Kart Graveyard – Death of an Industry

While wandering around a small town in Southern Arizona my wife and I came across this kart display which I dubbed “Kart Graveyard”

Some of these cars in the pictures above had complete brake systems and somewhat refined steering.

Finding this graveyard got me thinking about the manufacturers of these cool play things and I ran across this website and shared it here.

http://www.e-kmi.com/ArchivesPost2005/ft/THE SLOW DEATH OF AN INDUSTRY Opinion by Darrell Sitarz.htm

THE SLOW DEATH OF AN INDUSTRY Opinion by Darrell Sitarz

In the 1990s, the American fun kart industry was churning out nearly 200,000 units annually by nearly 3 dozen manufacturers. Today, there are only a handful of fun kart makers still remaining.

So, what has caused the downfall of what was one of the largest portions of the go-kart industry? Some cite the high cost of liability insurance, some say it’s the imported karts or the ATVs while others think it’s because of cost of mandated safety features which added to the overall cost. It may be one or two, or it may be all of the above; so let’s look at it item by item.

COSTS
In the mid-1990s, the US Consumer Products Safety Commission targeted the fun kart industry and asked it to look into setting manufacturing guidelines and to increase and standardize safety features. With those as goals, the American Fun Kart Association (AFKA) was formed by the manufacturers and suppliers and standards were subsequently set. The AFKA was commended by the CPSC on their ability to take on the problem and do what was necessary to help insure public safety. The solution to the safety problem however led to another, that of increasing the cost of manufacturing a kart, the cost of which was, of course, passed onto the consumer. At that time, a few manufacturers decided to cease production feeling they could not compete in the marketplace due to the increased manufacturing costs.

IMPORTED KARTS
With costs rising, some manufacturers went overseas with an eye to reduce costs by importing karts.

“The problem was that the overseas manufacturer would make three vehicles. One was for their customer in the states and two for them to bring over here and sell under a different brand name,” an industry source said. “This would give them a foot hold in the US with a proven design that had historically sold. They could sell it cheaper because it came with their own engine that looks very much like a proven US motor and they don’t pay product liability insurance.”

So in essence, the manufacturers that went overseas were now competing with themselves. The results: more manufacturers went down the tubes.

ATVs
And here’s a strange twist of fate. Back in the late 1980s three-wheel ATVs were banned because of safety concerns in the US. Suddenly wham!, the fun kart industry began it’s upsurge in sales again topping out at nearly 200,000 units annually. So now what’s happened? The resurgence of the “new” ATV, a four wheeled version with more features and major off-road capabilities has also had a hand in the downfall of the fun kart industry. In 2004 for example, 817,000 ATVs were sold which is 4 times the amount of go karts in the industry’s best year.

PRODUCT LIABILITY INSURANCE
The slow death in the industry was caused by several factors, the main one may have been the tremendous cost of product liability insurance. It got to the point that most of the kart makers could not afford it.

“The manufacturers were not supported by the insurance companies that would accept premiums and not fight the cases but would make settlements and in turn would raise the rates for all kart manufacturers,” a reliable industry source told e-KMI. “Lawyers would represent the karts owners because they knew there would be a settlement and they would get paid. Getting hurt today is like winning the lotto but even better because it is tax free! People don’t have to accept responsibility for their actions because there are lawyers that will represent you know matter how stupid your action was because “we will get you something”.”

One or a combination of all of the above have taken their toll with the fun kart industry. But whatever the case may be, the industry appears to be in serious difficulty and is looking for answers, if there are any?

The following is a partial list of US fun kart manufacturers which have gone out of business or have ceased fun kart production since 1990.

Action Fun Karts
Avenger
Bird
BKS
Brister’s Design and Manufacturing*
Brister’s Thunder Karts
Clark Karts
Chief Karts
FKL
Fun Karts LA
Hamilton Brothers
Hang 10
Hoffco
Karts International
K-C Manufacturing C., Inc.
Klipper (not producing fun karts but still making promotional go-karts)
Midwestern Industries (acquired by T & D and now producing promo karts)
Minati (Brave Industries)
Murray*
Moto Machine
Performance Industries
Polaris (never made karts but had Brister make karts to test the market)
Robron
Simplex
Scat Fun
Tiger Industries
Trampolking
USA Industries
Yerf-Dog*

* Ceased fun kart production in 2005

Current US Fun Kart Manufacturers:

Carter Brothers
KartCo
Ken-Bar
Manco

 

Thanks for reading.

