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Last Call- I Knew We Should Have Made That Left Turn at Albuquerque Edition

Robert Emslie October 30, 2014 Last Call


Cucamonga, or as Mel Blanc used to pronounced it on the Jack Benny Show, kook-a-mung…ga, is one of the California cities saddled with a funny name. Others include Cudahy, Boring, and Los Angeles. Cucamonga derives its name from a Tongva word for something like ‘sandy place.’ Situated below the San Gabriel mountains, it is also a stop along the venerated Route 66, and that’s likely where this old filling station was located. Snow-capped peaks, Spanish casa style, and six pumps with no waiting, it just didn’t get any better, did it?

Last Call indicates the end of Hooniverse’s broadcast day. It’s meant to be an open forum for anyone and anything. Thread jacking is not only accepted, it’s encouraged. 

Image: Club Cobra

Technology and Stuff – Chevrolet Spokesman Botches World Series MVP Presentation

Scott Ith October 30, 2014 All Things Hoon


Who doesn’t love the internet?  Well, Miss Teen South Carolina, for one. Maybe that woman who fell out of the grape stomping vat – she might not love the internet. Today, Chevrolet’s spokesman Rikk Wilde probably isn’t too fond of the internet. Following last night’s World Series win by the San Francisco Giants, Mr. Wilde had the honor of presenting the MVP award and a new Chevrolet Colorado to MVP pitcher Madison Bumgarner.

The result was memorable.

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Jan Anderle and The Dálník: Blurring the line between Bike and Car.


Repulsive, isn’t it? A gargoyle among the sirens of steel and rubber that make up the historic motorcycle collection of the National Technical Museum, Prague. It may be redolent of the kind of creature that lurks at the bottom of the ocean’s deepest trenches, but it also happens to be one of the more interesting footnotes in European transportation development in the 20th century.

I covered the way-ahead-of-its-time ČAS Sc quite recently, and this, the Dálník 250 prototype is even more extreme in its concept. Find out more about it and what it led to after the jump.

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The Hooniverse Dream Car Garage: Project Two-Tone Toyota UZJ60

Bradley Brownell October 30, 2014 Project Cars


How far can you go with your lust for a car before it becomes an obsession? I don’t know why the sudden change, but I have for the last two years or so grown to adore these ‘J60 generation’ Toyota Land Cruisers of the 1980s, most specifically the pre-facelift version, and even more specifically, trucks with two-tone paint jobs. There is just something about that boxed shape that has attracted my attention, and the legendary reliability surely did nothing to tarnish it’s reputation. It could have something to do with my recent move to the land of deserts and mountains. Growing up in the midwest, I had no desire for anything that was capable off road, and certainly no need for one. Now that I’m out west, however, I constantly find myself drifting into daydreams of driving the various trails around the Reno/Tahoe area. What better way to go off road than to do it in style?

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Mid-Engined Rat Rod Pickup Gets an A for Concept, C+ for Execution

1935 mid engine rat rod pickup for saleWe try not to be in the business of too much mockery or negativity here at Hooniverse. It’s not that we’ve got no teeth, but that we do Car Stuff (writing, wrenching, racing, driving, etc) for fun. The world’s a serious place with enough serious business going on; we use Car Stuff as a refuge. When we run out of awesome stuff to talk about we can traffic in outrage and cynicism.

That said, there’s room for commentary and critique. The idea of a mid-engine-ed (sigh…) rat rod pickup is an attractive one. Plenty of room and frame rail to mount up a bitchin’ powertrain for the world to see…or maybe better hide it under a toolbox or something like these guys from this year’s Thunderhill LeMons. With so much room, one could drop in a cool I-8, a gnarly industrial/aircraft/marine powerplant or a unique FWD choice like a Cadillac 472/500. Alas, the (sadly, deceased) builder of this car elected for a more obvious choice: Chevy 350/350 combo on a big box-steel frame attached to a Jag IRS.

But maybe we can salvage it to something a dash more creative. First off, we need to fabricate a functional frunk. There’s ample room up front for luggage or kegs. The radiator’s currently in the grille, but were it relocated to the bed a much more aggressive chop could be taken out of the grille/hood area. That, or replace the grill with a solid “shield” of polished or die-rolled metal or something cool. Out back, we need to lower that IRS some (looks like it’s trying to avoid being kicked in the nuts), ditch those fuel tanks (for a single unit up front?) and fab some semblance of a bed. If you wanted to get really “theme-y” with it, you could add an engine stand/hoist and make it look like it’s hauling its own engine as cargo. Put the radiator in there askew to add to the effect. goofiness aside, this thing could probably be made into a decent performer. Also, can you think of any other vehicle with independent rear, but solid-axle front suspension?

