Every car buff knows that when you need to haul 15,000+ pounds, rip a stump out of the ground, or pull down an aging barn, you’re best off if you use a diesel-powered machine. Not due to its horsepower, but due to its torque. See, diesel engines notoriously have extremely high torque ratings, but their horsepower is typically very low in comparison.
So now you can understand our confusion and excitement when we hear about a diesel-powered dragster. That’s like hearing about a 1994 Geo Metro that can tow 10,000 pounds; it just doesn’t quite make sense. Well, now it does. What we have in the above video is a rail car with an International DT466 engine, which primarily saw use in school buses and farm equipment.
We are not too sure which DT466 this dragster has, as there are several variants – MaxForce DT466, DT466E, and DT466 – but we do know they produced a maximum of 300 horsepower, which is certainly not enough to get the car down a quarter mile in 7.6 seconds. According to the original poster of the video, the engine was built by famed diesel engine specialists Hypermax.
Needless to say it is fairly badass to hear a diesel engine spooling up three turbo chargers, then flying down a racetrack with black smoke billowing away. Yeah, a 7-second drag car is fun, but the added effect of the diesel sights and sounds just make it absolutely insane.
Crank up those speakers nice and loud, and enjoy the sounds of this beast.
Okay, I have worked in many repair shops in my day. During my tour as a service manager, I came across a fair share of “Mountain Man Mechanics,” which is the politically correct thing to call them. These guys love taking the strangest vehicles and creating monsters out of them.
There was one mechanic that took a 1980s Honda Civic hatchback and dropped a 1300 cc Hayabusa engine in it, thinking it would increase the Civic’s performance. He didn’t quite grasp the logic of torque-to-weight ratio and ended up with only a really cool sounding Civic .
Another monster that sticks out in my mind is when a mechanic tore apart his unwilling wife’s mid-1990s Mitsubishi Mirage and dropped its body on a self-shortened S-10 frame. He then dropped a 307 cubic-inch Oldsmobile engine in it and connected the Olds engine to the transmission and transfer case on the S-10 frame. It actually looked and sounded mean when he was done, but instead of re-welding the frame together, he used several bolts to secure it. Guess what happened...
What’s my point here? Well, a new monster has recently come to our attention, which is for sale on Craigslist. The owner has dubbed this machine a 2007 Willys Trike. This trike has a stretched Jeep CJ-2 body with a motorcycle wheel on the front. The body sits on a custom frame – hopefully it’s welded – and has the rear independent suspension from a T-bird.
Instead of having the old Jeep CJ-2 engine, this beast has a Chevy 4.3-liter Vortec engine, which is good for around 190 horsepower, if it is stock. Plus it has a four-speed transmission connecting the engine to the rear wheels.
The handle bars for the motorcycle wheel span all the way from the front of the vehicle through two slots under the windshield. We bet this thing is a scary animal to maneuver at high speeds. But anyways, this “Mountain Man” monster can be yours for “just” $11,000. We bet this thing sits on the market for a while.
We are no vacuum cleaner experts, but we can say from firsthand experience that Dyson vacuums suck, in a good way. As a company it’s obvious that they don’t suck, as the above video makes it look like the employees and management sure do know how to cut loose sometimes. Okay, we are done with the “suck” jokes.
The video shows what happens when a company has a few too many spare parts lying around, some extra time, and a team of engineers that simply love building random stuff. What you get is a fastest vacuum cleaner car competition.
The rules were simple; build an electric car using spare parts from a Dyson vacuum cleaner. Some of the cars looked a little boring, but others were amazingly innovative and downright fast. The engineers then launched their creations down a drag-racing track made from empty boxes and wooden pallets to see whose car was the fastest.
Though the video doesn’t show a winner, it was still entertaining. Far and away our favorite clip was the dude donning full racing garb going down the track on a go-cart-like contraption that he built. We’re pretty sure the racing equipment was more for effect than actual fear of injury. Another funny one is at the 0:32-second mark when the operator looks like he’s diffusing a bomb, when in reality he is pressing the launch button on an impressively quick creation.
