Saturday, January 26, 2013

Found in the Yard: Junkyard Zagato

Over the years Zagato coachwork has bodied cars from great marques including Aston Martin, Lamborghini, Alfa Romeo, Maserati and more. Zagato designs have prevailed on race tracks and adorned bedroom walls for decades. That makes it all the more startling that a car with this this illustrious badge would end up in a junkyard waiting to be crushed.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

AdverTimeWarp: Peak of the 80's

It doesn't get much more 80's than this. In this installment of AdverTimeWarp we've got a "turbopowered" 1985 Chrysler Laser that claims to be bringing the heat. A casual read reveals it's stunning 5.5 second 0-50 time. That's pretty fast even for modern standards. Wait a minute, 0-50?

Monday, January 21, 2013

Race on Sunday, Write on Monday: TLM Goes Ice Racing

Barnaby Conrad was once quoted as saying “auto racing, bull fighting, and mountain climbing are the only real sports... all others are games.” (The quote is often wrongly attributed to Ernest Hemingway who thought bullfighting was a tragedy) These writers were surrounded by auto racing in it's infancy when it a loud, extremely dangerous and uncharted sport. Though to an extent it still is, modern racing is far safer, better organized and more refined than it ever was in the 20's. Nonetheless, slapping a race number to a car never fails to provide a thrill no matter what era.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Big Blocks and Bench Seats: 60's Chevy Owners Manuals

1963 Chevy Impala owners manual

The 60's were great times for GM. Cadillacs were objects of success and prestige, fuel injected Corvettes were fast and beautiful on par with the best Europe could offer and the Chevrolet Impala was the car of the masses. 1960's owners manuals were interesting too. Filled with compression ratios, timing degrees and lubrication points, these manuals were technical bibles provided so that car owners could properly maintain their vehicles. Nearly 50 years later we can easily use the internet to access such information but old tech specs are just so cool!

Friday, January 11, 2013

AdverTimeWarp: Spaceship From the Pleiades

What if you're in 1985 and you want a sporty 4WD car but the Eagle SX/4 just seems a little too old-fashioned? Well as a resident of 1985, Subaru has you covered. Debuting that year, the angular Subaru XT was the radical, aircraft inspired  answer to a question few had asked.

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

The History of Horsepower via Microsoft Excel

How interesting is this graph? Well that depends on how big of a car dork you are. This graph is a fairly accurate representation of how sports car horsepower has progressed through the years. The Corvette, Nissan Z and Porsche 911 were chosen for their long production run and quasi-entry level sports car status.

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

AdverTimeWarp: Crossover Before it was Uncool

Welcome to AdverTimeWarp, where iconic and odd car ads are pulled straight from the 80's magazines that held them for decades and brought new life! Today's 1985 AMC Eagle SX/4 was years ahead of it's time by combining real four wheel drive capability with sporty car looks. Alas it would prove to not be enough to save American Motors.

Found in the Yard: Pistons Not Included

Rotaries are cool. Even though they get V8 fuel mileage, have very little torque and they burn oil like a two-stroke weed-eater, they have quite a few perks. Their compact size, revvy nature and otherworldly smoothness keep car enthusiasts gravitating towards them like sailors towards nymphs. Sadly, today's 1985 Mazda RX-7 GSL goes "hmmmmmm" no longer.

Sunday, January 06, 2013

Suzy Goes to Race City

While going through the vast Life Mechanical archives (think the digital equivalent of the end of Raiders of the Lost Ark) I found this little gem. More specifically, it's an image of two things that no longer exist. 

Saturday, January 05, 2013

Midnight Supra

Gotta love the license plate
Like it or not, the incredibly cheesey Fast and Furious movies wormed the twin turbo Supra into our hearts. The movie franchise that takes place in a mythical world where all girls love cars and street racing is never met with mal-consequence brought Toyota's big star to mainstream culture. 

But this article isn't about Brian or Dominick, it's about what makes the MKIV twin turbo Toyota Supra a car of legend.

Friday, January 04, 2013

Found in the Yard: The Real Plastic Fantastic

It could be arguably said that overzealous cost-cutting and the Chevrolet Corvette killed the Fiero. Of course there are always many factors to a car's demise but relentless bean counting measures and the infamous internal GM mandate that nothing can be faster than the Corvette, certainly kept the little Fiero from being all it could be.