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Last Call- Swamp Thing Edition

Robert Emslie April 22, 2014 Last Call

Swamp Thing

I don’t know what it is about the Lada Niva that makes me like them so much. I mean, the Ruskie Trucklodyte is little more than just a poorer quality Suzuki Samurai without the stigma of that car’s ready parts availability. Maybe it’s the cheeky turn signal eyebrows that does it. This Niva is certainly doing it and this shot is available as a desktop wallpaper for all your computer background enjoyment. Find it embiggened here.

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 source: desktopwallpaperz

1965 Cadillac Coupe DeVille is a Whole Lot of…something

1965 cadillac coupe de ville for sale

It’s been a while since we checked in with our friend 1 Owner Car Guy (DANGER: Auto-play), seller of great used cars, cereal marshmallows in bulk, pocket beagle puppies and herbal supplements. Oddly enough, this Cadillac was in the first batch of his vehicles I found when I fell down his rabbit hole of craziness. Anyway, today we’re looking at his ran-when-parked ’65 Cadillac Coupe DeVille.
1965 cadillac coupe de ville for sale

The exterior’s a bit rough in the form of a few dents and a pried-open trunk and according to the seller the interior and most of the trim is gone, or at least “not on the car anymore”. That condition combined with a $1400 price might explain why it’s still for sale after over six months, but it’s not like he’s hurting for car storage space. To no one’s surprise, I’d love to get it under a grand, sell a few things off and make a preposterous LeMons car out of it. That, or use the 429 as a donor for an old-school hotrod of some kind.

The Carchive: The ’98 Maserati Quattroporte Evoluzione


Welcome to another opportunity to run a metal detector over the sands of time to seek whatever nuggets of automotive history have been buried by the tides of progress. It’s time for a visit to The Carchive.

It’s my Birthday, and to console myself for having racked up yet another year, today’s offering from the vault is one of my favourite brochures for one of my favourite cars. Pure self-indulgence.

It’s the ’99 Maserati Quattroporte Evoluzione.
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V.I.S.I.T – 1973 Chevrolet Chevelle Malibu Coupe

I’m in the Navy and between the various Naval facilities I’ve visited or been stationed I see a wide variety automotive tastes. For the most part cars are bad to downright horrendous, but occasionally there’s a diamond in the rough like today’s example: a 1973 Chevelle Malibu Coupe. The Laguna Model gained some notoriety as Ryan Gosling’s vehicle of choice in the 2011 crime drama Drive. 

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Car Shows- Some Things To Do This Weekend in L.A.

Robert Emslie April 22, 2014 Car Shows


Hey angelinos – or even near-by-erinos – what have you got on tap this weekend? Well, if your answer was nuttinmuch then here’s a couple of shows that you should think about attending. On Saturday the Z Store is holding their Z Bash, which they describe as ‘a one-day celebration of the Z-Car and the loyal fans of the West Coast Nationals.’ If you’re into Nissan’s venerated sports car and can make the trek to the City of Orange, then this is a can’t miss opportunity to see every generation, from S30 to Z34, and pick up some parts if that’s also a need. The Z Store is located at 1139 West Collins Avenue, Orange, CA 92867. More info may be had at their site, and a map to the locale can be found here.

If your interests are less Land of the Rising Sun and more aligned with the empire upon which the sun supposedly never sets then you’ll want to attend Sunday’s parking in the park event, The Queen’s English Cars Show and Auto Jumble at Van Nuys’ Woodley Park. Running from 9 am until 4 pm, the annual oiling of the grass as I like to call it is an excellent opportunity to take in both the common – MGB, TR3, XKE, etc – and the obscure. And all of it was built in Jolly Olde! If you’d like to bring your own old Brit to show, check out the cost and entry info here. Maps and directions to the park are available here.

I’m going to try and be at both shows, Saturday in my S30 and Sunday with the Jaguar Owner’s Club catting up the place in the morning. These are both typically great events, and the Queen’s English is one of the best opportunities in L.A. to see the best of Britain so I highly recommend that one if you’re in the area.

UPDATE: Here’s yet another great event coming up this Saturday. The San Gabriel Valley Region chapter of the Porsche Club of America will be holding a Concours d’ Elegance at the Art Center College of Design which is located at 1700 Lida Street in Pasadena. Car placement starts at 7:30 and judging at 9:30. The Art Center Cafeteria will be open for lunch and tours of the Gallery will be offered starting at 1:00. For more info, click here.

Image sources: The Z Store, ©2014 Hooniverse/Robert Emslie, All Rights Reserved

Rhys Millen Racing’s Mid-Engine V8 RM460 Hyundai Genesis Coupe



SEMA cars tend to be one-and-done kind of exhibitions of excess. Often, the cars will leave Vegas and head straight for the scrap yard, or to go on a press tour before being relegated to the dark and dusty corner of a shop somewhere. This one, though, seems to have survived to hoon another day. We spotted this one-of-one custom at last weekend’s Shift-S3ctor half-mile drag racing event in middle-of-nowhere Coalinga, Ca. RMR’s 2009 SEMA entrant was parked up with both hoods open, showing off the amazing engineering underneath. Take one part Genesis Coupe, add eight cylinders of 500 horsepower Genesis-Sedan-sourced 4.6 liter Tau, blend liberally with a pinch of Mendeola sequential gearbox, and a dash of Rhys Millen insanity, and this is what you get.

