12. Modern muscle vs. classic supercar

Quartermile:
Window shopping for cars is one of my favorite past times.
I have a diverse love of cars.
New (2012) cars often outperform, or at least equal, old (2002) “exotics” or supercars.
So for this article I’m only considering cars built basically 1998-2014

1995/6 Dodge Viper

1995/6 Dodge Viper

The Flying mile:
This article is dedicated to window shopping (or Ebay shopping). For the purposes of this exercise I’m going to assume your great uncle Alfred has died and left you $35k to buy a car. Lucky you! But sorry for your loss. 😦
My favorite place to look for a wide range of cars like this is Ebay because of it’s quick sort properties. I generally type the vehicle I want, then “Buy It now” then sort by “Lowest Price first” and that tells you the absolute bottom price you can pay for a car of that make. There are other ways to car shop, as I’ve talked about before, but this is definitely the quickest I’d say.
https://mywheellife.com/2014/05/30/6-my-wheel-life-how-to-buy-a-vehicle/

With $35k you could buy a LOT of different cars, but again for the sake of argument, lets say you are into american muscle cars. V8 (or V10 – Dodge Viper). What kinds of cars can you afford in the $35k price range? There are TONS of cars you can buy for that. Porsches, Toyota Supras, Skylines, Camaros, RX-7’s, Mercedes. So let’s say you are in the market for a newer American Muscle car. But do you want an “exotic” such as a classic Dodge Viper? or a more modern car like a Shelby or Boss Mustang? Let’s investigate the merits of each.

I’ve picked 3 cars below, an older (10+ years old) Dodge Viper, a 7 year old Shelby Mustang GT500 and a 2012 Boss Mustang. Seems like a pretty strange comparison of cars? Why not a New Dodge Challenger? Because I like the Mustangs, and the Viper, that’s why. Also, for the people who are extremely brand loyal I ask why? Any one engineer could end up working for any of the Big 3 (Ford, Chevrolet, Dodge) or any car manufacturer for that matter. They are all big companies and when it gets to these very fast cars everyone is on a pretty level playing field, despite what Brand Loyalists will argue. Perhaps in the future I’ll look at some more comparison. Anyway, onto the numbers.

The first car to consider is a 2nd generation Dodge Viper. I really love the style of this car, especially the coupe. There were approximately 10,000 Vipers made in this 6 year span. That low production,compared to 10,000 2007 Mustang GT500’s, puts the viper in the class of an exotic. Also that it was significantly more powerful than the “normal” muscle cars of the day, Camaros, Mustangs. It was in Lamborghini fast and powerful territory. What are the benefits of buying an exotic? For one exclusivity. How many will you see? From the production numbers, not many! What are the downsides of an exotic. Not as many people will be qualified to work on it and parts will be expensive. You see the Viper has taken quite a cost depreciation (for examples worth $35k vs it’s starting cost at the turn of the millennium. But there are also many selling for lots over the $35k mark. Despite being older the viper posts competitive performance numbers to the newer “common” car.

2002 Dodge Viper

2002 Dodge Viper


1996-2002 (2nd gen) Dodge Viper
Cost new: $70,000
450 Horsepower 8L Natural aspirated V10 engine
Quartermile 12.2-12.3 seconds
3420 Lbs (500lbs lighter than 2007 Mustang GT500)
Top Speed: 185 Mph
http://www.musclecargarage.com/dreamcar.html
http://www.cars.com/dodge/viper/1998/expert-reviews

2007 Shelby Mustang GT500

2007 Shelby Mustang GT500


The 2007 Mustang GT500 is the next car we will consider. Funny that it’s another snake (Viper vs Cobra).
Cobra vs. Viper

