Category archives: Features

The Interview: Ken Block

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Ken Block next to the 2016 Focus RS | Photography by Jacqulyn Currey

Ford has produced the Focus RS for some time, but only for the European market — until now. At the recent Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale auction, the first North American 2016 Ford Focus RS crossed the block and brought $550,000 for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF). Ken Block was there to talk briefly about the car and to help boost the bidding to benefit charity.

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Pick of the Day: 1983 Jeep CJ7

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Pick of the Day: 1983 Jeep CJ7

If you watched the Super Bowl, you probably took note of the evocative and star-studded 60-second Jeep commercial during the half time break featuring Steve McQueen, Marilyn Monroe, Jeff Goldblum and the dinosaurs from Jurassic World. The Terminator even made an appearance. In addition to these more recognized figures, the commercial featured 60 portraits in total of other famous and ordinary people who helped shape Jeep’s 75 year history in addition to different Jeep models throughout its history.

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Driven: 2016 Toyota 4Runner

2016 Toyota 4Runner Trail  is setup for travel on or off pavement | Larry Edsall photo
2016 Toyota 4Runner Trail is setup for travel on or off pavement | Larry Edsall photo

So many automakers have moved their sport utility vehicles to unibody “crossover” architecture that I’d almost forgotten what it was like to drive a real body-on-frame model. Fortunately, Toyota still makes such a vehicle, what it calls a “full-capability SUV,” the 4Runner.

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| Interior and cargo area photos by Toyota

Toyota has been producing the 4Runner for more than 30 years. Still at true SUV, the 4Runner rides on a truck-style frame and offers a 4×4 powertrain for true go-anywhere capability along with the capability of towing 5,000 pounds, whether it’s a boat or camper or ATV or motorcycle trailer. Continue reading

Students learn to shift for themselves in concours cars

Jed Rapoport lets a student take the wheel of his 1951 Allard K2 | Hagerty photos
Jed Rapoport lets a student take the wheel of his 1951 Allard K2 | Hagerty photos

Imagine learning how to manipulate a manual transmission in a car worth a million dollars?

But that’s what happened the morning before the third annual Arizona Concours d’Elegance when several concours participants shared their vehicles with students at the Hagerty Driving Experience. Continue reading

Driven: 2016 Nissan Titan XD

2016 Nissan Titan XD is one monster of a truck | Larry Edsall photos
2016 Nissan Titan XD is one monster of a truck | Larry Edsall photos

So Bob Golfen drove the all-new 2016 Nissan Titan XD for a day, and spent part of that day crawling around off-pavement. I drove one of Nissan’s new full-size pickups for much of Arizona Auction Week, and the only time I was away from pavement was parking on gravel lots at Barrett-Jackson and Russo and Steele, and at the parking lot I use while teaching journalism classes at Arizona State University. Continue reading

Pick of the Day: 1970 Chevrolet Camaro

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1970 Chevrolet Camaro

In the Golden Age of car design, many manufacturers strove for innovative futuristic designs. Some looked as though they had been inspired by a UFO, while others drew inspiration from aircraft of the time. This trend seemed to calm down over the years but never fully went away, offering resurgence with the new models coming out today.

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Bob’s favored few from the Silver auction in Arizona

Checking under the hood of a custom Dodge pickup during bidding at the Silver auction | Bob Golfen photos
Checking under the hood of a custom Dodge pickup during bidding at the Silver auction | Bob Golfen photos

Compared with the five other Arizona collector car auctions going on this week, Silver’s Fort McDowell sale is way out in right field, both in location and substance. While the other auctions are situated within the Scottsdale/Phoenix metro hub, Mitch Silver has planted his event northeast of town at the Fort McDowell Casino and Resort in the Yavapai tribal community.

And while the other auctions try to outdo each other in the splendor of their sales, Silver remains a laid back and easily accessible affair for the everyman enthusiast, with most of the collector cars on the docket readily affordable. Continue reading

What’s caught Andy’s eye at RM Sotheby’s Arizona auction

This makes my 16th year of covering RM Sotheby’s Arizona auction. I have had some great times and seen some great cars at the sale. Part of the charm of this auction is the diversity of the cars that RM Sotheby’s offers.

This year is no different, which makes it difficult to narrow my “Pick6” selection. Actually, I couldn’t reduce my list of likes that far, so I’m including seven cars on the docket that I would love to have in my personal collection. Continue reading

Larry’s likes at Russo and Steele’s Scottsdale auction

Cars fill four huge tall tents at 16th Russo and Steele Scottsdale auction | Larry Edsall photos
Cars fill four huge tall tents at 16th Russo and Steele Scottsdale auction | Larry Edsall photos

The first of the several hundred cars on the docket is scheduled to roll into Russo and Steele’s auction-in-the-round “block” at noon Thursday, when Drew Alcazar and his team launch their 16th annual Scottsdale sale. Wow. Has it really been 16 years since this high-energy auction made its debut? Continue reading

Window shopping with Nicole at Gooding & Company

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One of the Ferrari’s being offered at Gooding & Company | Photography by Matthew Fink

So far the selection of cars at Gooding & Company has been the most enticing I’ve seen this week at the Arizona auctions. From the moment I walked in I was drawn to so many vehicles, especially the Ferraris.

There’s a stunning Ferrari that greets you as you enter the first big tent, and a row of them is just around the corner.  But there were other cars that also caught my eye, including those from Japan and several barn finds. Continue reading