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Classic Captions – The 1968 International Harvester Pickup Edition


Welcome to the Hooniverse Classic Captions Post, and yet again, it’s that time of the week in which this feature appears, so let’s review the premise; I search for images that were used by the car companies in their print advertising or brochures, and it is your job to provide a humorous caption that is some how tied in with the image. This week we have an image of a couple going “Antiquing”…
Last time, we had an image of the Original Cute Ute, and the participation level was OK, but I know we can do better. The runner-up comment was from Alcology, and as usual, it centered around the Suzuki’s stature: “As predicted, the size jokes didn’t stop when Steve bought his Samurai.” This was kinda funny, but there was one that seemed to be the overwhelming favorite this time.

This time, it was once again Devin who set the tone with this comment: “Pictured: Dinner, Rolls.” This was pretty obvious, but it still is very funny, so congratulations Devin on winning last weeks round.

It’s now time to take a look at this weeks entry, and it is an image for the 1968 International Harvester Pickup Truck. This was the start of the softening of the Pickup Truck for the leisure market, and International didn’t want to be left behind. The ad copy even states that the new International is now available with power brakes, a new integral power steering unit, Air Conditioning, an Automatic Transmission, Bucket Seats, Soft Carpeting, and a stereo. It seemed that both GM and Ford were starting to make inroads into the suburban truck market with stylish yet practical trucks, so both Chrysler and International were playing catch-up. This was the last year for this body style for the International, with a whole new truck waiting in the wings. But is this really the way to sell a Pickup Truck to the masses in 1968? (You can click here to see the full size image)

You have the next five days to come up with a great caption. The editors will deliberate on the merits of each entry, and after contemplating our own caption (For example; Why is Aunt Martha going Antiquing with her girlfriend in a Pickup anyway…), we will pronounce a winner. So, get to work and create you’re own caption for this unusual image.

Photo Credit: Alden Jewell’s Flickr Photostream

Hooniverse Asks- How Slow is Too Slow?


The picture above shows part of the May 1975 Road & Track cover, and teases an article within the issue that’s a grand-mal test of nine small cars available in the U.S. that year. Why was R&T, noted for their affinity for string-back driving gloves and European sports cars, lowering themselves to such depths? Well, at the time the U.S. was facing a crude oil supply constrained by certain members of OPEC for our country’s support of Israel.

That ‘Gas Crisis’ as it was known made fuel economy a far more important attribute than acceleration, and while many of these cars get decent gas mileage, their zero to sixty times are jaw-droppingly slow when compared to even the most lethargic of modern rides. The quickest of the bunch, the VW Rabbit was timed by the magazine to make that dash in 12.7 seconds, which is snail-like by today’s standards. At the other end of the spectrum the Beetle, coming from the same company, took a glacial 18.1 seconds. Less than a second ahead of that at 17.3 and 17.7 were the Datsun B210 and Renault 12.

Now you’ll have to keep in mind that even sports cars were slower back then. The 49-state Triumph TR7 tested in the same issue could only manage 11.3 seconds to reach sixty, and a contemporary Ferrari 308 GT4 could barely break 8 seconds. The point of all this is that the cars of today are hugely more competent than those of the past, but are they too much more competent? If a modern Fit or Spark can hit sixty in around 11 seconds, is that too slow? Alternatively, if most cars are able to knock off freeway speed in under 8 seconds, is that too fast and would they be more efficient with a few fewer ponies (hearsay, I know) at the gain of a few more MPG and a cheaper price tag? Would they then become more dangerous to drive in modern traffic, or would traffic benefit from the more languid pace? What do you think, how slow is too slow?

Image source: May 1975 Road & Track Magazine

Last Call- Rat-A-Tat-Tat Edition

Robert Emslie April 21, 2014 Last Call


The hot rodder’s maxim is that loud pipes save lives. I don’t know how that jives with the machine gun-style straight pipes on this military themed hot rod pickup truck. Of course I guess, the life you save just might be your own.

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: ©2014 Hooniverse/Robert Emslie, All Rights Reserved

Free Shop Supply Samples For The Win!

Tanshanomi April 21, 2014 Wrenching Tips


As every crack dealer and supermarket aisle chef knows, giving away free samples is a great way to introduce your product to customers who wouldn’t otherwise know of or try your product. The tactic works, however, only if your product is really good (or tragically addictive, but that’s another discussion). Two additions to my garage that I discovered through the-first-hit-is-free tactics that I am now überloyal to are Fluid Film and Worx hand cleaner.

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