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Our Top 5 Picks from the 2019 TECHNO-CLASSICA ESSEN

Our Top 5 Picks from the 2019 TECHNO-CLASSICA ESSEN

Not long ago we featured a Top Gear video showing presenter Chris Harris really enjoying himself among rows of ‘youngtimer’ classics bound for auction. Well, I tracked that specific auction down and picked my top 5 cars out of all 103 set to go under the hammer between April 11 - 12 at an RM Auctions event held during the Techno-Classica Essen 2019.

It really was hard to pick, because pretty much any of those cars could classify as a keeper. And, not only are they interesting and rare, but each and every car is in perfect condition - some of these cars will sell for well north of $100,000. Most models are from the 1970s, 80s, and 90s, but some are also either older than that or from the early 2000s.

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2019 Chicago Auto Show - Worst In Show

2019 Chicago Auto Show - Worst In Show

The debuts better left out in the cold

The 2019 Chicago Auto Show’s big debuts are all over and done with, and as we look back at all the new metal that rolled through the McCormick Place convention center this year, we find that some of ‘em nailed it, while others fell flatter than week-old cola. This piece is covering the latter - the lame, the boring, the “what were they thinking?” debuts that left us scratching our heads and furrowing our brows. Per usual, we wanna know what you thought were the worst of the worst, so post your picks in the comments section at the end of this article!

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2019 Chicago Auto Show - Best In Show

2019 Chicago Auto Show - Best In Show

The finest debuts from The Windy City

With the big sheet pulls now done and the McCormick Place convention center inundated with auto-hungry members of the general public, it’s time to recap our favorite debuts from the 2019 Chicago Auto Show. We made sure to include a little bit of everything here, from big ’n bad pickups, to quick, compact sports cars, to refined four-doors. Let us know your favorites by posting in the comments section at the end of the article!

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The Miata 30th Anniversary Is Cool and Here Are 10 Other Awesome Anniversary Models

The Miata 30th Anniversary Is Cool and Here Are 10 Other Awesome Anniversary Models

Over the years, many automakers celebrated with an anniversary model, we look at the good ones

For an automaker, almost any excuse is an excuse good enough to roll out a special version of a model in the lineup. Be it the anniversary of the company itself or of that model, we’ve seen many dull models celebrate important landmarks, but here are 10 of the ones that weren’t boring nor easily forgettable.

The unveiling at the 2019 Chicago Auto Show of not one but two anniversary models, the Mazda Miata 30th-anniversary and the Volkswagen Jetta GLI 35th-anniversary, got me thinking and made me search for interesting anniversary models from the recent past. Here are ten most interesting from the 21st century - so don’t expect to see Lamborghini’s Diablo SE30 or the Subaru Impreza 22B to name but a few. Those deserve to have their story told another time.

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8 Crazy Diesel Swaps in Unexpected Cars

8 Crazy Diesel Swaps in Unexpected Cars

Oil burners powering cars they were never really meant to power...

Diesels have received an increasingly bad rep over the past decade. They’ve been shunned by some as too dirty to run, a view strengthened by all the climate change advocates throwing their arms in the air announcing our impending mass extinction by global warming. However, there are those (rare) people who still appreciate the good old compression-ignition engine and who will go to great lengths to retrofit a car they like with an oil burner to satisfy themselves.

On my quest to find the craziest diesel swaps that the internet has to offer, I’ve assembled this list of ten examples that are not only cool but also support the idea that a diesel swap is a valid swap... at least in my mind. Keep in mind that some of the swaps on the list are easier to achieve than others as they require an extensive reengineering of the vehicle.

In some cases, the (often bigger) new engine won’t fit where it intended to, and it either gets moved to the middle of the car or serious hacking of the engine bay and firewall need to take place. But once the work on one of these is done, it will not only be super fast (if you use a turbocharged diesel) but also frugal. And, if you tune it well (which you should), it won’t spew out that much sooty black smoke out the back (or the hood, side, or wherever you feel like re-routing the exhaust to).

