Long Drives Through The Desert

You cannot drive 165 miles through it, uninterrupted by towns, without a terrible understanding of how inimical to human life the desert is. The basic design hasn’t been changed; it’s still a pushrod cross-flow hemi with an aluminum head. n contrast, the Van Culturists wheel their badly-sprung, unstable, underbraked, high-center-of-gravity, overloaded hulks as though they were Carreras. Its effect, unfortunately, is to reduce action to the level of catalog-reading. (Wait until some guy with a real sense of humor paints his Nomad or Winnebago to look like a traveling log cabin.) We are a nomadic, gypsy people and are getting even more so as time goes by. The climate in your sealed capsule is constant. Its health chart lists a horsepower peak down a debilitating 13 hp since the 1973 SR-5, and in the current California version (subject of this test), the atrophy is even worse at 15 hp.

Engineers do not agree on how best to isolate a tire’s performance from that of the car, but the majority hold a cautious faith in a machine called a flatbed tire-tester. Centrifugal force transfers weight from the inside to the outside tires when a car corners, deflecting the suspension and rolling the body at the same time. At the beach, I turned south and ran along the coast highway. If we were to draw these research results together into the ideal tire for the enthusiast, it would likely be a steel-belted radial of low aspect ratio. Calspan has the latest science in this area—a vast $800,000 monster built with grants from the Motor Vehicle Manufacturers Association and the Tire Manufacturers Association. The putsch is over; the Fatherland is now secure.

Recurring rumor of the month: VW Daimler-Benz are considering a merger. The Highway Safety Research Institute also uses a flatbed tester, but this University of Michigan organization also has a sophisticated mobile tire-tester that might be considered an outdoor laboratory. One dark night in L.A. Exhaust gases can escape through a cylinder-head gasket into the cooling system. The basic construction is a two-piece unitized body. In the words of media dwarf Ron Ziegler, One Lap of America is hereby declared inoperative. The cockpit is well finished for an honest-to-God sports racer. Here’s why: The independent trucker’s income depends entirely on how many loaded miles he can travel in a week. I looked at him and shouted, Let’s get some breakfast and let it dry out.

Tubbs is especially intrigued by dynamos, tires, Huntington Beach auto glass and amused by a reference to a small insect shield as a debugger. It will be powered by a four-cylinder engine and probably priced well under the current 242/244 model line. Future social historians, I firmly believe, are going to study the various strata in our society and judge their significance to the time by standards other than the old-fashioned class divisions such as economic, educational, racial and ethnic groupings. It was American sports-car racing exemplified: huge enthusiasm untrammeled by finesse. There are a few flaws evident in Wilkinson’s April editorial.

The car was mounted on a floodlit pedestal in the garden, the guests milled about toasting it with champagne—an automotive centerpiece extraordinaire. But the crime Toyota has committed has to do with the cost of it all—and not just the list price, although that has taken a fat hike as well. We perceive that even so startling a skin as this new Triumph’s makes us not much different from our neighbors. But it did eliminate one very important element of the car/driver system: the feedback link that can modulate the brakes or compensate by steering to hold the car right at the fringes of traction for an extended period of time.

Toyota has always been the master of the plastic interior. The VW model, as yet unnamed, will be offered with a choice of two engines: a 1600cc four or a 100-hp, 2.0liter five-cylinder unit. After that, Hill switched to a 2.6 Ferrari and Jack McAfee and Carroll Shelby began appearing in 4.1 Ferraris.