The 1964 Riviera 'Rivision'
This '64 Riviera is the winner of this years coveted 'Ridler Award'. With a pair of turbos and yellow paint that would make Tweety proud, this car was stellar from top to bottom. This picture was sent to us courtesy of Alan from A&R Classic Restorations. Once again A&R was on scene to present one of the great cars they have built. In fact, they have had their hands on more than one car that has competed for that ever elusive prize. They did not, however, have a car competing for that award this year. They returned with the car they unveiled at this show last year and came away with a multiple awards. They won 1st in class, outstanding display, and overall Best street machine! First time to get a best overall in their category all season and they did it at the largest ISCA show on the circuit!
You can see the car they presented below and see a video we produced of the build of this amazing car by "Clicking Here"
The Texas Thaw Video
Get Your Own DVD Copy Of The "Texas Thaw' video for only $9.99 (includes shipping)
To purchase via PayPal, send $9.99 to WildBill@HotRodsNow.com.
Please include your name, address and be sure to say the payment is for a
"Texas Thaw 2014 DVD"
You can also pay with a check or money by sending to:
"Texas Thaw 2014 DVD"
8708 Flicker Lane
Dallas Texas 75238
If you see your car here and would like to know how much additional footage of your car I have,
email me at: WildBill@HotRodsNow.com
Fun At Dallas
When we got to the Dallas Autorama this year, we saw some of the best cars there are. But besides the great cars, there were vendors everywhere you looked. You could buy license plates, beef jerky, windows for your home and of course great food and plenty of beer. But our favorite vendor booth had to be 'The Phoenix Insurance'. Not only are these folks one of our sponsors, but for some reason, they seemed to attract all the gorgeous ladies to their booth. Perhaps it was the great Divco they were displaying (pictured), maybe the guys working the booth had that special something that really drew the ladies in or maybe it's because everybody knows that if you want the best insurance for your classic car, hot-rod, exotic or even your daily driver, then 'The Phoenix Insurance' is where you wanna go.
A New Record & A New Sponsor
For A New Year
In January 2014, Hot Rods Now broke it's all time record for viewership and visitors to our site. We are continually growing and bringing you the best of the best in Hot-Rods, Classic Car culture and the local drag racing scene. We have also been lucky enough to land another sponsor for the next year. We'd like to give a big "Welcome Aboard" to Statewide Remodeling. Their continued support will help us to be in more places, go to more races, expand our coverage and to bring it all to you...our fans and viewers. The folks at Statewide Remodeling aren't just a sponsor...they are so much more. They are truly involved in this hobby in a big way. Frank Manzare, VP, is a true car guy. He has some of the nicest cars you could hope to see (we'll feature those in the near future). Statewide Remodeling has an annual car show that has grown every year and draws some of the best cars in the area. On top of all that, Frank still finds time to be heavily involved in the Super Chevy Show in Ennis, Texas each year with sponsorship and/or promotions (more on that show coming soon). We are very excited to have them on board and look forward to a great year.
Below is a video we shot in 2010 at the Statewide Remodeling Car Show. This was about 6 months before the launch of Hot Rods Now. Since then, we have been to every one of these shows. We gave our first ever 'Street Stalker Award' at one and continue to do so. We look forward to seeing you there this year.....
While checking out some performance car forums recently, we saw a conversation we would like to relate to our fans here. The subject was power to weight ratios and about how weight reduction can improve your e.t.'s at the track. There is no doubt that by significantly reducing the weight your car is carrying, you will certainly improve your rate of acceleration and even your top speeds on the drag strip. Weight reduction can also help your road course speeds, but in the case of road courses, it is just as important to consider your weight distribution. For the purpose of this conversation, let's concentrate on power to weight ratios at the drag strip.
In this forum, there was a rather smart-mouthed kid who was using quite abrasive language and also made some unnecessary and quite serious personal attacks against people (he was just a silly kid with a worn out rice burner so it was nothing new). We don't want to use his real name, so we will refer to him as "Smarty-Pants" in this article. "Smarty-Pants" drives an old, rather worn out RX7. It is clear from the pictures he shared of his car, that it is stock ride height and the over-all exterior appearance has been neglected for quite a long time. In reality, the outer appearance means nothing about the cars performance abilities, since I have seen VERY fast cars that also left a pile of rust in the burn-out box. "Smarty-Pants" had done NOTHING to upgrade anything on his car. He had upgraded none of the steering or suspension. He had done nothing to the rear end or gear box to increase the performance of the car. He had also done absolutely nothing to the engine to increase power....his entire effort at being faster was to take off the interior door panels. The pictures I saw didn't show the rear of the car, but I would be willing to bet there was also one of those over sized 'fart-can' mufflers on it.
