Have you heard this one? A man comes up to a Cobra at a car show and asks the owner who’s standing by, “Is that a Mazda Miata?” The owner says, “No, just look at the engine and that will tell you it’s not a Miata.” The man says, “I bet those sidepipes are so loud you can’t hear anything.” The Cobra owner responds, “That’s never been a problem. The car’s so fast, all the noise is way behind me.” For Rick Findley of Easley, South Carolina, this conversation actually took place. KIT CAR first met Rick at the Unique Motorcars Homecoming celebration. He caught us admiring his Unique 427SC roadster, with its British Racing Green paint and tan leather interior. After a few minutes of conversing with Rick, we decided to photograph the Cobra for a feature. Rick’s road to Cobra ownership had a good many twists and turns. His dad owned a Ford dealership in Pickens, South Carolina, while Rick was growing up. In … [Read more...] about Unique Motorcars 427 Shelby Cobra Replica – Made More Unique
Unique miata accessories
In 2016 the car-making industry saw its seventh consecutive year of record sales in the U.S. with 17.55 million purchases in all. So far in 2017 the numbers seem to have finally plateaued, with analysts forecasting a final total closer to 17 million—still not too shabby. Various social, political, and economic factors are driving the slight decline, but don’t blame it on a lack of interesting, exciting, and appealing new vehicles designed to grab our attention. Indeed, the following is filled with more than 100 cars, crossovers, SUVs, and trucks that are either on sale now or will be within a few years. Even so, this lineup is not exhaustive in terms of everything coming down the pipe. It is composed of the top 100-plus machines that pique our interest as the automotive world continues to change on a seemingly daily basis. Although there might come a day when, as some predict, we will see a sad end to our celebration of No Boring Cars, the good news is—as evidenced on … [Read more...] about New and Future Cars for 2018 and Beyond
Although Mazda has only revealed pricing for the base Sport trim level, the Japanese automaker detailed two other enticing versions of the new 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata at the 2015 New York auto show. Customers looking for a little more performance should pick the Club Edition (pictured here), while the impatient may want to get on the pre-order list for the Launch Edition. The 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata Launch Edition is limited to just 1,000 cars, which potential customers can reserve online at longlivetheroadster.com from May 5; the lucky first 1,000 customers will then be able to place a $500 to secure their car. The cars come exclusively with Soul Red paint and Sport Tan leather upholstery, and are all Grand Touring models. Standard equipment includes 17-inch wheels, heated seats, automatic climate control, navigation, a Bose nine-speaker sound system, blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert, and lane-departure warning. Buyers also receive a Mazda-branded Bose Bluetooth … [Read more...] about 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata Club, Launch Editions Revealed
Mazda will show off a Club Edition version of the all-new Miata next week at the 2015 New York auto show. Although the automaker has not yet shared any specifics on the 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata Club, expect the car to have unique visual components and some mild performance upgrades. The 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata Club Edition will follow in the footsteps of the Club version of the outgoing, NC-generation sports car. Slotting between the entry-level Sport and the well-equipped Grand Touring trim levels, adding the Club treatment to a 2015 Miata gave the car a new front air dam, black headlight housings, blacked-out mirror caps, black headrest roll bars, a stripe decal on the side of the car, body-color dashboard trim pieces, gray 17-inch wheels, and a rear diffuser. Models with a six-speed manual transmission also benefitted from a limited-slip differential and sportier Bilstein shock absorbers. Those tweaks will almost certainly carry over to the 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata Club Edition. The … [Read more...] about 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata Club Edition to Debut in New York
Some 1.5 million people are employed in the endeavor of designing, engineering, building, and selling new vehicles. It’s a Herculean effort, one we celebrate annually with our New Cars issue. You’ll find 83 cars that have either just come out or will debut very soon. This year, we’re also shining a spotlight on a few of the lesser-known folks who help make the cars you see on these pages. Look for them throughout the section. And as always, we’ve included our unvarnished opinions to aid your car shopping, because the person that matters most to us in this whole process is you. Without you, there are no new cars and there is no annual issue. Click the links below to learn about some of the hottest new cars available for 2016. <img src="http://enthusiastnetwork.s3.amazonaws.com/uploads/sites/11/2015/08/New-Cars-Under-25k.jpg" alt="See all new cars under $15k” class=”wp-image-707655″ /> Chevrolet Spark — $14,500 (est)Smart Fortwo … [Read more...] about The 83 Hottest New Cars for 2016
Fiata Spiata has a nice ring to it, no? The engineers, designers and marketers who worked on the car don’t think so. While the 2017 Fiat 124 Spider unveiled at the 2015 Los Angeles Auto Show has unique sheetmetal, interior door panels, seats, and some distinctive dash design, its own spring and shock tuning, and even its own engine, its basic platform is the critically acclaimed ND-generation 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata. These pieces will be assembled in Mazda’s Hiroshima assembly plant, with an Italian-sourced Fiat MultiAir 1.4-liter turbo-four under the hood, rated 160 horsepower and 184 lb-ft of torque. It’s the first rear-wheel-drive application of the iron-block MultiAir, which will have a front-mounted intercooler and its own engine mounts. Sales are to commence in the summer of 2016, beginning with a high-zoot Prima Edizione Lusso launch model in Azzurro Italia (blue) with saddle seats and six-speed, um, automatic transmission only, and just in time for the original … [Read more...] about Miata, Italian-Style: 2017 Fiat 124 Spider Debuts in L.A.
