Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Gatebil - Mantorp Park 2011

Thirteen minutes of fearless Scandinavians in fast cars. Yep, that'll do nicely.

Bonneville Fourgonette

It's not all streamliners and hot rods that pound the salt flats at Bonneville. This Renault 4 Fourgonette has a 290bhp turbocharged R5 Gordini engine, geared to achieve 175mph+. And yes, that is the gearbox you can see poking out of the front.

It was built by Les Triplettes de Bonneville - click here to see.

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Lamborghini Countach Turbo

748bhp. 0-60mph in 3.7s. 207mph. In a Countach...

Lamborghini's archetypal wedge was always a vision of excess, but the Turbo model took the formula to extremes. The 4.8-litre V12 was boosted by a brace of turbos, adjustable via a switchable boost control knob that offered between 0.7-1.5 bar.
Only two Countach Turbos actually left Sant'Agata; the first, a prototype, is MIA, so the Swiss-registered example you see here is the only official model in existence. And there's a woman in red PVC mucking about with it. Interesting.
Click here and here for more.

Porsche's 7-speed 'box.

7-speed manual 'box, that is. Now, I don't know about you, but I reckon that might be too many ratios for a floor-shifter...

Saturday, 27 August 2011

Smokey Yunick's NASCAR Chevelle

It's unfortunate that arguably one of the best-looking race cars of all time never got a chance to race, yet thanks to Smokey Yunick's famously, er, creative interpretations of the rule-book, that's precisely what befell this NASCAR classic. In a time when General Motors had withdrawn all official support for motorsport concerns and most teams had switched to Ford or Mopar metal, Yunick stuck with GM, building this '66-nosed '67 Chevelle.
Weighing a comparatively light (well, by Detroit standards at least) 1770kg and powered by a 416ci V8 producing 450bhp, it walked the walk to back up the promises made by that gorgeous colour scheme. Smokey's attention to detail was typically fastidious with this car; a vortex-generating lip was added to the roof, the glass was all fitted flush to the body, the front bumper was extended to create an airdam and the rear bumper was feathered into the body, all to aid aerodynamics. But it was some of his under-skin modifications that really irked the NASCAR board; for example, his reckoning that the permission to use any manufacturer's frame beneath the body could include Yunick building his own frame that shifted everything further to the left, in order to balance the car better on Daytona's banking. They didn't like that kind of behaviour.
The car outlawed, it was sold in 1968 to a racer in Georgia; however, after two decades of neglect, Smokey rescued and restored it in '88. And now, this beautiful product of the 'Best Damn Garage in Town' is up for sale once more... and it could be yours. Just click here.
Seriously, sell your house and live in the Chevelle. You need this in your life.

Ken Block: Gymkhana 4

THE HOLLYWOOD MEGAMERCIAL! Hell, yeah. Everything you'd expect and more - smoky drifts, physics-defying angles and innovative camerawork. Stick it on fullscreen and enjoy.

Ian Callum vs Kaz Yamauchi

Gran Turismo 5's damage engine allows you to pulverise your dream garage without the niggly irritation of all those massive real-world repair bills. But have you noticed that some cars are, well, more susceptible to body blows than others? I built myself a spicy little Jaguar XKR last night, and look - it just doesn't bounce well at all.
Reckon Jag design supremo Ian Callum's done something to irritate GT puppetmaster Kaz Yamauchi...?

(Maybe it's just the way I was dicking about with the handbrake.)

Friday, 26 August 2011

The 1982 Ford Cortina

1982 - the year I was born. And my mum used to have a silver mkV Cortina Ghia just like this one. A 2.3 V6, it was - reg MOO 840V. Ah, memories...

C.A.R.C. RS4 Avant

Matt paint is everywhere; sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. And when it does, you still run the risk of being pigeonholed as a bandwagon-jumper. So, how to be different?
How about a splash of C.A.R.C? Standing for Chemical Agent Resistant Coating, it's the same paint used on US Marine Corps vehicles... and it's resistant to infra-red. Which could be, er, handy.

Click the images to enlarge, and click here for more.

Production car racing - 1975

Racing classics on an oval is a risky business. But in 1975, of course, the cars in this race weren't classics - they were everyday production cars. Minis, mkI Escorts, Imps, 105E Anglias... road-spec sporting derivatives being driven here as their makers intended: fast, hard and enthusiastic. Marvellous.

Thursday, 25 August 2011

A Pinch of Salt

SuckSqueezeBangBlow keeps featuring these Depth of Speed videos because, well, they're just so damn good. This latest one takes you into the personal, introverted yet communal world of the Bonneville Speed Week, where it isn't just big-money corporations trying to break Guinness records - it's everyday Joes in their garage-built classics just driving fast for the love of it.

Thursday, 11 August 2011

Depth of Speed - British Mania

The latest in the excellent Depth of Speed series, in which a film-maker and his wife travel across the States seeking out inspiring stories of man's love for the automobile. This episode looks at Roger Gisseman and his lifelong passion for classic British sports cars.

Reeves mk2 Golf

You may have heard about House of Reeves, the Croydon furniture store that's been trading in the same family since 1867, burning down in the London riots. SuckSqueezeBangBlow pays tribute to the Reeves family here by looking at the mk2 Golf owned by Maurice Reeves, prepared by Croydon Auto Repairs, which can often be seen embarrassing far more expensive machinery at Brands Hatch.
You can learn more here.

Here's some footage of a Caterham Superlight chasing the Reeves mk2 around Brands Hatch.

As if that wasn't excitement enough... click here to see the legendary Reeves mkI.

Betty the MGB

My cousin's husband, Mark, is a lucky boy. When they were househunting a while back, his principle stipulation was that he'd need to have space to build a nice big garage to play in, and that's exactly what he did.
He's a die-hard VW enthusiast and his daily driver is a '57 Beetle that he lovingly restored. He's been working on a '67 splittie for some time, which is almost nearing paint stage, but a few years ago he accidentally distracted himself by buying Helen, my cousin, an MGB. It was tired but seemed like an easy project; however, on stripping it down there turned out to be a little more work than he first thought, so the splittie's been on the back burner while he gets stuck into the MG.

As you can see, there's been a lot of cutting, welding, swearing, sanding and spraying, but the time's approaching when Betty will finally be back on the road...

...stay tuned to SuckSqueezeBangBlow for further updates. (And, of course, news on the camper!) You can see from these pictures of the Beetle that Mark doesn't do things by halves.

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Stanced New Six

BMW's New Six range was their Bavarian reaction to Mercedes-Benz's dominance in the executive market. Launched in 1968, the line included coupés and saloons powered by a choice of 2.5, 2.8, 3.0 and 3.3-litre straight-sixes. The coupés, designated 'E9', went racing in the ETCC and are consequently very desirable; the E3 saloons, however, are sort of forgotten - comparatively speaking, at least.
The example we see here is a Bavaria, a model launched exclusively for the US market in 1971, featuring the 2966cc engine from '72, when this one was built. They were an unusual mix of large executive luxury and a relatively spartan spec list (to keep costs low) and sold in very low numbers. So don't be surprised if you haven't seen one before.

And isn't it nice to learn about a new car because someone's modified one into something extremely cool? This New Six rides on airbags over Gotti 1001 rims and features some beautifully patinated paintwork.
Click the images to enlarge, and click here to see more.