The Truth About Cars » Sleeper The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. Wed, 16 Jul 2014 16:33:07 +0000 en-US hourly 1 The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. The Truth About Cars no The Truth About Cars (The Truth About Cars) 2006-2009 The Truth About Cars The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. The Truth About Cars » Sleeper QOTD: Your Favorite Domestic Sleepers Thu, 20 Dec 2012 14:00:10 +0000

Domestic cars don’t get enough attention on TTAC, but we can also be prone to heaping too much praise on particular examples; I may be the lone dissenting voice on the roster that does not swear a blood oath to the Panther. The W-Body Impala, which is set to go into Panther-like fleet-only production until mid-2014, is similarly polarizing. Some adore it, some despise it while others reflexively disdain it due to the effusive praise heaped upon it.

Personally, I think the later 3.6L cars are fantastic bargains, and even better sleepers. The “High Feature V6″ is a gem, even when hooked up to GM’s pokey 6-speed automatic. The interior and trunk are both cavernous and the massive depreciation occuring within 12 months of their purchase date makes them a compelling used car choice.

From the Blue Oval, my pick would be the Flex Ecoboost. The boosted box-on-wheels is hardly the value proposition that the Impala represents, but it’s pretty hard to argue with a family wagon capable of running high-13s in the quarter mile. The relative rarity of the Flex makes it even sweeter.

Lastly, the Pentastar brand has a wealth of options. Any of the Pentastar cars could be viable candidates. How about a Pentastar powered Dodge Avenger or Chrysler 200? The 6.4 second 0-60 sprint is more than class competitive. Those who want a bit more flash could opt for the V8 powered Chrysler 300C (not the 300S or Varvatos Edition), but my own pick would be the redneck-special Ram Express, driven over some jagged rocks to ensure maximum damage to the mufflers.

Feel free to nominate your favorite domestic sleepers from the past or present. Having been before slightly before the Internet, I delight in hearing my Dad and Uncles tell stories about their old Satellites that they’d race up and down the winding streets of Montreal, or the 440-powered New Yorker that left frequent rubber deposits at every intersection. First person to say “LT1 Roadmaster” loses the game.

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Question: Which New Car Would Make the Sneakiest Sleeper? Wed, 06 Jun 2012 14:30:53 +0000 Old-timers will tell you that the Golden Age of the Sleeper ran from the end of World War II through the late 1960s, when you could take, say, a Grandma-spec ’61 Lancer wagon and stuff the engine compartment full of Max Wedge 413 power. I think the old-timers are as wrong about that as they are about the superiority of film cameras over digital cameras; the current era of computerized engine controls, big turbochargers, and tougher drivetrain components means you can get ridiculous power (and handling) out of quotidian transportation appliances. So, looking at the current lineup of snore-inducing machinery that nobody would ever in a million years suspect of being quick, which new car would provide the best balance of potential performance and invisibility? A Kia Rio with a huge turbocharger and the finest suspension upgrades that cubic yards of cash can buy?
The problem with the Rio is that it’s so invisible that nobody would quite know what to think when one is sighted getting 100 yards of rubber shifting into fourth gear on the highway. That’s why I think the Camry would be my sleeper of choice. The ’12 Camry’s V6 makes a fairly decent 268 horses, but the use of the same engine family in Toyota trucks means that you can get all manner of aftermarket supercharger and turbocharger kits for it. I’d want a manual transmission, and (if I couldn’t find some JDM unit that bolts onto the tranverse-mount GR engine) I’d see if the RAV4 6-speed could survive 400+ boosted horsepower.
Yeah, nobody would know what to make of a bone-stock-appearing Camry that could really haul the mail! What new car would you choose for such a project?

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