men, younger men, some women, and every child that laid eyes on it. The Dodge Viper roared off the production line in 1992 and carved out a place in the human heart that no American car had in nearly three decades. 

Inspired by the first car to bear a snake badge (and had the fangs to match), the Viper became the modern rendition of the perennial Shelby Cobra. In its initial public offering, the Viper was incredibly close to the Cobra, not only in design, but in options as well. No roof, no door handles, no side windows (unless you count zipping up pieces of plastic), no air conditioning, no traction control, or anti-lock brake system.


 

Blasphemy! Fords, Mopars, And More Invade The National Corvette Museum

On: Mon, May 23, 2011 at 1:57PM | By: Andrew W Davis


Charger in front of National Corvette Museum test 2

Now I have to warn you Corvette people: What you’re about to read may be upsetting and could result in conniptions and all manner of carrying-on. So if you have a heart condition, a “Jake” tattoo, or a child named “Zora,” you better stop reading right now.

Right.

For the rest of you, it might interest you to note that you can see an incredible collection of American Muscle—built by all the finest brands in the business—from now until Father’s Day weekend at a little spot in Bowling Green, Kentucky, the locals like to call the National Corvette Museum.

No, I’m not kidding. Right in the very place created to revere the Corvette there’s a display of 14 of the finest classic muscle cars America ever produced, with nary a Corvette—and only three Chevys—to be seen.


Fairfield County Concours Seeks Earliest And Longest-Owned E-Types

On: Fri, May 20, 2011 at 1:59PM | By: Andrew W Davis


Fairfield County Concours d'Elegance logo test 2

How early is your “E”?

The fine folks at the Fairfield County Concours d’Elegance in Westport, Conn., need your help. As part of the Sept. 17-18 show’s festivities they are honoring the Jaguar E-Type—and its 50th birthday—with a “Featured Judging Class” that will include two rare representatives for which they’ve created special awards.

Why should you care? Because one—or both—of those awards could be yours just for owning an early E-Type.

[Not that owning the car Enzo Ferrari himself—yes, THAT Ferrari—called “The most beautiful car ever made” isn’t reward enough…]


There Are Cobras, And Then There Are Cobras; This Is The Latter.

On: Tue, May 17, 2011 at 2:53PM | By: Andrew W Davis


'63 Shelby Cobra Demonstrator at Mecum test 2

Known to folks that know these things as the “Shelby Demonstrator,” CSX 2096—a 1963 289 Cobra—was “one of a small handful of cars used for such PR purposes as the September 1963 Motor Trend road test and the August 1963 Playboy cover shoot.”

[It also served for 15 months in a “dealer demo”-style capacity at Shelby American, thus the name.]

Your chance to buy one of the most noteworthy Shelbys comes this Friday, May 20, sometime in the afternoon/evening during Mecum Auctions’ “Original Spring Classic Auction” coming to you live at the Indiana State Fairgrounds, or from there via “HD Theater, a Discovery Network.”

Can Mecum get a million or more for it? Maybe…


Pebble to "Celebrate the Greatest Ferrari of All Time" (x20+!)

On: Tue, May 10, 2011 at 3:02PM | By: Andrew W Davis


1963 Ferrari 250 GTO Berlinetta test 2

“My Ferrari.” Racing driver and journalist Denise McCluggage pegged those two as the two best words in the English language, and if you’ve ever been able to say them and mean it, you know why.

But, for those of us—myself included—who can’t, why does this little Italian marque of red cars with a black-horse-in-a-yellow-rectangle badge mean so much to so many?

I’m convinced that it’s because they all wear the glow generated by the Ferrari’s greatest road-going(!) race car, the 250 GTO. And I’m not the only one who thinks so. This year’s Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance—on Sunday, August 21—is hosting a record-setting event to celebrate the “50th anniversary of the birth of this model” which is “considered by many to be the greatest Ferrari ever manufactured.”


RM To Auction Creme De La Creme In Como

On: Mon, May 9, 2011 at 3:32PM | By: Andrew W Davis


Look deep into her eyes... '37 M-B 540K test 2

If you’ve been sitting on your billions just waiting for the right opportunity to convert them into something sexier than numbers on a spreadsheet, now’s your chance. [Well, your chance will actually come May 21 when RM Auctions will have their sale at the Concorso d'Eleganza Villa d'Este. So almost now.]

Right about here I could say something snide like “If you have to ask what or where that is you can’t afford anything there,” but we already know that’s true. But since I know, and you have more money than I do, I’ll gladly report it’s in Como, Italy.

[Look, just follow George Clooney or one of the dudes he’s supporting with “Oceans 47” or whatever the latest one is. I hear he’s got a pretty sweet pad nearby.]

Right. Now that you’ve got the where, I’m going to give you the why: RM Auctions is offering the most star-studded slate of consignments I’ve seen this decade, including, per their site, “32 blue-chip consignments with no fewer than ten anticipated to break the million-euro mark.”

That’s $1.5 million in real money, folks. And these lots' selling prices start there…


50 Years Of Astronauts And Corvettes

On: Mon, May 9, 2011 at 1:24PM | By: Chris Salamone


Apollo 12 Astronauts test 2

If you’ve read Tom Wolfe’s bestselling book The Right Stuff, sat through the 1995 Tom Hanks movie Apollo 13, or the recent Star Trek XI flick, or perhaps even claim to be privileged enough to remember the Space Race, then you no doubt have a firm grasp on the relationship between astronauts and Corvettes. Since May 5, 1961, when Alan B. Shepard became the first American to return from space flight and immediately got behind the wheel of a Chevrolet Corvette, America’s most iconic sports car and spacemen have been engaged in the throes of full on automotive passion.

In honor of Alan Shepard’s heroic mission, 30 of America’s surviving astronauts gathered in Cocoa Beach, FL on May 7th to commemorate the 50thAnniversary of Shepard’s sub-orbital flight. Recognizing a great publicity opportunity, GM made sure that all 30 would be driven in Corvettes representing all six design generations built since the model’s 1953 debut.


Classic Car Cultist: International Scout II

On: Wed, May 4, 2011 at 4:47PM | By: Chris Salamone


International Scout II  test 2

 Oh… you’ve never heard of the International Harvester Scout II? Well, I’ll bet you’ve seen it in one of the 34 movies and shows starring this epic American off-roader, such as Desperado, Avalanche, Milk, Dallas, and, of course, Swamp Thing. The Scout II may not be your absolute favorite hero machine, but as far as credibility is concerned, Swamp Thing is commonly accepted as the authoritative standard for cult classic films and this car is the perfect automotive pairing to swamp monsters and hokey script writing. But, the Scout II offers much more than just a funky aesthetic.

The International Harvester Scout was one of the seminal production civilian off-road SUVs, meant to compete with early Jeep models. Scouts were produced as two-door trucks with inventive options such as a half cab pickup or removable hard and soft tops. Considering that IH spent a total of 24 months in R&D for the entire vehicle (engine and manufacturing), the Scout was and remains to be an incredible achievement.