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12 Best Handling Cars in America Under $100,000

12 Best Handling Cars in America Under $100,000

Corner carving capability trumps acceleration and top speed this time

The stereotypical view about driving in the U.S. (propagated by people who’ve never actually been Stateside) is that it’s mostly wide, straight roads that make huge pickups seem small and where people drive their cliché muscle cars mostly straight and occasionally turning to the left. But America has innumerable awesome driving roads scattered across its vast territory, breathtaking roads with great tarmac and scenery, and there are plenty of people in the U.S. who prefer a good handling car over a big, powerful bruiser that resents corners.

This listicle is for them as it tries to concentrate the 12 best handling performance cars that you can buy for under $100,000 (some of which falling well under that figure). You may also be surprised to note that two of the cars in the list below are by all definitions actual muscle cars, yet in their current incarnation they have a lot of sports car DNA and they thoroughly deserve their place on this list.

When first doing research for this list I thought it was going to be tricky to get ten cars that fit the bill without resorting to filling the list with hot hatches. But thankfully, the $100,000 cap proved sufficient to include plenty of cars that may be quite diverse, yet they’re all known for their excellent handling. The fact that some of them are also really fast in a straight line and still come within budget is a bonus.

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8 Interesting Facts About The 2019 Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona

8 Interesting Facts About The 2019 Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona

When it rains at Daytona it pours... with cool stories!

The IMSA Weathertech Sportscar Championship kicked-off in grand style with a rain-soaked 57th running of the legendary Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona. Many great stories emerge from last weekend’s twice-around-the-clock enduro around the Floridian Roval, and we’re going to look at eight of the most striking.

The Daytona International Speedway, home of NASCAR’s Daytona 500, has been hosting endurance races since 1962 but, this year’s race will go down in history as one of the wettest and most riveting, with changing conditions actually ending the proceedings early, after just 23 hours and 50 minutes had elapsed. The big story, of course, was Fernando Alonso’s victory in the No. 10 Konica Minolta-sponsored Wayne Taylor Racing-entered Cadillac DPi-V.R he co-drove with Jordan Taylor, Renger van der Zande, and Kamui Kobayashi. However, the topsy-turvy event that opens IMSA’s anniversary season was action-packed in all four classes, making us already anxious for the 12 Hours of Sebring.

Besides Cadillac, we had three more class winners. BMW bagged a lucky victory with their larger-than-life M8 GTE in the GTLM category, Lamborghini won back-to-back in GTD with the Grasser Racing Team that also scored the victory 12 months ago, and Elton Julian’s DragonSpeed operation won in LMP2 despite both of the cars suffering a number of accidents and the leader actually crashing out moments before the second red flag.

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Best Small Cars Ranked from Worst to Best

Best Small Cars Ranked from Worst to Best

Looking for a compact car? Here’s a comprehensive list to help in your decision-making process

There is no dearth of options in the compact cars segment today. To stand out from the crowd, cars these days have started segment-overlapping as well. You may find all the specifications of a conventional sedan in a hatchback, or vice-versa. You’ll find cars that don’t reside in the subcompact niche or the compact niche, but somewhere in the middle. With so many small cars on the market, though, choosing which one is best isn’t exactly easy. So, to make life simpler for you, here is a list of 17 of the best small cars ranked from worst to best.

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13 Cars with 700+ Horsepower You Can Buy Today

13 Cars with 700+ Horsepower You Can Buy Today

When somebody mentioned a 700+ horsepower, say, ten years ago, you would have thought about the handful of vehicles that come close to that value in thousands and the few that surpassed it. Nowadays, though, it seems like every other sporty wagon, car, or SUV is getting more powerful by the year, and 700 horsepower is starting to become more common than ever.

If you set your goal of buying a 700+ horsepower vehicle today, then the list of vehicles you may end up having to pick from could look a lot like this - an eclectic mix of different styles of cars, with wildly varying price tags, styles, engine displacement, and levels of tech. It will most likely boil down to the price of the vehicle, in most cases anyway, but rest assured that some of the vehicles on the list are genuinely attainable and, even if most aren’t, the sheer variety of choice you have today is actually quite impressive.