Tim

antique kartsantique karts

 

Auto Factoids for the Week of May 21, 2017 – Goodyear, Sloan and Rose

Light week this week but here are your #AutoFactoids  for the week of May 21, 2017.

May 22, 1929 –  Goodyear Blimp took its maiden flight.   Still provides some of the best auto racing coverage!!!

Goodyear Blimp.

First Goodyear Factory

Mr. Goodyear

 

May 23, 1875  – Alfred P. Sloan Jr. was born in New Heaven Conn.   He headed up GM as President and guided it through some iconic car designs.  He was instrumental in establishing the idea of make styling changes annually and planting the idea of  (something we consumer dislike) planned obsolescence. He also established a pricing structure by sub-brand (Chevy, Pontiac, Oldsmobile, Buick, Caddy) —referred to as the ladder of success, so that they did not compete with each other, and buyers could be kept in the GM “family” as their buying power and preferences changed as they aged.   

 

Alfred P. Sloan – Time Magazine Dec 1926.

Alfred P. Sloan

 

May 26, 1906 – Mauri Rose born  in Columbus, Ohio.  This Racing Hall of Famer driver, placed second in the 1927 Indy 500. Actually won the Indy in 1941, but that was a tough victory, spanning two Maserati-powered Elgin Piston Pin Specials cars, after the first one had mechanical issues. He tossed a fit and the car owners pulled one of the other drivers from the race and give Rose that car.

 

The Pin

The Elgin Pin

 

What powered that thing? The Elgin’s  “Power Plant”

The Pin’s power plant.

 

Mauri in the Blue Spark car!

 

Thanks for reading.

Tim

Auto Factoid for Week of Nov. 30, 2014

Hope you all had a great Turkey Day!! Here is the line up of Auto Factoids for the first week in December!!!   Nov 30 1960  De Soto ceases production.  The last De Soto produced were really the Chrysler Windsor, most did not sale, even though dealerships continued to received cars after the …

Auto Factoids – Week of May 31, 2015 – Ford, Olds, Model T

Here are your Auto Factoids #AutoFactoids for the beginning of June, 2015. May 31, 1927 – Ford produced the last Model T.    There is some debate as to actual date and it’s said that the 15th million Model T rolled off the production line on May 26th, 1927 and the Henry …

AUTO FACTOIDS & C.N.N for Week of 7/26/2015 – Studebaker to Viper

Kaiser-Fraser formed July 26, 1945 – The Kaiser-Frazer Corporation was the result of a partnership between automobile executive Joseph W. Frazer and business man Henry  J. Kaiser. In 1947, the company acquired the automotive assets of Graham-Paige.  Interesting enough, Kaiser had no automotive business experience.   In 1953 the company became …

Auto Factoids and C.N.N for week of Sept 6th 2015 – TBird and Studebaker

Here is your #AutoFactoids and Car News Now for this first full week of September 2015. Auto Factoids Sept. 7, 1954 – Production of Ford Thunderbird begins 1955 T-Bird 2002 Thunderbird             Sept. 8, 1903   Preston Tucker was born in Capac, MI. While dubbed “Tucker Torpedo” during production no ‘Torpedoes’ were produced. Beautiful …

Auto Factoids and C.N.N for week of Sept 6th 2015 – TBird and Studebaker

Here is your #AutoFactoids and Car News Now for this first full week of September 2015. Auto Factoids Sept. 7, 1954 – Production of Ford Thunderbird begins 1955 T-Bird 2002 Thunderbird             Sept. 8, 1903   Preston Tucker was born in Capac, MI. While dubbed “Tucker Torpedo” during production no ‘Torpedoes’ were produced. Beautiful …

 

Auto Factoids for Week of April 30th, 2017 – AMC, GM, Packard, Le Mans

Auto Factoids (#AutoFactoids) for Week of April 30th 2017

 

May 1, 1954 – American Motors Corp Formed

Formed  from Nash-Kelvinator and Hudson merger.  It was still referred to as Nash-Ramber and then AMC Ramber though the 1950’s.  Styling didn’t change in the next few years and 1955-1956 Ramblers were badged as both Nashes and Hudsons, with no visible difference between the two. Rambler became a marque in its own right for the 1957 model year. The Nash and Hudson makes were continued as senior model only through 1957, after which all of AMC’s offerings were marketed as Ramblers.