Folks, this is NOT what you want to do to your car to go faster. If you are building a purpose built race car, then you can remove the carpets, door panels, A/C unit, heater box and even the duct work and radio, etc etc from the car and reduce your overall weight by a couple hundred pounds. You can replace the glass with lexan and the hood and doors with fiberglass versions. All of this will have a definite effect on your lap times. But if you have a beat up, worn out, old rice burner, and your entire plan for increased speed is to take out the door panels, you may want to have your head examined. If that is how you intend to go faster, then you might as well drive around naked...think of all the weight savings you'll have by not wearing clothes.
Keeping It Legal
We all make modifications to our cars that sometimes push the boundries of legality and sometimes we even go beyond them. Most of us have made exhaust changes or other such 'improvements' to gain horsepower that may not exactly be to the liking of the EPA or other government agencies. Perhaps you have run some tires on the street that give you absolutely incredible traction, but they were meant for 'track use only'. We've all been there. These are not uncommon ways that hot-rodders make modifications to increase power and performance. These are things many of us have been caught doing and in some cases, may have even been given a ticket or citation. But these types of mods are difficult, if not impossible to notice as your car drives by. But the mods that make ZERO sense to me, are the ones that do absolutely nothing for the performance or power of the car and can be seen and noticed from a mile away. For example, extremely dark tint on the windows. In many states, there are very strict limitations on how dark the side glass tint can be on a car. Another common appearance modification is to 'smoke' out the tail lights. This makes seeing those tail lights or brake lights so difficult that even I am against this one when they get too dark. The ones you see in the picture here are dark enough to make it look good, but not so dark you can't see the lights or brake lights. But there have been times that I have been behind a car with very dark ones and in the day time it is just impossible to see the brake lights when they come on. Folks, I am sure you think it looks great. I am sure putting these on your car elevates your cool factor (at least in your own mind, anyway), but when your changes begin to adversely effect the safety of others around you, it's time to think before you act. I recently had a discussion with a guy who has extremely dark tint and heavily smoked tail lights. He was bragging about the fact that he had received over 50 citations for these offenses (Yes...he was bragging. I believe, in his own mind, this eleveated his cool factor). He said there was a cop from a town he used to live in that gave him over a dozen citations for this violation. He also said it really ticked him off when he got those citations. I am still having trouble understanding why this guy, who is so blantantly disregarding the law and the safety of others, gets mad when he has done NOTHING to try and make his car legal and continues to get citations for the same thing over and over. Folks, make your car yours...make it special and make it stand out....but don't be a dummy. If what you are doing is illegal, if what you are doing keeps getting you citations and especially if it puts others in harms way, DON'T DO IT!!!!! And if you are so hard headed that you do it anyway....don't be the kinda jack-wagon that gets mad when you get a ticket.
Coming In 2014
Hot Rods Now is already planning a jam packed year for 2014. We will be attending more car shows than ever before and will up our game at the races this year, also. We hope to be a little more competitive and alot more consistent at the drag strip. But with all the work we have done to our steering and suspension we also intend to try our hand on the autocross this year. There will be tons more cars featured here and all new racing and event videos, too. So if you are going to be anywhere near the Dallas/Ft Worth area, look us up. If you are attending or organizing an event (car show, drag races, autocross, etc) let us know. We may just show up. Since we can't be everywhere, if we can't attend we will at least help you promote your event on our SHOWS/EVENTS page.
The Domino Effect
What is the 'Domino Effect'?