It’s always nice to see a large company like Dyson pulling off a fun project like this. And it’s even more impressive to see the kinds of wheeled contraptions engineers can zip-tie together from a few spare vacuum parts. Enjoy watching what happens when engineers have too much free time on their hands.
As much as we try to resist talking about every single celebrity’s car, there are some cases where a celebrity car also happens to be 100% ridiculous. In those cases, well, we just can’t help ourselves. Enter in, Justin Bieber’s 2012 Fisker Karma .
We aren’t reporting on the fact that this teen pop idol is being environmentally friendly, nor that he was handed the keys to this beautiful black Fisker Karma free of charge. Nope, that’s not the story. The story is that this 18-year-old pop sensation turned this beautifully sculpted ECO-supercar into a rolling mirror, literally.
We are cool with a little chrome, but there is a point when it becomes excessive. Mr. Bieber, you hit that point of excess, then broke through the barrier and tossed a live grenade at the remainder of that barrier to make sure it can never be crossed again.
This young man chromed out the entire car, not just a few accents here and there, the e-n-t-i-r-e car. Top to bottom coated in shiny, sunlight-reflecting chrome. Now, if he lived somewhere that the sun wasn’t excruciatingly intense, that might be cool, but this dude lives in California. As you can see from the above video, the sunlight creates a nearly blinding reflection on the car’s surface, which we would assume is illegal.
Um, nope, according to California law, a fully chromed out car is perfectly legal, but those pretty little mood lights under the front bumper are not legal. I remember getting pulled over repeatedly in Pennsylvania for my Camaro’s exhaust being too loud, that monstrosity of a Karma is louder than my Camaro’s exhaust could have ever been.
Hit the jump to see this beautiful machine before Bieber ruined, err, customized it.
So what happens when an Aston Martin Zagato, a 2000s Thunderbird , and an Austin Healy all get tipsy on high octane fuel and have one wild night? You get the newest retro sports car by custom car builder Fornasari, the Gigi.
To say this thing is awkward looking is an understatement, but then again nearly all of Fornasari’s cars are awkward looking. The Gigi has the signature double hump roof of a Aston Martin Zagato, the taillights and rear fenders of a 2000s Ford Thunderbird, and the front clip from an Austin Healey 3000. Well, it doesn’t literally have these parts, but it sure looks like it. All awkwardness aside, this car is supposedly going to be a real screamer.
Fornasari claims this car will come fitted with a 6.2-liter V-8 engine that will produce more than 500 horsepower. This will propel this Frankenstein car to 60 mph in roughly 3.5 seconds, per Fornasari, and will have a top speed of 200 mph. If you feel you can bypass the goofy, err, "retro" looks, you can snag one of these things up for just shy of $290,000.
Besides the aforementioned details, there is not much more on these cars and no delivery dates are set. The only other tidbit of information we managed to dig up is that a convertible option is in the works. We’ve attached a few concept pictures in the gallery below, so you can see exactly what we are talking about.
Between proms, parties, guys’/girls’ nights out, and other things, we have been in a lot of limos in our day. We have also seen plenty of them in our time in all shapes, sizes, makes, and models. However, we have never ever seen a muscle car stretched into a luxury limo. This all changed when we came across LA Custom Coach Inc., who is famous for stretching unusual vehicles into limos. The oddest limo on their lot, which includes a stretched F-650 and a stretched Charger , is a roughly 28-foot-long Challenger SRT8 .
According to the video above, the entire stretching process took a total of four months from start to finish. It involved chopping this poor car in half, modifying its frame, then adding sheet metal and windows. On the inside, LA Custom Coach Inc. completely gutted the SRT8 and added in full black leather with slight touches of red, which are actually the signature SRT dual slashes.
My parents always told me that there are only two things that are certain in life: death and taxes. Well, at least you can handle the former in style. Yeah, sure, there are Mercedes and Cadillac hearses available, but nothing says “style” quite like cruising to your final resting place in a modified circa-$400,000 Rolls-Royce Phantom.
