Tag: Autoweek

90 Years of the ’32 Ford at the Petersen Automotive Museum – Mark Vaughn @Autoweek

90 Years of the ’32 Ford at the Petersen Automotive Museum – Mark Vaughn @Autoweek


A little over 90 years ago, on March 31, 1932, Ford brought power to the people—V8 power, which up until then could only be found in Cadillacs, Lancias, and cars like that. With the all-new 1932 Model 18, Henry Ford democratized the V8. Suddenly just about anyone could buy a powerful car that also looked good. And as soon as ’32 Fords got to be old cars, they and their flathead engines were scooped up by veterans returning from WWII and turned into hot rods, over and over again.

Tom McIntyre’s ’32 3-window rebuilt by Rolling Bones was originally a race car.

“Hot rods are still cars that are third or fourth or fifth owners that you can customize and make it your own,” said Terry Karges, director of the Petersen Automotive Museum. “But you start with something that’s real affordable, that almost nobody wants anymore, and you start to personalize it.”

“It’s the iconic hot rod,” said collector Bruce Meyer. “It’s a great platform for innovation, and hot rodding is all about personalization, innovation, and performance. So when something’s right, it just lasts. And you can see that it’s pretty darn popular.

To celebrate all that, the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles didn’t just host another cruise-in—though they did that—but they invented their own holiday, National Hot Rod Day, June 11, and invited owners of ’32 Fords to come and celebrate.

While signups suggested there might be 250 cars present, a little over 100 actually showed up. No matter, it was still a great day filled with horsepower, old friends, and stories of ’32s of yore.

“The ’32 Ford was the first economically available V8 engine,” said hot rod author Pat Ganahl, who was wandering among the Deuces on the Petersen’s open-air parking deck. “And it was a totally new body style, thanks to Edsel Ford.” It was a body style that has easily stood the test of time, mainly due to its simplicity of design.

“From the Model A to the ‘32, you really got a little bit softer and smoother, there are a few more curves and compound curves and things to it,” said AMBR-winning hot rod builder Troy Ladd of Hollywood Hot Rods. “I think it really was a turning point in automotive design at the time… I think it’s just a really nice design—it just works.”

5 Things to Know about the Ford F-150 Lightning – Jay Ramey @Autoweek


Ford’s electric F-150 brings lightning-quick launches and plenty of juice for your tools.

The Ford F-150 Lightning, revealed on Thursday night (May 20), is easily one of the most-important launches for Ford in this entire decade, and also one of the most important EV launches for any automaker. Making its global debut just months after the start of sales of the Mustang Mach-E, the 2022 F-150 Lightning wants to turn the Blue Oval’s best seller into the best-selling EV truck in America, and as we saw last night all the ingredients are there.

1 The Goals

The F-150 Lightning is not meant to be an electric truck that happens to be useful in daily life, but to be a daily working truck that just happens to be electric. The F-150 Lightning is also meant to win over longtime Ford truck buyers with its versatility and impressive bag of tricks, even if they wouldn’t have otherwise thought about buying an EV, as well as those who’ve been waiting for a large and affordable electric SUV with the added versatility of a truck.

“We’re not here to make an electric truck for the few—Ford is committed to building one that solves real problems for real people,” said Kumar Galhotra, Ford president, Americas and International Markets Group. “F-150 Lightning delivers everything we’ve said electric vehicles can offer, plus the capability expected from a Built Ford Tough truck—not just near instant torque but powerful towing and hauling customers can depend on.”

2 The Performance

Equipped with the standard-range battery, the F-150 Lightning produces 426 hp and 725 lb-ft of torque. Upgrade to the long-range battery, and you’ll get the bonus of having 563 hp and 725 lb-ft of torque to play with.

When it comes to towing and payload, the F-150 Lightning will tow 10,000 lbs, and will carry 2,000 lbs of cargo.

Staying true to the last Ford truck to use the name Lightning, the electric F-150 will also be able to launch itself from 0 to 60 mph in the mid-four second range, which President Joe Biden briefly quoted as being 4.3 or 4.4 seconds. Those aren’t quite the final figures, but judging from Ford’s statements, they’re close.

