Tag Archive for classic

Bikes Like They Used To Make ‘Em . . . Again!

2015-Yamaha-SR400b

People get into bikes for many reasons, but probably two of the big ones are fun – and affordability. The fun is directly proportional to the affordability, too. A bike you can buy outright eases stress. Big payments for the next several years adds stress. And stress is the mortal enemy of fun. As motorcycles…

An Old VW For Everyday Use?

Hippie Beetle

My friend (and web ninja master of EPautos) Dom asked me the other night what I thought about getting an old VW to replace his modern car as his everyday driver. He hasn’t owned an old Beetle before. I have owned two – and drove one of them (a ’73 Super Beetle) in DC traffic…

Retro Review: AMC Marlin Fastback Coupe, 1965–1967

Pontiac’s GTO, which appeared in 1964, had every other American automaker rushing to cash in on the emerging youth market for big-biceped intermediate muscle coupes— including AMC. AMC, however, decided on a unique twist. Instead of me-tooing the Big Three’s muscle cars, it went with the personal luxury coupe concept – anticipating cars like the…

Retro-review: 1966-74 Dodge Charger

Pontiac’s Tempest-based GTO had been on the market for two years when Dodge finally fired back in mid-1966 with an intermediate-sized, big-engined intimidator of its own – the Charger. Though it wasn’t first on the field and so can’t claim credit for igniting the frenzy, the Charger would become every bit the muscle car legend…

The … Thing!

The Bible says the poor are blessed in spirit – but they sure get short-changed when it comes to transportation. The Jeep-like VW Type 181 “Thing”  - sold here for only two years, 1973-1974 –   didn’t even come with carpeting. Or gauges (other than a speedo). You did get a couple of small indicator lights,…

Party Time! Excellent! 1975–1980 AMC Pacer

Wayne’s World immortalized the AMC Pacer,  a car which defined the 1970s even more than a Bee Gees 8-track, the “Farrah” hairstyle, or the leisure suit. In fact, wearing a leisure suit and listening to a Bee Gees 8-track while driving a chiffon-yellow Pacer with wood panel accents to your job as assistant manager of…

1983–1988 Hurst Olds/442

Oldsmobile had a long and distinguished history – and suffered a slow, painful death. The process of mortification began in the early 1980s, when General Motors gutted the formerly independent engineering departments of each of its seven car divisions. Management eliminated the Buick, Pontiac, and Oldsmobile-built engines that had made each of these divisions’ cars…

In the Rearview Mirror: 1977-81 Z28 Camaro

The smart athlete retires gracefully, at his peak – before he starts to slip and give off that “has-been” stink. To their credit, that’s what Chevrolet managers did when they discontinued the Z28 version of the popular Camaro sport coupe after the 1974 model year. True high-performance engines such as the 1970–1971 Z28’s solid lifter-equipped…

Rambler American Cross Country Wagons, 1954–1969

It’s not well-known, but AMC’s Rambler line actually surpassed Plymouth as the number-three brand of car in America (in terms of total sales) by the early 1960s, under the inspired leadership of George Romney—father of 2008 Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney. It was also a performance brand—though few remember this today. For example, the 1957…

Cadillac Allante, 1987-1993

If General Motors eventually goes bankrupt (again) it won’t be for lack of imagination and innovation. It will be for lack of successful innovation. The Allante project is a case in point. It began with high hopes – and an audacious plan. By the mid-1980s, Cadillac was still the “standard of the world” – if…