Thursday, August 25, 2016

Incredible '68 Dodge Coronet

Today I discovered this cool modern conversion of a 1968 Dodge Coronet.  It was created by Steven Jarudd of Sweden.  Its got the interior, engine, and electronics from an '07 Charger SRT8 and I think he did a really great job.  More pics can be found on Steve's Facebook page.

I even found a video but excuse the crap choice of music.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

662 HP Can Be Tricky

Yesterday I was playing with my Shelby at a stoplight and did a hard pull.  I got grip, shifted to second, got grip and then at about 70mph I lost grip and the tails started to come around.  It didn't become a crazy disaster because I lifted and it straightened right out, but this seems to be the common reason why GT500s end up tangled in the trees.  You really aren't expecting to lose grip once the tires have traction after the shift.  Just like the guy in the video below.  I didn't get as squirrely as this guy because I lifted but I can certainly see how things could get out of hand quickly.

I have a pretty solid respect for this car so I'm usually ready for anything when I'm giving it the beans but still it was pretty unnerving.  The Drive Channel listed the 2013 and 14 Shelby GT500 among the top 10 cars out there that is trying to kill you.  Perhaps more serious tires are in order.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Dodge's Latest Mess

Contrary to popular belief I am not a Mustang fan.  Of course I like them enough to buy them but they are not the car I’m always after.  In fact I absolutely hated them in high school.  The big reason I’ve owned so many is that they are fast out of the box and there are endless aftermarket possibilities.  A Mustang can be easily built to be whatever you want it to be.

Before I bought my first Mustang I was primarily a “Mopar of No Car” kind of guy.  I loved Dodge and Plymouth muscle cars.  To me they always seemed like the underdog that Ford and Chevy people wrongfully underestimated.  Once a guy pulled up next to me in my Duster 340 bragging that his Nova had a 350.  In his mind the bigger number mean he would stomp me and he was sadly mistaken.

So then why am I not driving around in a new Challenger or Charger instead of a Shelby?  Because Dodge treats its heritage like garbage.  To charge a few more bucks Dodge with slap R/T on everything from a minivan to a SUV.  It used to be an exclusive badge for performance vehicles meaning road and track, but now it means nothing.  Then Dodge created SRT as their exclusive performance car but of course we started seeing that show up on Ram pickups and even Jeeps.  Now we have Hellcat which has migrated over to Charger and the word is it will be on a Ram soon.  Dodge does not know how to keep something exclusive or special anymore.

So in the tradition of Dodge whoring out their heritage they announced the Challenger T/A package.  For those who don’t know way back in 1970 when things were good Dodge created a T/A variation of their Challenger to be raced in Trans Am races which is where the T/A comes from.  These were high winding small block 340s with what was called a 6-pack which was 3 two-barrel carbs. They were light and had upgraded suspension and brakes.  Today they are fairly rare and expensive cars.

Now with Ford creating the new track oriented GT350 Mustang and Chevy creating the track oriented Z/28 Camaro did Dodge follow suit and resurrect the Challenger T/A to be a track attack machine like in the old days??  Nope.  It’s a stupid sticker package along with intake and exhaust options that don’t change the horsepower numbers at all.  Oh, well surely keeping with tradition they have something special under the hood like a supercharged 5.7-liter or maybe even a turbo V6??  Nope, instead it’s got the standard 375hp 5.7 or the 485hp 6.4 same as all the other Challengers packages.  With the Challenger T/A they had the chance to stay relevant with Ford and Chevy and create their own track attack car to chase after the competition with.  Just like the special small block 340 6-pack engine of the '70s they could have used a turbo V6 or at the very least boosted the smaller 5.7 V8.  But that would take effort, research, engineering and testing to create.  Stickers and badges on the other hand are easy to apply and cost way less.

So this is why I no longer fly the Mopar flag, Dodge just doesn’t try anymore.  They aren’t the scrappy underdog anymore, they are just behind and not in a cool way.  Hell, they took the Charger which was an amazing iconic car and turned it into a 4-banger hatchback and then into a 4 door sedan.  I’m just glad that Plymouth is dead so we don’t see some modern Cuda abomination out there on the streets.

Pics and info courtesy of Car & Driver

Friday, August 19, 2016

Firebird Spotted

Yesterday there was a pretty nice looking 1967 Firebird 350 sitting out in front of my house.  The body looked solid but when he started it up it sounded like it could use some TLC.  Still grabbed a few shots to share.  Looks good in silver.

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Bad Parking

Bad parking makes me almost as crazy lack of parking.  Unfortunately my place of work has both problems. Downtown Toronto like most downtown areas does not value having ample parking but I fail to understand how a company can continue to hire hundreds of people and not have a thought regarding where they are going to put them all.

Certainly many take the subway, bike, or walk to work but with so many people not everyone can live within easy commuter distances.  I for instance live about 40 minutes away by car so walking is not an option.  It used to be that getting to work by 10 got you a spot, then it was you had to be there by 9:30, and now you really need to be at work by 9 if you expect to get a parking spot near the building.

So I understand that the later it gets the more desperate people get to find anywhere to put their car.  But some places just aren't parking spots.  As you see in the pic this area is meant to allow people to drive down the row and do a turn down the next row.   But with people parking in that space it's impossible and people are forced to backup all the way to the row's entrance.  One BMW asshat in particular parks there regardless, even if legitimate spots exist.

I used to have my own parking spot but I lost it when more senior people decided they'd rather drive than take the subway.  On days I drive my Cobra I refuse to park it on the street.  I arrive at 9, if there is parking then great.  If there isn't then I go home and call in sick.  So far I haven't had to do this.

Monday, August 1, 2016

Dave Wood Pre-owned Centre In Newmarket

There is a used car dealership near me that certainly has an interesting stock of cars.  When I first moved to the area it seemed like any normal used car dealer but recently they appear to have started focusing on performance and specialty vehicles.  I walked past there today and took a few shots.

Just out in the lot today there was a 2010 and 2012 GT500 Shelby Cobras.  A 2015 Mustang GT, a Camaro convertible, a Charger R/T, and an old 1961 GMC truck with a 454 big block in it.

Then inside the showroom there was a Challenger Hellcat, a GT350, and a Camaro with it says a Limited edition Panther package that produces 600 hp from it's supercharger.  Never seen on of those before.  Unfortunately the dealership was closed for a civic holiday do I had to take shots through the showroom window.


I'm not sure why they are focusing on such a performance driven stock in a town like Newmarket but it's certainly fun to see these cars come and go.  I certainly didn't know about a Camaro Panther package before this.

As a side note I've heard this dealership isn't very good.  However my only experience with them was when my girlfriend's car broke down and she coasted into their lot a couple years ago.  She is an attractive blonde and was on the last straw with her troublesome car.  If there was ever a time to sell a person a car that was the time.  However the Dave Wood salesmen just stood in the showroom looking at her through the window.  She called CAA and they towed it away. They never came out or even attempted to approach her.