Great for Throwing Codes…and Not Much Else

Hypertech Max Energy Code ReaderI like to know what my car is thinking.  With human-human relationships, this is best fostered through a long and meaningful communication, a lifetime of time spent together.  With human-car relationships (yes, there is such a thing), you can just plug in an OBDII device.  I ordered mine for $15 from “China, China,” a couple of years ago, and it’s never failed me. Continue reading “Great for Throwing Codes…and Not Much Else”

The Group B Justy: A Madman’s Dream

subaru justyThe fire came while I was reading something dull.  Boring, that is, by most people’s standards, but not mine.  I was browsing through the class regulations and requirements for the 2012 Rally America season.  I’m a huge rally fan, and ever since I attended my first rally back in February, I’ve experienced a longing, several times a week, to rob a busy convenience store, buy an old beater VW or Civic and go rallying. Continue reading “The Group B Justy: A Madman’s Dream”

Mid-America: 7 US-Produced Mid-engine Cars

American mid engined carsThere are only a few different engine layouts found in production 2-wheel-drive cars.  If you’ve never browsed that grey bar down the side of Wikipedia, here’s a quick and easy legend to understand them. Continue reading “Mid-America: 7 US-Produced Mid-engine Cars”

5 Crazy Ways to Save Gas

Crazy gas savingsWe’re all sick of perpetually-rising gas prices.  We’re even sick of complaining about them.  So instead of jawing on and on about miserable trips to the pump and how things were back in the day, we’ll discuss the other side.  Since gas seems to be worth its weight in gold, or at least pork rinds or something, here are a few obsessive ways to be stingy with your fuel, and their more practical, watered-down versions. Continue reading “5 Crazy Ways to Save Gas”

Paris 2012: Beauty Meets Realism

2013 Paris Auto ShowEvery year the Paris Motor Show stands somewhere between New York and Geneva on the great “beige business to awesome cartoons” scale of wackiness.  It’s a place where grey-clad businessmen and hipster designers converge.  Here are a few highlights of the bold and the boring. Continue reading “Paris 2012: Beauty Meets Realism”

Hybrids 2.0: A Coming of Age

toyota hybrid conceptI read Catcher in the Rye when I was a sophomore in high school and I remembered being a little disappointed by the end.  Holden didn’t really prove to be much of a hero, and as a lover of the traditional story, I didn’t get it.  I asked my mom, a teacher, why Salinger’s little book was such a masterpiece.  “It’s a coming of age story,” she said.  And then I understood, being much the same age as the protagonist.  Holden Caulfield’s little adventure in the city was a disillusionment, when he had to face the fact that though he was born with into wealth, not everything was going to fall into his lap. Continue reading “Hybrids 2.0: A Coming of Age”

Daily Driving Old Cars in the Future

Modern carsHave you seen the Honda Accord commercial starring all the inattentive drivers?  You know, the ones who have to rely on Honda’s “stop alarm” because they weren’t watching the truck they were tailgating?  Or the woman who must use the motion tracker to see if there’s an opening in the exit lane she is about to miss because she’s blabbing to her friend about politics?  Or the guy who hears the lane drift buzzer because he’s trying to get that last, precious drop of Starbucks to slip into his stanky maw? Continue reading “Daily Driving Old Cars in the Future”

Jaguar F-Type: No House Cat

2013 Jaguar F-TypeFor years Jaguar has been playing second fiddle to Aston Martin in the faux-British sports car market. Their bigger cars sell well, but the Leaping Cat seems to have dropped anchor there, resting in the luxo-barge segment. Their sporting days, when they built beautiful racers and one of the fastest production cars in history, are behind them. Continue reading “Jaguar F-Type: No House Cat”

An Inch From the Ground and a Wheel Off the Edge

extreme kartingAyrton Senna.  Tony Stewart.  Lewis Hamilton.  Darrell Waltrip.  Jeff Gordon.  Kimi Räikkönen.  Sebastian Vettel.  Mario.  What do all these legends of racing have in common?  What do they have in common with hundreds of other racing champions from the last several decades?  They all started small.  Very small. Continue reading “An Inch From the Ground and a Wheel Off the Edge”

EBC Yellowstuff: The Street Review

ebc yellow stuff padsBritish servicemen are an enigma.  One moment they’re good old chaps with pints, polite as a British person, the next they’re flying Harrier jets or storming your beaches alongside a member of their royal family.  Their best-of-the-best military division wears a humble name.  Special Air Service sounds like something you’d pay extra for when shipping a package to your grandmother. Continue reading “EBC Yellowstuff: The Street Review”