Cobra vs. Viper


It boasted 500 horsepower which puts it ahead of the older viper yet you see the quartermile time is slower. Part of this can have to do with track prep, vehicle prep, driver. You can see times vary by as much as .5 seconds on a vehicle based on those factors. You’ll see the same time slip discrepancies for a 2012 Boss below .6 seconds between different magazine tests. For reference once a vehicle goes 11.5 seconds in a quarter mile you need to install a roll cage. So for the average Joe the Viper is probably a little faster, based on the test numbers. Also the exclusivity of the Viper is a selling point. “Total production for 2007 GT500’s comes to 10,844 units with 8,150 of those being coupes and 2,694 being” – MotorAuthority. And that was only one year! same as 6 for the Viper.You will also not that the top speed of the GT500 is limited to 155 Mph this is pretty standard, unless a car is an exotic, like the Viper, but really when will you go that fast?
2007 Mustang GT500
Cost new: <$50k,000
500 HP 5.4L supercharged V8
Quartermile 12.7-12.9 seconds
3920 Lbs
Top Speed: Electronically limited to 155 Mph
http://www.motorauthority.com/news/1017481_official-2007-shelby-gt500-production-numbers

2012 Boss Mustang
The last car we will consider is a 2012 Boss Mustang. This “common” car is boasting 444 hp, almost as much as the 10+ year older Viper. The Boss went on a diet compared to it’s older brother the 2007 GT500. It also lost some horsepower, but you can see from the quartermile times that they are at least equal or some places measured the Boss as faster and equal to the 10 year older Viper which is a much higher class of vehicle. Again, this is based on a lot of factors such as track prep, driver, etc. This also goes to show what 10 years of technology will do for performance when this Mustang costs about 1/2 of what the Viper did 10 years earlier and is on the same performance level. For exclusivity there were approximately 4000 2012 Boss Mustang’s built in one year. You will see that the depreciation is not near what the Viper, being 10 years old, is, only a few thousand from the MSRP of $42k to our target of around $35k. Also you get the benefit of newer technology and with that reliability. I would say that a 2012 Boss will have more readily available and cheaper parts than a 2002 Dodge Viper.
2012 Boss Mustang
Cost New:$42,000
444 HP 5.0L Naturally aspirated V8
Quartermile 12.3-12.8 Seconds
3666 LBS
Top Speed: Electronically limited to 155 Mph

2012 Boss Mustang

2012 Boss Mustang


http://www.caranddriver.com/reviews/2012-ford-mustang-boss-302-test-review
http://www.motortrend.com/roadtests/coupes/1102_2012_ford_mustang_boss_302_test/specs_test_data.html

Based on the above synopsis, which vehicles would you buy? I am torn. All will be great vehicles down the road and will get many looks from passers-by. Do you want the raw power and exclusivity of a V10 Viper or the newer reliability and equal performance of the newer Boss or Shelby. Once you get to vehicles of this performance in competition, a lot of the performance falls on the driver as these are all more car than most people are ever exposed to. So which one would you buy? What other vehicles would you consider?

10. My Wheel Life – Hot Rod Power Tour 2014, Part 2 of 3

Quartermile
Continued coverage of HRPT 2014
The greatest road trip in America!
Check my Part 1 if you haven’t yet.
https://mywheellife.com/2014/06/15/8-my-wheel-life-hot-rod-power-tour-part-1/

Clean Chevelle (to show you all I'm not only about rat trucks!)

Clean Chevelle (to show you all I’m not only about rat trucks!)


The Full Mustang?

Tuesday June 10th 2014 Drive from Charleston, WV to Norwalk, OH
This day started by picking up the parts we had ordered the day before for the Mustang, lower a-arms and front struts. $600 and we were on the road with the rest of the tour.
We arrived at Summit Motorsports Park around 3 pm. This was one of the easiest venues to get into. I suppose because they had plenty of room and are set up to handle that many cars? We parked the Mustang by the GM rescue mechanics. As I mentioned before, if you are having serious problems and bring these guys parts and a broken car, they will fix it, no charge! This is my official “Thank You” to those guys!

GM mechanics saving our Ford! Great guys!

GM mechanics saving our Ford! Great guys!


They won’t swap your new cam in! But if your car has brakes fading away, clunky suspension (guilty) or other safety issues they will help in a heart beat. They also were helping some guys with rough running vehicles, etc once they got caught up on the safety stuff. I asked Robbie to watch the car get fixed while I went and got my Golden ticket for the Comp Cams drawing. I talked with quite a few folks while walking around in my Spartan outfit. Many people gave me thumbs up and took pictures. A few shook their heads, some asked if I lost a bet, all understandable.
HRPT golden ticket Spartan!