The three year lease.It entrances and traps the most spellbound car aficionados into a monthly payment that keeps them at the altar of the car payment.Is that a bad thing? Well, depends on the way you want to look at it. What can’t be argued is that both sides get what they want, and after three years, that customer can choose to stay with the manufacturer or go somewhere else. To me at least, that seems like a fair bargain.But what if the automaker could offer a better deal? For both parties?Per mile cost of ownership models are still in their infancy. Yes, there are tacky penalties that are added to most lease agreements in the U.S. and elsewhere. Other countries have also developed unique pricing models, such as in Israel. Where car buyers (in the absolute loosest meaning of that phrase, since most cars are leased) get to own a car for a specific period of time, and then skip the last ‘ballon payment’ and give it back to the dealer who initially sold it.What … [Read more...] about Hammer Time: Financial Hypnosis On A Per Mile Basis
Pop-top Cinquecento Makes For A Sunny DispositionWhat price the sun? That's the question Fiat is asking potential buyers of its new 500C. All else remaining (mostly) equal, would $4,000 come between you and the chance to have bright, unfiltered Helios riding shotgun? Or, using forty Benjamins to mark your steps, would you gladly throw the money down and do a Tarantella from the $15,500 Fiat 500 to the $19,500 Fiat 500C?While logic doesn't own a car in this segment, we can say this: Having spent an afternoon whooping it up in the 500C through the winding lanes of upstate New York, wallet aside, when compared to the hardtop model, the 500C is all gain and just a pinprick of pain.Let's set the scene by returning to that statement about logic. Specifically, its absence. Trawling the comment sections of various web sites, it's common to find people deprecating the 500C's price. And to some extent, that surprises. The $19,500 Fiat 500C has two additional seats and a whole lot more cargo room … [Read more...] about 2012 Fiat 500C
Like the Bonneville Salt Flats, One Lap of America is a speed-freak playground for aftermarket engineering. Sure, there are always a few cars that could be perceived as factory-supported, although sometimes this perception requires some squinting. We exclude press-fleet cars, such as the C/D BMW M5, from this reckoning, but that still left several neo-works rides in the 2006 field: a Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8, co-driven by Erich Heuschele and Dave Zelkowski, both DaimlerChrysler engineers; a Ford Shelby GT500, shared by Bill Woebkenberg, a Ford SVT engineer, and Kip Ewing; a supercharged Honda Civic Si, co-driven by a pair of Honda engineers. And a brace of Honda Odysseys (that's right: minivans), driven by more Honda engineers. But the really fast traffic had a strong do-it-yourself flavor. Consider Ron Adee's Dodge Viper coupe. Adee's name will be familiar to One Lap watchers. He's been a tour regular since 1997 and has distinguished himself in recent years with entries that go … [Read more...] about 2006 Cannonball One Lap of America
So, yesterday afternoon TTAC author and moderator Corey Lewis decided to scorch our retinas by posting a photo of a very unique Mazda Miata on Slack. A very bad Miata, too.The image originated from quaint Saint-Jérôme, Quebec, a northern bedroom community of Montreal. In it (photo rights require us to paint you a grim picture), the red NA Miata sported a laundry list of aftermarket add-ons — accessories the owner no doubt felt made his or her Miata the gosh darn hottest Miata around. Like New York’s hottest club, this thing had it all. Fender skirts. Chrome luggage rack. Chrome wheel arch trim. Oh, and a completely nonfunctional continental kit, as all continental kits are these days.It was a crime against Miatas.Which leads to the question: what non-factory add-on isn’t a crime?Once upon a time, buyers could check a box and have their Detroit iron roll out of the factory with a tastefully concealed spare tire slung over the rear bumper. Rear fender … [Read more...] about QOTD: What Aftermarket Appearance Part Can You Get Away With?