Well, this ultra-luxurious death-mobile is due to become a reality, as Biemme Special Cars did the unthinkable and strapped a hearse backside to this pricey machine. The Phantom B12, which Biemme dubbed it, will make its debut at the 2012 Tanexpo Funeral and Cemetery Trade Show, which is like the New York Auto Show for undertakers. No, not the Undertaker you once saw pseudo-fighting people in a ring, the real undertakers that take care of deceased people.
With the exception of the decked out coffin area in the rear, its massive 23-foot length and a self-leveling air-ride suspension, the Phantom is the same as one you may see in a dealership. It features a 460-horsepower, 6.5-liter V-12 engine and a six-speed automatic transmission, which assures that you’ll never live up to the “late to your own funeral” expression.
This beast is rumored to cost somewhere in the vicinity of $660,000, so it’s doubtful that you’re going to see it at your local funeral parlor any time soon, unless you live in Beverly Hills of course. Regardless, if you want to go out in style, there is nothing quite like one final ride in one of the most luxurious cars available today. Now, if there was just a cool way to handle taxes, life would be perfect.
The year 2013 marks the 50th anniversary of the famous Italian sports car brand, Lamborghini . In 1963, Ferruccio Lamborghini started the company with the intent of creating supercars to compete with models from Ferrari . Now, as a celebration of this event, and as an homage to Ferruccio Lamborghini, Mark Hostler, a transportation design student at Staffordshire university, has created the Lamborghini Ferruccio Concept.
According to the designer, the concept is "a car that takes inspiration from the company’s lineage, and also showcases the current design language and innovations of the company in their trademark flamboyant style." The concept’s front end, bonnet, and super-wide rear end were inspired by the Countach . The front and rear wings were inspired by the Miura , while the sharp nose and mirrors, and aggressive air intakes across the body and roof take their inspiration from the current Lamborghini design language.
The concept was designed to use a small 5.0 liter V12 engine with two turbochargers and feature direct injection technology.
Hit the jump for a video of the Lamborghini Ferruccio Concept by Mark Hostler.
Since the very first Batmobile was introduced in May 1930, there have been replicas made by fans and tuning houses everywhere. But never has one been made with an actual turbine engine that the Batmobile of the late 80s had in the film. Putsch Racing has done just that...minus the guns, rockets, gadgets and gizmos.
Putsch Racing is better known for restoring and tuning cars and bikes, but this one-off project is quite possibly Casey Putsch’s most unbelievable yet. Not to mention that the car sounds like a fighter jet. A really mean fighter jet.
Powered by a turbine engine taken from a decommissioned military helicopter, the Putsch designed Batmobile is a marvel in ingenuity. There’s even an iPad in there doing who knows what. Maybe they took a page out of Hyundai’s book and used it as an owner’s manual. We’d hope not though, something cooler seems more fitting.
What’s even better than Putsch designing and creating this fire-breathing beast? It’s for sale. But you’ll have to contact Putsch directly for a price, which is probably fairly high.
Hit the jump for some more information and an accompanying video of the Batmobile by Putsch Racing.
As with most custom projects, companies who go through this option understand that it’s a hit-or-miss proposition; some people might like it and some might hate it.
In the case of Italian coachbuilder, Fornasari, their new crossover project, the RR99, definitely falls somewhere in between. The car was initially presented at the Geneva Motor Show back in March and is being described as a luxury grand tourer that offers plenty of off-road capabilities.
It even has an impressive powertrain under its hood, one that features a GM-sourced 6.0-liter V8 engine that produces 610 horsepower with a ’north to 60’ time of just 3.8 seconds and a top speed of 174 mph. By all accounts, the RR99 has some serious ponies inside that body. But it starts to get a little tricky when talking about the body. The interior looks luxed-up, which is pretty cool, but the exterior design, is pretty confusing. There are elements of Lamborghini , Aston Martin , and Porsche that seem to have been thrown into a giant blender, ratcheted up to peak power, and produced the RR99.
Judging it on its looks leaves a lot to be desired as far as originality is concerned. Thank God, it’s got an impressive powertrain, otherwise this crossover - they really took it literally with that label, didn’t they? - will be as forgettable as anything we’ve seen lately.
For anyone insane enough to want to buy it, Fornasari is currently taking orders.