The Truth About Cars » trans am http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. Mon, 31 Aug 2015 17:30:55 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.4 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 editors@ttac.com editors@ttac.com (The Truth About Cars) 2006-2009 The Truth About Cars The Truth About Cars » trans am http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/wp-content/themes/ttac-theme/images/logo.gif http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com QOTD: What Would ‘The Modern Bandit’ Drive? http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/qotd-what-would-the-modern-bandit-drive/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/qotd-what-would-the-modern-bandit-drive/#comments Tue, 09 Jun 2015 14:00:40 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1088097 Burt Reynolds and his 1977 Pontiac Trans Am in “Smokey and the Bandit”, complete with gold on black screaming chicken and honeycomb wheels, are solidly part of the zeitgeist of the late ’70s. But what if they weren’t? From Burt’s perfectly manicured mustache to the Trans Am’s perfectly sculpted grille resembling said mustache, the film about running Coors beer from […]

The post QOTD: What Would ‘The Modern Bandit’ Drive? appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
i254809

Burt Reynolds and his 1977 Pontiac Trans Am in “Smokey and the Bandit”, complete with gold on black screaming chicken and honeycomb wheels, are solidly part of the zeitgeist of the late ’70s.

But what if they weren’t?

From Burt’s perfectly manicured mustache to the Trans Am’s perfectly sculpted grille resembling said mustache, the film about running Coors beer from Texarkana to Georgia is solidly a product of its time. Being born seven years after the release of “Smokey and the Bandit” and in a country with arguably very different ideas on what constitutes beer, I’ve never fully-grasped the cultural relevance of the flick.

Bringing the idea as a concept into modern day cinema, you get pretty close to the first instalment of “The Fast and the Furious” – uber-macho main character that smuggles/steals, a handsome cop who takes a liking to a female character with ties to said uber-macho main character, and a plot wrapped around a series of car chases (let’s call that filler). But, just like the ’70s film, the first F&F is also very much a product of its time. Released 14 (!!!) years ago, almost every vehicle sans Toretto’s Charger is a disposable heap ‘tuned’ with horsepower stickers and very, very fast lowering kits.

fast-and-furious-2001-11-g

We still have the F&F franchise to satiate our need for over-the-top car chases interwoven with mind-numbing plot. What we don’t have is the purity of The Bandit giving Smokey a hard time.

Let’s bring “Smokey and the Bandit” into 2015.

First, we need to start with the star, not the car, because – let’s face it – Burt is a year shy of turning 80 and probably not the person you want leading an action-comedy. This requires us to identify some sort of modern day Burt Reynolds equivalent. We also must be careful jumping the casting shark – looking at you “The Dukes of Hazzard”.

My suggestion: Ryan Reynolds. While his ability to grow a mustache is limited, Ryan has the ability to compensate using witty charm and overall good looks. Also, his smile is as devilish as any grin thrown by the aforementioned Burt. To top it off, Ryan is a genuine gearhead, though mostly of the two-wheeled variety with a penchant for Deus bikes.

Obviously, the Bandit can’t ride a bike (well, he probably can, but won’t). For all the character’s tough guy flaws, I can’t see Bandit wearing a shirt emblazoned with “If You Can Read This, The Bitch Fell Off” across his back like a pseudo biker gang member with a dental degree. The Bandit would never let said lady fall off in the first place. So, our leading man must drive a car or at least something enclosed with four wheels that can be licensed for highway use.

Let’s use the 1977 Pontiac Trans Am’s then $8,000 value as a baseline. That brings us to a llittle under $35,000 in today’s money. Also, you probably don’t want another 1977 Pontiac Trans Am even if you can acquire one at $35,0000 threshold as any Screaming Chicken (not the euphemism) on sale today has sat around a used car lot acting as a beacon for simple-minded slack-jawed mouth-breathers to come in and spend their cash a la Jeremy Piven’s “The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard.” You’ll probably want to go new – or nearly new – so let’s put a limit on this car being MY2010 or greater.

So, restrictions set – 2010 or newer, $35,000 “speedy car” budget – what would ‘The Modern Bandit’ drive? BONUS: Since you can now buy Coors – for better or worse – virtually anywhere, what would Snowman be smuggling to Georgia?

The post QOTD: What Would ‘The Modern Bandit’ Drive? appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/qotd-what-would-the-modern-bandit-drive/feed/ 80
QOTD: It’s 1977 and You’re The Bandit. Do You Buy a Trans Am… or Something Else? http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/qotd-1977-youre-bandit-buy-trans-something-else/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/qotd-1977-youre-bandit-buy-trans-something-else/#comments Mon, 08 Jun 2015 11:00:51 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1087041 We had a 1970s movie-car QOTD last week, and that was so much fun we’re doing it again! So, here we go: in the beginning of Smokey and the Bandit, when Big Enos challenges The Bandit to fetch 400 cases of that Colorado Kool-Aid, a wad of cash of unspecified thickness gets handed over for […]

The post QOTD: It’s 1977 and You’re The Bandit. Do You Buy a Trans Am… or Something Else? appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
QOTD - Instead of Trans Am Bandit Choice - 610px

We had a 1970s movie-car QOTD last week, and that was so much fun we’re doing it again! So, here we go: in the beginning of Smokey and the Bandit, when Big Enos challenges The Bandit to fetch 400 cases of that Colorado Kool-Aid, a wad of cash of unspecified thickness gets handed over for expenses, including a “speedy car.” As we all know, The Bandit headed straight to the nearest Pontiac showroom and bought himself a brand-new 1977 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am. In the film, that car seemed to be the fastest imaginable motor vehicle (thanks to the magic of engine swaps, stunt drivers, and special effects). In reality, however, the ’77 Trans Am was kind of a bloated Malaise Era slug, and The Bandit probably had a lot of better escape-the-smokeys car choices available.