HRPT golden ticket Spartan!


One guy I talked to while walking around was David Brown. He had 2 vehicles on Power tour, a 1928 Ford and a 1964 Ford, both trucks.
David Brown, 1928 Ford

David Brown, 1928 Ford


David Brown 1964 Ford truck. Very cool shop truck style!

David Brown 1964 Ford truck. Very cool shop truck style!


Once our car got fixed and I received my Golden Ticket we walked around a little. We ran into the guys driving the Evil Atom. They have to at least be in the running for the toughest guys on power tour. This year was pretty nice weather, but the lack of any roof makes it even tougher to drive (through rain) than most rat rods, and this is something like these guys 6 HRPT.
http://evilatom.com/
Evil Atom (Screen shot stolen from the Evil Atom website)

Evil Atom (Screen shot stolen from the Evil Atom website)


That night we stayed at a small hotel and once again meet some cool folks there. Robert Brown (no relation to David) shared with us his 1973 Firebird. What a clean car!
Robert Brown's Firebird

Robert Brown’s Firebird


Don't drink the Kool-aid from the Firebird's radiator!

Don’t drink the Kool-aid from the Firebird’s radiator!


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Wednesday June 11th Norwalk, OH to Crown Point, IN
The next day we headed out and what a great drive that was! No clunking, our stuck brake pad had been replaced, the drive was quiet and we could actually enjoy it! Today’s drive included a stop at Lane Automotive. We choose to skip it, much to my angst now. I was told by fellow Power Tourer’s that it was a great stop! I guess the lesson here is “Never skip a lunch stop!”
We arrived at Lake County Fairgrounds in Crown Point, IN around 3 pm. This was a very cool stop! The fairgrounds was a very cool setting, it wasn’t rows of cars, they were parked in between trees, around a lake etc. It made for a nice walk. There were a ton of great cars this day (just like every other day).
I met Bobby from Sons of Anarchy! (Not actually, but sure looks similar!)
How serendipitous that I had my Sturgis Motorcycle Rally shirt on from last year.

Bobby! (almost)

Bobby! (almost)

Actually Bobby from SOA

Actually Bobby from SOA


After checking in we started walking around the pond. This was where we met a ton of cool Hot Rodders!

I had been seeing these “Laid-Back” stickers popping up on everyone’s cars. Shane was putting one on his 1966 Ford with the 7.3 diesel earlier in the week when I met him, and a ton of other vehicles had them on also. I finally took the chance to stop and say to these guys. I talked with Chris Barker at that booth. They had a couple cool woodie wagons there and Batavus scooter. I studied abroad in Holland and this particular model was made in Holland so I am a bit more partial to it than most people.

http://laidbackusa.com/

Laid Back scooter/motorcycle. I studied abroad in Holland and this particular model was made in Holland so I am a bit more partial to it than most people. The brand is Batavus.

Laid Back scooter/motorcycle. I studied abroad in Holland and this particular model was made in Holland so I am a bit more partial to it than most people. The brand is Batavus.


This car was a popular car at every stop. Didn’t get the guys name.
This was a very popular car at HRPT. It has a overhead cam Inline 6 cylinder Pontiac engine. Quite the unique power plant! The rest of the car was very unique also.

This was a very popular car at HRPT. It has a overhead cam Inline 6 cylinder Pontiac engine. Quite the unique power plant! The rest of the car was very unique also.

Here’s another vehicle I didn’t get much info on but I thought the rusty flames were pretty neat!
20140611_164741

cool rust flames!

cool rust flames!


The next vehicle I stopped at was the Ring Brothers party camper. These guys build incredible cars. Check out this custom Pantera they recently finished. On the HRPT they were just having fun, I didn’t see any vehicles, besides the party camper, which was pretty awesome!

https://ringbrothers.com/
http://www.autoblog.com/2013/11/06/ring-brothers-adrnln-pantera-sema-2013/

RingBrothers party camper. You see they let me brand their gas tank with a MyWheelLife.com decal. cool guys who build awesome vehicles! Check them out.

