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Author Topic: Car Trivia, Post a Feature, First, Statistic, or??? Gear Heads Welcome!! Back to Topics
Hambone61
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Oregon

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Message Posted: Nov 14, 2008 4:47:30 PM

List a bit of trivia, auto related, that you know for sure. It can be about anything automotive regarding sales, styling, firsts, features, performance, mechanical highlights, anything that may be interesting to someone who loves cars.

I'll get it started:
In 1938, Packard had a twelve cylinder engine. The engine was of V design and had an unusual valve layout that put both the intake and exhaust manifolds on the top of the engine. This engine had an innovative cooling overflow tank mounted alongside the engine. The cooling system on this car held a whopping 40 quarts and the engine took 10 quarts of oil!

I guess if you could afford to drive a Packard, you could afford the money for the five gallons of antifreeze required, not to mention the oil and maintenance required.

What do you have?
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eB40
Champion Author Maryland

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Message Posted: Mar 6, 2015 10:19:01 AM

The 1964 Pontiac GTO was considered the pioneer in muscle cars in the 60s and 70s and was able to go from 0-60 in 6.6 seconds. The GTO also had a trap speed of 99 Miles Per Hour.
bongobro
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Mar 4, 2015 2:53:45 PM

March 4...a tale of the good, the bad and the ugly.

The good: The American Automobile Association (AAA) was founded in Chicago in 1902; one of the largest AAA branches is based in St. Louis...

The bad: Warren G. Harding, considered--until recently--to be the worst president in U. S. history, becomes the first president to ride to his inauguration in a passenger car in 1921...his ride? A Packard Twin-Six.

The ugly: In 1966, a Timberline Turquoise Wagonaire station wagon was the last of 8,947 Studebakers to roll off the assembly line in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, ending a line of cars dating back to 1902--and wheeled vehicles dating back to the original Conestoga wagons in 1852. (The American Studebaker factory in South Bend, Indiana, closed in December 1963.)

The irony was that Studebaker Corporation was turning a profit in its non-automotive divisions (Onan electric generators, STP oil treatment, Gravely Tractors, etc.), but financial agreements made with its bankers would not allow Studebaker to put any money into its automotive division! Plans had been made for Studebakers as far ahead as 1970--amazingly based on the Lark platform, which itself dated back to the "Loewy" platform that debuted in 1953!--but they would never see the light of day.
bongobro
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Mar 1, 2015 2:00:08 PM

A little more detail on the seat belt story:

A passenger-side front seat belt was offered as optional equipment by Nash on its Ambassador and Statesman models in 1950. It wasn't to keep anyone from slamming into the windshield in an accident, but was billed as a way to keep the right-front passenger from aliding out of the Airliner Reclining Seat while the car was in motion. So Granny could take a nap without falling out of the seat!

Seat belts were offered as optional equipment in 1956 on Ford, Lincoln and Mercury cars and even in Ford trucks as part of its "Lifeguard Design" ad campaign; Chevy outsold Ford in '56, which leads some auto writers to suggest that more people were "interested in added dash than a padded dash." However, for 1957, Chevy and Plymouth both added seat belts--and even shoulder harnesses--to the option list.

In 1962, American manufacturers were required to install anchorage provisions for safety belts in all new automobiles...which Studebaker took advantage of by offering standard seat belts in their 1963 models, as in 2tall's previous post.

Front seat belts were mandated in all new cars built after January 1964, and rear seat belts were mandated for models built after January 1966.

And, a trivia note from February 28: In 1903, the Dodge brothers sign a contract with Ford Motor Company to produce engines for Ford cars. Thanks to that contract--and the resulting profits--Horace and John Dodge made enough money to start their own company, which is celebrating its centennial this year!
2Tall
Champion Author Maryland

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Message Posted: Feb 28, 2015 11:06:46 AM

1963 Seat belts first offered as standard equipment.
1965 Rear seat belts became standard on most cars.
bongobro
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Feb 23, 2015 12:15:42 PM

Congratulations are in order for 24-year-old Joey Logano, who won the Daytona 500 yesterday afternoon (February 22nd). Yesterday marked the 56th anniversary, to the day, of what is now called "America's race." On that day in 1959, Lee Petty won the first-ever Daytona 500 in a photo-finish with Johnny Beauchamp at the brand-new Daytona International Soeeday. Beauchamp, driving a Ford Thunderbird, was first declared the winner, but was then disqualified, so Petty won the race in an...