1958 4 Door Rambler Ad

1958 Rambler Statesman – 2Dr.

 

May 2, 1918 – Chevrolet becomes part of GM.

GM was started Billy Durant by using the financing from his Durant-Dort Carriage Company to take over Buick Motor Company. He changed the name to General Motors (with Buick eventually becoming a separate brand later on).  He soon brought in Oldsmobile, Cadillac and Oakland company.  He started Chevrolet (in partnership with famous Swiss race car driver Louis Chevrolet) to help off set the financial issues as a separate company.  Durant eventually started purchasing more Chevy stock and eventually took control and folded Chevy into GM.

May 3, 1948 – Willys Jeepster Phaeton debuts. 

These were mostly powered by the Inline 4 Cylinder, L-head engine. (134.2 cid, bore 3.13, stroke 4.38, compression 6.48:1 for about 63hp). Power got to the wheels via a 3 speed transmission.  All the Willys had the same wheelbase length of 104″ with the total length of the Phaeton being 174.8″.   Production was not well-defined through out all the models offered but approximately, 10,326 Phaeton were build.

1948 Jeepster Phaeton

May 3, 1949 – Packard’s 50th Anniversary 2000 Gold Packards. 

These were  Dealer Driveway.  These weren’t “gold” cars but they were painted in a special paint code of Gold.  Each were powered with 327 c.i.d., 150 hp engine. The number of ’49 2000 Gold Packards produced was about 600 (some say 1500) . The event was held at was the Utica Proving Grounds.  Currently none are known to exists although you can see a few “gold painted” 49 Packards pop up from time to time.

Here is a 49 Packard – painted gold.  Is it one of the Drive-Aways?  Slight chance.

Packard’s Utica Proving Grounds.

 

May 4, 1923 First Le Mans 24 hour race.

The first Le Mans 24 Hour race was held just outside Le Mans, France.  Initial the race was limited to ‘production’ cars  and  two drivers, now they require 3 drivers per car and the of course these cars aren’t in your dealers show rooms.  The race was won by one of the French teams  – André Lagache and Léonard driving a Chenard et Walcker  with  3.0L I4 engine.

This is an awesome looking car!!!

May 6, 1928 Chrysler debuts the De Soto.  The De Soto wasn’t available to the public until 1929.  It sported an L-head six cylinder engine, displacing 174.9 CID and producing about 55hp.

First De Soto

Thanks for reading.

Tim

#AutoFactoids

Here are your Auto Factoids #AutoFactoids for the beginning of June, 2015. May 31, 1927 – Ford produced the last Model T. There is some debate as to actual …

Average Guy’s Car Restorations, Mods, and Racing

(via Auto Factoids for the Week of April 23, 2017 Mazda, Ford, Lamborghini). Tagged: autofactoids. Source: average-guys-car-restoration-mods-racing.com.

#AutoFactoids – Average Guy’s Car Restoration, Mods and Racing

AutoFactoids | Auto Factoids for the Week of April 23, 2017 April 25, 1970 – First Mazda in the US I remember seeing the first Mazda cars in the U.S. I was 12 or …

Auto Factoids for the Week of 2/22/2015 – Firebird, Thunderbird, AMX

Feb 25, 2015 Got a few huge debuts this week’s Auto Factoids (#AutoFactoids), so lets get started. Feb 23, 1954 – Ford shows off the Thunderbird for the first.

Auto Factoids for the Week of April 23, 2017 Mazda, Ford, Lamborghini

Auto Factoids for the Week of April 23, 2017

April 25, 1970 – First Mazda in the US

I remember seeing the first Mazda cars in the U.S. I was 12 or 13 and I recall thinking – Why?   We still had the big 60’s cars and really didn’t see a need for the small cars.  The first rounds fo the Japanese imports were well thought of, perhaps unfairly and reliability was an issue.  But the Mazda has come a long way.  I remember back in 1989-90 when the  Mazda Miata (MX-5).  It was a “girls” car (so I thought…don’t judgement) and dealerships were charging quite a bit over invoice and getting that price, at least out in California.  But have things changed.  See the times they put down in SCCA events and even at my local SCCA chapter where I run my Corvette, I don’t think less of this generation of Mazda.

