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Weekend Edition – Tampere Sightings: Toyota Celica 1.8 GSi

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In case you caught a glimpse of an electric blue Celica in the background of the previous Micra shots, you’re in for a treat. I did actually have time to take a couple photos of the Toyota, too.

And as it so often is with these ones in here, this Toyota Celica is the base model 1.8 GSi with 115hp. Total Suomi-spec, and this one has been in the country since new, originally sold by a capital region dealer.

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Truck Thursday: 1979 Datsun 1500 Truck (620)

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It’s a pretty handy coincidence, after running a Datsun-Nissan weekend edition and including a photo of the exact same kind of 620-series truck, I noticed this one parked at a service station close by.

It’s not exactly a common sight here, as most of these were probably run to the ground before the mid-1990s and replaced with a King Cab of some sort. This truck has slipped through the crusher’s fingers and dodged the tin worm the best it’s could.

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Exercises in Plasti-Dip: Volkswagen Golf MKIV

Antti Kautonen April 14, 2015 Finnish Line

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This mud-coloured, completely matte Mark-Four VW Golf has been appearing on this Helsinki street every now and then. I walked for a cheap pizza – one that sadly found its final demise in the hands of my brother after I foolishly planned to save half of it for the next day – and on the way back, holding said pizza I snapped these photos of the Volkswagen.

Funny thing is, a millennial Golf already blends with its surroundings here. The owner of this example just wanted to be absolutely sure. It’s like a counter-point to a MKIII Harlekin.

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Surprise Brougham: 1996 Cadillac Deville Concours

Antti Kautonen April 13, 2015 Finnish Line

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Suppose it’s Monday. Wait, it is Monday. Ugh. 

Anyway, when you get over the fact that the working week has started and brought a slush storm with it, and you go for groceries later in the day, an honestly weird car sighting is something that can really lift up your spirits. No, it wasn’t the Alfa or the Citroën that caught my eye, but this plush and smooth mid-’90s Cadillac.

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Helsinki Street Sightings: 1984 Mazda 323 DX

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On some grey, overcast days you never see anything that really turns your head. Well, as a car guy, you care a little about everything. Just a little.

And then there are sunny days that really bring out the red on some small, boxy econo-hatches such as this 1984 Mazda 323. Look at it! Over 30 years old and still doing daily driver duty. And parking by feeling, by the looks of things.

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Helsinki Street Sightings: 1993 Skoda Forman

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Following the Eastern European street furniture in an earlier post by our Kamil, here’s a newly Czech car doing daily service in Finland. Czechoslovakia was peacefully split into two countries on January 1st, 1993, and this car was first registered late in the year, so the odds are that the Skoda Forman here was built in the Czech Republic.

And the name, Forman, does puzzle me a little. Is it for man? Or is there a Milos Forman reference? Any way you see it, this elongated Favorit seems handy for any man hauling old Czech-language films by the VHS-load. Personally, I recommend Hoří, má panenko (The Firemen’s Ball).

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Helsinki Street Sightings – Rover 600-series

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How would you like your mid-1990s Honda Accord, sir? As an American-built car from Ohio? Or perhaps a Japanese one? Or as a re-dressed, widened version of the very JDM Honda Ascot Innova, which the European Accord essentially was?

Nope, for true class you would want it decorated with a Viking ship. No matter how beateresque the car would be in 2015, it would still carry the Rover 600 badging with pride. This one shot tonight on a Helsinki street shows the way.

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Black Pepper: Volkswagen Lupo GTI

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The Volkswagen Lupo was never sold here new, but some examples have been imported here privately in the latter years. You can take your Lupo pick from usual 1.4 petrol engines, or go for different TDI versions, the three-pot, 78mpg 3L TDI being the more interesting of those. But this GTI version is probably the most Hoon-worthy model of them all, with a 125-horsepower 1.6-litre petrol engine.

This 2002 car was seen in the next town over, and I snapped a couple shots as a memento.

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Streetwalker: 1988 Chevrolet Camaro IROC-Z

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I’ve shot a lot of cars for this site, and a large number of those have been American cars strewn around the Finnish small-town landscape. Again, wintertime snow humps are receding, and the stateside-born metal is revealed, either by people bringing out their priced V8 behemoths or the melting snow just showing you what it has hidden for months.

This 1988 Camaro IROC-Z belongs to the latter camp. A friend remarked he has seen the dreamy red T-Top beast buried in snow for the whole winter long, and now you can see it in its perfect ’80s glory. And it doesn’t even seem that much worse for wear.

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HCOTY 2014 Nominee: 2014 Dodge Challenger R/T Blacktop

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[Editor’s Note: Yes, we suck at this. Two new cars this year… we apologize and it won’t happen again. Antti at least has a good reason for this one.]

Having thought long and hard about the car I would be nominating as my personal Hooniversal Car of the Year candidate, I have no other option than to go way back to the last days of May and the first days of June, when I finally set foot on American soil and American tarmac and received the keys to a 2014 Dodge Challenger R/T Blacktop, reviewed here.

Granted, it’s not a Hellcat by a long stretch, and the at least 707-horsepower super-Challenger has deservedly become the beacon of insanely powerful Challengers since its unveiling, but for myself the old R/T stands for so much more.

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