Best of Oppositelock: July 29, 2013

Illustration for article titled Best of Oppositelock: July 29, 2013

Gathered here are the Oppositelock posts that people have put a good deal of effort into writing over the weekend. Today it includes a Honda Life kei car, the Shelby American collection, a Locost build and more.

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Illustration for article titled Best of Oppositelock: July 29, 2013
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In the land of the America's, we scoff and giggle at the sight of a Smart ForTwo, a Mitsubishi iMiev, or even a subcompact like the Fiat 500 and Chevrolet Spark. But little did many of us know that in the land of the Rising Sun, even smaller subcompacts, called kei-cars exist as a standard for cheap and effective transportation. Not only are the streets of Japan small, windy and crowded the lack of parking spaces, taxes and insurance rates are affordable.

I like history, it's filled with tales of bravery, perseverance, luck and plenty of tragedy. But I think that it's the great men and women of history that really make us feel connected. They force us to stop and remember that history is made by real people with real feelings, real needs, real thoughts and real preferences. And just what would those preferences be when setting out to buy a new or used car? Well that is the extremely important question I will now attempt to answer. Of course, it's never possible to know for sure, but with a little bit of research and the perspective of time, I think we can make some pretty good guesses.

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Car shows and car spotting

Illustration for article titled Best of Oppositelock: July 29, 2013
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Being keen eyed Jalops, several Oppositelock readers were busy taking pictures of cars over the weekend. Desertdog went to a small car show at his local Hooters on saturday, Twinturbo BMW hit up a Cars & Coffee even in Portland and naturally aspirated spotted some cool classics in the parking lots of some local shops.

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Since feather-throttle-no-hair published his ten cheap hoonmobiles from an American perspective, I though I'd do the same, but use european cars only. Since I live in a country which has a lot of snow during winter, most of the cars are RWD and AWD. FWD aren't as good for hooning, but some might want to do a hot hatch list. The Europeans started using FWD on everyday cars long before the Americans, but also had a fair amount of AWD models, so to have newer cars on the list I had to include AWD. I think all of these cars are well under the 10000$ mark in any market, most of them probably under 5000$.

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So Thursday was cruise night, so I wanted to take my Darts; it was the first time my 72's gone and I wanted my 75 to be up there with For Sale signs on it. But on the way we went to a park to take some pictures of the two cars together. I'll be the first to admit I'm no photographer... And of course I had to pretend I was in a Whitesnake video. Then the fun started....Doris, the black one, decided that I hadn't fixed the hot start problem I thought I had fixed.

I'd like to explore a somewhat forgotten, under appreciated visitor from the two wheeled world. The BMW C1. Introduced by BMW in 2000, the C1 was designed to appeal to urban warriors who really wanted that classic scooter feel, but not the wind/bugs/rain/exhaust in your face enjoyment of a Vespa. No, the C1 connoisseur wanted a roof over their head, a windshield wiper when it rained, and a bitchin' sound system for their 3 hour, 10 kilometer commute to their European workplace, or local red light district.

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Framed by the backdrop of the Rocky Mountains, in an industrial park outside Boulder, Colorado resides The Shelby American Collection. It is not a large museum, but it is significant by anyone's standards. In it the visitor finds himself immersed in the history and development of Shelby cars beginning with an AC Bristol to a 2014 Ford Shelby GT500.

Local motors is that group of online designers. Yeah, that one that made the awesome Rally Fighter. Now, they have added a second, awesome, vehicle to their fleet. Coming in at 25,000 dollars, I bring to you, the Racer, stars and stripes edition. It was designed in a computer program using a martini scheme. However, due to copyright issues, LM can't use the martini on the bike. However, with a little change in title, it becomes a very solid bike.

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It looks horrible without any panels or fenders, but once the fenders are on it, it will all make sense. I think I am going to form some sort of ducktail to help meld the fenders to the back panel, as it doesn't follow them exactly. It's a lot closer than the rounded back end was. The top section was extended by roughly 4", and the bottom by 1". Nothing is pretty about it, but after some grinding and welding, it should be more presentable. Yes, that is conduit. It's strong enough for cosmetics, and there is going to be more triangulation for even more rigidity. At $1.48 per 10 feet, it works pretty well.

