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Hemmings Motor News Blog

Hemmings Motor News has been around since 1954. We're proud of our heritage, but we're also more than the Hemmings full of classifieds that your father subscribed to. Aside from new editorial content every month in Hemmings, we have three monthly magazines: Hemmings Muscle Machines, Hemmings Classic Car and Hemmings Sports and Exotic Car.

While our editors traverse the country to find the best content for those magazines, we find other oddities related to the old-car hobby that we really had no place for - until now. With this blog, we're giving you a behind-the-scenes look at what we see and what we do during the course of putting out some of the finest automotive magazines you'll ever read.

Old Reliable IV Leads Fezell Collection of Lightweights and Other Race Cars Into Auction

Posted October 27, 2016 9:00 AM by dstrohl

Don Fezell didn’t build his collection for the fame of it. He didn’t go hog the spotlight at televised collector car auctions. He didn’t build a personal museum for the cars. He didn’t send press releases to the magazines begging for coverage whenever he added another ultra-rare factory lightweight to the set. Instead, he built the collection of race and muscle cars “because I liked them and loved them” and now he’s decided to disperse the majority of the collection at auction.

“It’s just the right time with me being 78 years old and not wanting to leave a mess for my wife and kids,” said Fezell, of DuBois, Pennsylvania. “I’ll continue racing for as long as I can, but it’s time to move on and take care of my family.”

A racer – both on and off dragstrips – since the mid-Fifties, Fezell had a healthy first-hand appreciation for factory-built drag cars of the Sixties after losing to the likes of Grumpy Jenkins. So in 1975 when he started his car collection, he decided to focus on some of the best high-performance machines Detroit built.

Yet another collection has grown to big for its owner, and it's time to move on.

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ECTA Begins Search for New Track After Amazon Expands in Wilmington

Posted October 26, 2016 9:00 AM by dstrohl
Pathfinder Tags: aerospace delivery racing

All that free shipping’s gotta take its toll somewhere. For the East Coast Timing Association, the expansion of online retail giant Amazon’s shipping capabilities has translated to the loss of its land-speed racing venue of the last five years and led to a search for another suitable location.

“While we knew that our time may have been limited at Wilmington Air Park we were hopeful that the 2017 season would be held here,” the racing organization wrote on its Facebook page late last month, ahead of its final 2016 racing date earlier this month. “After a meeting with Air Park officials… we learned that this would be our final meet at this facility.”

According to Tonya Turk, president of the ECTA, airport officials made the decision after Amazon announced it would fly its new cargo service out of Wilmington about a dozen times per day, with more flights coming.

Amazon's steadily growing business displaces more than other merchants...

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Selling a Collection of “Papa’s Toys”

Posted October 25, 2016 9:00 AM by dstrohl

It all started with cars. The local hot rod club met in the back yard of Susan’s family. She mostly stayed inside – she was the “little sister” and wasn’t part of the group. But she noticed John, and even while in grade school she knew that someday John would be The Guy she would marry. To her mother’s delight, John joined the Navy. Her Mom said that Susan couldn’t marry anyone till she graduated high school. John came home. Susan graduated the day before Memorial Day in 1963. They married the next day.

And so their story together began….

Sometimes they would drag race on the road in front of her parent’s house. Her parents never knew it was them, and they never got caught. Her brother did, though. There were Consequences for him – not them.

When the family of a car nut has to sell off his or her collection...

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The World’s Best-Known ’76 AMC Pacer Sets Auction Record in Las Vegas

Posted October 24, 2016 12:00 PM by dstrohl
Pathfinder Tags: amc classic auto famous cars Pacer

According to the latest value guides, a 1976 AMC Pacer in excellent overall condition (but falling short of concours-quality) should be worth in the neighborhood of $6,000, but when that Pacer is the original Mirthmobile, driven by Wayne Campbell and Garth Algar (actually, Mike Myers and Dana Carvey) in the surprise 1992 hit Wayne’s World, all bets are off. Last Saturday, the recently restored Wayne’s World 1976 AMC Pacer crossed the stage at Barrett-Jackson’s Las Vegas auction, selling for a fee-inclusive price of $37,400, and easily besting the $18,945 existing world auction record for an AMC Pacer.

Like the movie itself, which sprung from a series of skits on Saturday Night Live, no one expected the Mirthmobile to be a hit. Its Earl Schieb-quality light blue paint was sprayed over the original yellow, and flame decals were added in contrast to the performance potential of the Pacer’s, 90-horsepower inline-six. The car’s wheels were deliberately mismatched with hubcaps up front and chrome wagon-spokes out back to emphasize the car’s teen-poverty origins. On the other hand, it did have an Excellent! audio system, a soft-drink tap and a ceiling-mounted licorice dispenser.

How Garth Algar's Mirthmobile ended up in Vegas, on Pawn Stars, and then on the auction stage. Licorice dispenser included.

2 comments; last comment on 10/25/2016
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Miura, Gullwing Mercedes up for Supercar of the Century Honors

Posted October 20, 2016 9:00 AM by dstrohl
Pathfinder Tags: classic auto Mercedes supercar vote

Most of us will never drive one, let alone own one – their rarity and rarified price tags define them, after all – but supercars nevertheless inspire many a debate when it comes to pairing superlatives and automobiles. Fastest? Most advanced? Most expensive? Which made the topic a perfect one for the Classic and Sports Car Show to broach when it decided to crown the greatest supercar of the last century with the public’s help.

Like American muscle cars, supercars are believed by many to have originated in the 1960s but actually date back much further. Ultra-expensive, ultra-high performance vehicles date back to the beginning of the automobile industry – in fact, with automobiles generally regarded as playthings of the rich at the turn of the century, pretty much any automobile from that time could be considered a supercar – and have only become more technically sophisticated since then.

An online poll has an unusual nominee for 'Supercar of the Century'.

2 comments; last comment on 10/21/2016
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