Posted by Doug DeMuro in Feature
on Jun 19th, 2013 | 27 comments
To start, a bit of an apology, as I’ve neglected this site far too much lately. This is because I am in the throes of finishing my e-Book, which I expect to sell to approximately 11 people including my mother twice.
Today I wanted to do something a little different: ask your advice. To help promote the book (and possibly reach 12 sales), I’m going to buy a “long term” used car and write weekly reports about how it is, either on Jalopnik or TTAC. These reports will be written in my usual style, which is “never let the facts get in the way of a good story be visible on the page.”
Posted by Doug DeMuro in Ridiculous Rebadge
on Jun 13th, 2013 | 8 comments
We’ve been recently discussing the Jeep Grand Wagoneer over on TTAC, which has reminded me of a very unusual used car: the second-generation Jeep Grand Wagoneer.
No, I’m not talking about the various facelifted and updated versions of the original Grand Wagoneer, which came out in the 1960s and used the same outdated chassis for decades. I am instead referring to the 1993 Grand Wagoneer, which was really just a rebadged Grand Cherokee.
Here’s what happened: when Chrysler ditched the Grand Wagoneer in the early 1990s, they were highly afraid of losing loyal customers. That makes sense, as many...
Posted by Doug DeMuro in It Exists
on Jun 10th, 2013 | 16 comments
In the late 1990s, Lincoln beat Cadillac to the full-size luxury SUV punch by releasing the Navigator just before Cadillac debuted the Escalade. The vehicle you see here is an attempt at achieving a second such release date victory.
The Lincoln Blackwood was offered in the 2002 and 2003 model years with a retail price of around $53,000. Of course, not one Blackwood changed hands anywhere that figure, because the truck was fraught with shortcomings.
In theory, the idea of the Blackwood makes perfect sense. I once read Lincoln decided to build the truck after discovering some absurd number of their...
Posted by Doug DeMuro in It Exists
on Jun 7th, 2013 | 22 comments
I think, if you asked around, you’d find that this site really needs some more Volvo content. And so I’ve decided to provide that in the form of a short piece on Volvo’s forgotten model: the S90.
I know what you’re thinking: there is no S90! You’re crazy! Also, this site does not need any more Volvo content! You’re probably right about that last bit. I’ve covered a lot of Volvo stuff here, largely because they build loads of very unusual cars. Like the S90.
OK, so you’ve heard of the S40, and the S60, and the S80. You had forgotten about the S70, but now you sort of remember that,...
Posted by Doug DeMuro in GM Bad Idea
on Jun 5th, 2013 | 20 comments
Remember the Chrysler PT Cruiser? I’d like to call that a “Chrysler bad idea,” but in reality, it wasn’t. The thing sold like crazy, and I still see them around, each in the hands of elderly people who are really pleased by them.
But the General Motors version was a bad idea. The Chevrolet HHR, which stood for ‘Heritage High Roof’ was a copy of the entire PT Cruiser idea, from the retro styling to the dull driving experience. It was even designed by the same person, Bryan Nesbitt, who joined GM after the PT Cruiser’s launch.
Chevrolet eventually decided to make a panel version of the...
Posted by Doug DeMuro in Feature Fail
on Jun 3rd, 2013 | 12 comments
I’ve always liked the Ferrari California. Why? For one, it drives like a Ferrari. Seriously: it’s small, it’s quick and the handling and suspension are tuned precisely as you’d expect from a Ferrari, which is to say that it’s a lot like a Lamborghini or a Porsche but you believe it’s way better because it has a Ferrari badge.
It also sounds like a Ferrari. Even with the stock exhaust, jamming the throttle on the California unleashes exactly the sound you want from Italy’s finest. This seems counterintuitive considering the California is a front-engined four-seater, but it’s true. ...