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Sunday, October 10, 2010

1973 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am SD 455 by Ertl 1:18 scale

ERTL The original Grand Am was introduced in the fall of 1972 as a 1973 model. It was
based on the GM A platform (A-body) along with other cars such as the Pontiac
LeMans, Pontiac GTO, Chevrolet Chevelle, Buick Century, and the Oldsmobile
Cutlass Supreme. The GM A-body platform had major design revisions in 1973 that
included the elimination of pillarless hardtops due to proposed federal rollover
standards, but with frameless windows similar to that of a hardtop. No
convertibles were produced due to those same federal rollover standards (that
never were enacted). In addition to federal emissions regulations that reduced
performance, new federal standards required a 5 mph (8.0 km/h) impact-resistant
front bumper and a 2.5 mph (4.0 km/h) impact-resistant rear bumper, which
increased to 5 mph (8.0 km/h) for 1974.
[edit] 1973
The Grand Am, coined by Pontiac with a name derived from two other cars in its
lineup ("Grand" signifying "Grand Prix luxury" and "Am" for "Trans Am
performance") was designed as America's answer to European luxury/sport sedans
and available as a 4-door Colonnade sedan or a 2-door Colonnade coupe. 43,136
Grand Ams were built during the first year of production (both two door and four
door models).
The 1973 Pontiac Grand Am style had a unique flexible urethane front fascia
center nose (known as the 'Endura' nose) that was squeezable and could return
back to its original shape following a minor collision along with the new
energy-absorbing bumpers, a total of 6 grille openings with vertical bars, round
front turn signals with a cross-hair design, horizontal rear tail lights, and
chrome rear bumper. Additionally, Grand Ams featured a Radial Tuned Suspension
(RTS) as standard equipment which included the radial-ply tires, Pliacell shock
absorbers and front and rear sway bars for improved ride and handling. This
basic suspension tuning also came standard with the Grand Prix SJ option in 1973
and optional on two other Pontiac models that year including the full-sized
Bonneville and the sporty Firebird. The Grand Am was one of only three GM cars
to come standard with radial tires and appropriate suspension tuning in 1973
with the others being the Oldsmobile Cutlass Salon and Chevrolet Monte Carlo S.
For a 4200 pound car, it handled quite well, being both predictable and
From the Net.

Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX Winner 2009 Rally Ireland by Vitesse

Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution driver Shaun Gallagher (Ireland)
            collected a convincing win in the Group N category of Rally Ireland,
            which ended in Sligo Sunday’s afternoon. His fellow Lancer drivers
            were also on fine form to lock-out the podium, taking another
            one-two-three finish for the all-conquering Lancer Evolution,
            despite the awful weather conditions.
            Running as the opening round of the 2009 World Rally Championship,
            in place of the legendary Monte Carlo Rally, the crews had been
            expecting harsh conditions on the notoriously wild west coast of
            Ireland. And the weather certainly delivered. The opening two days
            of the event were battered by rain storms so severe they forced the
            event organizers to cancel the final two stages of the opening day.
            Like the event it replaced for this year, Rally Ireland straddles
            two countries - Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland - with
            equal amounts of competitive action in both. The rally’s
            headquarters are in Sligo, in the Republic, but the ceremonial start
            is in Enniskillen in the North.
            No matter which side of the border the competition was, however, the
            rain remained torrential. Making the best of the atrocious
            conditions was Alan Ring (Ireland). The Lancer driver pushed his car
            as hard as he dared along the treacherous Irish lanes to ease his
            way 30 seconds clear at the front of the Group N field by the end of
            the opening day. Gallagher kept him honest through the early part of
            day two and, when Ring slipped off the road in SS11, the first run
            through Tempo, Gallagher seized his opportunity to further close the
            gap. Two stages later and Gallagher was ahead. He remained there
            until the end of the event.
            Running under the World Rally Team Ireland banner, Gallagher
            admitted his victory was a proud moment.
            "Winning Group N here means a great deal," he said. "It’s been such
            a tough event, I can’t remember conditions like that for a long
            time. It was like being in a swimming pool some of the time! But the
            car was great, it ran really well despite all of the water. It was a
            tough fight as well, you know Alan [Ring] was quick on the first
            couple of days."
            The third and final day of Rally Ireland came as a complete contrast
            the Friday and Saturday, with sunshine and near-freezing
            temperatures arriving in time for a final blast up and down the
            beautiful scenery of the Atlantic coast.
            Another local driver, Gary Jennings (Ireland) was second in Group N,
            with Paul Elliot (Ireland), Rory Byrne (Ireland) and Derrick Jobb
            (United Kingdom) bringing their cars home third, fourth and sixth
            At the front of the field, defending world champion Sebastien Loeb
            (France) won the event for the second time in succession, leading
            home his fellow Citroen driver Dani Sordo (Spain). Mikko Hirvonen
            (Finland) was the first non-C4 WRC driver home as he guided his Ford
            to third place.
            The next event is Rally Norway (February 12-15), which is the
            opening round of the Production Car World Rally Championship.
From the Net.

The actual Mitsubishi Lancer evo IX.

1930 Cadillac V16 Imperial Sedan by IXO

The Cadillac V-16 was Cadillac's top-of-the-line car from its January 1930
launch until production ceased in 1940 as the war in Europe killed sales. All
were finished to custom order, and the car was built in very small numbers; only
4076 cars were constructed in the eleven years the model was offered. The
majority of these were built in the single year of 1930, before the Great
Depression really took hold. This was the first V16 powered car to reach
production status in the United States.
In 1926, Cadillac began the development of a new, "multi-cylinder" car. A
customer requirement was seen for a car powered by an engine simultaneously more
powerful and smoother than any hitherto available. Development proceeded in
great secrecy over the next few years; a number of prototype cars were built and
tested as the new engine was developed, while at the same time Cadillac chief
Lawrence Fisher and GM's stylist Harley Earl toured Europe in search of
inspiration from Europe's finest coachbuilders. Unlike many builders of luxury
cars, who sold bare chassis to be clothed by outside coachbuilding firms,
General Motors had purchased the coachbuilders Fleetwood and Fisher Body to keep
all the business in-house. Bare Cadillac chassis could be purchased if a buyer
insisted, but the intention was that few would do so.
It was not until after the stock market crash of 1929 that Cadillac announced to
the world the availability of the costliest Cadillac yet, the new V-16. The new
vehicle was first displayed at New York's automobile show on January 4, 1930.
From Wikipedia.