So, in his shoes and with a ’77 Trans Am-sized stack of C-notes, what car would you have bought for that run to Texarkana and back?

Now, the list price of a 1977 Firebird Trans Am was $5,456, but the Bandit’s car had the $556 Hurst Hatch option, the $1,143 Y82 Special Edition option package, the $195 factory CB radio (which itself required one of a number of costly factory sound-system options), and no doubt lots of other price-inflating extras (you think The Bandit and his perfectly groomed mustache would have gone without air conditioning – 442 bucks – in that climate?) we must assume would come in any fully loaded 1977 Detroit car. It’s safe to say you’d be looking at something around $8,000 by the time the dust settled. That gives us a baseline to work with. For the purposes of this exercise we’ll toss in an extra thousand dollars and say you can pick any brand-new, 1977 model-year, street-legal-in-the-United-States car or truck that costs under $9000 (about 35 grand in 2015 bucks). If you don’t have the Standard Catalog or equivalent, you’ll need to at least make an effort to look up ’77 MSRPs online, or just make quasi-plausible guesses. Obviously, the best choice would be to buy something like a cheap used 240Z or Corvette and then spend all the leftover money on aftermarket hop-up goodies, but this option is not allowed here. Likewise, there will be no dealer-installed NASCAR race motors, “brand-new” rally-prepped cars, or other loophole-exploiting workarounds. Available-to-the-general-public, right-off-the-showroom floor, bone-stock 1977 four-wheeled vehicles only!

QOTD - Instead of Trans Am Bandit Choice - Warlock 610px

If the film had been made in 1978, I’d probably go for the Dodge Lil’ Red Express pickup, which was the fastest Detroit production vehicle that year and fully loaded with genuine Burt Reynolds-grade redneck badassness. However, we’re stuck in 1977, which means you could still get the nearly-a-Lil’-Red-Express ’77 Warlock pickup. I’m not sure what the list price for the Warlock package was, but the ’77 D100 Sweptline half-ton started at a mere $4,737, which means you’d have plenty of money left over to get the 170-horsepower four-barrel 360 (sorry, no factory big-block in the D100 that year), floor-shift four-speed transmission, heavy-duty everything, and a CB radio.

QOTD - Instead of Trans Am Bandit Choice - RX4 610px

Of course, The Bandit would have been pretty quick (by 1977 standards) in a cop-grade Dodge Aspen with 4-speed and every available performance option, and the ’77 Chevy Nova with a similar setup would have been decent in a car chase. But Burt Reynolds was known to drive fast in imports in his films, so we shouldn’t overlook such options. Sadly, the Citroën SM he drove in The Longest Yard was a $13,500 car and not even available in 1977… but what about something like the Mazda RX-4? Imagine The Bandit with Wankel power! The ’77 Datsun 280Z had great handling, proper disco styling, and a not-too-shabby-in-1977 149 horses. Or the Alfa Romeo 2000 Spider Veloce, with 110 Italian ponies in a 2,455-pound package and an $8,795 price tag? Il Bandito in an Alfa would have driven circles around those ponderous Pontiac cop cars! The Porsche 911 was, of course, way out of Der Bandit’s price range, but the nimble BMW 320i could be had for a hair under 8 grand.

QOTD - Instead of Trans Am Bandit Choice - TR7 - 610px

So many sub-$9,000 cars to choose from in 1977! So, what’s your choice?

The post QOTD: It’s 1977 and You’re The Bandit. Do You Buy a Trans Am… or Something Else? appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/06/qotd-1977-youre-bandit-buy-trans-something-else/feed/ 99
Ke$ha’s Gold Trans Am is a Metaphor For Her t—What? http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/03/kehas-gold-trans-am-is-a-metaphor-for-her-t-what/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/03/kehas-gold-trans-am-is-a-metaphor-for-her-t-what/#comments Sun, 03 Mar 2013 13:20:32 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=479700 Editor’s note: This article contains a discussion of organs. Not those in churches, more the ones found between legs. If this offends you, please don’t exercise your right to click-through. If you click through, please don’t complain that you found a story about private parts instead of car parts. If you do express outrage, we will […]

The post Ke$ha’s Gold Trans Am is a Metaphor For Her t—What? appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>

Editor’s note: This article contains a discussion of organs. Not those in churches, more the ones found between legs. If this offends you, please don’t exercise your right to click-through. If you click through, please don’t complain that you found a story about private parts instead of car parts. If you do express outrage, we will understand that this was for the benefit of the moral police at your workplace or home. 

