And the Real Winner Is…

Murilee Martin
by Murilee Martin
and the em real em winner is

The Index of Effluency, considered the top LeMons prize, goes to the team that accomplishes the most with a car that never, ever belonged in the same time zone as a race track. A Fiat 600 with 1000cc Moto Guzzi motorcycle engine swap? Effluent and then some!

The Italian Stallions used to race a Fiat X1/9, but that car was just too reliable for their taste (chew on that for a while, you racers who feel that the universe of available LeMons cars includes nothing but the RX-7, E30, and Sentra SE-R). A 1964 Fiat 600 seemed like just the ticket, but why not hot-rod the thing with a big Moto Guzzi powerplant? Sure, great idea! As it turned out, the “big” motor tended to overheat in a hurry when pushed on the race track, so the team’s drivers spent the entire weekend driving by the cylinder-head temperature gauge; when it hit 450 degrees, they slowed down. That meant that the tiny Fiat spent hour after hour creeping around the track while cars scaling in at five times the Stallionmobile’s weight roared past. Countless Crown Victorias, a ’76 Continental, a Maserati Quattroporte, and a freakin’ full-stretch Town Car limo menaced the 600 for hundreds of laps, but the Stallions just kept the car out there. Congratulations, Italian Stallions!

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  • ToolGuy CXXVIII comments?!?
  • ToolGuy I did truck things with my truck this past week, twenty-odd miles from home (farther than usual). Recall that the interior bed space of my (modified) truck is 98" x 74". On the ride home yesterday the bed carried a 20 foot extension ladder (10 feet long, flagged 14 inches past the rear bumper), two other ladders, a smallish air compressor, a largish shop vac, three large bins, some materials, some scrap, and a slew of tool cases/bags. It was pretty full, is what I'm saying.The range of the Cybertruck would have been just fine. Nothing I carried had any substantial weight to it, in truck terms. The frunk would have been extremely useful (lock the tool cases there, out of the way of the Bed Stuff, away from prying eyes and grasping fingers -- you say I can charge my cordless tools there? bonus). Stainless steel plus no paint is a plus.Apparently the Cybertruck bed will be 78" long (but over 96" with the tailgate folded down) and 60-65" wide. And then Tesla promises "100 cubic feet of exterior, lockable storage — including the under-bed, frunk and sail pillars." Underbed storage requires the bed to be clear of other stuff, but bottom line everything would have fit, especially when we consider the second row of seats (tools and some materials out of the weather).Some days I was hauling mostly air on one leg of the trip. There were several store runs involved, some for 8-foot stock. One day I bummed a ride in a Roush Mustang. Three separate times other drivers tried to run into my truck (stainless steel panels, yes please). The fuel savings would be large enough for me to notice and to care.TL;DR: This truck would work for me, as a truck. Sample size = 1.
  • Art Vandelay Dodge should bring this back. They could sell it as the classic classic classic model
  • Surferjoe Still have a 2013 RDX, naturally aspirated V6, just can't get behind a 4 banger turbo.Also gloriously absent, ESS, lane departure warnings, etc.
  • ToolGuy Is it a genuine Top Hand? Oh, I forgot, I don't care. 🙂