The car had some ‘socialization’ issues and it took a few years to get a good network of dealerships in the U.S.  However, by the mid 1970’s Mazda’s were emission compliant and figured out how to get 90 hp out of just 70 cubic inches.

1970 Mazda Luce Coupe

 

April 28, 1916 – Ferruccio Lamborghini born in Renazzo di Cento, Italy.

Ferruccio Lamborghini

Renazzo isn’t far from Modena, Italy, which is ‘Mecca’ for Italian cars.  Ferruccio’s family were grape farmers and didn’t just jump in to designing cars, but started out in the tractor business Lamorghini Trattori.   Then he started an oil heater factory that turned into an air conditioning factory.  In fact he didn’t start Automobili Lamborghini until 1963.  It’s a shame those car never caught on!!

Lamborghini Tractor

2017 Lamborghini Centenario

1963 350 GTV

Note:  It takes me a couple of days to put these together – not working straight though, mind you – as I was getting ready to finish this up I ran across an article May 2017 edition of Hemmings Motor News (my personal favorite automotive magazine publisher) on the 1959 Lamborghini DAL 35 Super Tractor.   The company is now part of SDF and they also sell other band name tractors like SAME, Dutz-Fahr and a couple of others.  According the Hemmings article they use the Lamborghini Bull logo.

April 28, 1953 – Kaiser-Frazer buys Willys.

Kaiser-Frazer car production was a mixed bag in the 1950’s.  Some typical 50’s cars were produced and some exciting like the Henry J and the Kaiser Roadster of 1954 and the Kaiser Darrin. The Frazer name had faded away by then and Kaiser purchased Willys for $63,381,175 and formed the Kaiser Willys Corporation.  They exited the passenger car market to focus on utility vehicles, including the Areo-Willys.  Kaiser took their business overseas to Argentina,  Israel, Netherlands and continued make utility vehicles until 1962.  By 1963 the company was called the Kaiser Jeep Corporation and was sold to American Motors in 1970.

'50s Willys.JPG

Last of the passenger cars Areo-Willys

April 29, 1959 – Ford builds 50,000,000 car.

That car was a 1959 Ford Galaxie that came out of the Dearborn factory.  It was a white 4 door sedan with the 292, engine.  It was actually a Ford Fairlane 500 Galaxie and the first time Galaxie was used on a Ford car.  Fast forward – but not too far – and the Fairlanes, Fairlanes 500, and the Galaxies were to become monster muscle machines in the mid to late 60’s!!!

Ford Fairlane 500 Galaxie – 50 Millionth Ford

Thanks for reading.  Stay tuned for another episode for Average Guy’s Car talk.

Tim

 

Auto Factoid for Week of Nov. 30, 2014

Hope you all had a great Turkey Day!! Here is the line up of Auto Factoids for the first week in December!!!   Nov 30 1960  De Soto ceases production.  The last De Soto produced were really the Chrysler Windsor, most did not sale, even though dealerships continued to received cars after the …

Auto Factoids – Week of May 31, 2015 – Ford, Olds, Model T

Here are your Auto Factoids #AutoFactoids for the beginning of June, 2015. May 31, 1927 – Ford produced the last Model T.    There is some debate as to actual date and it’s said that the 15th million Model T rolled off the production line on May 26th, 1927 and the Henry …

AUTO FACTOIDS & C.N.N for Week of 7/26/2015 – Studebaker to Viper

Kaiser-Fraser formed July 26, 1945 – The Kaiser-Frazer Corporation was the result of a partnership between automobile executive Joseph W. Frazer and business man Henry  J. Kaiser. In 1947, the company acquired the automotive assets of Graham-Paige.  Interesting enough, Kaiser had no automotive business experience.   In 1953 the company became …

