Monday, January 27, 2020

Widebody Volkswagen Beetle Is Real, Also Absurd

These days, it's only natural for a build to be based on a rendering, since this is one facile way for the owner of a factory machine to test various custom incarnations before actually commissioning one. However, things are the other way around with the Volkswagen Beetle sitting before us - while this is a rendering, it is based on an actual car.
 3 photos
Widebody VW Beetle (rendering based on build)Widebody VW Beetle
"So the rendering is way more extreme than the real deal, right?" Wrong. In fact, it's pretty hard to tell the difference between the two. And if you're not so sure, you can compare the two thanks to the Instagram posts at the bottom of the page.

The first post, which comes from digital artist Khyzyl Saleem, is a fully-textured 3D model of the wacky Bug. As for the ones below it, these portray the actual car. For the record, this car belongs to the collection of Juca Viapri, a Mexican social media star with over 5 million YouTube subscribers and north of 3.3 million Instagram followers.

From the rusty take, to that rear spoiler, which could be mistaken for some sort of shed pillar, this Vee-Dub is not easy on the eyes. Then again, even the artist who decided to bring the contraption into the virtual world admits this.

"We all have different taste when it comes to building cars, and it's something we should be respectful of. Which is purely the reason why I wanted to model @jucaviapri's Beetle," the pixel wielder explains in the post showcasing the Porsche sibling we have here.

In fact, the parts of the vehicle that are the most difficult to digest might just be the most important attention grabbers. Looking past the said spoiler, I'm referring to bits such as the "diffuser", as well as to the negative camber angle of the rear wheels, which seem to scream "function follows form". Oh, and if we also factor in the metal work up front, the whole "aero" kit looks a bit like a medieval armor...

PS: All those who felt that renderings portraying a Rauh-Welt Begriff Beetle were too much now have a new standard to judge by.






From: https://www.autoevolution.com/news/widebody-volkswagen-beetle-is-real-also-absurd-140598.html#

Sunday, January 26, 2020

Poolside

$1M worth of Corvettes trapped inside flattened buildings after blast





HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Among those picking up the pieces after Friday's deadly explosion is the owner of Houston Corvette Service.

Gordon Andrus' business is right across the street from Watson Grinding & Manufacturing, the site of the deadly blast. Two employees at Watson were killed.

Due to the explosion, two of the buildings Andrus owns were flattened, trapping the Corvettes inside. In fact, he says the cars are worth $1 million.

"Mine are flattened. It's sitting there with about a million dollars in cars right now. We restore old Corvettes, and it's full of what used to be really nice cars," Andrus said.

No one was inside the buildings at the time of the explosion.

Andrus said he's grateful no one was hurt at his facility.


From: https://abc13.com/5877954/

Friday, January 17, 2020

Photos Show Dozens of Classic Cars Abandoned in Collapsed Train Tunnel


It's human nature to bury the dead. Maybe that's why it's so eerie to look through this collection of photos showing a group of classic cars rotting away in a disused, collapsed train tunnel—it's like peering into a crypt, disturbing the spirits within.
There's a long story behind these leprosic husks and their resting place, a ruined piece of late-Victorian infrastructure in northwest England. After the trains stopped running decades ago, the tunnel was converted into a subterranean car repair shop, then subsequently abandoned in 2012 when a large ceiling collapse threatened the integrity of the entire complex.
Everything was left behind—customer cars, old projects, tools and equipment, and older abandoned vehicles that predated the shop itself—and the place was sealed off. Recently, a local photographer named Kyle May got access to the tunnel from its current owner and agreed to share his photos with The Drive on the condition that we don't publish its exact location or the full backstory to help safeguard it from scavengers. You'll notice that some of the chambers look surprisingly clean and well-lit—that's because the property was actually being used to film a movie at the time.

Wernher von Braun: his story told. "Missile to Moon", documentary. PBS (2012)

The Munsters Drag-U-La Coffin Car and Koach

Dodge Makes Controversial Change To Charger And Challenger


Hot stuff coming through!
There are some things in this world that are hard to explain. Dodge Charger and Dodge Challenger owners choosing to keep the factory-installed splitter guard protectors on their vehicles following delivery is one of them. Fiat Chrysler first began installing these plastic protectors on its muscle cars back in 2015, specifically for the SRT Charger and Challenger to protect them during shipping. Makes sense, right? Of course. Thing is, owners opted not to remove them.

Car and Driver researched this matter further and, not surprisingly, it's a polarizing topic within the Charger and Challenger community. Heck, there's even a Facebook group solely dedicated to the practice. As of now, it has 12,000 members.

Dealerships are technically supposed to remove the splitter guards before customers take delivery, but this isn't always being done. The plastic guards even have written on them the following: "TO BE REMOVED BY DEALER." Why aren't dealers doing so? Because some are being pressured to keep them installed by customers. Go figure. Many owners don't seem to be bothered by these yellow pieces of plastic at the front of their muscle cars, even if they contrast with the body color. Protection is protection, right? Not necessarily.