I’m approaching an age when one is more likely to be thinking about hip replacements than about hip hop or being hip, so I’m not really sure who Ke$ha is. I presume she’s a musician or singer or rapper of some kind because she apparently writes songs, one of them about her gold Trans Am and at The Truth About Cars we can dig songs about cars. Well, she says it’s about her Gold Trans Am, but in reality, it is about her ladyparts.

If you don’t believe me, click on that YouTube link while at work and later you can tell us all about your meeting with HR – it is definitely rated Not Safe For Work. (On second thought, our technical team assures us that it can be viewed with “Safe” settings on at YouTube.  YoiuTube must be going down the YouTubes.) Considering that one of the most common automotive cliches one will see or hear is that men drive big cars or sports cars or SUVs or whatever to “compensate” for some kind of anatomical or sexual “shortcoming”, I find Ke$ha’s recent comments to Q magazine rather humorous.

[Gold Trans Am] began as a song about my car, which is a gold Trans Am, and it works about 40 per cent of the time. I don’t have another car because I love that one so much. But then like all great pop it became a metaphor for something else – my pu**y. But my vagina is in tip top working order. Valeted and souped-up and working 100 per cent of the time …

I was in seventh grade once too, so the jokes practically write themselves. Is her “Trans Am” the High Output version? Has it been bored and stroked? What’s the displacement? Does it come with a blower? Is there a factory approved lubricant or is it lubed for life? I’m sure the Best and Brightest can come up with your own. Tire tracks all across her back indeed.

Now I’m not saying that no man has ever written a song ostensibly about a car but actually with salacious intent (or non-automotive songs with salacious intent). I’m pretty sure that Ike Turner offered a backup singer or two a ride on his Rocket 88, and that’s considered to be the first rock ‘n roll song ever. I’m also pretty sure that if the lead vocalist of some cock-rockish band today said that “this song is about my d*ck”, most folks would just laugh at him, just like Zappa did 40 years ago when mocking B’wana Dik’s “Harley”.

Click here to view the embedded video.

Discuss among yourselves. I’m going to go watch some Archer reruns.

Ronnie Schreiber edits Cars In Depth, a realistic perspective on cars & car culture and the original 3D car site. If you found this post worthwhile, you can dig deeper at Cars In Depth. If the 3D thing freaks you out, don’t worry, all the photo and video players in use at the site have mono options. Thanks for reading – RJS


The post Ke$ha’s Gold Trans Am is a Metaphor For Her t—What? appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/03/kehas-gold-trans-am-is-a-metaphor-for-her-t-what/feed/ 56
Somebody Wants You To Help Buy A Trans Am For Joe Biden http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/10/somebody-wants-you-to-help-buy-a-trans-am-for-joe-biden/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/10/somebody-wants-you-to-help-buy-a-trans-am-for-joe-biden/#comments Fri, 12 Oct 2012 20:05:17 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=463605 Vice President Joe Biden’s net worth has been estimated to be as low as a quarter-million dollars — chump change by the standards of Mr. Obama and Mr. Romney — but surely that’s enough money in the bank to pick up a decent Trans Am, right? According to these guys, no. They want you to […]

The post Somebody Wants You To Help Buy A Trans Am For Joe Biden appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>

Vice President Joe Biden’s net worth has been estimated to be as low as a quarter-million dollars — chump change by the standards of Mr. Obama and Mr. Romney — but surely that’s enough money in the bank to pick up a decent Trans Am, right?

According to these guys, no. They want you to buy a Poncho for the Veep, and so far they’re raised about $800 of the $25,000 they think it will take. Why? Well, here’s their case:

Joe Biden has calmly and quietly been an incredible Vice President. He was one of the first politicians to publicly embrace gay marriage and may have been personally responsible for President Obama coming out in favor of gay marriage and the subsequent change in the Democratic Party’s platform. He is also a stunningly intelligent politician who understands the nuance of foreign and domestic policy.

A Vice President that incredible needs an incredible car, clearly. Although the second-gen Trans Am has entered the modern lexicon as shorthand for “ridiculous Seventies disco stupidity”, for a few of the years during its over-long stay at dealerships it was the fastest American-made car money could buy in the quarter-mile. The Super Duty 455 could hit a 13.5-second quarter-mile in an era when the Countach ran a 14.6. Variants with the “400” Pontiac V-8 are revered, the Olds “403”-equipped cars are considered second-rate, and the Turbo Trans Am was more successful as an idea than as an actual automobile.

What better way to make a political contribution this election season than to buy a Trans Am for a guy who earns $230K a year? Of course, Republicans are free to buy a Trans Am for Mr. Ryan as well, but speaking as someone who went to school with the guy, he probably doesn’t need the money.

The post Somebody Wants You To Help Buy A Trans Am For Joe Biden appeared first on The Truth About Cars.

]]>
http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/10/somebody-wants-you-to-help-buy-a-trans-am-for-joe-biden/feed/ 40