Oldsmobile 88! (The switch to Plymouth was soon to come.)
WasabiPWRD
Sophomore Author California

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Message Posted: Feb 15, 2015 11:23:07 AM

1
bongobro
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Feb 15, 2015 11:18:53 AM

Somehow, "burn up that 1000 feet" doesn't have quite the pizzazz of "burn up that quarter mile" (from "Drag City," Jan and Dean, 1963).

For those who get tired of endless TV car commercials, we must go back more than 100 years to the first national automobile ad of any kind. Oldsmobile ran its first national ad in "The Saturday Evening Post" on Feb. 15, 1902. (Automobilia fans note that the Post ran many, many car ads through the years until its "last issue" in 1969; the Post was revived some years later, minus car ads.)
Mikeyy1960
All-Star Author Cape Coral

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Message Posted: Feb 8, 2015 12:28:22 PM

Top Fuel dragsters are the fastest sanctioned category of drag racers, with the fastest competitors reaching speeds of 330 miles per hour (530 km/h) and finishing the 1,000 foot (300 m) runs in 3.7 seconds.

Because of the speeds, this class almost exclusively races to only the 1,000 foot (300 m) distance, and not the traditional 1/4 mile (1,320 foot / 402 m). The rule was changed in 2008 by the National Hot Rod Association following the fatal crash of Funny Car driver Scott Kalitta during qualifying at the SuperNationals, held at Old Bridge Township Raceway Park in Englishtown, NJ. The shortening of the distance was used in the FIA at some tracks, and for 2012 is now the standard Top Fuel distance. The Australian National Drag Racing Association is the only internationally recognized sanctioning body that races at 1,320 foot for the majority of races in Top Fuel.

A top fuel dragster accelerates from a standstill to 100 miles per hour (160 km/h) in as little as 0.8 seconds (less than one third the time required by a production Porsche 911 Turbo to reach 60 miles per hour (97 km/h)) and can exceed 280 miles per hour (450 km/h) in just 660 feet (200 m). This acceleration subjects the driver to an average force of about 4.0 G over the duration of the race.
bongobro
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Feb 8, 2015 11:14:38 AM

FEBRUARY 8:

1909: The Indianapolis Motor Speedway is incorporated, but the first 500-mile Memorial Day race doesn't take place until 1911.
bongobro
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Feb 7, 2015 3:02:59 PM

Think combination ignition-steering locks started with the 1969-model new cars? Not quite. In 1948, Ford used combination ignition-steering locks on its cars, but abandoned the idea with its all-new 1949 models.
nifty6
Sophomore Author Toronto

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Message Posted: Feb 3, 2015 9:59:08 PM

Oldsmobile the 1949 model was equipped with an ignition key and a starter push-button to engage the starter. Pushing the starter button would engage the starter, but if the ignition key was not inserted, unlocking the ignition, the car would not start
bongobro
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Feb 2, 2015 9:54:15 AM

FEBRUARY 2:

1942: A grim day for drivers in the U.S. who hadn't bought a new car. Nationwide vehicle rationing was announced by the U. S. government; at the same time, carmakers were ordered to concentrate exclusively on production of war materiel. One week later, on February 9th, all civilian automobile production ended "for the duration."
bongobro
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Feb 1, 2015 12:21:50 PM

FEBRUARY 1:

1898: Dr. Truman J. Martin of Buffalo, New York purchases the first auto insurance policy ever issued, by the Travelers Insurance Co. of Hartford, Connecticut. Premium: $11.50 (for how long a period, I don't know), but I don't think anyone would gripe about paying that little for car insurance today!

