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The Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio is the best sports sedan out there

You could buy the BMW, and be boring. You could buy the Mercedes-Benz, and be smugly content. You could be the Audi, and play it safe. You could buy the Lexus, and be comfortable enough. Or… you could buy the Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio, and be a hero.

If you make the heroes choice, you now have 505 horsepower at your disposal thanks to a Ferrari-derived 2.9-liter twin-turbocharged V6 engine. It works magic to the rear end through an eight-speed gearbox.

On the outside, you have a muscular and mean machine with a perfectly poised stance. Inside, the Alfa gets down to business with its thin-rimmed suede and leather steering wheel and massive paddles to control the transmission. The seats are excellent, which is good because you’re going to want to fling this four-door beast through the corners.

It’s not cheap. It’s definitely not perfect (keep your warranty information handy). But it is the most thrilling machine in its segment.

[Disclaimer: Alfa Romeo tossed us the keys to the Giulia QF and included a tank of fuel. We had to fill up the car three more times…]

Podcast: Episode 245 – Casa de Klapman

I had to step out this week so Chris Hayes took the chance to meet up with Hooniverse Podcast regular Zack Klapman for a one-on-one catch up. This week the pair cover the Long Beach Grand Prix, the recent passing of the “One Take” reigns to Zack, and Chris’ deliberations on a new daily driver.

Hooniverse Asks: Faux Patina?

Jeff Glucker April 17, 2018 Hooniverse Asks

One one hand, I want to applaud anyone out there who customizes, cherishes, and enjoys their vehicle. That’s what ROCS Auto has down with this Porsche 911. The car is called the ROCS Palo Alto 911 Panamericana Outlaw, and it looks the part. The idea is that this is what this Porsche would look like if it had been used as a Mexican road racing car for decades.

The problem I have here, is that it hasn’t done any of that. The car was built for a well-to-do California client that wanted a car to look like it’s lived a life it hasn’t. It’s fake. It’s faux patina.

I like the aesthetics of this car, but it hasn’t earned those aesthetics. And so I can’t stand behind it. This car is kind of lame, even while it’s cool at the same time.

This is fake ripped holes on overpriced jeans. This is artisanal insanity applied to the automotive space. It’s faux organic. It’s the Whole Foods of automotive styling.

I don’t like it.

But you might, and that’s okay. What do you think of this car and faux patina in general? 

[Source: FlatSixes]

Hooniverse Asks: Do we *need* the Jeep Trackhawk to exist?

Jeff Glucker April 16, 2018 Hooniverse Asks

I’m driving a 707-horsepower Jeep this week. It makes no sense. It defies physics through the sheer monstrous power of its supercharged 6.2-liter V8 engine. It costs $90,000. The fuel economy is in the single digits.

It’s hilarious, dumb, amazing, childish, and wonderful all at the same time. Do we really need a vehicle like this to exist?

I say yes, because the combustion engine needs to go out with a few more high notes before electrification is the standard. But what say you?

Hooniverse Asks: Would you buy a new Alfa Romeo product?

Jeff Glucker April 12, 2018 Hooniverse Asks

Would you spend your hard-earned cash on a new Alfa Romeo? It doesn’t need to be the spendy 505-horsepower Giulia Quadrifoglio shown above. There are more affordable options at play in the current Alfa Romeo product lineup offered here in the States.

Could you overlook any perceived quality issues and pull the trigger on an Alfa Romeo?

I ask because I’m currently running into the tail end of a great week with the car above. The video will be out soon. Over the course of my time with the car I’ve been waiting for it to break down. It’s done just that with nearly everyone that’s driven the thing. Yet it hasn’t done so yet with me. I realize it’s now bound to happen, but I’m holding out hope that it doesn’t. 

Still the niggling worry is there that the dash will explode into a symphony of warning lights and the entertaining machine will leave me as it rides away on the back of a trailer. That thought exists… but so does the thought of a sharp driving sports sedan with aggressive styling and a truly excellent dynamic experience.

Would you spend the dough on an Alfa?

