Category archives: Features

Best of French and Italian car owners endure the dust and heat

Dare we call this a passel of Facel Vegas at the Best of France and Italy car show? | Larry Crane photos
Dare we call this a passel of Facel Vegas at the Best of France and Italy car show? | Larry Crane photos

‘Best of France and Italy” is not a concours d’elegance. It is a chance for Los Angeles area owners and fans of a specific, under-served, group of enthusiast cars to assemble and share stories, to find help — and rare pieces — as well as buyers and sellers. Continue reading

Driven: 2017 Chevrolet Volt

Redesigned Volt mirrors technology inside with aero exterior design | Larry Edsall photos
Redesigned Volt mirrors technology inside with aero exterior design | Larry Edsall photos

When Chevrolet introduced its Volt for the 2011 model year, it launched a new kind of electric car: One you could drive without range anxiety.

Although it seemed revolutionary at the time, the idea of an electric car with an onboard, petrol-powered generator, traced to the development of the EV1, GM’s limited-range, two-seat electric car of the previous century. GM requires all its vehicles to go through a specific durability testing regime, and that required longer drives than the batteries in the EV1 prototypes could provide. Continue reading

Pick of the Day: 1934 Pierce-Arrow AB Jenkins Special

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1934 Pierce-Arrow AB Jenkins Special

David Abbott “Ab” Jenkins was a pioneer of the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah, setting dozens of speed records in the 1930s. With help from the Pierce-Arrow automobile company, Ab Jenkins modified the company’s 12-cylinder engine with the goal of running it on the Salt Flats for 24 hours and covering 2,400 miles.

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Bookshelf: Yearbook reports on collector car market’s vitals

Auction yearbook: An annual report on marketplace health |Historica Selecta images
The annual report on marketplace health |Historica Selecta images

‘The health of the market should not be judged on values alone,” writes Peter Wallman, managing director of RM Sotheby’s Europe. Instead, he suggests, consider such things as “the aspiration to own collector cars.”

“Whether this is via the multitude of specialist rallies, Concours d’Elegance, historic race meetings, or even local Cars & Coffee events, the burgeoning lists of entrants and spectators at such events really should be factored in when analyzing the health of our industry, and by all accounts, it appears the appetite to enter into classic car ownership is very healthy.” Continue reading

Driven: 2017 Ford Fusion Hybrid sedan

Ford Fusion Hybrid gets an upgraded grille and other refinements for 2017 | Bob Golfen
Ford Fusion Hybrid gets an upgraded grille and other refinements for 2017 | Bob Golfen

Hybrid cars have a reputation for being boring, more like appliances than automobiles. Their main positive quality is good fuel economy, but rarely do they offer an interesting driving experience.

Really, when was the last time you heard someone say their Prius was fun to drive? Continue reading

Packard in the pond and more from Hilton Head concours

The Stutz Bearcat that later in the day won Best of Show honors at Hilton Head | Andy Reid photos
The Stutz Bearcat that later in the day won Best of Show honors at Hilton Head | Andy Reid photos

Long-term, the 2016 Hilton Head Motoring Festival & Concours d’Elegance likely will be remembered for two things: That organizers were able to stage the event so soon after Hurricane Michael ripped through the area and as the concours where the Packard went into the pond.

It seemed something of a miracle that the 15th annual concours on South Carolina’s island playground could take place in the aftermath of such a significant storm, a tribute to the festival, resort and others who went well above and beyond just to put everything back together. Continue reading

Hilton Head has something special for Saturday showgoers

Porsches align for a club display at the Hilton Head Island Motoring Festival's car club day | Andy Reid photos
Porsches align for a club display at the Hilton Head Island Motoring Festival’s car club day | Andy Reid photos

The final weekend of the Hilton Head Island Motoring Festival & Concours d’Elegance includes a twist that many other concours have copied — a Saturday car club jamboree.

This event brings together a variety of car clubs, many of the car specific groups, some more regional in nature, and invites members to show their cars on the same fields that will host the concours on Sunday. Continue reading

We visit a couple of madams in Las Vegas

Perhaps the most beautiful car on display was the Madame X Cadillac that Chip Foose did for Wes and Vivian Rydell
Perhaps the most beautiful car on display was the Madam X Cadillac that Chip Foose did for Wes and Vivian Rydell | Larry Edsall photos

Hey, this is Classic Car News, so of course we’re not talking about women who might run a house of prostitution. But to my eyes and ears, the two most fascinating cars at the recent and 50th annual trade show of the Specialty Equipment Market Association were Madam X and Madam V. Continue reading

Pick of the Day: 2009 Nissan GT-R

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2009 Nissan GT-R

There is no denying that the Nissan GT-R is a supercar. When Nissan premiered the modern decedent of the Skyline in 2008, the car came with a $70,000 price tag, making it out of reach for most but still reasonably attainable. Since then, prices have grown to match Godzilla’s girth.

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At the wheel: Driving in the Grand Prix of Scottsdale

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Racing in the ClassicCars.com No. 77 car | Photo by Charles Siritho

In an interview with Ken Block after the premier of his Gymkhana Seven video, he told me that making the video was surreal because he never thought the streets of Los Angeles, his hometown, would be shut down just for him to drive and showcase his skills for a YouTube video. I remember thinking, that’s how you know you made it — when your hometown shuts down for you to hoon.

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