Zoom-Zoom, Slurp-Slurp

Early RX-7s rarely see 20 mpg highway and can be driven down into single digits; owners laugh at later claims of 30 mpg

By the late 1970s, the sports car world was looking bleak indeed. A 1975 Road & Track comparison test of the Maserati Merak, Lamborghini Urraco, and Ferrari Dino 308 GT4 showed none of these detoxed beasts to be capable of a sub-eight-second 0-60 mph run. It was far worse Read More

Nash’s “Mini Me” for ’53

The American automotive scene is littered with the tiny carcasses of small cars that U.S. manufacturers have tried to foist on a largely unwilling and disinterested market. American Bantam, Playboy, Crosley and Nash with the Metropolitan all tried, with varying degrees of success. But in the end, the American market’s love for large cars would always prove too strong.

But in the early 1950s, with the postwar import fad in full swing, the unconventional Nash-Kelvinator corporation believed there was a Read More

Too Late the Fiero.

The transformation was astonishing. The 1988 car had performance, braking, and handling to go with the good looks

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The manner in which the Pontiac Fiero was sold to the unimaginative Roger B. Smith-era GM management (now thankfully long gone)-a generation of inbred, know-nothing dullards, who nearly killed GM-speaks volumes about how obtuse they were.

One sports car, the Corvette, was enough for Smith’s beady-eyed bean counters, so the mid-engine, two-seater Read More

Avoidable Classic: GM Diesels

Have I Got a Smokin’ Deal for You.

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When pundits ponder why diesel cars failed in the U.S., the infamous engines built by Oldsmobile from 1978 to 1985 come to mind instantly.

Critical engineering flaws, consumers who ignored strict maintenance schedules, and the handicap of a casually water-logged diesel supply turned the cackling diesels into rolling grenades. Most have gone off by now.

Since the last Oldsmobile diesel Read More

Good Value out of the Box (Its Own)

The 2-liter is really the car to have, as it transforms the 914 from an also-ran into a car capable of out-running a TR6

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By the late 1960s, it was apparent the 912 was no longer the answer to Porsche’s need for a lower-cost, higher-volume model. High production costs and currency issues had forced the 912 far above 356 price levels and at not enough of a discount versus the Read More

“Eldosaurus” Has Evolved into White Elephant

Cadillac had a tough task in replacing its first front-wheel-drive Eldorado, the Bill Mitchell-designed model of 1967-70. Although gigantic, this first-gen front-driver was, like its stablemate the Oldsmobile Toronado, quite beautiful. Its successor, built from 1971 to 1978, was simply large. But the second-gen did have one advantage over its predecessor- it was available as a convertible.

This series wasn’t referred to as the “Eldosaurus” for nothing. With just two-doors but nearly 19 feet long, it was an arrestor hook Read More

Morgan Brings a Sword to a Knife Fight

The Plus 8 offers something in the Allard J2 vein, with way too much power for its antediluvian chassis, but with a dash of British style

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If Scotchman William “Braveheart” Wallace had been alive in the late 20th century, he probably couldn’t have resisted the broadsword of sports cars, the Morgan Plus 8-even though it was built by the hated English. It’s just the thing for carving up your favorite Read More

2CV: The Legend of the “Tin Snail”

Prior to WWII, the mostly rural population of France did not have a cheap and utilitarian vehicle that would allow them to embrace the automobile the way Americans had with the Model T. The 2CV was conceived as the car that would mechanize the French peasant class.

Like the Volkswagen Beetle, the 2CV had its roots in the pre-WWII era. Pierre-Jules Boulanger, a Michelin executive assigned to Citroën, called for a car that could carry two people and 200 pounds Read More

Alfa GTV6: Best of the Bottom-Feeders

The Maratona edition was referred to as the “Marijuana” edition, in reference to what Alfa must have been smoking at the time

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For many Alfisti (our esteemed Publisher included), the saga of Alfa Romeo in the U.S. effectively ends after 1967, when emission controls began to sap their essential “Alfa-ness.” Having driven his ’65 Giulia Spider Veloce, it’s not difficult to see how he comes by this opinion. And the Read More

1961-79 MG Midget

These are truly small cars. Anyone larger than 5’9″ driving one looks like a trained circus bear in a parade

The early ’60s were the golden age of the British sports car. The British Motor Corporation (BMC) aimed to have a product for every possible driver. MG dealers were clamoring for a car smaller and cheaper than the MGA. A badge-engineered version of the Austin-Healey Sprite Mk II seemed like just the Read More

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