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10 Legendary Carmakers That Disappeared

10 Legendary Carmakers That Disappeared

Recession, poor management, and tough competition forced them to fold

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread around the world, automakers are shutting down car production and preparing for the oncoming recession. Governments are working on bills to help them but there are fears that some companies will go out of business. Mainly because it has happened before. The car industry was affected by several recessions over the last 100 years and each of them left a mark by sending important automakers into bankruptcy. Here’s a list of legendary companies that we lost.

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If Kevin Hart Is Sued Over Lack of Modern Safety Equipment In an Old Car - Does That Set a Precedent for Future Lawsuits?

If Kevin Hart Is Sued Over Lack of Modern Safety Equipment In an Old Car - Does That Set a Precedent for Future Lawsuits?

By now, you surely know that The 1970 Plymouth Barracuda that Kevin Hart commissioned from Speedkore has been crashed. Hart was, reportedly, not the driver and for now we don’t know exactly what happened until a full investigation comes forth, but it looks like he’s still staring down the barrel of yet another lawsuit. Yup; despite the fact that Hart wasn’t driving the car when it crashed, the two passengers in the car, one of which was also seriously injured, could actually file a lawsuit for negligence against Hart because the car didn’t have safety equipment.

The lack of safety equipment comes into question because the car was so powerful – 720 horsepower to be exact. And, as such, lawyers are claiming that the car should have had numerous pieces of safety equipment including but not limited to five-point safety harnesses, airbags, and a roll cage. Hart could, in theory, also turn around and sue the company that tuned the car for selling him a car without what some claim to be required safety equipment. Now, this raises the question of future precedent that leaves tuning and custom car companies, as well as owners of said cars, liable in the future. Here’s some food for thought.

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Kevin Hart's Hellcat-Swapped 1970 Plymouth Barracuda Destroyed In Crash - Was It His Fault, Though?

Kevin Hart’s Hellcat-Swapped 1970 Plymouth Barracuda Destroyed In Crash - Was It His Fault, Though?

Prayers up to Kevin Hart and his companions in the car crash

Actor and comedian Kevin Hart was involved in a serious car crash near his home in Calabasas, California. According to an incident report filed by the California Highway Patrol, Hart and two other individuals were involved in a car crash after the driver lost control of Hart’s 1970 Hellcat-swapped Plymouth Barracuda — the same one he bought last July for his 40th birthday — forcing it off the road and into a gully about 10 feet off the road. Hart and the driver, identified as Jared Black, reportedly both suffered “major back injuries,” while the third individual, identified as Rachel Broxterman, did not suffer any injuries. The story remains in flux as we speak so expect more updates regarding details about the crash, and, more importantly, the condition of both Hart and Black. As far as the 1970 Plymouth Barracuda goes, it’s a total wreck. There’s no saving that one.

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Kevin Hart Has a Hellcat-Swapped and Tuned 1970 Plymouth Barracuda and It's What Dreams are Made of

Kevin Hart Has a Hellcat-Swapped and Tuned 1970 Plymouth Barracuda and It’s What Dreams are Made of

We have dreams and aspirations; Kevin Hart has birthday gifts for himself

Kevin Hart is now the proud owner of a 1970 Plymouth Barracuda, one of the greatest old-school muscle cars in history. But as is often the case with Hart himself, looks can be deceiving, especially if you don’t know what’s sitting underneath that hood. On the surface, this is a 1970 ‘Cuda. But once you open that sheet metal, the Barracuda’s original 275-horsepower 5.4-liter V-8 engine is nowhere to be found, replaced instead by a 6.2-liter supercharged HEMI V-8 engine that produces a whopping 720 horsepower. The resto-modded ‘Cuda is the creation of aftermarket auto builder Speedkore with some assistance from HP Tuners. Hart scooped it up for an undisclosed price to celebrate his 40th birthday. It’s about as good a birthday gift as you can buy yourself, provided you have the funds to make the splurge.

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Check Out This Modern Plymouth Barracuda Rendering Based on the Dodge Challenger

Check Out This Modern Plymouth Barracuda Rendering Based on the Dodge Challenger

This is the Barracuda that could have been, but will never be

Plymouth was killed off as a brand in 2001 by parent company Chrysler; a move met with dismay by many fans of the brand whose roots could be traced back to 1928. But if Plymouth were still around today, it would most likely have offered a modern, reimagined version of its Barracuda pony car that it sold from 1964 to 1974.

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1961 Plymouth Asimmetrica Roadster

1961 Plymouth Asimmetrica Roadster

It’s one of just two

Virgil Exener’s swansong within the Chrysler Corporation, the Plymouth XNR prototype, created quite a stir at the dawn of the ‘60s and Ghia thought it would be profitable to turn it into a road car. The Asimmetrica was thus born, but even it was too extreme for the consumer and only two were built, both of which had NASCAR goodies hiding under the hood.

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1960 Plymouth XNR Concept

1960 Plymouth XNR Concept

The Plymouth Asymmetrica, later renamed the XNR after its designer, was a concept car built and showcased in the 1960s. Plymouth’s first full-blown sports car, the XNR was conceived as a possible competitor for the Chevrolet Corvette and the Ford Falcon, but the show car never made it into production.

Unlike most concept cars from the era, which were kept by their respective automakers, the XNR was returned to its builder, Italian firm Ghia, and then sold to a privateer. The XNR changed hands a few times until the 1970s when it made to Lebanon, where it was found and hidden during the country’s civil war. The concept was sent to Canada in 2008, where it was restored until 2011. In 2012, it was auctioned for nearly $1 million.

