Monday, November 24, 2014

Saturday, November 22, 2014

The World's Fastest Cars (2): Aston Martin Virage

Going alphabetically, the second car to be featured in my favorite book is this Virage. Call me uncultured, but I did not know that virage is "corner" in French. The model had to have a name that started with the letter V. Other possible names included Vulcan, Valiant, and Vanguard.

The author described Aston's three traits as brawny character, technological simplicity, and road-burning performance. These traits were definitely true in the 1980s, and although they are still probably true today, Astons just don't seem as unique anymore. The commoditization of exotic cars has really cheapened brands like Aston, Maserati, and Bentley, don't you think?

Back to this Virage, The first prototype, built in 1987, was disguised under a short-wheelbased Lagonda sedan. Unfortunately, I can't find a picture of this prototype online anywhere.

Toyota Supra on Motorweek

I clipped a magazine ad of this Supra and it was taped on the wall in my college dorm room. Incredible performance. Incredible car.

Old Merkur review on Motorweek

I still want one, even with the Brazilian Pinto engine. And only if it's got the biplane rear spoiler, please.

Adding machine, exposed

Via Reddit.

Friday, November 21, 2014

A janitor and a cook

This radio story left me a little weepy this morning. It's a local story. A small nursing home was shut down and the owner and staff just abandoned the elderly and ill patients. Well, all of the staff except the janitor and the cook. Here is their 2-1/2 minute story.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

The World's Fastest Cars (1): Acura NS-X

I am now going to go over all the cars featured in my favorite book. Looking back, the second ever post on this blog (in 2006) was about the NSX.

What I learned in the write-up in the book about the car:

  • NS-X stands for "New Sports car X". Honda was supposed to give it another name when it appeared in showrooms.
  • One of the goals of the Honda supercar was to create a cabin devoid of "fatigue inducing properties" such as a noisy cockpit or indifferent control layouts.
  • Journalists and enthusiasts were anticipating a V10 or V12. 
As we know, it came with a V6, and everyone was happy. This is a very different reaction to the V6 Jaguar XJ220.