Auto Factoids and C.N.N for week of Sept 6th 2015 – TBird and Studebaker

Here is your #AutoFactoids and Car News Now for this first full week of September 2015. Auto Factoids Sept. 7, 1954 – Production of Ford Thunderbird begins 1955 T-Bird 2002 Thunderbird             Sept. 8, 1903   Preston Tucker was born in Capac, MI. While dubbed “Tucker Torpedo” during production no ‘Torpedoes’ were produced. Beautiful …

Auto Factoids for the Week of 2/1/2015 – Kaiser Week

Here are your Auto Factoids (#AutoFactoids) for the first week in Feb. 2015!!! I think we can call this Kaiser Week as 3 of our factoid are related to the Kaiser auto manufacturing. In fact the month starts right off with Kaiser factoid. Feb 1, 1947 – Graham-Paige sold out to Kaiser. …

Auto Factoids for the Week of 2/22/2015 – Firebird, Thunderbird, AMX

Got a few huge debuts this week’s Auto Factoids (#AutoFactoids), so lets get started.   Feb 23, 1954 – Ford shows off the Thunderbird for the first time. Although the Thunderbird wasn’t available until 1955 it was in design.  Originally it was going to be called the Vega!! 1955 T-Bird   Feb 23, 1967 – …

Auto Factoids for the week of April 16. 2017 – Mustang, Lincoln

Hey guess what’s back?   Auto Factoids. 

Here they are for the week of April 16. 2017

April 16th, 1908 – Oakland car company sold it’s first car.  Oakland was formed in 1907 by Edward M. Murphy.  He was originally a buggy maker and then sold a 4 cylinder car designed by Alanson P. Brush.  It was a 4 cylinder car.

I believe they actually began producing cars in 1907.

 

 

The mother of all debuts, the Ford Mustang was on April 17, 1964.  Little did any one know what a success that little car would be. There were 3 engine available for the 64 1/2 Mustang, the 170 inline 6 cylinder, the 260 V8 and the 289 V8.  There were 97, 705 hard tops produced and 28,883 convertibles.

1964 1/2 Vert

1964 1/2 Coupe

 

April 17, 1969 another Ford debut the Ford Maverick. Just 5 years the Mustangs release Ford tried again to capture the magic my debuting the Maverick.  The Maverick was offered only in two door platform on a Falcon chassis and sported only one engine, the 170 cid.  That engine was called the  Falcon 6 cylinder with produced about 100 hp. Over 127k were produced in the first year.

1969 Maverick Clay moc-ups. I think the top model would have been a great look.  Although it did look a bit like the Mustang

 

 

Lincoln becomes  a separate division of Ford in 1955 on April 18th.  It came in a Custom and Capri series.  It took the form of 2dr, 4dr and convertible.  Believe it, or not the 4415 lbs car was considered “Sport” model.

Two door Capri

 

18 April 1964 Sunbeam debuts the iconic Tiger.   The Sunbeam Tiger a collectible car.  It only came in a convertible with 260 V8.

Referred to Sunbeam Tiger MKII or Series I

 

On April 22nd back in 1954 Hudson and Nash merged to from American Motors Corporation (AMC).  This would mark one of the last independent auto makers and brought us such coolness as the Marlin, AMX, Javelin, Rebel and don’t forget the Pacer and Gremlin.    Here are two examples of the AMX from a local car show here in 

1971  AMC AMX

1969 AMC AMX

Thanks for reading.

Tim

#AutoFactoids

#ProjectSportsRoof

Auto Factoid for Week of Nov. 30, 2014

Hope you all had a great Turkey Day!! Here is the line up of Auto Factoids for the first week in December!!!   Nov 30 1960  De Soto ceases production.  The last De Soto produced were really the Chrysler Windsor, most did not sale, even though dealerships continued to received cars after the …
Auto Factoids – Week of May 31, 2015 – Ford, Olds, Model T

Here are your Auto Factoids #AutoFactoids for the beginning of June, 2015. May 31, 1927 – Ford produced the last Model T.    There is some debate as to actual date and it’s said that the 15th million Model T rolled off the production line on May 26th, 1927 and the Henry …
AUTO FACTOIDS & C.N.N for Week of 7/26/2015 – Studebaker to Viper