This very real and sometimes very expensive event is what happenns to most of us car folks at one time or another. Our recent attempt to upgrade a few components on the front suspension of our 1970 Camaro is a perfect example. A good friend of ours, Jeff Engle, over at American Muscle Restorations was doing all the work for us. We have seen his work and knew that it would be done right. But, we got ensnared in the trap that I call
the domino effect. This is when you replace one component only to then realize that the adjacent one must also be replaced. Sometimes this is expected...other times it is not. Before we were done with what we were hoping would be a few simple upgrades, we had replaced just about every single component on the front of the car due to wear and age. Jeff was patient with us and kept us fully informed during every step of this project. Unlike some of the more aggresive shops out there, he simply let us know what the situation was and let us make our own decisions. There was no pressure and no hard sell from him. That made the entire situation much more bearable. So while the project did go quite a bit above the scope we were expecting, we never felt anything other than pleased with every step along the way. When it was all said and done, the folks at American Muscle Restorations went above and beyond what many other so-called professional shops do for their customers. Now that we finally have the car back and it is running and driving better than ever, it won't stop raining....I guess that's the final domino in this story
Jeff Engle's Red Hot Chevelle
With many weeks left until the new drag racing season really kicks off, we were feeling a bit restless. So at the request of our favorite local racer, Jeff Engle, we put together this compilation video from some of the footage we shot of his car in 2013. Jeff has done 100% of the work, including drivetrain, paint, interior, etc etc on this beast. It is powered by a powerfully built Pontiac 400 with a healthy shot of NO2.
Coolest Shift Knob Ever
This shift knob belongs to our fan, Patrick McGown.
It was made for him by his cousin just before he was deployed. Patrick said he hasn't found the right car to put the knob on yet, but he hasn't given up looking, yet. Patrick also said that his cousin has just returned stateside, so hopefully he will begin making some more great looking custom pieces very soon.
We wish them both good luck.
1961 Ford Falcon
G A S S E R
to see video
Where Will You Buy Your Next Classic Car??
Hot Rods Now took a trip to Palmer, Texas to check out the place you need to go for your next Classic Car purchase. We don't say this lightly. You can believe that if we recommend them, it's because we have checked them out thoroughly. The place we went was Lone Star Classic Cars. What we didn't know when we headed down there, was that the GM is none other than Jerry Shelton. If you are a Classic Car guy from the DFW area, chances are you know him or at least have heard of him. Jerry has been selling Classic Cars for about 40 yearsand has sold over 16,000 classics in his career. He was the owner of the very successful and well respected dealership called Hilltop Classics in Palmer, Texas. Jerry is well known, but not just in Texas and the surrounding states, he has sold cars around the world. His reputation is one of an honest and knowlegable car guy. But now, Jerry has joined Lone Star Classic Cars. Not only do they sell cars, they also will be doing Classic Car Auctions four or five times a year. So check them out and see what they have to offer.
The Lonestar Team
Jerry Shelton (General Manager) 972-978-9138
Brett Witt (Sales, Operations) 214-957-3090
Zach Witt (Asst. Mgr, Sales) 972-533-9224
Wally Szymczak (Sales) 214-354-0515
Wild Bill Test Drives An Audi R8
In today's world, it's best if a guy does little sweet things for the woman he loves...things he does just because he loves her....and for no other reason than that.....and if that guy is truly lucky, his wonderful woman will return the favor and get him special things he would really like.....things like making arrangements for him to get his hands on an Audi R8 for an hour. After all, that's how I scored this test drive....it was all arranged by my beautiful wife. All I had to do was show up and drive the dickens outta this car. I sure love her.
Here are a few facts about this Audi R8:
4.2L FSI V8 engine
430 hp @ 7900 rpm
316 ft lb torque @ 4500 rpm
0-60 in 4.4 seconds
All Wheel Drive
Automatic trans with manual mode and paddle shifters
Top speed 187 mph
This particular car came with every option available for this model, including the carbon fiber body package and carbon fiber in the engine bay. That alone was a $4500 option. Total cost on this car as delivered was $143,000....and they let me drive it....Well if you wanna see how that went, just watch the video below. I would like to thank my 'guide' David for going the extra mile and shooting some film for me while we were out driving. That was above and beyond the call of duty. If you wanna drive this car or one of the other half dozen or so exotics they have, just check out 'DFW Drive Your Dream'.
