Category: Book

Myth and Mogul : John DeLorean – New Documentary  @Netflix

Myth and Mogul : John DeLorean – New Documentary @Netflix

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Netflix have released a recent documentary on the rise and fall of John DeLorean

Plus a look back at previous DeLorean content here on Automotive American

The documentary is a mixture of footage from a previous documentary and interviews with those involved at the time including family members.

For me it’s the best one so far and I guess may be the last?

For John’s back story you can go to Wikipedia

Information on the documentary can be found here at Netflix

A few years ago I interviewed Chris Parnham historian of the DeLorean Owners Club UK for my podcast, and I thought this would make a good companion to the new documentary. Details of the club can be found here

Chris is a lovely man and the interview can be found below

https://automotiveamerican.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/chris-parnham-delorean-blog.mp3

I was lucky to be given a copy of Chris’s and Andy Withers excellent book – DeLorean – Celebrating the Impossible 

The original article is here

Books from Richard Edmonds Auctions

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About an hour away there is an auctioneers that specialise in transportation and automobilia. I managed to score a set of books called “Automobile Engineering” from 1920 published by the American Technical Society. Very interesting stuff!

Upon collection from the auction site there were a number of cars to be collected, including a Model T and a Metropolitan

Richard Edmonds auctions are in Chippenham Wiltshire and hold regular classic car and automobilia auctions.

Book Review: COPO Camaro, Chevelle & Nova – Tom Stahler @ClassicCars.com

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The history of the muscle cars covertly produced from the Central Office Production Order

COPO was Chevrolet’s special-order system used by dealers to build high-performance models in the 1960s despite a corporate racing ban. The COPO program was  originally designated for fleet vehicles such as taxicabs, but at the peak of the muscle car wars, it was used to build the ultimate high-performance Chevy muscle cars.

Author, Matt Avery, a Chevy muscle car expert, combed the archives and found the owners and people involved in the COPO program, providing the culture with a compelling story and outright resource for COPO cars. The COPO muscle car and racing programs produced an extraordinary period of automotive history, and Avery captures all these facets in a very entertaining book.

Read on

Another look at The Unfair Advantage by Mark Donohue – Mac’s Motor City Garage

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In the opinion of many, Mark Donohue’s The Unfair Advantage is one of the finest racing books ever written. MCG takes a few moments to revisit a motorsports classic

It really is remarkable, and in a strange way, affirming: After all these years, ask racing professionals, from Indy car drivers to NASCAR crew chiefs to motorsports journalists, to name their favorite book about auto racing, and the one most usually called out is the classic volume by Mark Donohue and co-writer Paul Van Valkenburgh, The Unfair Advantage.

First published in 1975, the book is far from obsolete—in fact, it grows more golden every year. When a new edition was published in 2000, MCG was honored to write the review for AutoWeek magazine. An updated, web-friendly revision of that review follows below. -mcg

The Unfair Advantage was originally published in 1975, a bit lost in the wake of Mark Donohue’s brilliant life and its sudden, shocking end.

Donohue won three Trans-Am titles, the Indy 500 in 1972, and brutalized the Can-Am series in 1973 with the 917-30 turbo Porsche, a monster he personally chained and mastered. Little left to win, Donohue retired from driving, but then just as abruptly un-retired to take one more challenge: leading Penske’s assault on F1. At Austria, just two races into the 1975 season, Donohue crashed in the morning warm-up. And he was gone.  Just like that. Donohue’s fans—everyone was a Donohue fan—were left only with their memories, and the book. They weren’t enough.

Read on

 

How to Rebuild and Modify Ford Flathead V-8 Engines – Mike Bishop and Vern Tardel

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Keep it mild or build it wild, but either way, How to Rebuild and Modify Ford Flathead V8 Engines will help ensure your flathead is delivering the power you need.

The ultimate Ford flathead resource for hot rodders and restorers.The last commercially produced Ford Flathead V-8 was cast over 60 years ago. Simple by today’s high-tech standards, during its performance reign from the late ’30s through the mid ’50s, the flathead was unsurpassed for go-fast power on the cheap. It spawned the modern aftermarket speed-equipment industry and became a favorite of bootleggers, dry-lakes racers, dirt trackers, street racers, and a whole generation that just wanted fast cars

 

Read on

 

 

Book – Car: A Drama of the American Workplace by Mary Walton

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Book – Car: A Drama of the American Workplace by Mary Walton

Book by Mary Walton on the behind the scenes activity behind the launch of the Ford Taurus, at the time the Taurus is reputed to have saved Ford Motor Company.