Dodge and SRT design chief Mark Trostle previously stated owners are "just ruining the paint." FCA, which continues to actively encourage owners to remove the guards, has decided to act. Starting now, those splitter guards will no longer be bright yellow but rather hot pink.

Because "they weren't part of the original design," FCA sees no reason to keep them yellow, a color that was apparently randomly chosen. Chances are muscle car enthusiasts will not be fans of hot pink. Even though FCA is doing what it can to discourage this annoying trend, it's too early to tell whether the switch to pink will work. The automaker hasn't ruled out changing the guard color yet again, perhaps to black to avoid contrast, if the practice continues. This would be admitting defeat because the switch to hot pink may not change owners' minds, but it's worth a shot.

Meanwhile, the online debate continues.

Thursday, December 19, 2019

This Broken Ford F-150 Shows Why You Should Never Overload Your Truck


Just because someone can pass their driver's test it doesn't mean they should be trusted on public roads. Such is the case with this Ford F-150 owner who decided to sit an entirely-too-large camper shell on the back of their pickup, bending the bed and nearly snapping the frame in half. As we know, when something like that happens, you wind up here. On the internet.
This poor, victimized truck is an 11th-generation F-150 in King Ranch trim, made between 2004 and 2008. At the time, it was cream of the crop: saddle leather seats, a power sunroof, and even a Sony surround sound system. It came standard with a 5.4-liter V-8 making 300 horsepower and 365-pound-feet, proving it to be an exceptional performer in the towing and hauling departments.
Still, though, this slide-in camper is too much. First, it's clearly intended for a long-bed truck and this—as you can see—is a short-bed model. Secondly, a quick Google search shows that the topper weighs around 2,800 pounds; this particular F-150 only touts a payload capacity of around 2,000 pounds in crew cab, four-wheel-drive configuration.
This is a recipe for disaster as one Reddit user pointed out on the original thread.
“That camper weight is probably dry. Once you add passenger, liquids, and luggage, that truck is toast," said one commenter.
Others think that while the bed is clearly toast, and the frame itself may be OK.
“It’s probably just bed damage and not the frame but still,” mentioned one user.
“You can see the straight frame below it in the shadows. There are a handful of bed bolts between this and catastrophe,” added another. 
The teensy strap that's been lobbed from one side of the bed to the other isn't doing much for load security, either.
Hopefully, the driver knew better than to hit the road once they parked and saw the damage to their truck. Then again, who would think they'd ever see something like this in public to start with?

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

The 2021 Cadillac Escalade Is Mercifully Inoffensive Looking

Image shared with permission, rotated and contrast-boosted by the author to show detail
Photo: allcarnews (Instagram)
I happen to like the restyled look of the 2021 Chevy Suburban and Tahoe SUVs. I dare say it’s the best application yet of GM’s insistence on stretch-face styling for everything. Many commenters disagreed though, so perhaps the more stately jaw of this apparently leaked 2021 Cadillac Escalade will suit you better.
Spy shots of the ’Slade have been rolling around for months, and early pics of the multi-layered dashboard, in particular, have been somewhat interesting. But I do believe these photos from @allcarnews on Instagram, shared with us by the site’s rep Justin, are the first fairly clear images of the redesigned Escalade’s exterior without camouflage.
Based on the proportions and size of the vehicle, there really is nothing else the SUV in these pictures could be besides an Escalade. Unless Cadillac is planning on changing the name to “XT10” or something.
As a side note, GM isn’t going to confirm or deny that powertrain or horsepower figure in that Instagram caption so, while a carryover 6.2-liter V8 is likely, take that piece of information with a grain of salt.
What we can see for sure though is that the grille is large, the headlights are (relatively) small, and it looks like the C-pillar has got a little more swoop than it has had in previous iterations of the Escalade. Other than that, it seems, fine?
Of course, we’re looking at the vehicle in the most unflattering factory floor lighting through a grainy iPotato camera lens, but you can get a pretty decent sense of what the shapes all look like. It’s not bad. I’m a lot more interested in what that two-tiered gauge cluster looks like when it’s working, though.

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

🎄 Christmas Silent Jazz Playlist - Smooth Winter Jazz Music with Fireplace

Massive Barn-Find Collection! Cadillac Series 62, AMC Marlin, Pontiac GTO, and More