1919: In my last post I referred to engines that "go boing, boing, boing" and those that go "hummmmm..." but on this date the Cummins Engine company was established in Columbus, Indiana...as you know by now, Cummins is the foremost manufacturer of engines that go "clatter, clatter, roar." That is, diesel engines...just ask any owner of a Dodge Ram Turbodiesel.
DasAuto92
Champion Author Montreal

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Message Posted: Jan 30, 2015 1:56:52 PM

Anyone ever go for a spin in a Gremlin like this one?
"
My '75 Gremlin X was set up similar to that.Stock 304 3 speed.Tires were stock size D70/14 all 'round, mated to factory rims.Then changed the rear tires to G60/14. I installed air shocks 'cuz i pulled a snowmobile trailer.Would break the odd shock support(rear) but solved the problem by welding a second support to original.
Now i'm in the midst of changing my intake to a 4 bbl, as i found a original AMC performance intake by Edelbrock.
Still own the car as of today with 69,000 miles.
bongobro
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Jan 30, 2015 12:50:18 PM

JANUARY 30: The beginnings of "Zoom-Zoom":

On this date in 1920 (95 years ago!), Toyo Kogyo Ltd. was founded in Hiroshima, Japan. The company built its first automobile in 1960 (55 years ago!) under the brand name "Mazda," and was one of the very few companies to embrace the NSU-Wankel rotary engine technology (remember "piston engines go boing, boing, boing, boing, boing, but the Mazda goes 'HUMMMMMMMMMMMM...!'"
bongobro
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Jan 29, 2015 12:01:44 PM

JANUARY 29:

Yugo goes bye-bye!

On this date in 1989, Global Motors--the American company which imported the tiny Yugoslavian car starting in 1986--files for bankruptcy. The Yugo--a reworked Fiat built in Yugoslavia--sold for as little as $3990 when it was launched, but its numerous shortcomings (low power, poor build quality, poor parts availability, and most notably, poor reliabiity, send it to the showers by 1990.)
bongobro
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Jan 21, 2015 4:15:43 PM

American Motors built 4,180 Hudson automobiles for the 1957 model year...but only 4,108 were sold in the U. S. and Canada. What happened to the other 72? Strange as it sounds, they were CKD units (crated, knocked-down) that were sent to England and built at a Hudson factory dating back to the mid 1920's. Thus they had right-hand drive and other appurtenances pertaining to cars for sale in Europe. Considering, according to St. Louis classic car historian Bruce Kunz (a/k/a "The Fin Man"), only one '57 Hudson was built for every 369 1957 Chevies, it makes ya wonder why AMC even bothered???

[Edited by: bongobro at 1/21/2015 4:16:27 PM EST]
heyman_31036
Sophomore Author Georgia

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Message Posted: Jan 21, 2015 3:55:33 PM

Anyone ever go for a spin in a Gremlin like this one?

Randall 401 XR
2Tall
Champion Author Maryland

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Message Posted: Jan 21, 2015 12:31:55 PM

Ferrari only builds 14 cars each day.
bongobro
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Jan 14, 2015 2:20:29 PM

JANUARY 14:

1914: The Ford Motor Company make its first use of a moving assembly line....supposedly inspired by the butchering line of a meat-packing plant, which could be best described as a "dis-assembly" line.

1954: Nash-Kelvinator Corporation and Hudson Motor Car Company merge into what will ultimately become "The Last Independent": American Motors Corporation....the last "AMC" branded vehicle, an Eagle station wagon, rolls off the assembly line on December 14, 1987, about half a year after Chrysler buys AMC (mainly for its Jeep vehicle lines).
bongobro
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2015 12:21:47 PM

January 11:

1913: Hudson introduced the world's first regular-production closed sedan, the Model 54.

1917: The first in a long, long line of trucks "built Ford Tough" made its debut when Ford Motor Company began building a factory built truck. So this is the 98th anniversary of the first production Ford truck (wonder if they'll do a Centennial Edition F-150 or Transit come 2017?)...

1940 (75 years ago): General Motors built its 25-millionth automobile, a Chevrolet Master DeLuxe 2-door town sedan. Price: $725. (That and a few bucks extra would put a dealer-installed cruise control in a Chevy Cruze!)
bongobro
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Jan 1, 2015 7:57:00 PM

True enough, DasAuto. My wife's first new car was a 1974 Gremlin with the 304 and Torque Command...no X package...just a little red car that left other drivers goin' W...T...F...? when they thought they could shut her down in a stoplight grand prix!

The only thing it needed was the Ziebart rustproofing that appeared on its successors, the Spirit and Eagle SX-4! We had to get rid of the "Gremmy" about a year after we got married in 1984. The rust-out was such that we were worried about our then-infant daughter riding in the back seat....