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10 Exciting Cars That Will Cost You As Much as the 2020 Toyota Supra

10 Exciting Cars That Will Cost You As Much as the 2020 Toyota Supra

With its $50,000 MSRP, the 2020 Supra can be compared with some mighty interesting models

The fifth generation Supra A90 is no longer aspiring to be a Porsche 911 slayer, but, given its price, you can pit it against some pretty brisk, fun-to-drive cars. Toyota designed the latest Supra to be fun to drive, its proving ground being the Nurburgring. Company CEO Akio Toyoda was heavily involved in the development process of the A90. He said that he gauged the experience of driving the new Supra, which is more compact than ever before, in comparison to the old model he used to drive around the ’Green Hell’ to learn the track.

The production version hasn’t been put to the test yet, but journalists were allowed to take turns driving some development prototypes around the Jarama track last year. Car & Driver wrote that "there is a smoothness to the Supra that we haven’t felt in a BMW in years," and we know that it will joyfully slide, but what other cars you can look for if you’ve only got Supra money in your pocket? Well, We’ve decided to explore the diverse range of models that you could go for with that "Supra" money you’re hanging on to.

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10 Surprising Vehicles with More Power than the 2020 Toyota Supra

10 Surprising Vehicles with More Power than the 2020 Toyota Supra

Speaking of surprises, there are a number of them in this list

It seems fair to say that many people were underwhelmed by the Toyota Supra. People knocked Toyota for the Supra’s looks. Some were upset about its high pricing. And a lot of other people didn’t think too kindly to the engine choices that Toyota prepared for its returning sports car. A base version that produces less than 200 horsepower? Really? The range-topping version of the Supra does have 355 horsepower and 365 pound-feet of torque at its disposal, but even that came from a BMW-sourced engine. Truth be told, the Supra’s 355-horsepower output isn’t that bad. But it also could’ve been higher, especially when you consider that so many other models from different segments can carry that much power without having to be a sports car, specifically one that has to carry the legacy of one of Toyota’s most iconic nameplates. If you’re wondering how many vehicles have more power than the 2020 Supra, we compiled a list made up of 10 of them. And, if for nothing else, this list may surprise you.

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14 Little-Known Facts About The 2020 Toyota Supra A90

14 Little-Known Facts About The 2020 Toyota Supra A90

This Is An Epic Car With Some Culturally Unacceptable Issues

I have been in the business of car journalism for more than a decade, yet, not once in all this time have I witnessed so much scrutiny of a car as we’re seeing right now with the new 2020 Toyota Supra. I can’t say it was unexpected, but literally, everybody is so mesmerized by the newcomer. Not necessarily in a good way, either. Personally, I do believe that this car is possibly one of the best to appear in this decade, but the question is, is this really a Supra? While that question may never be answered, I can tell you a lot of cool things about the new car, and we’re here to talk about them.

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8 Awesome Looking Steering Wheels in Attainable Cars

8 Awesome Looking Steering Wheels in Attainable Cars

Most very expensive cars have nice steering wheels, but cheaper ones often don’t

Designing a great steering wheel is no mean feat: it needs to first and foremost serve the practical purpose, since it is the only means for the driver to input steering lock, but at the same time it needs to be nice to hold and, last but not least, also be nice to look at.

Steering wheels in older cars used to be so elegant, with their thin rim and thin prongs - they always look like they suggest you can drive the car with your fingertips. That’s obviously not a safe way to hold onto the wheel, but it looks really nice, especially if it’s a wood rim with exactly three polished bare metal spokes.

But since the advent of airbags, manufacturers have struggled to integrate the safety device into the wheel hub and also make everything look nice and tidy. It’s only in recent years that steering wheel look and feel has improved, and now you can go out and buy just a regular car with a nice looking helm.