Kaiser-Fraser formed July 26, 1945 – The Kaiser-Frazer Corporation was the result of a partnership between automobile executive Joseph W. Frazer and business man Henry  J. Kaiser. In 1947, the company acquired the automotive assets of Graham-Paige.  Interesting enough, Kaiser had no automotive business experience.   In 1953 the company became …
Auto Factoids and C.N.N for week of Sept 6th 2015 – TBird and Studebaker

Here is your #AutoFactoids and Car News Now for this first full week of September 2015. Auto Factoids Sept. 7, 1954 – Production of Ford Thunderbird begins 1955 T-Bird 2002 Thunderbird             Sept. 8, 1903   Preston Tucker was born in Capac, MI. While dubbed “Tucker Torpedo” during production no ‘Torpedoes’ were produced. Beautiful …
Auto Factoids for the Week of 2/1/2015 – Kaiser Week

Here are your Auto Factoids (#AutoFactoids) for the first week in Feb. 2015!!! I think we can call this Kaiser Week as 3 of our factoid are related to the Kaiser auto manufacturing. In fact the month starts right off with Kaiser factoid. Feb 1, 1947 – Graham-Paige sold out to Kaiser. …

It’s Car Auction Season – Barrett Jackson Car Show – Westworld of Scottsdale‎

I love this time of year here in Arizona.  Not just because you can work on your classic/muscle car in the garage without feeling like a Christmas turkey in the oven.  I love this time of year because it’s Car Auction Season!   For the next 3-4 weeks classic cars (and others) are bountiful between Tucson, AZ and Phoenix, AZ.

With Barrett Jackson Car Auction kicking off this week and RM, Russo and Steel auctions following up, beautiful cars are brought out in to the cool winter sunlight and driven or set on display.  Now, I’m not just talking about at the auctions themselves.  But I’m talking about the little known phenomenon that occurs in and around the area.

We have a tradition were we will spend some time driving round Scottsdale and Fountain Hills and other little sections of the greater Phoenix area and looking for the displays of cool classic, muscle, antique cars.  The owners have push these beauties out of their warm protective garages, out into the cool winter air.  Everywhere you drive,  sitting next to the curbs or at the edge of the driveways are some of the most prized, collectible and unique cars south of Payson, AZ.

Some of these are for sale, owners hope to catch the eye of disappointed bidder on his way home or get noticed a buyer that doesn’t really want to ponying up baskets full of old presidents to just participate in the auctions, but still suffering from the ‘classic/muscle/antique car flu that is epidemic this time of year.  Others just what to show off their well-loved works of metal art and have a discussion about it with passer-byes.

It is a great time!   We’ll be head there to spend couple days attending the events at Barrett Jackson and we’ll take the time to drive around the area and  I’ll grab a few shots of the local car eye candy and post them up.  If you are headed up drop me a note, I’ve met a few readers at such events, that’s always cool.

BTW  – Don’t forget some of the best view is in the parking lot at the these events – snap some shots and post them up on my Facebook page www.facebook.com/AGCarRestoration .

See you here.

Tim
#BarrettJackson

Barrett Jackson Scottsdale 2017

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Auto Factoids for the Week of Jan. 15, 2016 – Ford, Caddy, Turbo Bus!

Here are your Auto Factoids (#AutoFactoids) for the week of January 15, 2016.

 

Jan 16
– A.J. Foyd’s birthday – born this day in 1935 in Houston, Texas

A legend’s Birthday

– Dodge Omni and Plymouth Horizon were debuted on this date in 1977.   Who would have thought that one of them would sport the Shelby name plate?

4 Cylinder Turbo – AWESOME!!

Jan 17
 – Cadillac shows off its first car at Madison Square Garden on this day back in 1903 – the Run-About.

1903 Cadillac

 – Corvette debut, at the NYC Motorama in 1953

From the 1953 Motorams – Corvette Display

 – Ford Motor Co. begins offering public shares in 1956 – everyone loved the T-Bird!!!

Stocks and T-Birds offered!!!

Jan 20
– Chevy builds the last car back in 1942 just before WWII. They were one of the holdouts after the first Presidential request to stop production to support the war effort.

1942 Grill – No more Brightwork for a while!!

Jan 21
– GM produced the 1st Gas-Turbine vehicle was exhibited in 1954 in NY.  It sported the GT-300 engine.

http://www.turbinecar.com/mags/trueauto55/trueauto55.htm

 

Thanks for reading.