Here is a list of cars you can drive:
2012 Porshce Spyder
We All Have Daily Drivers
There is nothing better than spending the weekend cruising around in the cars we call our 'toys' or taking a trip to the track and really see what our old hot-rods will do. We can tune a carb and set the lash on our new roller rockers, but when our daily driver has
an issue it's almost always better to let the pro's handle it. Todays cars are more complex that the ones we grew up with. We used to listen to motor hum and see what it would tell us...nowadays you need a computer and factory training to really know what's going on. That's why at Hot Rods Now we recommend the factory trained techs at Lexutech, Ft Worth's first Lexus/Toyota specialty shop. The techs who work at Lexutech have more factory experience than you are going to find in any other Lexus/Toyota/Scion shop any where in the metroplex. There are many reasons to take your car to Lexutech. They are Honest, Reliable, Trustworthy, Wallet Friendly and even have Free Loaner Cars. So be sure to check them out. (see video below)
One Top Fuel dragster 500 cubic inch Hemi engine makes more horsepower than the first 4 rows at the NASCAR Daytona 500.
Under full throttle, a dragster engine consumes 1 1/2 gallons of nitro methane per second; a fully loaded 747 consumes jet fuel at the same rate with 25% less energy being produced.
A stock Dodge Hemi V8 engine cannot produce enough power to drive the dragster supercharger.
With 3000 CFM of air being rammed in by the supercharger on overdrive, the fuel mixture is compressed into a near-solid form before ignition. Cylinders run on the verge of hydraulic lock at full throttle.
At the stoichiometric 1.7:1 air/fuel mixture for nitro methane the flame front temperature measures 7050 degrees F.
Nitro methane burns yellow. The spectacular white flame seen above the stacks at night is raw burning hydrogen, dissociated from atmospheric water vapor by the searing exhaust gases.
Dual magnetos supply 44 amps to each spark plug. This is the output of an arc welder in each cylinder.
Spark plug electrodes are totally consumed during one pass. After half-way, the engine is dieseling from compression plus the glow of exhaust valves at 1400 degrees F. The engine can only be shut down by cutting the fuel flow.
If spark momentarily fails early in the run, unburned nitro builds up in the affected cylinders and then explodes with sufficient force to blow cylinder heads off the block in pieces or split the block in half.
In order to exceed 300 mph in 4.5 seconds dragsters must accelerate at an average of over 4G's. In order to reach 200 mph well before half-track, the launch acceleration approaches 8G's.
Dragsters reach over 300 miles per hour before you have completed reading this sentence.
Top Fuel Engines turn approximately 540 revolutions from light to light!
Including the burnout the engine must only survive 900 revolutions under load.
The red-line is actually quite high at 9500 rpm.
The Bottom Line; Assuming all the equipment is paid off, the crew worked for free, and for once NOTHING BLOWS UP, each run costs an estimated US $1,000.00 per second.
The current Top Fuel dragster elapsed time record is 4.440 seconds for the quarter mile (10/01/05, Tony Schumacher) The top speed record is 336.15 mph as measured over the last 66' of the run (05/25/05, Schumacher).
Putting all of this into perspective:
You are driving the average $140,000 Lingenfelter "twin-turbo" powered Corvette Z06. Over a mile up the road, a Top Fuel dragster is staged and ready to launch down a quarter mile strip as you pass. You have the advantage of a flying start. You run the 'Vette hard up through the gears and blast across the starting line and past the dragster at an honest 200 mph. The 'tree' goes green for both of you at that moment. The dragster launches and starts after you. You keep your foot down hard, but you hear an incredibly brutal whine that sears your eardrums and within 3 seconds the dragster catches and passes you. He beats you to the finish line, a quarter mile away from where you just passed him. Think about it, from a standing
start, the dragster had spotted you 200 mph and not only caught, but nearly blasted you off the road when he passed you within a mere 1320 foot long race course.
JimBob's response to that is, "Now that's acceleration".
This Is How A Saturday Night Can Turn Into A Nightmare.
It only takes one second for things to go from a casual Saturday night cruise to disaster and mayhem. Last Saturday, after leaving a local burger joint that is a popular Hot-Rod hang out, this car crashed. As I understand it, there were four people in the car, but luckily no one was seriously injured. Here is the story of the accident as it was relayed to me by a person who was NOT there.