This piece is only about regular (attainable) cars because there was never a time when you couldn’t get a nice wheel on an uber-expensive luxury car or supercar, regardless of how bad the times were - boutique manufacturers simply didn’t put an airbag in it and relied on fancy materials for wow factor. The fact that you can get a really nice wheel in just a regular car these days really improves their interior ambiance (especially for people who are into sportier cars) and also generally improves the driving experience. There are plenty of these out there today (thankfully), but I’ve tried to pick out my favorites in cars available right now for reasonable money.

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Cars that should be dead for 2019 but aren't

Cars that should be dead for 2019 but aren’t

Eight ancient vehicles still in production

Some cars become so popular that they end up being produced under license for decades. The most common examples include the Volkswagen Beetle and Microbus/Type 2, which remained in production until 2013 in Mexico and Brazil. Another example is the Caterham Seven, which still carries the legacy of the original Lotus Seven, launched in 1957.

But while the Seven was thoroughly updated and features modern underpinnings and technology, cars like the Beetle and Microbus remained rather spartan and eventually had to be axed due to safety and emissions regulations. But due to more relaxed rules in certain countries, some very old cars are still in production today. Here’s a list of vehicles that shouldn’t exist in 2019, but you can still buy them.

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The Best Cars to Roll With in the Middle of a New Year's Snow Storm

The Best Cars to Roll With in the Middle of a New Year’s Snow Storm

Maybe getting stuck in the snow isn’t so bad after all

Imagine this: you’re driving to your friend’s house on New Year’s Eve, and you get stuck on the way due to a snowstorm or a blocked road. You end up stuck for a few hours or until the next morning. You definitely won’t be cold if you have enough gasoline to keep the engine running, but things will become boring fast in an old vehicle without comfort and entertaining features.

Whether you’re alone or you have company, you need a few modern features to keep you busy until the storm passes or a rescue team comes to unblock the road. It’s obviously too cold outside, so you need to say inside. Hot drinks aren’t an option, but certain cars will keep you entertained or provide plenty of room to stretch out. Let’s find out which cars are the best to spend New Year’s in.

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Cars Discontinued in 2018

Cars Discontinued in 2018

You’ll no longer be able to buy these vehicles in 2019

The end of the calendar year is usually the time when we look back upon the greatest vehicles unveiled over the last 12 months, while many outlets create rankings for the best cars in various segments. But we tend to forget that many cars also go out of production each year. In 2018, we saw quite a few important nameplates go into the history books, with some to follow suit in early 2019.

Ford and Chevrolet are the leaders here, with both companies discontinuing sedans and other cars in favor of crossovers. Lincoln also replaced two familiar models, while Cadillac is ditching an entire range. Alfa Romeo, Nissan, Volkswagen, and Toyota also join the list of automakers that are either replacing or killing nameplates in the United States. Let’s see what vehicles we won’t be able to buy in North America soon.

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These are the most powerful three-cylinder engines in new cars

These are the most powerful three-cylinder engines in new cars

Turbo three-pots are hot these days and even performance cars have them now

Three-cylinder engines are normally associated with city cars whose main brief is to get you from point to point while using as little fuel as possible. Outright performance is not hugely important, nor is the way the engine sounds since all that matters for a three-pot is to be cheap to build, run, and maintain.

But the perception of three-cylinder engines seems to be shifting as more and more powerful units make their way to the mainstream automotive scene. Some of them are even finding their way under the hood of proper performance cars, and if this isn’t a clear indication of a shift in perception of such engines, then I don’t know what is.

This is our list of the seven most powerful three-pot power plants currently available in any car (and one model you can have it in), in ascending power order.

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7 Best Used Compact SUVs from 2016

7 Best Used Compact SUVs from 2016

If you’re looking to go used, you can’t go wrong with one of these!

Compact SUVs are the way to go these days. They are neither bulky like ladder-on-frame SUVs nor nimble like soon-to-be-extinct sedans. Compact SUVs are targeted to people from all walks of life; a performance SUV for the young-blood, a spacious SUV for families, and so on. Even the price bracket is huge. In this list, we have listed the best compact SUVs from 2016 that you can purchase on the used market.

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