Tim

www.agcarrestortion.com

Auto Factoid for Week of Nov. 30, 2014

Hope you all had a great Turkey Day!! Here is the line up of Auto Factoids for the first week in December!!!   Nov 30 1960  De Soto ceases production.  The last De Soto produced were really the Chrysler Windsor, most did not sale, even though dealerships continued to received cars after the …
Auto Factoids – Week of May 31, 2015 – Ford, Olds, Model T

Here are your Auto Factoids #AutoFactoids for the beginning of June, 2015. May 31, 1927 – Ford produced the last Model T.    There is some debate as to actual date and it’s said that the 15th million Model T rolled off the production line on May 26th, 1927 and the Henry …
AUTO FACTOIDS & C.N.N for Week of 7/26/2015 – Studebaker to Viper

Kaiser-Fraser formed July 26, 1945 – The Kaiser-Frazer Corporation was the result of a partnership between automobile executive Joseph W. Frazer and business man Henry  J. Kaiser. In 1947, the company acquired the automotive assets of Graham-Paige.  Interesting enough, Kaiser had no automotive business experience.   In 1953 the company became …
Auto Factoids and C.N.N for week of Sept 6th 2015 – TBird and Studebaker

Here is your #AutoFactoids and Car News Now for this first full week of September 2015. Auto Factoids Sept. 7, 1954 – Production of Ford Thunderbird begins 1955 T-Bird 2002 Thunderbird             Sept. 8, 1903   Preston Tucker was born in Capac, MI. While dubbed “Tucker Torpedo” during production no ‘Torpedoes’ were produced. Beautiful …
Auto Factoids for the Week of 1/25/2015

Wow it’s the end of January already.  Here are your Auto Factoids (#AutoFactoids) for the last week of January 2015. Jan 26th 1920 – Lincoln Motor Company formed. Lincoln Motor Company was actually started in 1917 and produced  Liberty engines with Ford parts for World War I.   After the war they began …
Auto Factoids for the Week of 2/22/2015 – Firebird, Thunderbird, AMX

Got a few huge debuts this week’s Auto Factoids (#AutoFactoids), so lets get started.   Feb 23, 1954 – Ford shows off the Thunderbird for the first time. Although the Thunderbird wasn’t available until 1955 it was in design.  Originally it was going to be called the Vega!! 1955 T-Bird   Feb 23, 1967 – …

 

73 Mustang – The 351C Has Landed – Merry Christmas!!!

Well there still are Christmas miracles.  The rebuilt, over-bored to .040 351 Cleveland is now sitting under the hood where it belongs. 

Won’t be long until #ProjectSportsRoof will be chewing up pavement!!!


Still have to hook up the C6 and add other components. Having it in place was my Christmas goal!!!

Thanks to a long time friend DG for coming all the way from the East coast and giving me a hand!!!!

Merry Christmas to all my readers and I hope the New Year treats you well!!!!

Merry Christmas

Yeah…I know it’s just a Mopar….but we’re on a budget!!!

 

Thanks for reading.

Tim

projectsportsroof

They Made How Many? 1959

I haven’t done one of these in a while, but I was reading an article from the ” Worlds Most Excellent” automotive publishing enterprise – Hemmings.  An article in the January 2017 issue of Classic Cars publication is a piece written by Jeff Koch (who is their – West Coast/Southwest guy) on GM’s Flattop designed cars of the 1959-1960 era.  These were massive cars with huge trunks and tons of  wrap around glass.

This a 1959 Pontiac Bonneville Flattop 4 door

This a 1959 Pontiac Bonneville Flattop 4 door- ain’t it huge?

According to the article these were just a two-year deal – ’59-’60.  So that got me to thinking how many were made?