Now today's trivia. New Year's Day was a big day for Chrysler Corporation...nearly half a century ago...the first production Dodge Charget was unveiled on New Year's Day 1966 at the Rose Bowl!
DasAuto92
Champion Author Montreal

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Message Posted: Nov 28, 2014 10:47:10 AM

Well i have to admit after 39 years and counting, i am one of those owners of a AMC Gremlin X with a 304 (5 liter) 3 speed, and a 83 Spirit DL. with a 258 straight 6. As for your printing of jeers and laughter, i must confess its opposite. I do get many thumbs up when driving, and lots of attention at car shows with both vehicles.
Remember, what AMC did with the Gremlin, was the bench mark for the Volkswagen Rabbit, Plymouth Horizon, Dodge Omni, and other models.
They just added 2 xtra doors.
2Tall
Champion Author Maryland

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Message Posted: Nov 28, 2014 10:12:04 AM

American Motors designer Richard Teague — remember that name — was responsible for some of the coolest cars of the era. The Gremlin wasn't one of them. AMC was profoundly in the weeds at the time, and the Gremlin was the company's attempt to beat Ford and GM to the subcompact punch. To save time and money, Teague's design team basically whacked off the rear of the AMC Hornet with a cleaver. The result was one of the most curiously proportioned cars ever, with a long low snout, long front overhang and a truncated tail, like the tail snapped off a salamander. Cheap and incredibly deprived — with vacuum-operated windshield wipers, no less — the Gremlin was also awful to drive, with a heavy six-cylinder motor and choppy, unhappy handling due to the loss of suspension travel in the back. The Gremlin was quicker than other subcompacts but, alas, that only meant you heard the jeers and laughter that much sooner.
bongobro
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Nov 22, 2014 7:23:07 PM

Last time I posted, I discussed the end of the Edsel. Within one year, another medium-priced make -- in fact, the fifth medium-price marque since 1957--bit the dust when Chrysler Corporation announced the end of the DeSoto line.

Of course, there wasn't much of a line to end. The '61 DeSoto came in a single nameless series composed of two-and-four door hardtops. No Firesweep, no Firedome, no Fireflite, no Adventurer. Just plain old DeSoto. Production started August 30, 1960 and ended November 30, 1960, with just 3,034 DeSotos produced: 2,123 four-door hardtops and 911 two-door hardtops. (For what it's worth, I have seen one '61 DeSoto ever...a two-door hardtop in the small northeast Arkansas town of Piggott, way back in 1967, when a '61 DeSoto was just an old car and nothing anywhere near collectible.)

However, some disgusted DeSoto dealers filed suit against Chrysler in 1960 shortly after production ended. The case was not settled until...

...1976.
bongobro
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Nov 20, 2014 7:39:42 PM

@DasAuto: Thanks for the correct figures on the '68 Rebel convertible... I knew they totaled 1200 units altogether; just had the wrong amounts of each!

Earlier this week in 1959--55-years ago--Ford Motor Company formally announced the end of Edsel production. Those looking for rare ragtops can choose from four versions, each unique to its model year.

1958 only: Pacer convertible, Production 1.876; Citation convertible, 930
1959 only: Corsair convertible, 1343
1960 only: Ranger convertible, 76 units

To put that into perspective, the single most-produced Edsel unit ever was the 1959 Ranger four-door sedan, with 14,093 units built in the U. S. and Canada. The least-produced ever was the 1960 Villager 4-door 9-passenger station wagon. Just 59 units were ever built...17 fewer than the Ranger convertible!

And, counting Canadian Edsels, the total three-year production was 118,287 (110,847 in the U. S. and the remainder in Canada).

By comparison, 121,869 1959 Ford Galaxie Club Victorias were built following the mid-year introduction of the Galaxie series -- a period of barely six months!
Piper1099
All-Star Author Florida

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Message Posted: Nov 11, 2014 7:27:18 PM

That is correct, a diesel has a 16:1 compression ratio to ignite the fuel.
Cetane is a form of hydrocarbon that, like you said, helps ignite the fuel and helps the engine run smoother and cleaner. If I remember correctly, the highest cetane rating is 55.

