Curb Weight – 2/27/2013

This is my latest segment.  It will be a frequent blathering of car stuff – current and maybe some old stuff.  I hope you enjoy it.

Bench seats started as the first front seats, clearly a hold over from the old ‘buck-wagon’.  Over the years the  bench was a stable, but has somewhat faded  Well for American cars it comes to an end the last 2013 Impala, which is the last U.S. car and the 2014 Impala will have bucket seats.

'61 Chevy bench seat.

’61 Chevy bench seat.


2012 Impala w/bbench seet and 2014 without

I was really excited to see C-X75 Super Car for Jaguar back in 2010 at the Paris Car show.  The car was to sticker at about 1.1 million dollars. However, it has been killed after just 3 prototyped.

Great Looking from the front.

Great Looking from the front.


Space ship?  Maybe it's butt killed it?

Space ship? Maybe it’s butt killed it?

Thanks for reading.






Car Show in – Rothrist, Switzerland

Remember a few post ago that covered MOPAR’s in Sweden? (Short Link:  I wrote how interesting it was to see US sheet metal in other countries.

Well check out this car show in Rothrist, Switzerland.  This is from Andres Palomares who lives in Bern, Switzerland.  There are some great examples of US car history in this show.

Switzerland is beautiful and visited Interlaken several times while living in Europe.

Thanks for reading.


Parking Lot Spotlight – 1957 Chevy

Another classic spotted in my local supermarket (does anyone actually use the word ‘supermarket” any more?).

This 1957 Chevy has all the chrome you might want.  It appears to have fairly new paint.  I love the wrap around windows and the exhaust exiting the rear bumper. (If I could figure out how to make that happen with my Mustang I would!!)

Of course I couldn’t hang around in the parking lot waiting for the owner, but would have loved to see the engine compartment.

You can tell the ’57’s a mile away.

Love bumper chrome and the wrap around windshield. Oh…that’s my grocery cart in the background.

Paint looked flawless on this car. Not labeled as a Bel Air or Impala and clearly not a ‘plan jane’ One Fifty.

Love the exhaust exit location on these cars!!

Chevy‘s standard engine for these cars was the 6 cylinder. The V8’s were considered a separate series and not an option.  Chevy produced over 1.5 million cars in 1957, second only to Ford.

Have a really cool parking lot find?    Drop me a note and we get it posted up.

Thanks for reading.


1960 Chevrolet Impala

I love this Impala and I don’t care that it has 4 ways to get in!!!!!!

By Angelo Van Bogart

Chevrolet built 497,048 four-door sedans in 1960. No one knows how many of those sedans were Impalas, Bel Airs or Biscaynes, but you can bet the farm that many went to rural America.

Determining how many 1960 Chevy sedans went to farmers is likewise impossible, but John Broucker isn’t concerned about that figure. What he’d really like to know is how many of those 1960 Impala sedans were equipped with a 348-cid V-8 and a four-speed manual transmission like his central Ohio sleeper ordered new by a farmer?

“I called General Motors and all they could tell me was how many were four-door sedans,” he said.

Chevrolet was not particular about the details of its production in this era, but Broucker’s car is certainly rare. Maybe even as rare as hen’s teeth. Broucker himself had a hard time believing the car’s combination when he first heard about the four-speed Impala sedan in 1980.

“The farmer that bought it new, I worked with his sister’s son, his nephew, and he said, ‘My uncle has a 348 four-speed,’ and when I [saw it], I said, ‘That’s a four-door.’ My buddy said it can’t be, it just can’t be, so I called the guy and I bought it.”

Even after buying the car from the original owner, and running into a mechanic who watched the car get unloaded at Progressive Chevrolet in 1960, Broucker sometimes has to defend what some people assume is a clone.

“Honestly, if I was going to clone a car, I wouldn’t clone a four-door ’60 Chevy,” he said.

That still begs the question: Why does a four-door 1960 Chevrolet Impala four-door sedan with a 250-hp Turbo-Thrust 348 and a four-speed with Posi-Traction even exist?

“Back then, if your buddy drove up to you in a four-door four-speed, you’d say, ‘You’re crazy,’” Broucker admits. “But he said he didn’t like the Impala (hardtop), it had the big back window, and he wanted a ‘fooler.’”

For the full fooler (a.k.a. “sleeper”) effect, the original owner even ran little hubcaps and blackwall tires to help the finned Impala fly under the radar. Aside from its performance options, the Impala is otherwise a typical farm sedan and generally lacks creature comforts.