After leaving the burger joint, another car pulled out in front of this one. When the driver swerved to avoid the car, it struck the curb, blowing out the right front tire (pictured). At that point, the people in this car were just along for the ride. The car then struck a retaining wall and a pole, causing the pole to fall onto the car.
Now you would think that this car is a goner.....but because it was well insured by an insurance company that specializes in classic and collector cars, this one could be rebuilt. So the next time you decide to try and save a few bucks on your classic car insurance, remember what you are paying for......
Nostalgia Nationals Video Is Here
See other great videos on our Car Show Videos page
CAN YOU INSURE YOUR 'RAT ROD'
If you own, want to own or are building a 'Rat-Rod', you NEED to read this
We have all seen them – the car that looks as if it’s cobbled together with baling wire, an old fence gate, and $4000 worth of engine and upgrades. When you look at them, you wonder why someone would drive such a monstrosity – but when you notice the details, you quickly realize that Rat Rods are more than the parts that are tack welded together. They are truly rolling works of art, with no two exactly alike.
Just like art, a Rat Rod must be insured properly. We talk to lots of folks that only have liability insurance on these unique rides. When you look at how inexpensive full coverage collector car insurance can be, it doesn’t make any sense to drive with liability only.
How cheap can it be to insure a Rat Rod – and how do you value that insurance? I’ll address the cost in a minute, but for now, I want to talk about how to value it. I find that most people who build cars (whether glossy restorations or rusted rat rods) have a pretty good idea of what they have in the car. Their significant others may be kept in the dark, but the person who built it knows exactly what is in it. We write rat rods like any other classic, on an agreed value policy. If you tell me your rusty 1950-something truck is worth $60k as it sits, then we submit that to the company, and that is what it is insured for. Lots of companies won’t insure a car with “flat” paint, or with external rust – but because we have so many companies available to us to write classic and modified, we have someone who is interested in giving you a good rate with excellent coverage – guaranteed.
What do rates look like for these types of cars? That’s an excellent question, and one that is hard to answer in generalities, but I’ll try. Take the truck to the right here for instance. This vehicle with an agreed valued of $25,000, and with a full coverage, zero deductible policy, the rate is only $250 a year.
With the value of these unique rides always on the rise, does it really make sense to have one if you can't properly insure it? We think not.
Here is another example without as many fancy parts. Valued at $10,000, the insurance rate for this nasty beast is approximately $160 a year. That rate also includes flat bed roadside assistance and limited (but not restricted) miles. What does “limited but not restricted” mean? Unlike some classic companies who want you to restrict your driving to shows only. “Limited but not restricted” means that while you choose your mileage plan, you may use those miles for anything you want – not just car shows. In addition, if something happens, the insurance company will allow you to do your own work. There aren’t many Rat Rod body shops out there, so this way you can know your car is done to your satisfaction.
So if you are building a rat rod, don’t let your own project fool you into thinking it’s only worth liability coverage; you have some money in this, and should protect your investment. No one needs to know you have a shiny new insurance policy protecting your carefully ratted out ride. However, if someone gets distracted by the “cool” factor of your street rod and runs into it, you need to be able to repair it. You’ve spent the big money in building a rat rod – make sure you can be made whole if the unthinkable happens and your car gets a dent that you didn’t intend it to have.
Get a quote, get a policy....
There's not too many vehicles The Phoenix Insurance can't insure:
The Phoenix Insurance is more than just a sponsor. They actually insure many of the vehicles you see on this site. Why not let yours be one also. Click Here For A Quote
Super Chevy, Ennis Texas 2013
For the second year in a row, Hot Rods Now, went to Super Chevy in Ennis Texas. We showed and raced a Camaro. Last year we took our 1990 IROC Z...this year we took pur 1970 SS Camaro. I won't give anything away, but lets just say our curse of showing up to the drag strip and not getting to race has ended. Also, we went a little faster than last year. In fact we beat the time we had in our IROC by 1.76 seconds.
(See Video Here)
If You Have Or Need Collector Car Insurance, Read This....
