Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Random Car Wednesday: 1986 Chevrolet Suburban

Sports cars are cool. Low slung, eye-catching and fast, they are beloved my almost all car enthusiasts. But sometimes, building a vehicle meant to go where roads don't exist is just as interesting. Such is the case with today's RCW, a Chevrolet Suburban. The Suburban has been around since the 1930's, and was always meant to be a rugged family machine, capable of being loaded with huge amounts of people and/or things. This one appears to be a 1986-ish model, from the Suburban's boxier years. Luckily, it stands out from the crowd with a host of modifications. Most noticeable is the massive lift kit and suspension, which gives the bigger wheels and tires some more room to breathe. Heavy-duty bumpers grace the front and rear, offering more protection than the stock units. This 'Burb also gets a beefy power-bulge hood and some almost-cartoonish fender flares. Now, Texas has an endless supply of lifted trucks and SUVs that never see a speck of dirt in their entire lives. Thankfully, judging by the spray of dirt and grime along the side of this mammoth machine, this owner uses the vehicle in whatever conditions or surfaces he so desires. As a result, it gets a big thumbs up from me. This boxy American machine is a perfect example of function over form.

1986 Chevrolet Suburban

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Random Car Wednesday: Alfa Romeo GTV6

There are certain sports cars that everybody is familiar with. The Porsche 911, BMW M3 and Lotus Elise spring to mind. Then, on the other end of the spectrum, we have some of the oddballs. Vehicles that have a smaller following or perhaps never really caught on. Take, for example, today's RCW, an Alfa Romeo GTV6. Firstly, I love Alfas. The 8C is phenomenal, the old Stradale racers were insane, the Giulia is certifiable sculpture, and I will always like the looks of the Montreal. Alfas have always mixed sports car philosophy with artistic design, and so seeing one here in Texas is a nice treat. The GTV6 was based on the Alfetta platform, and boasted a 2.5 liter V6 that produced approximately 158 horsepower. The end result was a very successful racing vehicle, as evidenced by the GTV6's performance in the Touring Car and Rally Championships of the 1980's. This particular model is a little worn when you get up close, but just seeing one in any condition is a treat. Hopefully the car's owner keeps this gem out on the road, and hopefully we'll see some more of these Italian classics in the near future.

Alfa Romeo GTV6

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Random Car Wednesday: 1968 Chevrolet El Camino

Can it really be December already? It's hard to believe how fast the year has gone by, but as the temperature drops we get the perfect excuse to stay inside with our friends and family. For the first RCW of the month, let's check out this classic cruiser from Austin, a 1968 El Camino. The part-car/part-truck design first originated in Australia as the ute, and later made it to America in 1957 when Ford introduced the Ranchero. Chevrolet followed suit in 1959 by introducing the now-iconic El Camino. The premise of these vehicles was to offer all of the comfort and practicality of a car, but with the utilitarian features of a pickup truck. Instead of taking a pickup and making it more luxurious, manufacturers took cars and made them more truck-like. This El Camino is a 1968 model, which was a huge step up from the previous year. The design was brand new, and was still based off of the Chevelle platform. This one has been lightly modified by the owner. It sits a bit lower to the ground, and all excess trim and badging has been removed. Coupled with the simple black paint, this El Camino looks pretty tough, and it appears to be a regularly driven vehicle. Seeing as how the El Camino was designed for getting things done, I'd say that serving as a daily driver is the perfect role for it.

1968 Chevrolet El Camino