An RC exhaust system by way of a plastic bottle and a driveshaft slapper

Jeff Glucker April 11, 2018 All Things Hoon

So you wish your RC drift machine sounded more like the real thing? We’ve found a fix that will get you a bit closer to what you seek. This Toyota AE86 remote control drift car makes glorious noise, and the way it does so is both very smart yet very simple.

The car is owned by Yoshitaka Hiraiwa. The driveshaft has been modified with an extra bit of material around the back half. Then wedged between the driftshaft and the bottom of the chassis, we have a folded up plastic bottle. That extra material on the driveshaft then smacks into the bottle every time it rotates. The smacking sounds intensifies as the revs increase, thus the entire effect comes off as if the car has an exhaust system.

The effect is excellent. Smart… yet simple, just like we said.

Thanks for the tip, John Cary!

[Source: 110% JDM Facebook Page]

Podcast: Episode 244 – Quite a Vas Deferens Here

The Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio has joined the party! I’m driving the Italian sports sedan this quick and so far *knock on wood* it hasn’t broken down. That’s amazing considering the car has done that for pretty much everyone else that’s driven it.

Beyond that we talk a bit about Chris’ upcoming potential car purchase, my Benz duo, and an upcoming loan of the Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk.

After that it’s question time, and as always, you folks have some good ones.

Hooniverse Asks: What’s the most unlikely yet capable machine out there?

Jeff Glucker April 10, 2018 Hooniverse Asks

I knew I wanted to get the Range Rover Velar dirty. I did not, however, expect it to be climbing hills, powering through massive rutted trails, and hanging wheels in the air like it just didn’t care. This is supposed to be the fancy pants Range Rover. The one that sacrifices function for quite a bit of form.

But it doesn’t sacrifice anything, because the Velar is ready to get its slim-fit suit exterior covered in mud.

This got me thinking… What is a vehicle that you’d guess wouldn’t be capable yet is actually quite good at a given task? This Velar is a comfortable yet capable off-road machine, but at first glance you’d suspect it would be forced into nothing more than mall crawler duty (in reality, it most likely will mind you).

What other vehicles out there hit you the same way?

Truck Central: 2018 Toyota 4Runner TRD Pro review

This thing costs how much?”

That’s a phrase I said to myself a few times, before it actually started to make some sense. You see, just a week prior, I had my hands on the new JL Jeep Wrangler. It was a Sport 2-door and yet it stickered for $38k as equipped. This 2018 Toyota 4Runner TRD Pro is $45k, and it has way more space, two more doors, and can go anywhere that the Jeep can go. The price point begins to become even more clear when you compare it to the JL Unlimited Rubicon, which is easily a $50k Jeep these days. So for a bit less than the top-spec Wrangler, you get a wildly capable 4Runner that has more room inside and can do nearly as much off the pavement.

Still, the 4Runner is dated. There’s a five-speed automatic connected to the 278-horsepower V6 and the center stack looks like it was designed by pre-school children.

But the damn thing looks pretty sharp in that blue paint with the black wheels, no?

Makellos Classics 1973 Porsche 2.7 RS Hot Rod

There’s a small Porsche shop down in Escondido, CA that’s putting together some excellent machines. Case in point is this 1973 Porsche 911 that’s been given a 2.7 RS treatment. In fact, Makellos has taken things a bit further and turned this old Porsche into a 2.7 RS Hot Rod.

In the tail, the 2.7-liter flat-6 engine breathes through a carburetor setup and feeds 220 horsepower through a short-ratio gearbox and short-shift kit. Up front, a set of Lockheed cross-drilled brakes haul in any speed effortlessly. Keeping the car planted is a set of Koni shocks along with upgraded sway bars and bushings.

The flares on the body are real steel RS-style flares and the bumper is an original S piece. Makellos went with perfect period-correct houndstooth buckets in the cabin and a set of lightweight RS door panels as well.

A car like this will set you back nearly $120,000. That’s a far cry from the damn-near million bucks it takes to snag an original 2.7 RS. And the best part is that this one probably drives better, without sacrificing its vintage appeal.

Well done, Makellos.