RingBrothers party camper. You see they let me brand their gas tank with a MyWheelLife.com decal. cool guys who build awesome vehicles! Check them out.

After them I walked past the dyno, which was at every stop on the power tour. It was a popular attraction every day.

Saleen Mustang on the traveling dyno

Saleen Mustang on the traveling dyno


Overlooking the dyno I talked with Ryan of Rusted Knuckles Garage. I was unable to find his website but I did find his youtube channel. Check out the pictures of his truck below. He was running Buick GN turbos from a 3.8 V6 but he had 2 of them on his SBC V8. He was nice enough to let me sit in his cool truck. It was awesome but a bit tight for me! The truck is named “Hands Full” because it’s a handful to control all that power when you hit the gas!



Crazy twin turbo small block Chevrolet rat truck. The turbos were from a Buick Grand National.

Crazy twin turbo small block Chevrolet rat truck. The turbos were from a Buick Grand National.


The Hands Full truck was a pretty tight fit. That's what happens when you channel a body over the frame.

The Hands Full truck was a pretty tight fit. That’s what happens when you channel a body over the frame.


Awesome front view of Hands Full!

Awesome front view of Hands Full!

After Ryan’s truck I ran into another rat. This one was built by Rich of the Hoosier Head Hunters. They were from pretty close by and had brought a few cars. Ryan’s was very cool. If you check out their FB page you can probably get in touch with Ryan. He said the truck was up for sale or trade if you are interested!
https://www.facebook.com/HoosierHeadhunters

Rich from Hoosier HeadHunters car club from Cedar Lake, IN.

Rich from Hoosier HeadHunters car club from Cedar Lake, IN.


There was one more awesome rat truck I took pictures of that day. Are you starting to feel a trend here? Is there something in the water in Indiana? If there is I hope I got some!

20140611_162802
20140611_162711
Later that night we stayed at Red Roof Inn and there were a TON of hot rodders there! Here’s a few pictures.

Cool HRPT parking lot!

Cool HRPT parking lot!


20140612_074005

One more vehicle that wasn’t a rat! Quite far from it! This just shows the variability of HPRT vehicles which is what makes it so great!

Cool Lotus on HRPT!

Cool Lotus on HRPT!


What were your favorite parts of Tuesday/Wednesday of Power Tour 2014 (Norwalk, OH and Crown Point, IN)?
What were your favorite cars?
Very nice 1969 or 1970 Mustang (to show you all I'm not only about rat trucks!)

Very nice 1969 or 1970 Mustang (to show you all I’m not only about rat trucks!)


Crazy Holden Ute from Australia? El Camino anyone?

Crazy Holden Ute from Australia? El Camino anyone?


What was the strangest car you saw on HRPT?
Did you meet as many cool people as I did?
Who was the most interesting person you met?
There are a lot more cool stories from HRPT, more cars, more people, more burnouts! So stay tuned! Subscribe, follow on FB, share with your friends, so you get to read the exciting final HRPT 2014 article (probably sometime in the next week or so).
As always, thanks for reading!
Here are all my pictures from HRPT 2014. They are on my FB page.
https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.285163794988893.1073741832.278105162361423&type=3
https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.285152084990064.1073741831.278105162361423&type=3

3. My Wheel Life – The Illusion of Speed

Quartermile: The short story
Cars, dirtbikes, motorcycles, trucks, they are made for having fun!
If you aren’t having fun you’re probably doing something wrong.
Off roading/mudding a truck, jeep, ATV can be fun too! (I have friends who do this, I haven’t, yet)
Sometimes the quartermile section can have something that is not mentioned in the full article. Sometimes the message strays from the title?
Who’s steering this ship? (Car?)
Strange

How car guys park....
Why do I spend time working on cars? The reason is two fold. First I enjoy the satisfaction of taking something apart that is not working and restoring it to working order. Second, and really the part I enjoy more, is the fun of showing and driving my car. I prefer to have my car together and utilizing it than having it sit in the garage. Cars are art but part of their art is their performance. What good is a 800hp (insert super car model here) if it sits in your garage? I’d rather have a 1999 Honda Civic with a loud cannon, a huge wing and a short shifter and a cold air intake that I drive everyday.

