Friday, January 13, 2006

CARNIVAL OF CARS: A Drive Around the Auto Blogs Block for Friday the 13th, 2006

The Detroit Auto Show has been hot and heavy, testing started at Daytona and a Dodge Charger R/T Hemi kept me grinning all week. How about you? Let's fire'er up and see what's down the Auto Blog block this week.

Need help figuring out what the federal tax code may mean for your purchase of a hybrid? Don't Mess With Taxes has a trunkful of information and analysis.

Peter DiLorenzo at Auto Extremist had this to say about the Detroit doings: "... there was a lackluster air about the show that emanated from the fact that many of the auto manufacturers appeared to be 'sleep walking' through the show or just going through the motions - and those companies distinguished themselves with rampant mediocrity and in one case, flat-out embarrassment." Go here to learn who ended up cowering in shame.

Also at the Auto Extremist cyber-digs, Methanol Boy sees the Ford Mustang, Dodge Challenger and Camaro revival trend and asks the obvious question about a new Trans Am Series: When? For what it's worth, I agree with MB on the "throw-back" rules for such a series.

Remember the flap a few weeks ago about Ford's corporate and financial support of homosexual groups and causes? AutoBlog reports this statement by the American Family Association's response to Ford's u-turn on the issue: "Ford’s support for these groups pushing homosexual marriage can only hurt dealers across the country. Why would Ford put the interests of seven homosexual groups ahead of the interests of all their dealers?" AFA is also casting a furrowed brow towards GM and DaimlerChrysler. This could get really ugly before it gets better.

CarPundit is rather taken by VW Vortex Forum's tour of a Phaeton factory.

Cars!Cars!Cars! want us to read this, or they will make us all drive Azteks. I'm reading! I'm reading! I'm reading!

Carscoop knows you're out there. You know who you are. The guy who thinks the Impreza WRX STi needs more horsepower. Go here.

Is the IRL saying we can all KISS Indy car racing's .... As for me, I just want to know who is Mindy? FastMachines has all the answers.

It's official now. The Buick Enclave podcast is up at FastLane Blog. Lutz is getting pretty good at these televised walk-arounds, you know? The Enclave is in that photo at the top of this post. Yeah, I mistook it for a Lexus at first glance, too.

Remember the days when qualifying for the pole at an F1 race required a zillion pounds of boost to get 1,000 horsepower out of that tiny little 1.5 liter turbo? Now you can get your Audi A8 or S8 with 1,000 watts of stereo power. It's not as fast as the F1 turbo, but almost as loud! Gear6 has the details.

Must-Read of the Week: Grant's Auto Rants on "the Other GM." That's the one that just might end up as the 21st Century's auto industry colossus.

Hot Wheels Blog spent a lot of time on the floor at the LA auto show but what impressed them most was the new Tahoe's interior: "Who would have ever thought that a Chevy dash would look like this?" Did you know HWB is cross-posted over at my buddy Dale Baker's Okie on the Lam sight?

Jalopnik wants to know which of the Detroit Auto Show's domestic concepts was the best. Vote here. My vote goes to the Camaro Concept.

Across the Pond, Jonathan Fry has an extended length look at the all-new Ford Transit. You can also listen to Jonathan opine here.

More Must-Read: Just-Auto's Dave Leggett on "cranial stimulation" and the auto industry's future.

Pssst. Hey, Meester. Want to see some photos of my 2007 BMW Three-Series coupe? Meet me here at LeftLane News.

Over at MotorAlley, David Wasserman overhead some union guys comparing the Camaro and Challenger concepts. It's all about the Hemi, doncha know?

So you think being an auto critic is all fun and games, huh? Well, head over to MPH Blog and scroll down to "The Lone Sentinel." Oh, the humanity of it!

Paul Tan assures me the Waja Compro is a car, not a new digital camera.

It's classics time over at Qt Auto News where everybody is all misty eyed over the 1955 Ford Crown Vic. "It's the classic American Car," they're blubbering. Get a hold of yourselves, people! Everybody knows the 55 Bel Air with the 265 and three-on-a-tree-with-overdrive is the classic American car. Heh.

What was your first car? What was your best car? Those inquiring minds at want to know. Me? My first was a tank masquerading as a 53 Chevy Bel Air. My best was a 76 Audi Fox, cream outside and beige inside. Loved that little Fox.

And while you're being RaceDriven, check this out, too. A 1954 Olds F-88 selling for $3.24 million? Just imagine, an Oldsmobile Corvette!

Need more info on GM's latest pricing strategy? Bob at Straightline explains everything here.

Tapscott Behind the Wheel's nominee for best Detroit Auto Show reporting goes to The Auto Prophet for this comprehensive and insightful look at ..... everything in Cobo, even some stuff nobody else saw.

The Car Blog gets seat time with a Ford GT. I'll have mine in Heritage Blue, thank you.

Robert Farago is beating around the bush about GM's future again. I wish the guy would just tell it to us straight at The Truth About Cars. How many days does he think GM will survive? Really.

Having had an emergency double bypass five years ago, Joe Sherlock's View Through the Windshield note about heading over the cardiologist for a check-up caught my eye. Hope everything went well today, Joe.

And finally as this week's drive comes to an end, Mike Davis at looks behind the numbers to find the real news in the 2005 sales figures.

Hope you enjoyed this spin. See you next week right here for another Carnival of Cars.