It also helps the engine start easier in cold weather, the higher the number, the better cold weather startup.
DasAuto92
Champion Author Montreal

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Message Posted: Nov 10, 2014 11:08:08 PM

Because diesels rely on compression ignition (no spark), the fuel must be able to auto-ignite--and generally, the quicker the better. A higher cetane number means a shorter ignition delay time and more complete combustion of the fuel charge in the combustion chamber. This, of course, translates into a smoother running, better performing engine with more power and fewer harmful emissions.
Piper1099
All-Star Author Florida

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Message Posted: Nov 10, 2014 9:14:07 PM

We all know how a diesel engine runs, but do we know what cetane is and how it applies to a diesel engine?
DasAuto92
Champion Author Montreal

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Message Posted: Nov 9, 2014 6:49:00 PM

Your welcome
:
:bongobro : why anyone would want one, I'll never know, but AMC production figures showed 872 SST ragtops were built, and 328 550'
:
There were 377 Rebel 550's built
In 1968 there were 823 Rebel SST convertables built, and these were the last year for the convertible model.
When new, the Rebel SST convertible was priced at $2,999
:
Are you kidding me? I'd take a SST Rebel in a wink.The V-8 engine in Rebels was an overhead-valve powerplant of 290 cubic inches with a bore and stroke of 3.75 × 3.25 inches and a 9.0:1 compression ratio. It was built with five main bearings, hydraulic valve lifters and a AMC two-barrel model 8HM2 carburetor to produce 200 hp at 4,600 rpm

My 1980 Z28 equipped with a 4bbl, 350 produced 180 HP.

[Edited by: DasAuto92 at 11/9/2014 6:53:46 PM EST]
2Tall
Champion Author Maryland

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Message Posted: Nov 9, 2014 11:21:05 AM

The first major toll road in the United States was the Philadelphia and Lancaster Turnpike, built in the 1790s, within Pennsylvania, connecting Philadelphia and Lancaster. In New York State, the Great Western Turnpike was started in Albany in 1799 and eventually extended, by several alternate routes, to the Finger Lakes region.
bongobro
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Nov 3, 2014 11:38:23 AM

Thanks, DasAuto, on comfirming that '65 Chevelle 300 convertible!

AMC did something similar in 1968 when they discontinued the Ambassador convertible and the American convertible; the only drop-top they offered that year was in the Rebel series. Actually, two: The top-line SST and, like the Canadian Chevelle, a base-series 550 series convertible. Now why anyone would want one, I'll never know, but AMC production figures showed 872 SST ragtops were built, and 328 550's. Grand total, 1,200--and it was the last AMC convertible built until the 1986 Renault Alliance.
2Tall
Champion Author Maryland

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Message Posted: Nov 3, 2014 10:43:15 AM

In 1892, Rudolf Diesel a German engineer invented a "New Rational Combustion Engine" which lead him to building the first Diesel Engine in 1897.
MeTaBall
Champion Author Maryland

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Message Posted: Oct 27, 2014 7:34:16 PM

Henry Ford receives most of the credit for the development of the car in the US (see Henry Ford Changes the World, 1908), however, he did not produce the first American automobile. This distinction goes to the Duryea brothers - Charles and Frank - who created their first gasoline-powered "horseless-carriage" in 1893. Like the Wright brothers, the Duryeas were bicycle mechanics with a passion for innovation.
The brothers built their first car in a workshop located in a building in downtown Springfield, MA. Their new invention was rolled onto the city streets for testing in September 1893. It sported a one-cylinder, gasoline engine and a three-speed transmission mounted on a used horse carriage. It could achieve a top speed of 7.5 mph.
Henry Ford receives most of the credit for the development of the car in the US (see Henry Ford Changes the World, 1908), however, he did not produce the first American automobile. This distinction goes to the Duryea brothers - Charles and Frank - who created their first gasoline-powered "horseless-carriage" in 1893. Like the Wright brothers, the Duryeas were bicycle mechanics with a passion for innovation.

The following year, Frank developed a second car with a more powerful two-cylinder engine. It was this car that he drove in America's first automobile race on Thanksgiving Day, November 27, 1895. The race was sponsored by the Chicago Times-Herald and ran a 54-mile course from down-town Chicago to Evanston, Il and back.

