I have photographed and wrote about interesting (to me) junkyard cars for nearly a decade, and so far I have not photographed a single one of the hundreds of discarded BMW E30s I have found in my travels. In fact, I just shot my first E30 the other day (a 325e with automatic, don’t get too excited), but first I must share a car I find far more interesting: an N-Body Grand Am with gray cloth interior and Oldsmobile Quad 4 engine. (Read More…)
Tag: Grand Am
The N Platform-based 1985-1991 Pontiac Grand Am was sibling to such rapidly depreciating semi-sporty-looking coupes as the Buick Somerset and Oldsmobile Cutlass Calais, and there was a time when they were common sights on American roads.
Now most of them are gone, but this Iron Duke-powered, 5-speed-equipped rusty survivor showed up recently at a Denver self-service yard. (Read More…)
When I’m walking the rows of a big self-service wrecking yard with lots of fresh inventory, it’s the weird and/or old stuff that tends to catch my eye. The endless supply of Chrysler Sebrings, Ford Tauruses, and Hyundai Accents camouflages the interesting newer stuff that’s worthy of inclusion in this series, so I’ll try to pay more attention to discarded 21st-century vehicles with stories to tell. Cars like this California Pontiac, from the final generation of the Grand Am. (Read More…)
The final iteration of the Grand Am, which was built for the 1999 through 2005 model years, had all the looked-bad-after-five-years plastic cladding that made 1990s GM cars so forgettable and RAM AIR! GM cars of this vintage are still so commonplace in high-turnover self-serve wrecking yards that it takes something special for me to break out the camera for such a car; in this series so far, we’ve seen this supercharged Grand Prix GTP, this Beretta Z26, this Cavalier Z24, and this Pontiac Sunfire, and now it’s the Grand Am’s turn. (Read More…)
This isn’t quite in time for Father’s Day, mostly because it took me a little bit of time to get permission to use the photos, but these photos of club racer Mark Domo and his son Tyler working the pitlane at the recent Grand-Am Continental Challenge are timeless examples of how motorsports bring generations of men together.
In the weeks to come, you will be treated to a set of racing tales to make the most ardent consumer of Schadenfreude blush. (Read More…)
Motorsports coverage is rarely part of TTAC’s remit, but I would be remiss if I failed to mention the first Grand-Am race at Circuit of the Americas. It’s great to have another world-class track in the United States, and there was some great racing there this past week.
How quickly can you build a race car? If you start with a Mazda2, the answer is “25 hours or less”. Mazda performed a quick B-spec build at the PRI show a few months ago. Sharp-eyed viewers will notice the “Long Road Racing” sticker on the rear bumper, leading me to guess that drivers with the appropriate credentials will be able to rent it from the firm.
B-Spec racing can be fun, as you’ll see in a few upcoming articles where we take a Mazda2 and run it in B-Spec against competition in the Canadian Touring Car Challenge and Grand-Am’s Total Performance Challenge.
The newly announced GX class for Grand-Am racing will allow alternative fuel engines to race in one of North America’s premier sports car series, and Mazda plans on jumping into things with their own Skyactiv-D diesel engine.
Of course, we have no idea what kind of car this engine will go into, regardless of whether it’s a street car or a race car. We can’t really see a diesel CX-5 race car tearing up the track. A new Mazda6 may be a possibility. God forbid it winds up being a Miata.
I have been asked by an uncle if I would like to his 91 Mercedes 300E (he has supplied all of his children and is now moving to the extended family). It has 230K km (140K miles) and looks to be in pretty good condition. He’s mentioned that it has been very reliable. The purchase price would be negligible and the insurance is reasonable. One of my concerns is that I would be using the car as my daily driver (it would be replacing my current 99 Grand Am (170K miles) and I wanted to get another take on that – is it reasonable, or is it not a good idea.
I’ve read a bit up on that vehicle and it seems to have a decent reputation for longevity (with the required maintenance). I was hoping if you could provide some insight as to whether this seems like a feasible idea, or would I just be better off sticking with the Grand Am.