Alex’s Blog: Robert Brooks Discusses the 250 GTO — Exclusive!

I went to London in early July with my father, SCM Publisher Keith Martin, to attend a special anniversary dinner at Bonhams’ headquarters — and to witness the unveiling of the Ferrari 250 GTO consigned for Bonhams’ August 14-15 auction in Carmel, CA.

Last week I spoke with Bonhams Chairman Robert Brooks. Brooks discussed the historic significance of the car, why it’s being offered without reserve, and what it Read More

Alex’s Blog: The Essence of BMW Throttles Through the Generations

The Ultimate Driving Machine has been my automotive drug of choice since I turned 16. My first Bimmer was a reliable 1977 320i. Soon after, I upgraded to power steering with my Alpine White 1995 318i, which I still drive today. My love for my car is renewed every time I hear the engine turn over and start right up. (It probably has something to do with a childhood spent bump-starting stubborn Alfas.)

With my background and loyalty to the Read More

A Nimble Backroad Whale

Flying all the way from Oregon to Texas to drive a car sounds a little bit crazy, but we’re talking about BMW’s 2014 M6 Gran Coupe — on the Circuit of the Americas track near Austin.

Once I reached the track, the BMW instructor waved his arm at the array of 2014 M6 Gran Coupes lined up in the pits and uttered my favorite sentence: “Take your pick.”

And there she was, with her carbon-fiber roof, my M6, whispering promises Read More

Alex’s Blog: The Little Alfa That Could

If you ever wanted to teach your daughter how to work on engines, just send her on a 1,000-mile road trip in an old car.

Last Sunday I left Portland with my two good friends, Carly Mackie and Carolyn Corl. We cruised down Highway 101 in the Sports Car Market ‘67 Alfa Romeo Giulia Super for a two-day road trip, with the California Redwoods as our final destination. We made it to the Redwoods and back, even though the Alfa Read More

Alex’s Blog: Toto, We’re Not in Oregon Any More

Espresso bars, cigarettes and the telephone greeting “Pronto!” surrounded me. It was official: I had just stepped off the plane into Italy with the promise of driving restored classic Ferraris on the horizon. It was the quickest 48 hours of my life.

A week ago my father, publisher Keith Martin, and I received an invitation to a press conference for a vintage car restorer called Modena Classic Works. It was to be held in the Museo Casa Enzo Read More

Alex’s Blog: The Mellow Rebel

A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to test drive a Hyundai Elantra GT. That car far exceeded my expectations. When its rebel sister known as the Veloster showed up in the garage, I grabbed the keys and took a long lunch, which turned into a long weekend.

For $22,100, this Hyundai comes with a 201-hp 1.6-L twin-scroll turbocharged 4-cylinder. The price tag is attractive, but before I started daydreaming about paint colors, I had to put the car Read More

Alex’s Blog: Confused Classic-Car Girl

This weekend I made an impromptu drive to Seattle to visit a friend from Kentucky. She just happened to be in the area for a few hours before she headed to Canada.

I scavenged the SCM press fleet for just the right candidate. The cherry-red Hyundai Elantra GT won, equipped 1.8-liter, DOHC, 4-cylinder engine with continuously variable transmission (D-CVVT).

The visit itself was as pleasant as expected. The Hyundai, by contrast, took me completely by surprise. After a six-plus hour Read More

Alex’s Blog: How SCM Scooped the World on the 250 GTO

When my father, Publisher Keith Martin, mentioned he was traveling to London on a last-minute trip, I didn’t think he was going to take my joke of me tagging along seriously.

However, I soon found myself following my Dad onto an airliner. We were scheduled to attend a special 25th anniversary dinner with Bonhams at their London headquarters.

Thanks to a direct flight from Seattle, we arrived at Heathrow just in time for tea. Our hotel Read More

Alex’s Blog: The Historic Races at PIR

It was one of those perfect summer days in Oregon: 80 degrees, blue sky, with the rumble of vintage cars racing in the air. Portland International Raceway hosted the annual Historic Races this past weekend. With a hotdog in one hand and a Coke in the other, I spent the early afternoon kicking tires in the pits and the classic car corrals.

Since I was a little girl, I’ve come to PIR this weekend each year to watch my Read More