The book is an excellent read and pulls no punches…

“An enlightening peek at the inner workings of a large corporation trying to reinvent itself. . . . It’s rare to find an auto book that explains the process of creating a car with so much color and detail.”―Business Week (a Best Business Book of 1997)

Faced with the task of redesigning the Taurus, America’s best-selling car and the flagship of its fleet, Ford Motor Company assembled 700 designers, engineers, planners, and bean-counters under a tough manager who set out to retake engineering and manufacturing ground lost to the Japanese. On their shoulders rested the reputation and the profits of Ford, not to mention an investment of close to 3 billion dollars. This biting, insightful account by a seasoned journalist follows the 1996 Taurus from its conception as a clay model in Detroit to its birth in an Atlanta assembly plant to its public debut in a New Jersey dealership. Mary Walton, who was given unprecedented access to the Taurus team, chronicles brilliantly the clashes between designers and engineers, marketers and accountants, product guys and manufacturing guys to create a revealing portrait of the tension, the passions, and the pride that fuel the race to #1. “An engrossing drama . . . with fascinating insights into every aspect of the car’s creation. . . . Walton does an admirable job of making the redesign of a car into a compelling human-interest story.”―Publishers Weekly (starred review) “An engrossing, satisfying read.”―Doron Levin, Philadelphia Inquirer (a Best Book of 1997) “Vivid and informative. . . . Consistently entertaining because it is engagingly written, this is the rare business book that is a page turner.”―Keith Bradsher, New York Times Book Review 8 pages of plates, photographs

Book available here

Related – Book – The Critical Path: Inventing an Automobile and Reinventing a Corporation by Brock Yates

S.C.T.A. Bonneville National Speed Trials – 1949-1968 Collector’s Set

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As a hot rodder, Bonneville is the ultimate destination. For the past seven decades, it’s been known to push man and machine to their limit. Legends are born out on the salt, and now the golden years of Bonneville racing have been compiled into an unbelievable two-book set.

Order from The Rodder’s Journal library here

 

 

 

Now in Print: The Robert E. Petersen Story – Get it from the TRJ Library

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There has never been a more influential automotive publisher than Robert E. Petersen. Through Hot Rod Magazine and his other titles—including Rod & Custom and Car Craft—he helped legitimize our sport and spread the word to millions of car crazy readers around the globe. Petersen was a photographer, racer, marketing genius, family man and much more—and now his life story is in print like never before. We’re excited to introduce Hot Rod Empire: Robert E. Petersen and the Creation of the World’s Most Popular Car and Motorcycle Magazines, published by our friends at Motorbooks and now available in the TRJ Library.

Written by acclaimed author Matt Stone and Gigi Carleton, Mr. Petersen’s longtime executive secretary and confidant (whose story was told in TRJ #75), Hot Rod Empire covers all the bases. It leaves no stone unturned, and it features a foreword by none other than Ed “Isky” Iskenderian and a preface by Bruce Meyer. It’s a star-studded cast, and it’s only fitting for the all-American tale of the King of Hot Rod Publishing.

Get it here at TRJ 

The Arsenal of Democracy: FDR, and an Epic Quest to arm an America at War – by A.J. Baime

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“The Arsenal of Democracy” was a phrase coined by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1940 in reference to the collaborative efforts of American industry in supporting the allied war effort by mobilising the mass production efforts to change production from consumer and other products to plane, tanks, bombs and other item required to win the war

As with all of A J Baime’s books this one is well researched and shows a deep knowledge of Detroit industry and in particular Ford Motor Company in wartime. The intricacies of the complex Father & Son relationship between Henry I and Edsel and the rise of Henry II are well described, along with Edsel Ford’s largely unsung role. Having read extensively on the subject of the early Ford Motor Company this book is a great addition and provided many new angles and facts.

A great read!

As an interesting footnote to the story of Willow Run, there is a campaign to stop the demolition of the bomber plant.

Read about it here

Henry: A Life of Henry Ford II by Walter Hayes

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I’m currently reading  Henry : A Life of Henry Ford II  by former Ford employee Walter Hayes

Henry: A Life of Henry Ford II

Henry Ford II arrives in the Netherlands (1954).

As those of you who read the blog know I’m a bit of a student of Henry Ford

This book has been a real eye opener for me in as much as I now understand how instrumental Henry Ford II was in saving Ford Motor Company after the death of old Henry.

Henry II took over the ailing company at a very young 25 years of age and was in office from 1945 until 1979 and died at the age of 70 in 1987

You can read more about Henry’s reign here