Who Is "The Phoenix Insurance"
There is one thing every Hot-Rodder, Classic Car owner, and weekend enthusiast has got to have. That's good insurance to protect their investment. When it comes to good coverage, low rates and the kind of personal service you expect and demand, there is no other place to get it all except The Phoenix Insurance. I found The Phoenix Insurance at a car show. That's right...they don't just sell Classic and Collector car insurance...they really participate in the hobby. In fact, they have an amazing build that we will cover here in the very near future, but for now let's talk about them. They had a sign above their booth that said "Ask me how I can save you money on your insurance"....so I asked them. It turns out they offer all the services we, as car-guys want, like flat bed towing, road side assistance, agreed value and so much more. What they offered was as good as or in most cases better than my current coverage. But then we got down to the nuts and bolts....How much does it cost? The quote they gave me was a significant savings over the policy I currently have. If that wasn't enough to make me change my mind, the courteous service I received from the knowlegable staff was. These folks really know cars and have a genuine interest in providing the best coverage at the most reasonable rates.
The folks at The Phoenix Insurance are offering a FREE BONUS for all Hot Rods Now viewers and fans. It's not often you get something for nothing, so you might want to jump on this one. If you would like FREE road side assistance, then you're in the right place. No strings attached, nothing to buy, no B.S.....just FREE ROAD SIDE ASSISTANCE (towing, lock-out, gas, jump start, etc etc). If that is something you think you can use (and who can't) then you are just a click away. SIGN UP for it today. CLICK HERE
Wild Bill Appears On "Car Brokers"
The producer of a new show that will begin airing on CNBC in the spring invited me to appear on their show. The premise of the show is about a guy from Lubbock Texas who goes around the country looking for cars to buy and sell and trade, etc. They contacted me and asked if I had a car I'd be willing to sell on TV. My answer was a quick 'yes'....I am always willing to sell if the money is right....TV or not, money is money and if I sell one, it just means I get
to go buy another. In the end, they weren't really interested in my Camaro....maybe the price was a little high, maybe they were looking for a car in a little better shape or maybe I was just so darn good looking that the host was intimidated (if you ask me, it was the third option....LOL), but either way, I drove my car home at the end of the day. The cars they were looking at were all over the map in style and price range.....I think this may very well be a good show when it begins airing. While there is no shortage of car shows on TV, there is always room for one more good one....I'll be sure to keep you updated as to when this show finally makes it on the air.
Introducing Holley Cruise
HotRodsNow.com Has It's First Correspondent
The picture above and the pictures below are some pictures of our very own Holley Cruise. We are hoping, as I'm sure you are too, that Holley makes lots more appearances here. Not only does she love everything about the culture of fast cars, but she knows how to have a good time while enjoying them. Never being one to shy away from a challenge or a new experience, Holley has jumped into this realm with her eyes wide open and her foot firmly mashing the gas. For as long as I have known her, I have never once heard her say she didn't like a car. In fact, as a little bit of a joke, we sent her out to Rod's Car Craft in Wylie Texas, and told her she was suppose to check out an all hand built custom car. That part of the story was true. We started by having her check out to of the most incredible cars there. She was definately having a good time. That's when we suprised her with the 'hand built car'. This is one you have just got to see.
To see the video just click on over to our "Fun Video's" page and choose the video titled "Holley Cruise & The Contraption"
Click Any Picture Below To Enlarge It
Remembering The 1969 ZL1 Camaro (COPO 9560)
In 1969 Fred Gibb wanted a more powerful car to race. The NHRA required that at least 50 cars had to go into production before it could qualify to race in the 'Super Stock' series. With that in mind, Gibb intended to sell all 50 cars through his own dealership. Eventually 69 of these beasts were built. Yenko and Berger were already selling COPO 9561 and COPO 9737 (Central Office Processing Order) Camaros with the monster 427 motors...but those were iron block cars. GM decided to produce the COPO 9560 with an aluminum block 427. The cars started life as a 396 SS car, sans stripes and badges. They had the factory's best suspension set-up (F4I) along with race capable heavy duty brakes, heavy duty springs and a race ready 4 speed. Right out of the box, this car was capable of turning low 13's with the stock exhaust and anemic looking stock tires. Throw on some slicks, a set of headers and do a little tuning to the car and it could easily achieve mid 11's at well over 120 mph. Not bad for right off the showroom floor in 1969. Dick Harrel was one the best known tuners for these cars and often worked closely with Gibbs. Dick could get them consistantly turning 10's. Many a record was broken and set by this Camaro during that time period.
