Category: Heritage

By on August 31, 2018

Image: Harley-Davidson

It was always a weird partnership, but, despite ending five years ago, it seems a struggling Harley-Davidson can’t stop thinking about its ex.

For more than a decade, Ford Motor Company sold Harley Davidson Edition F-150s to consumers whose other car was a bike. The “wow” factor varied, as over the years the model morphed from an appearance package to a performance variant to a luxury castle, only to be muscled aside by a growing roster of high-end trims.

Well, Ford and Harley-Davidson are back at it, but it isn’t an official reunion. Read More >

By on August 28, 2018

Image: Ford Mustang Mach I, by Corey Lewis

Don’t worry, Mustang owners. Ford Motor Company is definitely leaning away from naming its upcoming sporty, “Mustang inspired” electric crossover the Mach 1.

Fans of what will soon be the last remaining Ford car gave the automaker an earful after it teased the model at this year’s Detroit auto show. Hold on there, sailor, the voices cried — you’re telling me the V8-powered fastback of my dreams, the one with an optional Cobra Jet motor, is about to be sullied by a case of name theft? Why not just debut a bicycle called the Thunderbird while you’re at it? The back-peddling began almost immediately.

Now, it seems Ford realizes not everyone is as eager for an all-electric, self-driving (but maybe not completely self-driving, wink, wink) future as CEO Jim Hackett is. The Mach 1 revival seems doomed. Read More >

By on August 25, 2018

Image: Jaguar Classic

The sexiest car ever built rides again, only this time it won’t emit pollutants from its slender, chrome tailpipes. Jaguar Land Rover Classic, the automaker’s parts and servicing arm for old British tin, has announced a production version of its 2017 E-Type Zero concept will be made available to buyers.

Yes, this is the vehicle that Prince Harry and his bride, Meghan Markle, drove away from Windsor Castle in following their May nuptials.

Boasting a body long considered the equivalent of automotive porn, the E-Type Zero uses a restored E-Type Series I as a starting point. Beneath the car’s shapely flanks, however, it’s strictly 21st Century living. Read More >

By on August 23, 2018

Image: Kalashnikov

You don’t have to be from a former Eastern Bloc country to feel strange pangs of desire for this Russian one-off. Built by Kalashnikov — yes, that Kalashnikov — the CV-1 concept car features an old body concealing an advanced electric powertrain.

The maker of the AK-47, AK-74, and various other automatic small arms apparently wants to stamp out Tesla’s decadent invasion of the Motherland’s fledgling EV market. Read More >

By on August 17, 2018

In 1968, Ford issued a limited number of lightweight, “335-horsepower” Mustangs intended for the drag strip. While street legal, the vehicles were absolute beasts on the track thanks to the implementation of the 428 Cobra Jet engine. The powerplant utilized the racy 427 FE’s intake manifold and added ram-air induction, a functional hood scoop, and an engine bay full other performance modifications. It was serious business and produced far more horsepower than Ford claimed. Most estimates place the initial Mustang Cobra Jet’s output around 410 hp.

It’s now half a century later, and the model 50th anniversary is not an occasion you ignore. Ford chose to bring the Cobra Jet back for the occasion with iconic decals and mechanical upgrades that send it into the past and future, respectively. Unfortunately, onlookers can only enjoy the retro graphics and savage acceleration of this version at the track or in a garage. Because the Cobra Jet is way too extreme to be road legal.  Read More >

By on August 1, 2018

2019 Chevrolet Silverado

You won’t find three two-barrel carbs atop this Tripower mill. In fact, depending on the engine’s load, you might not even find three cylinders in operation.

General Motors plans to bring back a performance-focused name for its new 2.7-liter turbocharged four, Automotive News reports, giving the automaker a ballsy moniker for the engine it doesn’t want to admit is a four-cylinder. Read More >

By on April 24, 2018

Mitsubishi e-Evolution Concept

Mitsubishi raised the hackles of former Eclipse owners by naming its latest crossover — the Eclipse Cross — after the defunct sporty coupe. It now seems prepared to do the same to current Lancer owners.

The automaker claims there’s a new Lancer on the way, but it won’t be the same Lancer you fondly recall from years past. The market simply won’t support a traditional sedan or hatch anymore, the brand’s chief operating officer says — at least not with the kind of volume Mitsubishi desires.

No, this new vehicle will straddle the already blurred boundaries between a hatchback and a crossover. Excited yet? Read More >

By on March 29, 2018

2019 Mustang Bullitt

If you’re a superfan of the 1968 film Bullitt, or maybe just of Steve McQueen, prepare to split the difference between the price of a Ford Mustang GT and a Shelby GT350.

