Nope, your eyes aren’t playing tricks. And no, we haven’t been fooling around with Photoshop. That really is a Dodge Challenger SRT-8 parked on Waterloo Bridge in London, England, all testosterone and torque and Hemi orange attitude. We’re a long way from Motown, Toto… And we have a long way to go. Almost 3000 miles across Europe, in fact, on a journey that will see the big Dodge — one of just two Challengers outside the U.S. — tackle some of the Continent’s greatest roads, from flat-out autobahn to steep and writhing Alpine passes to famous racetracks where hard-muscled legends once diced with death. Why? Underneath its retro skin, the new Challenger SRT8 is a thoroughly modern musclecar, with the suspension, steering, and braking to match its V-8 performance. This is a musclecar you don’t need to make excuses for when the bench racing moves away from the dragstrip and onto the road course. And where better to prove the point than … [Read more...] about The Ultimate Dodge Challenger Road Trip
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When things evolve slowly it’s easy to overlook the distance that’s been covered. For example, you might not notice the changes in the mirror every morning, but your high school friends at your reunion will. In the same respect, sometimes to be able to appreciate just how amazingly advanced hot rodding has become in the past several years it requires taking a step back and looking with fresh eyes. Much like the tech industry at large, revelations, discoveries, and applications of technologies to create new and improved products and custom cars come so steadily nowadays that overall most of us remain largely unimpressed by the latest news. It’s just another hot rod with high-end parts, right? That ennui is unfortunate because the people working to advance the hot rodding industry do it out of passion, and that really shouldn’t be taken for granted. These guys just want to help us all build better cars. The result of that pursuit has created a shift in the hot … [Read more...] about 16 Hot Rodding Trends and Technologies – The Future Is Now!
With neck-snapping beasts like the 650-horse C7 Z06 roaming around, factory performance cars have never been faster. Cheers to the Corvette team for cranking out that pump-gas power number, because that thing is flat insane. The rest of us spend thousands to equal or exceed the supercharged LT4’s output. But normally, high-compression or boosted engine builds tuned for 91-octane street gas leave power on the table. If you want to add more timing or crank up the boost for more ponies, you’ll need more octane to keep that engine-killing detonation at bay. And adding octane can also benefit our lightly modded Vettes, too. Since the high-octane glory days of the 1960s, premium pump gas octane ratings have dropped, and then leveled off in the mid-1990s. They also vary widely around the United States. I travel between the East Coast and the Midwest a lot, and seeing an NYC-area Sunoco station with an Ultra 93 pump gets me all tingly. Does that make me weird? Yes, but let’s … [Read more...] about Everything You Need To Know About Octane
It’s hard to imagine that it was fifty years ago that group of enterprising professionals in the up-and-coming automotive aftermarket industry gathered to display their wares and promote their businesses. Though the Speed Equipment Manufacturing Association changed its name to Specialty Equipment Manufacturing Association soon after its formation, the focus remains the same: SEMA exists how to grow business. In fact the show itself has grown by measures never dreamed of by its creators: as of this year, the SEMA show represents the fifth largest trade show in the world. Part of this new plan was a means to debut new products. So strong is this component of the event that manufacturers time their releases to coincide with it. It’s grown over the years but probably not as much as it has in the past decade. Case in point, 2,500 new entries debuted at the 2016 SEMA Show. As one of the four photographers hired to photograph those entries, I’m in a very fortunate position: … [Read more...] about Top 50-Plus Coolest New Products for Hot Rods from #TENSEMA16
To mark the 70th anniversary of D-Day, we're publishing a feature from CAR magazine where we toured the Normandy beaches in a Jeep from 2014 and 1944. Read on for the full story. The sixth of June 1944 was the moment the Allies’ plan to liberate Nazi-occupied north-west Europe kicked into action. D-Day, they called it. You might read about the 36,000 bullets that each and every minute flew at troops on Omaha Beach, Normandy; the 480 mortar rounds that exploded around them as they waded – soaked to the bone, laden with kit, debilitated by seasickness – out of the water and ran in plain sight towards the German bunkers nestling in the sand dunes and cliff tops; about the 32 ‘amphibious’ Duplex tanks that were offloaded into the sea that day and the 30 that sank like heavy metal coffins, entombing some of the crewmen in the English Channel’s murky shallows. But it’s not until you visit the war cemeteries and you see those white … [Read more...] about Brothers in arms: Jeep Grand Cherokee meets ancestors on D-Day beaches
I got a call from my folks a year ago. It went something like this: “your mom wants a new Grand Cherokee for her birthday, what do you think?” I called up Chrysler and snagged a 2013 Grand Cherokee Overland Summit, the last major Mercedes/Chrysler vehicle to launch before Fiat took the reins. I came to the conclusion the American Range Rover was all kinds of crazy, had drivetrain deficiencies and she should wait until the 2014 refresh. That refresh has landed, so should mom buy one? Mom [not so] secretly wants a Range Rover, but living in the middle-of-nowhere Texas, the only dealers within 70 miles sell Detroit’s wares. Bang went the Range Rover Sport.The 2011 GC was a shock to the Jeep faithful. Not because it is the Mercedes ML’s half-brother, which itself is quasi related to the Mercedes E-Class, which is quasi related to the Chrysler 300. (My incest is complicated isn’t it?) What shocked Rubicon runners was the combination of independent suspension … [Read more...] about Review: 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee Summit (Video)