There were five entrants in addition to Duryea: 2 electric cars and 3 gasoline-powered Benz machines imported from Germany. The race started in the early morning in snowy conditions. A little over 10 hours later, Frank Duryea was the first to cross the finish line having survived a journey punctured by numerous breakdowns and repairs. He had averaged 7.3 miles per hour and took home a prize of $2,000 ($49,500 in today's money).
Piper1099
All-Star Author Florida

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Message Posted: Oct 22, 2014 8:10:53 PM

The 1938 Packard v-12 was a 175 horsepower 473 cubic inch L head engine. Although this was an odd looking configuration at the time, it was a better design than the ford flathead. It was less prone to overheating because the exhaust did not go around the cylinder wall, like the ford design did.
DasAuto92
Champion Author Montreal

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Message Posted: Oct 22, 2014 4:40:17 PM

Well my friends there is 1 1965 Chevelle 300 convertible that is located in Barrie, Ontario, Canada.
Red exterior, Black rag top.
They did make a Canadian 1966 convertible and production was 230 cars.
bongobro
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Oct 22, 2014 1:57:50 PM

What models were available in the 1965 Chevelle 300 series?

Two-door sedan, four-door sedan, two-door two-seat station wagon...and in Canada (and ONLY in Canada), a convertible!

A CONVERTIBLE? It helps to be Canadian to understand this, but Canadian GM dealers were once grouped into Chevrolet-Oldsmobile-Cadillac dealers and Pontiac-Buick-GMC-Cadillac dealers. During the 1961-66 period, Buick dealers offered a base-trim convertible in the Special series. To provide a comparable model for the other dealer network, a base-trim 300 series convertible in the Chevelle series was sold in Canada. (For that matter, a base-series convertible was also available in the Chevelle-based Acadian Beaumont series!)

No figures are available on how many Chevelle 300-series convertibles were sold in Canada, but I suspect if any are left, they would be some of the rarest Chevrolets ever sold in North America!
bongobro
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Oct 21, 2014 4:03:59 PM

Earlier today I saw a 1956 Buick Roadmaster two-door Riviera on the road, and it reminded me of a peculiar thing Buick did on its 1956 and 1957 models.

The front grille ornament and, on some cases, the trunk lid trim, identified the car, in this case, as a "1956 Buick Roadmaster." While it made it easy for anyone who could read to identify the make, model and year of your new Buick, it also made it easy for anyone who could read to identifiy the make, model and year of your Buick when you traded it in on, say a 1959 or 1960 Buick a few years later.

Who wants to drive a used four-year-old Buick when you wanted, but couldn't afford, say, a '59 or '60 Buick?

Buick dropped the idea for good with its 1958 models, which anyone could recognize--and wish they'd forget--upon first seeing them on the street!
bongobro
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Oct 15, 2014 6:12:38 PM

That 1960 Buick LeSabre 2-door pillared sedan was one of the last two-door post models offered by medium price manufacturers.

Buick continued through 1963 with that model, while Oldsmobile quit making full-size two-door sedans in 1961. Pontiac had Catalina 2-door sedans as late as 1968, and in 1959 and 1960 even had a two-door sedan in the Star Chief series (but oddly, no two-door hardtop). The 1960 Dodge offered a two-door Matador sedan, but only if you were buying a police car. The two-door sedan body, in fact, was cobbled from the Dodge Dart! The last two-door Mercury sedan appeared in 1966. And the Edsel Ranger's two-door sedan sold only 777 copies in its shortened 1960 model run.
toms1120
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Message Posted: Oct 13, 2014 8:08:03 AM

In 1960, you could purchase a brand new Buick La Sabre for under $3,000. With that you basically got two-doors, a (manual) steering wheel and an engine.
MeTaBall
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Message Posted: Oct 2, 2014 5:04:06 PM

The system of United States Numbered Highways (often called U.S. Routes or U.S. Highways) is an integrated network of roads and highways numbered within a nationwide grid in the United States. As the designation and numbering of these highways were coordinated among the states, they are sometimes called Federal Highways, but the roadways have always been maintained by state or local governments since their initial designation in 1926.

The route numbers and locations are coordinated by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO). The only federal involvement in AASHTO is a nonvoting seat for the United States Department of Transportation. Generally, north-to-south highways are odd-numbered, with lowest numbers in the east, the area of the founding thirteen states of the United States, and highest in the west. Similarly, east-to-west highways are typically even-numbered, with the lowest numbers in the north, where roads were first improved most intensively, and highest in the south. Major north–south routes have numbers ending in "1" while major east–west routes have numbers ending in "0". Three-digit numbered highways are spur routes of parent highways but are not necessarily connected to their parents. Some divided routes exist to provide two alignments for one route, even though many splits have been eliminated. Special routes, usually posted with a banner, can provide various routes, such as an alternate, bypass or business route, for a U.S. Highway.