It’s been almost 20 years since the Plymouth brand was discontinued and the XNR doesn’t get the attention it deserves. It’s why we decided to have a closer look at one of the company’s most underrated concept cars.

Continue reading to learn more about the Plymouth XNR.

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Video of the Day: Mopar Expert David Wise & The Last HEMI ‘Cuda At Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale

Video of the Day: Mopar Expert David Wise & The Last HEMI ‘Cuda At Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale

How much would you pay for the last HEMI ’Cuda?

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Jay Leno Meets a Plymouth Superbird: Video

Jay Leno Meets a Plymouth Superbird: Video

It’s one of only 58 models with a HEMI engine and a four-speed manual transmission

A 1970 Plymouth Superbird is considered a unicorn by today’s standards. What most people don’t know is that this outrageous machine wasn’t a hot pancake back in the day. Dealers struggled to sell them because of how they looked and some even resorted to removing the nose and wing to make them look like a typical Plymouth Road Runner. But the Superbird now holds a special place in the hearts of muscle car collectors, including comedian Jeff Dunham, who happens to own one of just 58 Superbirds with a HEMI engine and a four-speed manual transmission. Of course, a car of this stature, with a celebrity owner to boot, found its way to Jay Leno’s Garage.

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Bring Them Back: Five Automakers We Want To See Make A Comeback

Bring Them Back: Five Automakers We Want To See Make A Comeback

How we wish for these auto brands to grace us with their awesomeness once again

The auto industry can be a ruthless business. A handful of automakers have witnessed this first-hand and, far too often, the consequences have been devastating. In the best of cases, a company can weather the storm of mediocrity until it finds its footing again, whether through its own perseverance or simply getting a lifeline in the form of another automaker. Volvo knows this more than anyone now that it’s thriving under Geely ownership after years of uncertainty. That said, not everybody is as lucky as Volvo. Countless automakers have bitten the dust over the years for one reason or another, be it because of managerial ineptitude or simply not being able to keep up with its rivals.

This list is an ode to those companies. It’s made up of automakers whose returns to the industry we pine for to this day. It’s not a guarantee that we’re going to get our wish and see these brands get resurrected, but we can still dream. Either way, there’s nothing to lose as far as wishing upon a star is concerned, right?

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

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Jay Leno Goes Aeronautical with this Plymouth pickup: Video

Jay Leno Goes Aeronautical with this Plymouth pickup: Video

Radial-powered pickup makes an LS swap look mundane

Jay Leno is no stranger to custom, one-off builds. His garage full of such creation that were designed and built with little practicality – all parked next to meticulously restored historical vehicles and factory-fresh examples of timeless classics. None of them are more grandiose or nonsensical than this 1939 Plymouth pickup truck.

It’s powered by a 757 cubic-inch, seven-cylinder radial engine lifted from a 195 Cessna seaplane from the late 1940s. Both the truck and the plane sat in Gary Corns’ salvage yard in Colorado for nearly 30 years before he dreamt up this unseal concoction.

He decided to marry the radial engine with the pickup and cover every square inch with a period aeronautical theme. The result has this Plymouth pickup looking like a WWII-era bomber. Corns and his volunteer team of friends put the project together over several months working after hours on Wednesdays. Bare metal skin with rivets make the truck look like an aluminum aircraft, compete with roof-mounted windows, hand-painted warning signs, and red and green signal lights.

The Jacobs radial engine sends roughly 300 horsepower to the rear wheels via a heavy duty V-drive from a boat. A massive belt from a supercharger connects the V-drive to the engine’s output shaft where the missing propeller would attach.

Sadly, cooling is a major issue with the engine. Restricted airflow and a small reservoir of engine oil keeps its run time under 15 minutes before it begins overheating. Still, that’s plenty of time to enjoy this outrageous radial-powered pickup. There’s no doubt this project makes a small-block Chevy engine swap seem like child’s play.

Be sure to turn up the volume and enter full-screen mode. You’ll want the full experience with this 26-minute video.

Continue reading for more information.

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2016 Mecum Auction Indianapolis – Recap

2016 Mecum Auction Indianapolis – Recap

Shelby cars dominated in Indianapolis with two seven-figure examples at the top of the list

The History of Mecum Auctions goes back to 1988 at the Rockford Airport, where the first Mecum Auction was held. Over the last 28 years, Mecum has grown tremendously, now being ranked No. 1 in the U.S. for collector cars offered at auction, collector cars sold at auction, total dollar volume of sales, and the largest number of auction venues. On top of that, it has become the host of the world’s largest collector car auction that is hosted every year in Florida.

This last week, Mecum hosted an auction in Indianapolis, Indiana at the Indiana State Fairgrounds. This year there was a total of 1,859 lots that included plenty of collector cars, a few gas pumps, some neon signs, and even a few coin-operated kid rides. The big news from this auction, however, was the pair of Shelby Cobras that broke seven digits before the hammer dropped and a few other classics that are well worth taking an extra look at.

We’ve taken the time to cover the biggest sellers from the auction as well as a few of those that didn’t sell at all. There was even a 1971 Plymouth Hemi Cuda Pro Stock that got as high as $750,000 but didn’t get quite high enough to cross that thin reserve line. That was just one of many that didn’t sell, and those two Shelby Cobras weren’t the only models that found new owners last week. So, let’s take a look at a few of the most notable vehicles that went under the hammer last week.

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