The above brings me to the thesis of this post,The Illusion of Speed. Have you ever driven a geo metro, with a fallen off exhaust down a dirt road in 2nd gear at 30 mph? You feel like you are going 100 mph! Have you ever drag raced a 2007 Mustang GT a quarter mile in 14.22 seconds at 100 mph? That felt more like going 55mph down the road. Launching is probably the most fun part of drag racing. A 1987 Monte Carlo SS going 15.12 at 89 mph felt even slower…. My point here, besides I need a faster car, is that speed is relative. You don’t have to go 150 miles an hour to have a good time.

Motorcycles are a great toy to have for fun. They generally have great power to weight ratios which makes them speedy. The lightness makes them nimble, which is also fun. Although I can tell you from experience that swerving around inside your own lane is apparenlty “suspicious” enough for Johnny Law to pull you over and give you a ticket for a “hard to see” license plate. Motorcycles are also cheap. A 1970’s or 80’s Japanese motorcycle can be bought for anywhere between $500 and $1000. I personally have a 1981 Honda CM400C that I have turned into a bobber (with a little help from my brother). Stripped down, solo seat, no rear fender (yet, it’s in process). This is my around town bike. It is loud, I beat on the thing and I’m not worried if it blows up because I have so little money in it. If the engine blows up a replacement is CHEAP! And if you don’t want to replace an engine you could always Frankenstein a 600cc new rocket engine into it. I think that’d be an awesome project also. Did I mention how cheap old motorcycles are?
1981 Honda CM400C Spring 2013
Another way to have fun is on a dirtbike. I have been dirtbiking since I my father bought my brother and I a Honda XR80 for Christmas around 2003. I upgraded to a (1993) CR125 around 2006, you don’t need the newest toys to have fun! That’s a 2 stroke for those unfamiliar with dirtbikes. This is the bike I still have today. The most fun I have had on a dirtbike (and perhaps one of the most fun things I’ve ever done) was the hare scramble I participated in last year.
Follow the link below and change to New Hartford, IA – September 15, 2013 race.
Apparently I finished 77/115. There are a ton of classes represented in there. I was sure I finished higher…

http://www.iera22.com/race_data/scoring/index.php

The appeal of the hare scramble is you get to ride for 1:30-2 hours. The time is great, compared to drag racing/autocross where you get to drive a total of between 11 seconds and 10 minutes in a whole day. You are riding changing terrain with a bunch of other riders. Also there is minimal damage done to your bike or your body (if you aren’t some of my friends, you know who you are 🙂 Overall if you want to have fun, I recommend a dirtbike.
hare scramble Sept. 15 2013 new hartford
Onto street cars. How do you have fun there? Like I mentioned earlier, I can find pleasure in simple things. A 1995 Honda Civic stock with 100 Hp, give it a tune, an exhaust, and air intake and cool rims and sticker it up and drive it like you stole it. The great thing is it’s probably pushing 140 hp as this point so you will likely not be able to speed even. But really, Honda Civics can be fun. Remember, no haters welcome here.
On the topic of air intakes. You might find it interesting how Ford worked to develop a “performance feel” for the Focus ST ““active sound symposer” in order to provide the car with a fitting aural soundtrack. The symposer is similar to a sound tube that’s been used in the past on cars like the Mustang in the sense that it pumps sound from engine into the interior, but the Focus ST system is more advanced. It’s attached directly to the intake manifold and pipes in a specific frequency range – 200 to 450 Hz – into the cabin” – Taken directly from Motor Trend, Read more: http://wot.motortrend.com/sounds-good-2013-ford-focus-st-to-feature-active-sound-tube-204803.html#ixzz32I3podvJ
How fun is that?!?!?!