Before the U.S. Routes were designated, auto trails designated by auto trail associations were the main means of marking roads through the United States. In 1925, the Joint Board on Interstate Highways, recommended by the American Association of State Highway Officials (AASHO), worked to form a national numbering system to rationalize the roads. After several meetings, a final report was approved by the U.S. Department of Agriculture in November 1925. They received complaints from across the country about the assignment of routes, so the Board made several modifications; the U.S. Highway System was approved in November 1926. As a result of compromises made to get the U.S. Highway System approved, many routes were divided, with alignments to serve different towns. In subsequent years, AASHTO called for such splits in U.S. Routes to be eliminated.

Expansion of the system continued until 1956, when the Interstate Highway System was formed. After construction was completed, many U.S. Routes were replaced by Interstate Highways for through traffic. Despite the Interstate system, U.S. Highways still form many important regional connections, and new routes are still being added.
2Tall
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Message Posted: Sep 27, 2014 11:48:47 AM

The first car to utilize an engine with an overhead camshaft was the Marr Auto Car designed by Michigan native Walter Lorenzo Marr in 1903. The first DOHC car was the 1912 Peugeot which won the French Grand Prix at Dieppe that year. This car was powered by a straight-4 engine designed by Ernest Henry under the guidance of the technically knowledgeable racing drivers Paul Zuccarelli and Georges Boillot. Boillot, who drove the winning car that year, won the French Grand Prix for Peugeot again in 1913 but was beaten in 1914 by the SOHC Mercedes of Christian Lautenschlager.
2Tall
Champion Author Maryland

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Message Posted: Sep 19, 2014 9:03:32 AM

Little-Known Fact: There is no production 1983 Corvette. Although 1982 was the last year for the third-generation Corvette, Chevy decided to wait until the 1984 model year to launch the all-new car. Why? Some sources claim tighter emissions regulations necessitated more time for development. Others say that quality glitches at the factory were the real reason. All we know is every 1983 Corvette prototype was destroyed, except one: a white car that now lives at the National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, Ky.
bongobro
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Message Posted: Sep 13, 2014 2:44:15 PM

The hardtop station wagon was a phenomenon unique to the 1950s. At various times, Chrysler, Dodge, Oldsmobile, Buick and Rambler all offered four-door models without "B" pillars between the doors. (Chrysler and Dodge made them as late as 1964, in fact.) The most dramatic hardtop wagons of all the 1957-through 1960 Mercury Commuter, Voyager and Colony Park. Their "Dream Car Design" bodies were shared with no other Ford products. The 1959-60 wagons, on 126-inch wheelbases, were among the longest wagon wheelbases ever built, and the 1957-59 Commuter and 1957-58 Voyager were the largest two-door hardtop wagons ever made in the U.S. (the '55-'57 Chevy Nomad and Pontiac Safari rode 115- and 122-inch wheelbases, respectively) They didn't sell well when they were new, and surviving examples are extremely rare today. Mercury advertising boasted "there is only one side pillar in the new (1957) Mercury wagon," but their hardtop design was much more prone to rattles and squeaks, and the ravages of rust, than pillared wagons. But they were stunning, especially the 1960 Commuter, which was the cleanest-looking of all four model years. (Strangely, all Mercury hardtop wagon bodies, as well as their Olds and Buick counterparts, were built by Ionia-Mitchell Body Company, not by Ford or GM!)

[Edited by: bongobro at 9/13/2014 2:46:17 PM EST]
cDagasGo
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Message Posted: Sep 10, 2014 11:21:55 PM

Plymouth only made 1,718 340 four-speed Barracudas in 1973. Now they're a collector's item.
MeTaBall
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Message Posted: Sep 4, 2014 2:42:47 PM

What American muscle car had highest horsepower all time? It was the 1970 Chevelle SS 454 w/ 450 hp stock outta the box.
toms1120
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Message Posted: Aug 29, 2014 7:22:46 AM

Did you know what the term "Z28" meant? It was a production code that meant the car would have high performance options. 1967 was the first year for the "Z28" option. There were only 602 Z/28's made that year making it very rare and highly sought after.
eB40
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Message Posted: Aug 23, 2014 1:42:49 PM