Anyway, the current bid’s $4,000 with the auction ending Friday afternoon.

1935 Rat Rod Mid Engine Pickup for sale – eBay Motors

Hooniverse Asks- What Are The Gas Prices in Your Neck of the Woods?

Robert Emslie October 30, 2014 Hooniverse Asks


So I heard T Boone Pickens interviewed on NPR this week and he was lamenting the plummeting price per-barrel of oil, complaining that U.S. producers were drilling too much. You know what I say to that? Boo-freakin’-hoo T. Boone, go blame Tina Fey, because she was the on who was telling everybody to drill-baby-drill.

The truth is that – at least here in ‘Merica – we’re seeing a bit of a respite from ever climbing gas prices. I don’t know if it really is that U.S. producers are pumping an excess out of the ground like Pickens avers, or if the Oil Companies just forgot which way was up, but I appreciate the lesser impact on my meager funds every time I fill up these days. You know it won’t last forever though, so I guess we should all just enjoy it while we can – and maybe all go out and buy Hummers or Lamborghini Diablos or something.

I’m not just interested in my own fill-up financials however, that would be pretty damn selfish of me. No, I’m also eager to learn how you all are faring, and what the price at the pump is in your area. If you’re outside the U.S., have you seen prices decline in the past month or so? And if you’re here, where T. Boone Pickens is pissed he’s not getting more of your money, how much are you spending of late?

Image: US Message-board

Last Call- In Word and Deed Edition

Robert Emslie October 29, 2014 Last Call


In case popping the hood on the Slab-Side in the foreground wasn’t enough evidence, the car carrier in the back let the curious know who provided the means for the Cobra’s heroic performance. I can’t think of a more impressive admonition in the automotive world.

Last Call indicates the end of Hooniverse’s broadcast day. It’s meant to be an open forum for anyone and anything. Thread jacking is not only accepted, it’s encouraged.

Image: TheThrottle


Used Car Reviews – 2004 Daewoo Evanda CDX V200


Ever since the Daewoo Evanda came out almost fifteen years ago, I’ve been somewhat slightly intrigued by it. There’s something off-beat about the Evanda, as it often appears under a multitude of aliases depending of where it has been sold, and when, but never truly taking a name as its own.

To begin with, it’s most authentically a Daewoo V200, replacing the V100 that was sold under the Leganza name. The V200 was sold as the Daewoo Magnus on its home turf, and when they were shipped to Western European ports, the name Evanda was applied on the trunklids. On North American markets, it was either the American Suzuki Verona or the Canadian Chevrolet Epica, the latter echoing its 2006 replacement (sold as the Daewoo Tosca in South Korea), but as Daewoo was even further integrated under General Motors, the Chevrolet badges were applied on the cars even in Europe.

So, this is what you could have ended up getting in 2004: a Daewoo which says GM Daewoo under the bonnet and has a Daewoo steering wheel, but Chevrolet badges on the outside. It’s an anti-car really, a non-brand, and despite having been designed by Italdesign’s Giorgetto Giugiaro like its predecessor, it appears perfectly anonymous. And that might be the thing I like most about it, there’s no badge burden on it if you just snip off the golden bowties. And since I found a little used ten-year-old example for sale locally, I really wanted to finally try one. Especially since it’s brown.

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2015 Honda Fit – Why Jeff is Wrong

2015 honda fit ex-l front 34 (Custom)

Most auto journalists, and Jeff, just love the 2015 Honda Fit, as they should. After all, it is an economical, affordable, reliable, and highly utilitarian vehicle. Completely redesigned for this year, the Fit is extremely important as its buyers are likely to become the future buyers of pricier Honda cars. But after I spent some time with it, I wasn’t so in love with the Fit.

Allow me to explain.

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The 2015 Honda Fit is Biggie Smalls

YouTube Preview Image

A good compact car is capable of magic. It needs to pretend to be quite small on the outside, but reveal a large interior space once the doors are opened. The 2015 Honda Fit should be named David Copperfield then there’s some serious prestidigitation going on here. By the way, I spelled prestidigitation right the first time I typed this out… which is some sort of black magic.

Honda engineers have managed to create a interior world that’s deceptively vast. Fold down the rear seats and you basically have the cargo space of a crossover. You have the fuel economy of Honda Fit, however, and that’s a wonderful thing.

[Disclaimer: Honda tossed me the keys to the Fit for a week, and included a tank of gas. I am pretty sure I never needed to fill it up despite putting a good amount of mileage on the tires.]


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