My part of town is fairly nice, but not so nice that spotting the King Macca isn't still absolutely shocking. I would have sooner believed my eyes if the Royal Baby had galloped up to me astride a pink unicorn. The (quite unnecessary) backstory: A friend and I were cleaning up some downed trees out near the road when the F1 drove by. I heard a supercar growl, and thought it might be one of the Lamborghinis that lives nearby. When I recognized it as an F1, I waved frantically to my friend, and we both watched it drive a mile or so until it turned onto a small residential street.

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This year I went to MATG which is Miatas At The Gap for the uninitiated. Basically it's one of(if not THE) the biggest Miata events in the US. Overall, I had a great time except for my freaking stupid mistakes. While driving, I had no issues and got to really see what my car is capable of. While parked, was where I became a blithering idiot.

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There are many aspects to cars that are enjoyable: exterior and interior design, mechanics, speed, handling, noise, statistics, mobility, sport, etc. These are the exciting attributes that stimulate our passion for the automobile and keeps the culture alive and flourishing among us. On the other hand, there are also negative characteristics and connotations with the automobile: pollution, traffic, the need for fossil fuels (for now), maintenance, high initial cost, destructive image, danger, etc. Nonetheless, we choose to either ignore or tolerate these discouraging properties that come with owning a vehicle by focusing on the positive.

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Illustration for article titled Best of Oppositelock: July 29, 2013

Yes, you read that correctly. In all my wisdom, I put my BMW’s clutch on the line so my little sister could learn to drive a manual. The good news: it wasn’t a waste of time or expensive Bavarian mechanicals (yet).

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If I could afford it, I would make this into a habit, or a therapy. Angry and frustrated? Fine, buy a car, can be new, or used, doesn't matter. It's a new thing, it can take you places and provide you with another perspective on life and oh-so-big issues and problems. Which car would I buy first? French cars are my thing, but Mach I Mustang also looks like it could cure an angst or two. Perhaps by being angry often I could buy them all!

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On a recent visit to the Shelby American Collection in Boulder, Colorado, I saw this body hanging on the wall. You could easily walk by it and think "hmmm, that's a Cobra body" and continue on your way to the next exhibit. But you would be making a mistake. Next to the vertically suspend snake is an 8x10 frame housing an old Rare Finds article with the background story on body.

This first car hunt has been a lot harder than it should be. Between a Saab owner trying to hide something, a Volvo S40 with a rebuilt title, and a father wanting me to get something beige, my choices are becoming more and more limited. My father also wants to save money, getting something cheap that I can beat up, since apparently "I will end up hitting a tree." The hunt has brought me to this: a 1991 Volvo 240.

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Hatchbacks are making a comeback in America folks. Time will tell if they stick this time, but for the first time in a long time we have a plethora of options. Kia Rio and Forte 5, Hyundai Veloster and Elantra GT, Ford Focus and Fiesta, Volkswagen Golf, Fiat 500, and the Chevy Sonic and Spark. We should count our blessings. Then there’s the hotter options: Focus ST, Veloster Turbo, 500 Abarth, Fiesta ST, Forte 5 Turbo, VW GTI…and Sonic RS? Okay, the RS isn’t exactly hot, but after a few days of owning one I think it’s vastly overlooked when considering hot hatches.

Lots of people (including me) are miffed at what they see as the stewards at the Hungarian GP being unfair to penalise Romain Grosjean with a drive through penalty for passing Massa with 4 wheels off the track. Lets look at what happened shall we? Ant Davidson does a very good job of explaining it nice and slow.

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The European airline industry has seen the future of aviation. It’s sleek and organic, carries a sextet of turbines, and its powertrain works a lot like the Chevrolet Volt. The European aerospace consortium EADS has recently shown everything from its largest airliner, the Airbus A380, to its latest electric airplane idea, the E-Fan. But tucked inside the company’s huge chalet at the Paris Air Show was a small model where the two concepts meet — in 2050.

As always, If I've missed something and you would like me to include it, let me know.

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Fun Discussions

There were several posts that asked questions and sparked some good discussion over the weekend. Take a peek and chime in on some of them listed below:

Just the #tips

Honourable Mentions

These posts have already been shared with Jalopnik directly but deserve to be mentioned again because they were first posted in Oppositelock:

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