The limited-edition 2019 Mustang Bullitt, the third generation of which bowed in Detroit in January, commands a sticker price of $47,495 after delivery, the automaker announced today — positioning it more than $11k above the GT and nearly $11k below the GT350. Of course, neither of those models offer retro-themed flourishes, nor can you order Highland Green paint.

You also get 20 extra horsepower than the GT for all that expense, which is mercifully 5 hp more than the automaker first estimated. Read More >

By on March 19, 2018

2018 Nissan 370Z Heritage Edition previewed at New York Internat - Image: Nissan

Taking all of this with a huge grain of salt, as future plans at many manufacturers are often more fluid than the salty Atlantic Ocean, reports are surfacing of Nissan forging ahead with a new Z. And it’s not a crossover.

According to the UK outlet Autocar, Nissan will display a concept Z at this year’s Tokyo show in October*, with a production version showing up a year later in L.A.

Read More >

By on March 14, 2018

The Nissan Z-car has died once before — in 1996, only to return in 2003 as the 350Z. It’s been suggested that the Z will go the way of the Mitsubishi Eclipse and become yet another crossover. But a rumor out of Japan links Nissan with Mercedes-Benz for a new Z, possibly in time for the model’s 50th Anniversary in 2019/2020.

The Japanese site response.jp (thanks, Google Translate) has posted a rendering of the potential new sports car, showing the company’s corporate V-motion grille lined with LED strips, and a long hood that harkens back to the traditional proportions of the original 240Z.

Any news of the Z returning as a proper sports car instead of a crossover that trades heritage for blandness (Eclipse Cross, Ford Mach 1) is welcome news indeed.

Read More >

By on March 12, 2018

2019 Ford Mustang GT California Special

The Ford Mustang, recently made pointier and stripped of its middle-child V6 engine, earns a California Special package for 2019.

On the rare chance that anyone reading this is unfamiliar with the California Special’s history, it emphatically does not include surfing lessons and a being stuck on the 405. Among other items, though, it absolutely features the de rigeur GT/CS stripe because in California, there’s no point in doing something if you don’t shout about it, right?

Read More >

By on March 7, 2018

2017 Volkswagen #PinkBeetle, Image: Volkswagen

After going from the people’s car to the hippie’s car and, finally, to the car of semi-urban professional couples with no kids, Volkswagen’s retro Beetle has entered the home stretch. Despite a movement within Volkswagen HQ to keep the iconic shape around for a new generation, the German automaker now claims there’s no future for the Beetle.

Yes, once the current model disappears, it won’t crawl back out of the grave as an electric car or any other such thing. Get your tie-dyed shirt ready for the funeral. Read More >

By on February 19, 2018

Saab

One day, if we’re lucky, we’ll see a documentary showcasing old Saabs in their natural habitat. The slinky 9-3 plying the interstate between Burlington, Vermont and the Connecticut coast, a valiant 9000 prowling between a Denver lawyer’s office and home, and a black 900 convertible sneaking up on a rural farmers’ market.

David Attenborough will handle narration duties.

Until that time, we can draw comfort that a conservation program exists to keep this extinct brand on the road. Started last fall by the defunct automaker’s official parts supplier, the warranty program means Saab owners in the United States, Britain, and the brand’s Swedish homeland can look forward to smaller maintenance bills in the future. Read More >

By on February 14, 2018

It didn’t enjoy a long life, especially here in North America, and it didn’t make it through that short time span without an embarrassing engine defect, but good luck finding someone who’d turn down a hoon session in a Ford Focus RS.

As the king of all hot hatches, the Focus RS gave enthusiasts a sensible five-door for shuttling their kids to school and the ability to shred four tires into coleslaw on the trip home. Well, get ready to pick up a shovel. The Focus goes into its grave on April 6th, and the model line’s future has never looked shakier. Read More >

By on February 7, 2018

D-Type Jaguar Classic continuation

Jaguar has announced the D-Type is re-entering production this week, part of a “once-in-a-lifetime project” designed to get 25 examples of the iconic racer back on the streets. While it’s always exciting to see a venerable model resurface after a six-decade absence, this is nothing new for Jaguar. The company did a limited continuation of the E-Type coupe in 2015, the XKSS in 2016, and a singular electric-powered E-Type prototype in 2017.

That means the “new” D-Type is just another entry in Jaguar Classic’s ultra-premium heritage collection. However, this does not mean the continuation cars aren’t any less cool than a penguin perched atop a glacier adjusting his brand-name sunglasses.  Read More >

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