If you knew what you were looking at and bought one of these, it came with a factory 5yr/50,000 mile warranty. After all, these were completely street legal factory built cars. Of the original 50 cars that Fred had hoped to sell, he was only able to move 13 of these cars and eventually returned more than that to the factory, where they were re-invoiced and many were then sold through other high performance dealerships. Several had their engines removed for use in other projects...after all, the engine really was the reason to buy this four wheeled missle. Originally this engine was designed for the Can-Am Chapparal. It was without a doubt, the most powerful engine GM offered and was capable of producing over 500 hp from the factory. But all those go fast goodies couldn't keep buyers from suffering from serious sticker shock. With a price of $7269 it was almost double the cost of a COPO 9560 with a cast iron block. So with such a narrow window of buyers, the high cost and the intention of being a race car, these are very very rare Camaros. It's easy to see why these sell for hundreds of thousands of dollars, even getting near the million mark. These don't come onto the open market very often, but when they do, the big guns come out, and they come out swinging big wallets. But hey, if I had 'silly money' I would be one of the guys trying to buy one too.
Thanks for making www.HotRodsNow.com one of the
places you get your Hot-Rod fix...
Wild Bill (founder/creator)
Test Driving A 5th Gen Camaro
Until this past week I had not had the chance to test drive a 5th Gen Camaro. I flew from my home in Texas to North Carolina for the holidays and was going to rent a car to drive from North Carolina to South Carolina as my wife and I visited both sides of our family. So I figured, 'what better time to take that test drive'. We rented a bright yellow Camaro and a GPS and began our holiday adventure. Right out of the parking lot, it was clear that, although this was only the 6 cylinder, it was not lacking in get-up-and-go. The steering was tight, responsive and very crisp. It was a breeze to drive. The visibilty out of all four corners of the car was not to bad and about what I expected. My wife, Tiffany, was a little less impressed with the visibility, but agreed that it would just take a little getting use to. The interior was fairly basic, but this was a base level rental. No suprises there. All the gauges and indicators were easy to see and read once I set the tilt wheel to the right position. At first I couldn't see the turn signal indicators, but a simple tilt-adjustment fixed that. The seats were comfortable for the long six hour drive from one family to the other. The rear seat leg room left a little to be desired, but who needs rear seats? I like the sun-roof, but like all sun-roofs they are a bit noisy at highway speed.
Okay, enough with the looks and styling...what about the performance? As I said earlier, I immediately did a fairly hard acceleration right out of the rental car parking lot and was pleased with the response I got from the long skinny pedal. In no time flat I was nearly double the 45 mph speed limit on the long straight road out of the airport. It was the look I was recieving from the passenger seat that kept me out of triple digits, not the car. In both highway traffic and in-town traffic this sporty little ride had no trouble or hesitation when it came to getting around slower traffic or being the first to leave the light. One afternoon I took my future son-in-law for a quick ride under the ruse of needing to go to the store for a cigar. This was when I gave this car the 'Burn-Out Test'. As I pulled out of my parent neighborhood onto the highway, I turned off the traction control, pulled the gear selector all the way back and mashed the gas to the floor where I held it. It gave us a respectable amount of wheel spin, a little smoke and a suprisingly nice exhaust note at higher rpms. But in all honesty it was unimpressive during this portion of the test...but hey, it is the 6 banger and not the high horsepower V8, so I will cut it a bit of slack here. Later, the following day, as my brother and I headed to the store for yet another cigar (are you seeing a pattern here?) we decided to give the 'manual ' transmission mode a test drive. I had given it a whirl on a previous test drive, but my brother who has a background in SCCA racing put this car through it's paces on a little winding road down by the lake. We both came to same conclusion. The paddle shifters are fun and could be useful if you got some track time. During the high revving turns and during acceleration the exhaust made a nice sound and the car handled fairly well for what it is, but the V6 was just not where it's at. For the real power and the true hot-rod exhaust tone, you gotta get the V8. But as a daily driver for those less inclined to push a car to it's limits, this is perfect. Plenty of power, more than a ton of good looks, and even paddle shifters for a little play time now and then. I would be happy if this was in my driveway........
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Wild Bill's Video Pick
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