Of course my personal vehicles are American muscle cars, a 2007 Mustang GT and a 1987 Monte Carlo SS Aerocoupe. Lots of torque and hp. Unlike the Honda you can get in lots of trouble speed wise with these cars. The most fun I’ve had with a street car,on the street, has been Hot Rod Power Tour. It’s a humongous, week long, moving car show. Read more about Power Tour here: http://www.familyevents.com/event/229
I will be attending this year, trip goes from Charlotte, North Carolina to Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin. I will definitely chronicle that in a later post.
Other great ways to have fun on a smaller scale are local car shows. Check out the events section of my site to find events local to the Cedar Valley.

"Replica" Monte I made for a contest

“Replica” Monte I made for a contest


One final way to have fun with your street car is to race it! On the track!
Drag racing and Autocross are 2 great ways that let you put the pedal to the floor without losing your license. You just might find that you aren’t as “bad” of a dude as you thought. There will be many great drivers and fast cars at both of these events. The great part of these events is learning from others who have been in your place. Everyone had a first trip to the race track. If you go alone you will be sure to find someone who will talk to you. Don’t worry if your car is slow or not a race car even! I have seen 1998 Buick Centuries at the drag strip and 1984 Mercedes station wagons at autocross events! It’s all for fun!
(Again, find links on the events page.)

What’s your favorite way to have fun with an engine and some wheels?

So I hope you are now overly anxious to get out and start participating!
Keep the wheel side down and enjoy the ride.

1. My Wheel Life – Intro

Hello world. My name is Axel Hoogland. My passions are speed, design and engineering. I am a gearhead, car guy, engineer, motorcycle rider, dirt bike rider/racer, amateur/aspiring car builder and hopeful entrepreneur. I don’t discriminate against any genre of cars. Classic muscle cars, super cars, trucks, vans, motorcycles, classic hot rods, rat rods, sleepers, odd ball builds, dirtbikes, monster trucks, rally cars, drift cars, if people are passionate about their vehicle I love ém all!

Growing up my father told me that I should shy away from being a mechanic as a full time job. He told me that cars were a good hobby but not a high paying career. There was some truth to that but obviously many people are able to make a career out of working on cars also. That being said, I am very grateful for the direction my father steered me in. I was able to attend a 4 year college and graduate with a mechanical engineering degree. This has allowed me to be exposed to the initial steps of what goes into designing engines and vehicles. I now have a greater appreciation of all the testing and design work that happens before any vehicle is released to market. I also have been fortunate to visit many manufacturers of various components. Heads, blocks, frames, tires, rims, shift knobs, dipstick tubes, they are all made by someone! I have learned that no one (company or individual) builds a car by themselves. Every company has thousands of suppliers for each part of the car.

I was grateful to be exposed to dirt track racing from my father at an early age. His love of racing consumed all his free time that wasn’t spent farming. Also growing up on the farm I was exposed to a lot of broken machinery. I have been fixing things from a young age. As I have grown older I have been able to work on projects that are more interesting, involved and fun oriented than broken farm machinery.

During college I was part of a (FSAE) Formula Society of automotive engineer’s team. This is a great team for young gearheads. The team designs and builds a Formula 1 style (scaled down with a 600cc or less motorcycle engine) race car and compete against many other young hard working college students from around the world.

Since graduating I have had difficulties, at times, finding gearhead activities. This summer I am hoping to take in as many gearhead activities as I can. I have already participated in my first SCCA autocross. That was a great time despite the torrential rain all day. There were about 40 cars there and the people were great fun to talk to. I also took my newest car drag racing this summer. I have been drag racing before but it is always fun, especially with a new car. I will try to share some stories from those adventures in future posts.

I have also found it difficult at times to get friends interested in car related activities. Often people these days are only interested in drinking, watching tv, playing video games or putting all of their pictures of them doing those activities on social media. I don’t want to sound like a troll here. Those are all fine activities and I enjoy them on occasion, but personally I get much more enjoyment from going out and working on a car, going to a car show or better yet driving!

Through My Wheel Life, I want to inspire those of you who have similar interests to get out of your house/apartment/local bar and start participating in the gearhead community.

Hope you enjoy the ride!