Sunday, August 21, 2011

New Aquisition - XD Ford Falcon Ute - The 'Roo Chasaaa'

Yes, I bought the Jalopnik 'Nice Price or Crack Pipe' Falcon ute featured on Jalopnik. After a bit of negotiation, NP all the way.

For a long time, I've been debating the purpose of having my Powerstroke F-250 when I only use it to Ranger capabilities. An Aussie ute could even be marketed as a money saving venture given the price delta between the F-250 and the negotiated price of the Falcon - plus I needed to add another Aussie Ford to the stable. Therefore, my F-250 is on craigslist and the ute will soon be in my driveway, but only after a week long road trip to retrieve it. Scheduled to start over the Labor day weekend, this trip will entail flying out to Ontario (the warm one) and driving the 2,218 miles back to the D while doing the world's longest continuous burnout.

Expect a detailed account of the trip in September, provided I make it back by then.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Risky PR - Outback Australia in Auto Marketing

If you've been follow the happenings on the fringe of the auto industry lately, you've probably heard about Mercedes-Benz of Australia's trek into Outback Australia along the Canning Stock Trail in a fleet of six new Galandewagens. Well, if you didn't get to the end of the article, five of the broke due to rear shock failure (I don't know how that makes a G-Wagen undrivable but I digress...) and had to have parts air lifted to the scene.

Well as it turns out, this isn't the first time a trek into the Outback has ended in less-than-stellar PR for a company attempting to score some points with the motoring public. Toyota, of all companies, decided to pull the same stunt in the early 80's using untested cars directly off of the assembly line, all piloted by members of the domestic automotive press. I can't say that a trek across marked yet unsealed Northern Territory roads is the same as a drive across livestock trails but nevertheless it is a challenge for either vehicle. In the case of the Toyota, resulted in several burned up differentials, crashed cars, and suppliers with their tails tucked between their legs.

The article detailing the adventure and marketing lesson below came from an annual publication called Australian Motoring Year; a hardcover book put out by some of the top Australian journalists. It's really an awesome read and gives great insight into the highly competitive and home grown nature of the Australian auto industry in 1984. Enjoy.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Beat on the Irish Street: Benz E-Class-amino

Turning your old beater into a home brew el Camino is just about always a great idea. The usual recipe involves an old station wagon, a Sawzall, a lot of diamond plate and a case or two of your favorite brew. Starting off with a Mercedes Benz E300 (W210) sedan is an unusual step and I think its safe to assume this guy's Mercedes Benz Club membership has been revoked.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Waterford Hills Vintage Racing Photos

Last weekend vintage race cars took to the narrow 1.4 miles of Waterford Hills. Vintage racing has typically been more about cool old aluminum and fiberglass than it is about racing but with all the old school hotness on track, it doesn't matter.