“Whether they’re hauling a bed full of firewood through snow or towing a trailer on a road trip, customers need to be able to rely on their truck’s performance,” said Linda Zhang, chief engineer, F-150 Lightning. “This all-electric truck has been engineered with dual in-board motors, which means it can take on rough terrain. Our team of engineers has run the same arduous test regimen our F-150 customers have learned to expect from Ford

3 The Power

The Ford F-150 will make the most of its electric nature, offering four power outlets in the frunk alone, and seven others elsewhere including in the bed in the cabin, for a total of 11. Needless to say, this will make it a popular truck for work tools with the Pro Power Onboard system. This system will also keep track of juice when power tools are being used and will notify the owner when the range falls below a certain point.

Perhaps more impressive than the ability to power tools on a worksite is the ability of the truck to power an entire home in the case of a power outage. The Ford Intelligent Backup Power option can provide 9.6 kilowatts of power to a home through its 80-amp Ford Charge Station Pro, which Ford can help install in a home garage. The system can automatically kick in when a loss of power occurs in a home, and then cut off the flow when power is restored.

“Whether sheltering during a storm or trying to stay safe in a heat wave, customers can now use their truck to give themselves power when they need it most,” said Ryan O’Gorman, electric vehicle manager, Strategic Partnerships. “F-150 Lightning is built for seamless transitions between charging your vehicle and powering your house when needed—and Ford is the first in the U.S. to offer this capability on an electric truck.”

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What Year Was Peak Wagon in America? – Murilee Martin @Autoweek


There were two model years when American car shoppers had 47 station wagons to consider. Care to guess?

With the rise of the minivan in the 1980s and the SUV in the 1990s, most Americans lost interest in buying station wagons. Oh, sure, you can still buy a new wagon here today (all of which come from European marques, if you still count Volvo as European), but there was a time when the station wagon was so mainstream that American car shoppers could choose from dozens of different longroof models. The important question here is: what model year had the most new station wagon models available in the United States? Yes, we’re going to determine the year of Peak Wagon now!

As was the case with my still-controversial dive into the subject of the final two-speed transmission offered on a new car in Americadefinitions become all-important here. There are some very important such definitions involved here, and I assume you will be very angry about my interpretation of each of them. Just as with the maddeningly wrong and probably malicious definitions I deployed when I wrote about the Chevy Rat Motor, subjectivity comes into play.

First, calling your van a wagon doesn’t make it a wagon. Yes, Volkswagen of America called the Type 2 Transporter a station wagon in its marketing materials. Chrysler did the same with the Dodge A100, as did Ford with the Econoline and GM with the Corvair Greenbrier. Warlord-grade trucks aren’t wagons, either, so you Land CruiserLand RoverJeep and International Harvester fanatics might as well begin wailing and gnashing your teeth right now. I will allow that sedan deliveries are wagons— that’s a tough call, because some of the early ones are pretty truckish and/or not-so-wagonlike— but you’ll see that the sedan delivery model count doesn’t have any effect on determining the year of Peak Wagon in America.

Second, ordinary Americans had to be able to obtain a mass-produced wagon from a licensed dealer in America, and it had to be highway-legal here at the time of sale in order for it to count toward Peak Wagon scoring. That means no oddball wagons imported by servicemen stationed in Naha or Grafenwöhr, no backyard-built wagons with hand-carved poplar bodies and steam engines, no swoopy atomic-powered wagon prototypes built for World’s Fairs, no onesy-twosy imports of Soviet wagons by spirally eyed fly-by-night entrepreneurs (this one really hurts, because I was dying to include the available-here-in-theory GAZ Pobedas and Volgas, not to mention the Moskvich 402/407), no bracketed-by-asterisks homologation specials, no wagonified Detroit luxury sedans or muscle coupes custom-commissioned by high-ranking Detroit executives for their wives. No, no, no!

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What Does DeLorean EVolved Actually Promise? – Jay Ramey @Autoweek

  • DeLorean Motor Company appears to be planning a battery-electric coupe under the DeLorean brand, with a reveal set to take place sometime this year.
  • The Texas-based company, which acquired the rights to the automaker’s name, currently sells parts for the original model.
  • Italdesign is involved with the new sports car project, with Giorgetto Giugiaro having designed the original DMC-12 coupe.