Over all car production for 1959, which still saw the likes of DeSoto, Edsel (its last gasp of breath), Studebaker,  Imperial (as a separate brand…again) and even the Metropolitan, as producer of cars.    The leader for that year was Chevrolet in first place with just over 1.46 million cars produced followed by Ford in close range with 1.45 million cars produced.  The rest of the field looked like this:

Plymouth with 458, 261 (in third place which gives you an idea how the rest fared) followed by  Pontiac with 383k, then  Oldsmobile with 382K and  Rambler with 374k.   Buick managed 285K and  Dodge produced 156k, which was just slightly than Mercury with 15ok and Cadillac with 142K cars produced.  The field rounded out with Studebaker driving 126k out of the factory and a substantial for Chrysler with just 69, followed by Desoto with 45k, Edsel with 44k and Lincoln/Continental with just 26k.  At the bottom stood Metropolitan and Imperial 22k and 17k respectively.

So an estimated 2,655,686 cars were produced by GM in that year.  That’s a lot of flattops this include Cadillacs that didn’t escape the design.
1959-cadillac-sedan

chevrolet

Nor did the Corvair!!

So where are the now?  I just don’t see that many around and I’m sure it’s due to the 2 year only style and finding all that wrap around glass.

Have you seen one of these cool designed GM Flattops?  Drop me a note and pic and I’ll publish it up.

Thanks for reading.

Tim

I don't really need a Lambo....but.....

#TheyMadeHowMany

#projectsprotsroof

Car Production Numbers. They Made How Many? 1901

This is it. The beginning of it all.     What were they making in 1901? The top producer was the Locomobile car company with a total out put for the year 1,500 cars. Winton was second with 700 cars. Oldsmobile (ahh one we’ve heard of!!) was third with 425. White came in fourth with 193. Autocar was next …
Car Production Numbers. They Made How Many? 1911

1911 oh… that was a great year!  Well I don’t actually have any proof of that, but there sure were a lot of new car makes that year.  Here the list: Alpena; ArBenz; Atterbury; Carhartt, Case, Chevrolet; Colby, Crow-Elkhart, Dalton, Gaylord, Havers, Hupp-Yeats; King; Lenox; Mighty Michigan; Motorette; Nyberg: Penn; Rayfield; …
Car Production Numbers. They Made How Many? 1922

It is 1922 and the car industry is moving right along.  Small start-up car companies pop up here and there in the 1920’s. Here is how they stacked up for 1922. Top spot was Ford  producing 1,147,028 cars. Dodge was a very distant second with 152,653 car rolling off their assembly line. Chevrolet ran …
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The Roaring Twentys – a great time in US social and economic history.  1928 things still looked pretty good and no indication of the tough economic times that would lead to the terrible 30’s. 1928 saw 8 car companies fighting it out for market shares. Chevy lead the way with just over a million …

Auto Factoids for the Week of Aug. 28, 2016 – Goodyear, Porsche

Here are your Auto Factoid for this last week of August 2016.

 

Aug 29 1898  Goodyear Tire & Rubber incorporated – With a capital stock of $100,000 and 13 employees, they began November 21, 1898, with a product line of bicycle and carriage tires, horseshoe pads, and poker chips.

First Goodyear Factory

First Goodyear Factory

 

Aug 29 1876 Charles Kettering Born Dayton, Ohio 1876 – Kettering founded Dayton Engineering Laboratories Company (Delco) (which started in a barn) and later became head of research for GM (1920-1947)

Dayton Engineering Laboratories Company, or Delco.

Dayton Engineering Laboratories Company, or Delco.

 

Sept 2 1893  Frank Duryea car driven  – it wasn’t much just the typical ‘run-a-bout’ and I think kudos goes to Frank’s brother Charles as well 

1994 Duryea

1994 Duryea

Sept 3 1895  Duryea Motor Co.  incorporates –  Almost two years to the very day of the first drive, Duryea Motor Co. becomes a reality.  They produced some beautiful cars like:

This is the Model C Touring car. Production continued until 1927.

This is the Model C Touring car. Production continued until 1927.

Sept 3 1875 Ferdinand Porsche born  Mafferdorf, Bohemia – You may have heard of Freddy (as his Mom called him) Porsche, if not you know his cars:

 

Oh..BTW...it's a Hybrid!!

Oh..BTW…it’s a Hybrid!!

1976

1976

 

Thanks for reading.

Tim

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They Made How Many? 1916 Automotive Production

Feb 25, 2013 Interesting enough, Kaiser had no automotive business experience. In 1953 the company became… August 2, 2015. In “#AutoFactoids” …