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Quick Pic: Overlanding in a Land Cruiser

Kamil Kaluski March 10, 2017 Quick Pics

FJ Summit is sort of like a car meet except that they don’t meet up in a mall parking lot and take pictures. Instead they drive their various Toyotas over mountain passes and take pictures. The results are much better than the typical Icy Hot Stuntaz. Check out the gallery on OutsideOnline.com

If you are interested in doing something like that, you can join our own Russ Ross Ballott at FJ Northeastern’s 10th annual Northeast Run at Rausch Creek Off-Road Park on April 28th to April 30th. It’s no Colorado but few things are. 

Review: 2017 Acura MDX Advance

I was loading up this MDX for a family ski weekend trip when I received a text message from a friend. The message consisted of just two pictures; a loaded Toyota Highlander and an identical Acura MDX into which I was just trying to squeeze more stuff than anyone should be brining for a weekend.

“I’m on the fence… what to do, what to do? Volvo tranny will die within a few days and I have analysis paralysis on what to buy” my high school friend asked.

“Get a Pilot. The MDX is too small. I’m literally loaded up to the roof for a ski weekend” was my quick response to which I attached the below picture.  

Yes, the Acura MDX is a smaller small three-row SUV than most but after a weekend and 500 miles I learned that the size is really its only downside. And it is not necessarily a downside, either.

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2017 RUF CTR – Yellowbird Tribute

While RUF is recognized as an independent vehicle manufacturer, its vehicles were always heavy based on Porsches, or they were heavily modified Porsches, depending on your perspective. Now RUF introduced the new CTR at the 2017 Geneva Auto Show. Despite the car’s look, RUF says that it is not a Porsche. Rather, it is an all new, all original, carbon monocoque-based vehicle. While it does significantly resemble the original Yellowbird, according to RUF only the flat-six engine and transmission are Porsche based.

Over at The Drive there is a Porsche worshiping writer named Bradley Brownsport, or something like that, who ruins perfectly good cars when not writing about them. He recently wrote an article on the new 2017 RUF CTR and how he was totally not impressed with it.

He is also totally wrong. Allow me to explain. 

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For Sale: Tupac’s Bimmer and Biggie’s Suburban

Sometime ago the BMW 750iL (E38) that Tupac Shakur was shot and killed in was offered for sale at one and a half million dollars. We are not certain, but we don’t think that it sold yet. Now news comes that the 1997 GMC Suburban that Biggie Smalls was shot and killed in is also for sale, and also for one and a half million dollars. 

If that seems more than an interesting coincidence, it’s because it is. The family that currently owns the Suburban saw the bimmer for sale and decided to try to make a quick buck by selling the vehicle. They didn’t even know the history of their vehicle, which they have been using daily, until 2005 when the police asked to see it for a wrongful death trial.

It should be noted that the bullet holes in the bodies of both vehicles have been repaired. There is a bullet hole through one of the seat belts in the Suburban. 

So, those with three million dollars burning holes in their pockets can now buy those two cars and have a good chunk of the east coast-west coast rivalry right in their garage. Those without that much money can spend about $5000 on two identical vehicles that don’t have repaired bullet holes and hidden blood stains. 

2017 Honda Civic Type R – A Retrospective

Kamil Kaluski March 7, 2017 The News!

Editor’s note: Today Honda revealed the highly-anticipated Civic Type-R in production form at the Geneva Motor Show. It’s the first of its kind to ever be confirmed for US sale. It’s kind of a big deal and there’s only one hoon qualified enough to talk about it in the context of the cars that came before it…

What made the original Civic Type R and Integra Type R, and similar Hondas of the era, (depending where in the world you live), so special and popular in the mid-1990s had a lot to do with the market at that time. There were no Subaru WRXs and STIs, no Ford STs and RSs, no BRZ or 86s, and no Evos. The hot-hatch market was limited. The biggest competitors to those cars were the VW GTI and Diamond Star trio of Eclipse/Talon/Laser.

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Heel-and-toe versus clutchless shifting

Kamil Kaluski February 16, 2017 All Things Hoon

Watch the pros from the Team O’Neil Rally School explain how you should be shifting while hooning. Don’t feel bad if you still get properly heel-and-toe, it isn’t easy, and as the video explains there are several ways of doing it. Practice makes perfect. 

Shifting without a clutch is not so much difficult as it may cause damage to the transmission if not done right. I have tired it many times with mixed results and I always kept my foot over the clutch pedal just in case. Wyatt Knox, the guy in the video who I have met while hooning the Challenger GT, makes it look easy, perhaps too easy. 

Impounded Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren Left to Die

Kamil Kaluski February 16, 2017 All Things Hoon

Somewhere outside of the Prague is a police impound yard. Like thousands of other yards like it around the world, cars come and go in and out of that yard. Some are wrecked, others are stolen, some are impounded from drunks and druggies. And then there is something like this Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren which has been in the impound yard for six years and is not going anywhere fast. 

The story is this. In 2009 famous Czech footballer, Tomas Repka, bought himself a toy car. That car happened to be this white Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren. It was perfect – fast but relatively understated, exotic but not obnoxious. He bought it used which means he probably got a great deal on it. Except he did not.

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Ariel Nomad Tactical Plays in the Snow

Some time ago we took a close look at the Ariel Nomad Tactical, the car and all its features. At the time I said that when my friend Baer Connard of Ace Performance gets one this summer I will be first one to drive it. The summer has come and gone and I never found the time to drive the Nomad. Fortunately Joshua Sweeney from Shoot For Details did find the time. Not on that, his pictures are better than any I could have ever taken and he even shot a video, a vlog as the kids call it these days. 

Hit the jump for some awesome Ariel Nomad pr0n!

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Quick Pic: Automotive Valentine

Kamil Kaluski February 14, 2017 Quick Pics

Today is a very special day, one when you should spend time with the one you truly love. I did exactly that by going over to my friend’s shop and spending some quality time with his ’98 Acura Integra Type R. While the picture above is not of his car, his looks exactly like it, down to the proper JDM front-end. Even the industrial setting looks very much like it. 

Spending some time with the car you love will allow you to focus on the bigger things in life, things that really matter, such as the use of synthetic versus conventional engine oil. Pause, reminisce, discuss your future together, plan on spending more tome together, perhaps travel more. Just you and your beloved car. 

Image source: Honda-Tech

Review: 2017 Nissan Titan XD PRO-4X with Cummins Power

Nissan’s new Titan comes in two sizes: half-ton and almost three-quarter ton, call it five-eighths ton. I reviewed the half-ton Titan last summer and while I liked it I did not think there was anything revolutionary about it – it was just another pickup.

The Titan XD changes that with its unique size and the availability of a V8 Cummins diesel engine. This combination really makes for an interesting package. We hauled our Lada 24 Hours of Lemons racer across the state of Massachusetts to its new home and to see how the Titan XD performs with light towing duties.

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