“It doesn’t even have the rear-view mirror on the outside,” Broucker said. “It does have an AM radio, a heater, and the only thing that doesn’t work is the clock in the dash.”

With only 56,000 miles on the odometer, the rest of the Impala works as new, and Broucker said it remains largely original.

“It still has the original clutch,” he said. “I put front brakes and maybe a fan belt on and that’s about it. It has the original paint, original interior and original chrome. Sometimes, people look at the bumpers and say they’re a little wavy, but that’s they way it was. It even has the original generator, and the right rear tailpipe has a couple holes, but it’s the original exhaust.

“Behind all of the six tail lights, they have those little plastic cups on them. These are still on there. Any time anyone changed a light they threw them away.”

The unrestored Impala shows so well, it’s even placed second at the Stan Hywet car show in Akron, Ohio, against restored cars. Broucker believes the car’s excellent level of preservation is partly due to how the original owner stored the car.

“This farmer also worked at the railroad, and [he and his brothers] brought cabooses home and they made garages out of them,” he said. “I bet the thing was 3 feet off the ground and the wood floor helped preserve the car.”

When Broucker first saw the Impala, it was wedged in one of those cabooses.

“It was a real tight fit,” he said. “There was a pot belly stove in the caboose and I don’t know if he used the stove or not. They say the wood doesn’t sweat, it absorbs the moisture.”

The storage served the Impala well through 20 years and 50,000 miles with the original owner. Today, Broucker remains thrilled with the Impala’s condition. However, he hasn’t always found the car thrilling, which is why he’s only added about 6,000 miles to the odometer in his 32 years of ownership.

“Back then, I bought and sold a lot of cars, and for some reason I just held on to this,” he said. “I did think it was neat at first — I just thought it couldn’t be real, but it was. Honestly, I think I kind of lost interest and wondered, ‘Why did I buy a four-door?’ Then I would take it out and drive it and think, ‘This drives pretty nice.’ I was really happy with that.”

Many vehicles have come and gone from Broucker’s collection, but the Impala has been a mainstay. In fact, Broucker has pared his collection down to a 1969 Dodge Dart he races in the 1/8 mile and this oddly optioned Impala. That raises the question, would he ever race his Impala?

“I have [thought about it], but I might be embarrassed by it,” he said. “It has a lot of torque, but the point I am at, I don’t want to tear up the clutch.”

Instead, Broucker is content to blend into the car show landscape, making his Impala blend into the sea of hobby cars. For those collectors who enjoy the unusual, stumbling onto this rarity is like finding treasure. Maybe as exciting as finding that needle in the haystack.


27th Annual Chevy Showdown – 1980 Chevy Malibu Classic

As I ran though the photos for the all chevy how here Tucson, Az thought I’d follow-up with a few more.

Sitting under the tree at the far end of the parking lot was this great looking 2 door Malibu.  It as tough looking little car with a 350.

This proves that a two door version of the normally . blah looking car can be cool looking.



Signs says it all…

Meek and mild looking…..but OH…..WAIT!!!!?!!??!   What do we have here???!!!!!!

Are those straight dual tailpipes?!!!!?????? Yeah..they are!!!

Thanks for reading,



Parking Lot Spot Light 74 Impala

Right on the verge of the gas crisis, the ’74 models were a mixed bag of old school horsepower and new school power choking fog reduction hardware.  This Impala was in fact still a V8 with the power of the a 1960’s 6 cylinder.

Now I love the Impala models and if you’ve read a recent post I wrote I think 4 doors are under valued and with the right tweaks can achieve the power desired to make them a muscle car.

This Chevy was sitting outside a local CVS store with a for sale sign.

4 door with stamped steel wheels and poverty hub caps


Still sporting chrome bumpers



I like the plain jane hood and front end.





Another First @ Barrett-Jackson Auction – 427 Corvette

C6 performance convertible and its 60th Anniversary Package will be unveiled at Barrett-Jackson, where the first public version will be auctioned off for charity.

Some features:

The 427-cubic-inch (7.0L) LS7 engine  is from the Corvette Z06. Rated at 505 horsepower and 470 lb.-ft. of torque.  The 427 Convertible is only available with a six-speed manual transmission.

The LS7 was co-developed with the Corvette Le Mans-winning GT1 engine with:

– lightweight titanium connecting rods and intake valves

–  racing-inspired high-flow cylinder heads

– a dry-sump oiling system


– the same driveline and rear axle system as the Corvette Z06

–  Magnetic Selective Ride Control

– 19-inch front and 20-inch rear lightweight machine-face Cup wheels

–  ZR1-style Michelin PS2 tires

–  PDE performance packages – come standard and include unique gray-painted pockets.

