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Happy Collector Car Appreciation Day!

July 11th, 2014

1956 Chevrolet Corvette

Happy July 11th! Today is a very special day for car-lovers: the relatively newly dubbed National Collector Car Appreciation Day is a (real and official) holiday celebrated to raise awareness of automotive restoration and collection and its role in American society. A resolution was passed (one of the few truly bipartisan efforts) by the U.S. Senate in 2010 in order to to recognize the important roles played by automobiles in music, literature, cinema and other cultural and artistic aspects of the American identity. Organized by the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA), the event has been held on the second Friday in July since 2010. This makes today the fifth annual Collector Car Appreciation Day, and its popularity (and knowledge of its existence) is growing. And we couldn’t be happier about that.

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Car Clubs, Car Industry News, Car Lists, Car Minded, Car Shows, CarGurus Features and Updates, Classic & Vintage Cars, General Chat

Falling for Mazda and a Turbocharged Wankel

July 11th, 2014
Could a new RX-7 look like this?

Could a new RX-7 look like this?

I officially love Mazda.

I’ve slowly developed a crush on the scrappy little automaker and have been thoroughly impressed by the new Mazda3 and Mazda6. I even had a few scintillating hours with an older MazdaSpeed3.

She rocked my world, and I thought she was a one-time thing. But now I think I’ve transitioned into love.

How did this happen?

Maybe I’m just a sucker for rumors and the promise of future greatness. Maybe it’s talk of turbocharging the Wankel. Whatever the source of my newfound love affair, I dare you to read more and not fall in love, too.

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Car Industry News, Car Minded, Car Shopping, Classic & Vintage Cars, Foreign Cars, General Chat , , , ,

Time to Redefine Off-Road Adventures

July 10th, 2014

Subaru off road

When you think of off-roading, do you think of massive Jeeps, dirty Land Rovers and ’72 Fords?

I sure do.

My mind conjures images of massive boulders and mud-caked fenders. The vehicles I imagine conquering these obstacles are either old and beaten up or gigantic and customized to the gills.

Off-roaders are formidable and strong. They aren’t Subarus.

Right?

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$30,000: Honda or Audi?

July 9th, 2014

2015 Audi A3

Remember the parties Audi decided to throw for the 20-something crowd in an attempt to market the new A3?

To refresh your memory, the shindigs were by invitation and thrown by Audi dealers for hip young folks, the A3′s target buyer.

At the time, we said,

Not much more is known just yet, but the idea is to corral well-off potential buyers, woo them with food, drink and music, then hope the experience translates to new-car purchases.

It’ll probably work, since everyone loves a good party.

Well, it worked.

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Car Industry News, Car Minded, Car Shopping, Foreign Cars , , ,

Subaru BRZ Won’t Become a Classic… Yet

July 8th, 2014

2013 Subaru BRZ

Sometimes the best things in life don’t last long.

Puppies turn into dogs, fireworks last only about 20 minutes, and our favorite cars typically last only a generation or two.

When a new car comes out and people freak about how great it is, there’s always a chance the automaker will pull the plug and end the love affair early. That was the fear with the Subaru BRZ, which some people thought might exist only to satiate a niche and then disappear forever.

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1987 Jeep Lineup: Best Ever?

July 2nd, 2014

1987 Jeep Comanche

Remember when Jeep was awesome?

Back in the day, which is when everything cool and amazing happened, Jeep was the king of everything off-road. Even better, Jeep was affordable. If you were in the mood for a sturdy SUV that could go anywhere, Jeep was the only place you had to look.

But then things started to change. Maybe it was because the people at Jeep got lazy or greedy or maybe a combo of both, but Jeep split in two directions: inexpensive low-quality and really expensive luxury.

Can Jeep recover from that, or will another automaker step in to fill its shoes?

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Car Industry News, Car Minded, Car Shopping, General Chat, Trucks & SUVs , , ,

Car Startups and Their Odds of Success

July 1st, 2014

Commuter Cars Tango Parked-Side

At the beginning of football season, every team believes it will win the Super Bowl. With nothing but optimism in the air and a young season full of promise, football players have the confidence and drive to believe they’ll make it all the way. Of course, most do not.

Breaking into the National Football League is no easy task, and even the lucky few who make it have to prove themselves as worthy of being there.

The auto business is similar. The big players like General Motors, Toyota, Honda, Ford and Chrysler have made it exceptionally difficult for new players to participate in the auto manufacturing game. Tesla has finally made it to the party and started the process of proving itself as a big-league automaker.

Who will be the next rookie automaker to take things to the next level?

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Introducing the Supercar Unknowns

June 27th, 2014

SSC Tuatara

I was tagged in a Facebook post that said, “Dude, Washington has a supercar!”

The link went to a local story about Washington State company SSC and its Tuatara megacar, which is due to start production in 2015. That car has a very real shot at regaining the title of world’s fastest production car for SSC, whose Ultimate Aero has battled with Bugatti for the title over the last couple of years.

In our parts of the woods, SSC, formerly Shelby Supercars, is not an obscure car brand. Granted, we don’t see any roaming our city streets, but any real car nut knows it exists.

Keep reading for 5 supercars of which even the most pure of heart may not be aware.

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Does the U.S. Finally Stand a Chance?

June 25th, 2014

1968 Ford Mustang

This Thursday, the United States Men’s National Team will take on Germany in one of the most important 2014 FIFA World Cup matches thus far. Both teams have their own futures, plus those of Portugal and Ghana, largely in their hands. While the USA’s Jürgen Klinsmann and Germany’s Joachim Löw have both garnered high praise for their teams’ performances thus far in the tournament, we thought there was still a little room for improvement. We came up with starting lineups we hope Klinsmann and Löw will consider, lest the USA or Germany suffers the same fate as England and makes an early exit after not taking gearhead advice.

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Car Industry News, Car Lists, Car Minded, Domestic Cars, Foreign Cars, General Chat

The Upside of GM Recalls

June 25th, 2014

GM-recall

There’s a silver lining in every bad situation.

Sometimes you just have to look on the bright side.

After the rain comes a rainbow.

Every rose has its thorn.

Ridiculous clichés aside, there’s always an upside to even the lowest of situations. The General Motors ignition recall is certainly a low point for the world’s largest automaker, but some people are enjoying the benefits of said recall.

Who could possibly benefit from the disaster and tragedy of one of the biggest and most controversial recalls in history?

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