Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Back to Bob’s Antique & Classic Cars

1926 Ford Model T half ton delivery van
Photo by Kate Tompkins
Having more or less got caught up with my backlog of press releases, time to get back to Bob’s fabulous collection. Don’t know why I only have one shot of this 1926 Model T half ton delivery van, but I’m guessing it was stuck in a corner (there are a LOT of vehicles in a small space) and that was the best I could do. According to the information sheet next to it, this particular truck was the one that the Danbury Mint used to base their diecast Model T trucks on. I can’t find anything to confirm that, but here’s a webpage reviewing one of their 1925 Model T trucks (don’t seem to be any from 1926). I did get a tad distracted while searching for the 1926 Model T by this review of their 1964 Aston Martin DB5 Saloon – James Bond, 007 version diecast. Alas, discontinued. They don’t seem to be doing diecast cars at all at the moment.

Other posts in this series:

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Ford and LEGO Release Speed Champions Sets

For the kid in all of us, Ford is working with LEGO
Speed Champions to bring the excitement of the
racetrack to your living room with first-ever F-150
Raptor, pictured, and Mustang LEGO sets. Sets will
be available for purchase March 1 in LEGO stores
and Toys 'R' Us stores nationwide. (Photo: Business Wire)
Two—well, actually three—new vehicles have been added to LEGO’s Speed Champions line. Little fans of the Ford Mustang and F-150 Raptor / Model A hot rod can now build their very own, complete with race day accessories. Actually, I know quite a few not so little fans who would love to get their hands on these. You can find them online at the LEGO store or check out your local Toys ‘R’ Us (yes, they are available in Canada).

The Mustang kit has 185 pieces, which include a race driver and a time board. When I looked online, it was priced at $17.99. The F-150 Raptor kit is bigger, at 664 pieces, and includes not only the F-150 but a Model A hot rod, crew, garage, trailer, and a Christmas tree for drag racing. I saw it priced at $49.99.

In fact, I would have had this posted already if I hadn’t been distracted by looking at the other kits available in the Speed Champions line. McLaren Mercedes Pit Stop, anyone? Of course, I’d have to borrow somebody’s kid to put it together.

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Hagerty’s 2016 List of Future Classics

It’s always fun to speculate about which of today’s cars will be showing up at cruise nights 25 years from now. As providers of insurance for classic cars, Hagerty should have some idea of what’s likely to be collectible. I’ve pasted in their “Hot List” below. Cars on the list “must be produced within the 2016 model year with an MSRP of less than $100,000.” That means some of them are actually affordable to the average Joe or Jane. The cars are listed in order of price.

Any of your favourites on there? Personally, I question the Mazda Miata. While I find them cute, any articles I do on them get comparatively few page views. The Alfa, on the other hand. That is sweet! As for the Caddy, it may go like stink, but it looks boring, so I’m not making any room in the virtual garage for it. 

The 2016 Hagerty Hot List (along with base price):

Mazda Miata MX-5
 Photo credit Mazda
Mazda MX-5 Miata ($24,915) – Since 1989, this car has consistently (and sometimes exclusively) flown the flag of the lightweight roadster. Where there used to be MGs, Triumphs and Austin-Healeys, which leaked everything from oil on the driveway to rain on the passengers, there is the bullet-proof, trouble-free Miata. And thank goodness Mazda persists. The newest generation is shorter and more nimble than the preceding model and is quickly gaining the respect of driving enthusiasts.

2016 Ford Focus RS
Photo credit Ford Motor Company
Ford Focus RS ($35,730) –The Focus from Hell, the RS will finally reach American dealers for the 2016 model year with 350 hp, 350 lb-ft of torque, a six-speed manual and an all-wheel drive system that promises everything but the moon and a World Rally Championship trophy in every garage. Rear-biased torque distribution? Check. Grin-worthy power? Check. Hatchback practicality? Check. Look for Ford to snap up the crowd that Mitsubishi deserted when it discontinued the Evo.

2016 Chevrolet Camaro SS
Photo credit General Motors
Chevrolet Camaro SS ($37,295) – Following last year's debut of the sixth-generation Mustang, Chevy has once again risen to the challenge with the newly designed sixth-generation Camaro. There's a new 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder powertrain along with the V-6, but traditionalists will be glad to know that the SS badge remains in all its 455-hp V-8 glory.

2016 BMW M2
Photo credit BMW Group
BMW M2 ($51,700) – If you need any proof of BMW's commitment to building performance coupes that people love to buy, try searching for a pre-owned M1 Coupe. In 2016 BMW will launch that car's successor under the M2 nameplate. It's slightly larger, significantly sexier and equipped to bookend the M Division's lineup in the best possible way. Fans of classics like the 2002tii and the Z3 M coupe will love it.

2016 Ford Mustang GT350 R
 Photo credit to Ford Motor Company
Ford Mustang GT350R ($62,195) – As if the GT350 wasn't enough, the "R" version of Ford's hottest Mustang does away with everything possible to save weight – including the rear seat – and even offers wheels made of carbon fiber. Ford bred this pony with one purpose: race track victory. As they say in the financial world, past performance isn't a guarantee of future returns, but given the collectability of the Shelby GT350R from the '60s and even the Mustang Cobra R from 1993, we'd say this one's a shoe-in. 

2016 Alfa Romeo 4C Spider
Photo credit FCA
Alfa Romeo 4C Spider ($65,900) - We love the pureness and simplicity of the 4C. It's a refreshing reminder that great cars don't have to be complicated. This car is more alive on the race track than the open road, so we predict well-preserved examples to dominate the vintage races in the future. The little 4C offers performance similar to a Ferrari 360 Modena from not too long ago at a bargain price for an Italian exotic.

2016 Porshe Cayman GT4
Photo credit Porsche North America
Porsche Cayman GT4 ($84,600) – This just might be one of the most exciting driver's cars ever to come from Stuttgart. It borrows components from the current-generation 911 GT3 and puts them to work in a smaller, mid-engine package that makes many people wonder how much further the Cayman can go. We needn't remind you of how high-performance, low-production Porsches have done in the collector car market. 

2016 Dodge Viper SRT Coupe
Photo credit FCA
2016 Dodge Viper SRT Coupe ($89,090) – This isn't the first year of the current Viper, but in a time when most cars are trading engine displacement for forced induction there is just something to love about the brute force of the 8.4-liter V-10. If words like "bludgeon" "eviscerate" and "trounce" appeal to you, this is your car. Because who doesn't need a sledge hammer from time to time?

2016 Cadillac ATS-V Coupe
Photo credit General Motors
Cadillac ATS-V ($60,465) – This car is built in Lansing, Mich., to do battle with bad boys like the BMW M3 and Mercedes-AMG C63. Its twin-turbocharged 3.6-liter V-6 makes an eye-watering 464 hp that you can control through an eight-speed automatic or a six-speed manual with no-lift shifting and a penchant for taking punishment. The ATS-V is proof that Cadillac ain't just whistling Dixie; there's serious firepower behind all the smack talk.

Lotus Evora 400
Photo credit Lotus 
2016 Lotus Evora 400 ($89,900) – This is the brand's quickest and most powerful series-produced car ever, but it doesn't sacrifice Lotus' trademark lightness. It's a good indication that things are looking up in Norwich. We were worried about you for a while, Lotus. It's good to have you back on the Hot List.

[SOURCE: https://prnmedia.prnewswire.com/news-releases/368169561.html?tc=PRNJ_email_plaintext_headlines]