–  a rear-mounted battery

The 427 Convertible Body has:

–  Carbon fiber raised hood (introduced on the 2011 Z06 Carbon Edition)

–  Carbon fiber Z06-style fenders

 –  Carbon fiber floor panels

 –  The “CFZ” carbon fiber front splitter and rocker panels


427 Convertible’s curb weight to 3,355 pounds.

Other specs:

 – 505-horsepower LS7 engine, it gives the 427 Convertible a power-to-weight ratio of 6.64 – or one horsepower for every 6.64 pounds of vehicle mass

– one of the fastest convertibles in the world, delivering estimated 0-60 performance of 3.8 seconds, quarter-mile performance of 11.8 seconds, lateral acceleration of 1.04 g and a top speed of more than 190mph.



2013 Corvette-427-Convertible-Collector-Edition-1


Thanks for reading.



Bloomington Gold moves again | Hemmings Blog: Classic and collectible cars and parts

All Corvette Show

Bloomington Gold moves again | Hemmings Blog: Classic and collectible cars and parts.

The world’s most significant all-Corvette show is moving back to central Illinois. After nearly a decade of being held at the Pheasant Run Resort in St. Charles, Bloomington Gold will be moving about 115 miles south to the town of Champaign for 2013, near where it first began nearly four decades ago.

According to Bloomington Gold CEO, David Burroughs, “Although it will be hard to beat the beautiful fairways of Pheasant Run, input from Corvette-owning customers wanted more opportunity for socializing and driving events as part of the entire Corvette show experience. It needed to become more dynamic.”

David went on to say: “Our customers own Corvettes because they are fun to drive. So, we needed a venue that not only served our exhibitors and customers who buy/sell and certify Corvettes, but also a venue that makes it easy and fun to navigate to/from and around the community before, during, and after the show. Therefore, we needed a small-town atmosphere with big-town hotels, great facilities, and quick escape routes to miles of country roads. Champaign, Illinois, has the smaller-town atmosphere, and the University of Illinois Assembly Hall grounds have everything else.”

So mark your calendar for June 27-30, 2013. Not only will this be the first year for the new venue, but it will also be the show’s 40th anniversary. And if you’ve ever attended one of the Bloomington Gold shows, you’ll know that there’s something very special planned that every Corvette enthusiast will not want to miss. In the meantime, the 2012 edition of Bloomington Gold will remain in St. Charles and take place June 21-24. For more information, visit

COPO IS BACK!! The Camaro As it was Meant to Be!!

I just recently picked up a copy of GMs new Performance catalog and all I can say is WOW!!  But we’ll dive into that in a future post.

Gracing the cover was the latest and greatest COPO Camaro.  You remember those special order packages.  Well they have brought it back and factory racing just jumped up and shouted “LET DO IT!!!!”
[vodpod id=Video.15839761&w=425&h=350&fv=%26rel%3D0%26border%3D0%26]

COPO IS BACK!!, posted with vodpod

Car Sounds

People love to talk about car sounds. We even mimic them. They can bring back memories of a car you or a family member owned.  They can refresh visual memories of a race you attended or even participated in.  They also bring back memories of a not so nice incident.

I can recall each sound in separate wave lengths in my first car accident, I was actually on my way to take my drivers test.  I was driving my father’s brand new Ford Granada (he worked at a Ford dealership as body shop manager).  The car was totaled, the other driver ticketed.  A quick car swap and I went on to pass my test.

There are a few more sounds I remember.  I remember my high school buddy’s 1973 Mach I, normally as he dusted me in my ’66 Chevy Impala an awesome noise that Mustang made.  There was there the sound of the V8 under the hood of my Chevy – smooth but still throaty. (I don’t know if that’s even a work..but I’ll hustle over to Wikipedia and add it.)

But the other day was watching one of the Jason Borne movies and of course the there are the normal car chases.  He was driving a little mini cooper and within all the metal crunching and tire squealing, there was one sound, at pause in the chase when he shifted that Mini and the sound the transmission made, triggered  a memory.

In 1982 I was stationed in Germany and when I eventual got my European drivers license, the first car I could afford was a 1970 European Ford Escort.  It was a 3 speed  manual, shift on the flour and the sound of the transmission shifting in Jason’s Mini Cooper brought back that memory of my first European car.

My First European Car

Of course it didn’t have the pep that the Borne Cooper had, but it got me around.

Post up a note about a car sound that sparks a memory for you.  Best one wins a free gift.

Thanks for reading.