“This is all I’ve ever done,” Jonathan Ponulak says when we asked how he came about fixing, restoring, selling, and collecting vintage cars over the last 40-odd years. Through their automotive careers, Jonathan and his partner (and brother) Stan have ended up with an inventory of over 200 mostly vintage vehicles, scattered between several garages in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. “My brother and I owned Main Street Motors in Somerville, New Jersey. We started buying cars right out of high school and selling them to clients across America and the world,” Jonathan says. Their favorite hobby quickly turned into their perpetual passion, as the guys searched out and stored slumbering vintage cars all over the East Coast. The twosome were defining the term “barn find” back in the 1980s, way before it became a popular catchphrase in the world of classic cars today.
The Ponulak brothers certainly did well with their garage over the years. “One year we sold over 300 cars. Business was good—very good—and it’s been a great run,” Jonathan says. These cars you see here are the ones at their main garage located just outside of Jersey in Bangor, Pennsylvania. “These were some of the ones we held onto. The first car I restored is here. It’s a six-cylinder Falcon I did for my then girlfriend [now wife] back in high school. I also have my first car, a LeMans, and the GTOs that replaced it,” Jonathan says. Those are some favorites, but he also has a few others that are near and dear to his heart, such as a 1966 Emberglo Mustang GT convertible, and his parents’ 1969 Firebird 350 drop-top with 70,000 miles. There are plenty more here, and also 6,000 square feet of assorted auto parts in the basement that will be sold off in the future. “We are getting ready to retire and will definitely unload the majority of cars and all the parts stash at a major auction or in individual sales, so stay tuned,” Jonathan says. (You can reach the guys at Ih8rain2@hotmail.com for more info.)

1966 FORD MUSTANG GT CONVERTIBLE

This Mustang is a rare one indeed. “It’s a factory A-code, four-speed car with air, and it’s never been restored,” Jonathan says. To boot, it’s basted in the one-year-only “Emberglo” paint scheme with a matching-color Pony interior. It also has some interesting options with rocker moldings and stripes all listed on the build sheet. The car looks basically brand new without a spec of rust or issue with the paint; a rarity on the East Coast. “I bought it from a 93-year-old man who had the Mustang and nine other vintage cars he was selling. I had to buy them all to get this one. It’s a favorite of mine and it’s a fun car that drives perfectly. I love taking it out on the road,” Jonathan says.

1974 PONTIAC GTO

The rare ride is the last hurrah for the GTO lineage. “It’s basically a souped-up Ventura. This one is the trunk version, as some came with a hatch,” Jonathan says. This particular example is decked-out with a 350 small-block, four-speed, and factory sway bars. It shows only 22,000 miles on the odometer and is another very original car, basically untouched since new and still wearing its original tires. “It’s one of 2,100 made and I bought it from the original owner in 1982. We held onto it,” Jonathan says.

1963 FORD FALCON CONVERTIBLE

The 1963 Ford Falcon convertible is near and dear to Jonathan’s heart. “It’s the first car I ever restored, and I did it for my then girlfriend who is now my wife,” he says. It’s nothing special, with no power anything and a six-cylinder basted in Wimbledon White with a red gut. It’s a neat little cruiser whose value is all sentimental.”

1966 AMC MARLIN HARDTOP

This immaculate original car is a favorite. “It’s an AMC 327-powered ride with 27,000 miles on the odometer. It’s another car that hasn’t been touched over the years, still wearing its original paint. It has power steering and brakes and was always garaged. The interior of this 1966 AMC Marlin hardtop looks brand new as well.

1966 PONTIAC GTO CONVERTIBLE

This sweet 1966 GTO convertible was one of Jonathan’s cars over the years. The automatic ride features power steering and power brakes and is skinned in Candlelight Cream. “This was one of my high school cars. It has its original paint, drivetrain, and interior. The only things that were changed on the car are the Cragars,” Jonathan says.

1964 PONTIAC BONNEVILLE CONVERTIBLE

This full-size Poncho is a 389/four-barrel car with power steering, power windows, and power brakes. Upgraded add-ons include heavy-duty suspension, posi rear, and cool eight-lug wheels. But it’s the paint that’s the kicker: it says “Special” on the data plate, which shows it is not a stock Pontiac hue. This particular 1964 Pontiac Bonneville convertible went down the Cadillac assembly line, which is denoted in the paperwork. This is how Pontiacs were sprayed custom colors,” Jonathan says.

1961 CADILLAC SERIES 62

This beautiful bubbletop 1961 Cadillac Series 62 shows the early 1960s styling and the reduced fin size prevalent on these rides. It’s motivated by a 390 and has the typical power steering and power brakes. It’s a very original car with just 42,000 miles on the odometer.

1978 CADILLAC COUPE DE VILLE CONVERTIBLE

Though this 1978 Cadillac Coupe De Ville convertible was wedged in tight and hard to get a good shot of, it is worth noting. This is 1 of 100 convertible conversions made by Hess & Eisenhardt for Cadillac back in the 1970s. This particular one cost about $25,000 new—more than twice the asking price for a stock version. These custom beauties were sold through Cadillac. This particular one was used in a Charlie perfume commercial featuring Shelley Hack of Charlie’s Angels fame. It’s a neat and rare ride that the guys bought from the original owner.

1967 DODGE CORONET 500 CONVERTIBLE

There are very few Mopars in the Ponulak collection, but this 1967 Dodge Coronet 500 convertible is a good one. This drop-top is blessed with a 383/four-barrel big-block Wedge and is rowed by a 727 automatic transmission. It has power steering and brakes and a nice set of Magnums at the corners. Story is that the parents wanted to hand it down to their son, who was not interested. He opted for a station wagon instead. Crazy?!
https://www.hotrod.com/articles/massive-barn-find-collection-cadillac-series-62-amc-marlin-pontiac-gto/