The first car to include anti-lock brakes was the 1966 Jensen FF which came equipped with the Dunlop Maxaret anti-lock braking system (originally developed for use on aircraft). Although crude by today's standards (and sometimes unreliable), the Jensen FF's anti-skid system was a huge technological breakthrough at the time. Three years later, in 1969, the Lincoln Continental Mark III improved on the idea, placing sensors on the rear wheels that modulated pressure on the rear brakes when they began to lock up.
bongobro
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Message Posted: Aug 18, 2014 9:32:18 AM

The famous "silver streaks" that appeared on Pontiac automobiles from 1935 to 1956 were originated by a famous GM official--and were discontinued by the son of that man, who also was a GM official. Designer Frank Hershey was inspired by the oil-cooling fins of the French Napier race car when he created the bright strips that appeared on hoods, trunk lids and fenders of thousands of Pontiacs worldwide. William E. Knudsen, Pontiac general manager at the time, gave the go-ahead for the "silver streaks" to provide visual distinction from Chevrolets, which were being built in the same GM plants as an economy measure during the darkest part of the Great Depression.

While the "silver streaks" gave distinction to Pontiac vehicles during the pre- and post-World War II era, Pontiac's aging flathead six- and eight-cylinder engines gave the cars all the pizazz of Grandma's apron strings--or Grandpa's suspenders. That's how some wags described their appearance during the mid-1950s, as Pontiacs seemed to sell best to older adults. By 1956, GM officials gave an ultimatum to Pontiac: Get sales moving or the division would be dropped. (Pontiac came close to being dumped in the early 1980s as well, by the way.)

Semon E. "Bunkie" Knudson, William's son, took a look at the 1957 models then about ready to be introduced--and ordered the "silver streaks" be taken off at once. (There are a few pictures of '57s with the stripes on the hood, and frankly, they did nothing to improve their looks. The '57 Star Chief Custom Safari currently seen as my av picture, of course, doesn't have the streaks.)

By 1961, thanks to updated styling, improved versions of the Strato-Streak V-8 introduced in 1955, and active involvement in racing, Pontiac enjoyed several years as the third most popular make in America, behind Chevy and Ford.

[Edited by: bongobro at 8/18/2014 9:34:14 AM EST]
bongobro
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Aug 16, 2014 8:18:07 AM

In 1954, Plymouth introduced its top-line Belvedere series in the U.S. The name had been used on the Cranbrook hardtop model first introduced in 1951, and a Belvedere sedan was introduced in Canada in 1953. There were four models: A four-door sedan, a two-door hardtop, a convertible, and a two-door station wagon. The Chevy Bel Air and Ford Crestline had similar lineups, except the Bel Air offered a two-door sedan and the Crestline the first glass-topped Skyliner hardtop; Crestline and Bel Air both offered four-door station wagons.

What made the Belvedere unusual was its use of "Color-Tuned" exteriors an interiors, in four bright pastels not offered on its Plaza and Savoy counterparts: Santa Rosa Coral, San Gabriel Green, San Diego Gold, and San Pedro Blue. On wagons, the door and window frames were painted San Mateo Wheat (beige), and interiors were accented with the main body color.

Look for the October 2014 HEMMINGS CLASSIC CAR, which features an article with all four beautifully restored '54 Belvederes; a sedan in black-over-Santa Rosa Coral; a white-over-San Diego Gold hardtop; a San Gabriel Green convertible, and a San Pedro Blue wagon.

All four are knockouts!
MeTaBall
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Message Posted: Aug 15, 2014 7:27:35 PM

Today, alloy wheels are all but ubiquitous and are used by automobile manufacturers as a key styling feature, often used to differentiate model ranges and equipment specification. They started becoming popular with the general public in the 1980’s, but were in fact offered sporadically since 1924.

Previous to the development of the alloy wheel, wheels were formed of two pieces of pressed steel, the rim and the disc, either welded or riveted into a single unit. Or, they were fabricated of a steel or aluminum rim, connected to a center hub by metal spokes. A transitional design was a hybrid utilizing a steel disc for strength and an aluminum rim for weight saving. Such a design was used by Porsche and Jaguar in the 1950’s. Another example was the Borrani Bimetal, used on several Italian sporting models.

Cast or forged alloy wheels offer reduced weight and greater stiffness than stamped pressed steel wheels. They also offer the designer almost unlimited freedom in terms of style.
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