If you’ve been waiting this whole time for a cyberpunk EV and don’t necessarily want it to look like a truck, there could be another option not too far in the future.

The DeLorean Motor Company, or rather its successor in the IP rights, has shared a short teaser video previewing an EV with gullwing doors, set to a Chris Nolan-style trailer soundtrack with ominous-sounding horns.

The vehicle is promised to arrive in 2022, perhaps under the name DeLorean EVolved, as the company’s tweet suggests.

Curiously enough the previewed vehicle does not really suggest a design composed of mostly flat geometric shapes, especially when it comes to the profile of the roof. If you look closely, the teased design appears to feature a pronounced curvature to the A-pillars and the hood.

It does, however, feature gullwing doors, which at this point appear to be the sole element carried over from the original, along with the badge up front. To us the rendering in the teaser video looks far more like a front angle of the Bricklin SV-1 rather than the original DMC-12.

The only thing clear at the moment is that it is intended to be an electric sports car with gullwing doors.

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Tom Cotter: Inside the Mind of That Barn Find Hunter Car Guy – Al Pearce @Autoweek


Popular author and YouTube star has found his niche in the car world.

Some years back, during a Morning Edition segment on National Public Radio, a 100-year-old veteran gave the world his secret to a long and fulfilling life. That secret? “The same things that excited me as a 14-year-old still excite me today.”

In the case of 66-year-old Long Island native Tom Cotter, that means cars.

New cars. Old cars. Racing cars. Touring cars. Restored cars. Need-to-be restored cars. Two-seaters. Woodies. Classic hot rods. Stunning barn finds. Grocery-getters. Everything from the stock Pinto he drove on his honeymoon 44 years ago to an iconic Cunningham C-3 and the 1964 Corvette he races just for fun.

“I’m a one-trick pony, and it’s all about cars.”

“I’ve been a car guy almost from birth,” says Cotter, a runner and even a marathoner (he’s done most of the world’s major runs at least once) now living in Davidson, North Carolina. “I’ve hunted once, fished maybe three times, and never played golf. I’m a one-trick pony, and it’s all about cars. They’ve always fascinated me, always made an impression, even when I was just a little kid. I get as excited about a cool car now as I did when I was 14.”

In one form or fashion for most of their lives, Cotter and his wife, Pat, and their son, 29-year-old Brian, have pushed, pulled, towed, hauled and occasionally driven cars to the garage beside their home. Cotter left college after two years, hoping to become the next Bob Sharp, the famous Connecticut-based championship sports car racer/team owner/businessman. When that didn’t work out, he ran a repair shop, sold auto parts, sold furniture (?!), and spent several years working with motorsports marketing pioneer Dick Bauer. That led to a 1985-1989 gig with Humpy Wheeler at Charlotte Motor Speedway, where Cotter’s “pass in the grass” promotion—even though there was no pass—remains legendary.

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The Coolest Fords at Ed “Isky” Iskenderian’s 100th Birthday – Mark Vaughn @Autoweek

The Niekamp Roadster, winner of the first-ever America’s Most Beautiful Roadster at the first-ever Oakland Roadster Show, AKA The Grand National Roadster Show, in 1950.

The hot rod hero’s birthday brought out L.A.’s finest Fords for all to see.

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Some suspension of disbelief required.

In the middle 1960s, North Americans weren’t limited to just Chrysler, Ford and GM when shopping for a new Midwest-built pickup truck — they could buy a Gladiator from Kaiser-Jeep or a C-Series made by International Harvester as well. Here’s a magazine advertisement for the 1966 IHC pickups.

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JUNKYARD TREASURE: 1985 PONTIAC FIERO 2M4 – Murilee Martin @Autoweek


Like the Chevrolet Corvair that preceded it by a couple of decades, the Pontiac Fiero became a pretty decent sports car… just before The General killed it off. The 1984-1987 Fieros had Chevy Citation front suspensions in the back, Chevy Chevette front suspensions in the front, weighed 200 pounds more than the Toyota MR2… but looked pretty sharp for cars intended for low-cost penny-pinching commuter duty. You won’t see many Fieros today, but I see the occasional example in junkyards, especially in California. Here’s an ’85 in a Silicon Valley self-service yard.

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