Recent Posts

The Second Annual Malaise Invitational Is Set For June 24th. See You There!


(a second reminder)    The First Annual Malaise Invitational was a success, and there will be a second, this time in Philomath, about 45 minutes north of Eugene. The theme this year is “sleazy dealers”, as this promo video makes pretty clear.

In case you missed our coverage of the First, it’s here

Details of the show and registration is below:

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CC Outtake: 1995 & 2003 Chevrolet Cavaliers – Is This 8 Years Of Progress?

(first posted 6/7/2017)       One of Old GM’s worst habits was to drag out model cycles. This afflicted most severely their subcompact and compact offerings—witness the 13-year run of the first-generation Cavalier, and the 10-year run of the second generation. Post-bankruptcy, that habit seems to have been banished. That’s good. If GM wants to remain competitive in the compact segment, it can’t afford to be cavalier (ahem) with its compacts. While an ’03 Civic or Corolla shared little with their ’95 counterparts, these Cavaliers are almost identical. That’s bad.

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Automotive History: 1979 Ford Indianapolis Speedway Official Truck Package

(first posted 6/7/2017)       I recently posted about the Indy 500 Official trucks, reviewing some of the different packages that manufacturers offered in the 1970’s and 1980s.  One of those trucks stands out in my mind, the 1979 Ford Indianapolis Official trucks.   This was the only year in that 11 year span that a GM truck wasn’t used for Indy 500 duties.   Unlike the GM Indy trucks of the era, Ford actually produced a significant quantity of these trucks for the public.  There is little written about these trucks, so I decided to write a more comprehensive peiece about these trucks, something I hope CC readers will enjoy.

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Vintage Brochure: 1967 Ambassador – Fun In The Hay

The images in some of these old brochures are just delightfully perplexing: The nicely attired couple, the haystacks, the LP records, a phonograph? And the not-quite-Mustang-hip Ambassador Sports Sedan? What kind of party are these two planning on attending?

Lots of concepts got Ok’d on that brainstorm PR session. How many demographics are being chased in this one image?

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Curbside Outtakes: All In Day’s Work

The UK has just had that most remarkable thing – a bright, sunny, warm public holiday weekend, over the last weekend in May. Normally, we expect rain; this year was different. Such an event brings out the Curbivore in (almost) all of us. So, with the Alfa Romeo Spider Twin Spark now all ready for summer, camera phone charged up and no real fixed itinerary we set forth. A quick photo trail therefore of two days of typical English Bank holiday. Read the rest of this entry »


1953 Hudson Hornet • Hubba Hubba

Donno about you, but I consider it a good omen when I find an old car at a shop I’m about to patronise. Not just any old car(s), mind; one of the worst Read the rest of this entry »


COAL № 9: The BMW Era

Back in the aughts (the 2000s, for our younger readers) there was a joke going around: Q: What is the difference between a BMW and a porcupine? A: The porcupine has the pricks on the outside. BWM as a brand was seen as a car for the upwardly mobile, for the Gordon Geckos of the world: The ambitious, sometimes pushy folks on their way up the social ladder.  It was something of an aspirational brand for 30-somethings who wouldn’t be caught dead in a Cadillac or a Lincoln, the aspirational brands of their parents.

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Automotive History: Shockingly Low Volume Production Cars – The Dodge Edition

(first posted 6/6/2017)         For this latest installment of exploring low volume production cars, let’s take a look at Dodge, the sometimes mid-priced sometimes low-priced brand in the Chrysler Corporation.

Each of these installments is examining cars made from 1946 to 1995 and whose production is less than 1,000.  From what we’ve seen so far, there is a wide way in which makers reported sales volumes as some broke it down by engine (Chevrolet and Oldsmobile) while others break it down by body style (Ford).  If there are fewer than 1,000 examples based upon how it’s reported, that model is nominated for inclusion.  Over time, Dodge has reported both ways.

While this list isn’t necessarily all encompassing, it’s certainly an adventure.

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CC Global Outtake: IKA Torino in Buenos Aires

(first posted 6/6/2017)      The IKA/Renault Torino, produced first by Industrias Kaiser Argentina and then by Renault from 1966 to 1982, has become a minor legend in the North American auto enthusiast world and a genuine legend in its home country of Argentina for being what many hoped that Detroit would build: a compact and stylish grand touring car with all-around performance capable of taking on the best from Europe.  The body and engine of the humble 1964 Rambler American providing its foundation has only added to its mystique.  Paul’s January 2016 profile of this South American classic told its story quite thoroughly, but a spotting on the street in Buenos Aires compels another look.

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Cohort Pic(k) Of The Day: 1981 Honda Civic – Neat Hondamatic Survivor

This ’81 Civic 5-door was found in Amsterdam by Corey Behrens, and its condition is remarkable. Even more so when it turns out it’s a Hondamatic equipped one; Honda’s unique semi-automatic transmission.

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CC Capsule: 1996 Autozam “Carolls-Royce” – Urine For A Surprise

Nissan gave us the Pike cars, ushering the neo-retro craze. Mitsuoka took that to the next level, essentially becoming a carmaker dedicated to retro. All the big boys, from Subaru to Toyota and from Mitsubishi to Suzuki, started lathering some of their wares in plastichrome. Kit makers flourished, turning your mundane kei truck into a VW Transporter or a Citroën H van lookalike for a small fraction of the cost of the real thing. Surely, someone out there would end up making something unequivocally and purposefully ridiculous.

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MG Midget — Have Three; They’re Small!

I’d no idea what kind of an MG this was, except it was tiny. Standing next to it felt as though it came only up to my knees, and Read the rest of this entry »


In-Motion Classic: 1996 Chevrolet Impala SS – Chicago On Wheels

1996 Chevrolet Impala SS. Downtown, The Loop, Chicago, Illinois. Wednesday, May 17, 2023.

In a lengthening list of things I’ve never done until recently, I had gone to Chicago City Hall a few weeks ago to obtain some documents.  That stunning structure faces the Richard J. Daley Plaza in which stands the famous abstract Chicago Picasso steel sculpture first unveiled in 1967.  The main atrium inside of City Hall is just as beautiful as its exterior, with high, domed ceilings and exquisite, glimmering tilework.  Perhaps shockingly for any government office, I was in and out of there with my papers in minimal time, and the staff was helpful, efficient, and courteous if not overly smiley.  Having taken half a workday off to take care of a few things downtown before returning to my laptop back home, I spent a few minutes afterward to walk around and snap a few pictures, which was when this Impala SS materialized one block west of State Street.

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CC Capsule: 2016 Kia Cadenza – A Horse With No Name

(first posted 6/5/2017)       It is said that you can learn more from failure than you can success. Well did I learn a lot from this CC find. Come along and join me for a lesson.

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Curbside Classic: 1960 Lincoln Continental Mark V Convertible – A Long Way From Mount Rushmore


(first posted 6/5/2017)     Some cars just have a way of making a connection with a guy.  There are cars that have become iconic in film.  There are cars that loom large from youth.  There are cars that are just so strikingly unique that they cannot help but make an indelible impression.  What do you have when a car checks all three boxes?  We have this one right here.

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