Muscle cars are hardly as attainable as they once were. The truly desirable models are not only hard to find but also exceedingly expensive. Is there a solution out there for those of us who want to thunder around town in some monster muscle? Paul Choiniere has used his ingenuity and passion for the hobby to build himself a brutish street machine for a percentage of what any reasonable 1st generation would cost. The money he did need for the car, he made by doing body work for friends and restoring classic motorcycles.
Mazda discontinued their very popular and refined RX7 because of the difficulty they had meeting ever tightening emissions standards with the very peculiar Rotary engine the car was famous for. The RX7 was priced to compete with the Corvette, Porsche 911 and the Honda NSX. The high development costs to refresh a competetive RX7 and the shrinking high end market led to the demise of the RX7 in 2002. Mazda however, did not want to lose their "Zoom Zoom" sporty persona and had another car in development due for release in 2003[Japan]. The car in question, the new RX8, could be considered an improved RX7 on some fronts, but enthusiast have always considered it to be a watered down performance car. A mixed drink in comparison to a shot of Jack Daniels if you would? The new car (scheduled for release in 2004 outside Japan) would be a true sports car without any of the usual drawbacks offering compromises for day to day use.
In the used car market there is always something out there that seems to be a real performance bargain. Most of those bargains have some deep dark secret that ties to a manufacturer defect or poor design, (ex early 996 Porsche 911s (99'-01'). The statement "If it is too good to be true it usually is" is accurate all too often. So why should you look for one of these performance bargains? If you're like most people you can only really own one car at a time. That car should be; reliable, easy/cheap to maintain, convenient, winter drivable and FAST! What safe options are out there? Look for a 2005-2009 Subaru Legacy GT.
Too many pompous millionaires and billionaires buy legendary cars as status symbols only to keep them on display. The tolerably posh occasionally drive their classic memorabilia but we prefer when cars with racing heritage are kept doing what they were intended to do.
So Wednesday's typically aren't good for much. If you're like me, you are stuck at work all day in a mid week grind with no leisure time in sight. If you live in the Moncton area there is refuge from the mundane mid-week blahs. In the spring and fall, the Moncton Motor Sport Club hosts evening Auto-cross events on a regular basis. If you've got $20 and safe and functioning car you can join the friendly atmosphere. Everyone who tries it, seems to develop an addiction to the adrenaline and a thirst for more. Driving experience is very clearly the biggest advantage when competing for the best time of the day, but don't let that discourage or intimidate you. The organizers and participants are far from judgmental of rookies and offer support and advice at every opportunity. The rules are simple. So long as everyone is respectful of others in attendance, their cars and most importantly, respectful of everyone's safety, fun will be had by all.
So AWD, massive turbos, superlight chassis' and sleepers are all very cool but this car manages to be all of the above. Over 40 pounds of boost in a highly tuned AWD car that weighs around 2500lbs is a sure weigh to scare the pants off of any bystander. The stock interior is a nice touch, although it makes us wonder if the seats can even hold the driver in place with the acceleration this thing is capable of. We found ourselves staring at the speedo as it shot past the numbers and into the unknown in a matter of seconds. Enjoy!
Some people really have an extraordinary amount of trust for the people around them. That is certainly necessary for these human pylons, as this drifter works his way closer and closer to their toes. This isn't the sort of "heel & toe" driving that we typically are referring to.
This graphic by AUTOCAR magazine gives a glimpse of what is going on with all automakers. Gone are the days of simple, small and light performance cars. Credit to McLaren on keeping a hybrid supercar within 250kg of it's natural predecessor. All the technology and safety measures may still make a car that performs better, but we can all agree that less weight is always more desirable. When you look at all sorts of different vehicles you start to notice a horrifying trend. If you're like me, you prefer your performance cars as light as possible. So why does it seem that every current vehicle is heavier than it's predecessor?
Many people are obsessed with Nurburgring lap times as a standard benchmark for vehicle performance. While many drool over McLaren F1s and Ferrari F40s they may be surprised to hear that the Jaguar XJ220 held the production car record at the Nurburgring for 8 years from 1992-2000 with a time of 7:46. The XJ220 also held the top speed title briefly with a speed 213.1mph before the McLaren F1 set it's best speed a year later. So why then, with all the pandomonium around the Ferrari F40 and McLaren F1, don't we hear more about Jaguar's greatest supercar? Perhaps the faint aroma of false promises still arises when the name "XJ220" is spoken. This is a story of false advertising: the story of the Jaguar XJ220.