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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.

In Effort to Protect Racers, Backers of RPM Act Accused of Creating Loopholes

Posted September 20, 2017 9:00 AM by dstrohl
Pathfinder Tags: EPA legislation racing

Just about everybody in Wednesday’s Congressional subcommittee hearing addressing the Recognizing the Protection of Motorsports Act seemed to agree that nobody wants to bring an end to amateur racing and other forms of motorsports, but committee members and witnesses described the language of the act as overly broad and full of loopholes that would allow regular street-driven cars to bypass emissions controls.

“The concern with the bill isn’t whether racing conversions should be allowed,” said Alexandra Teitz, a lawyer testifying in front of the Committee on Energy and Commerce’s Subcommittee on the Environment on behalf of the Sierra Club. “The concern is whether the bill removes the EPA’s authority to enforce against defeat devices that are sold to overcome motor vehicle emissions controls. Any manufacturer could sell any device that’s a kit to convert a car… or override controls, and as long as they say it’s for the purpose of racing, the EPA couldn’t enforce against it.”

This legislation has more holes than Swiss cheese, so amateur racists, enthusiasts and even average motorists shouldn't be worried.

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Big. Yellow. Different. Yellowstone-Used White 706 Bus Lets All the Light In

Posted September 19, 2017 9:00 AM by dstrohl
Pathfinder Tags: auction Bus classic auto

Ironically, while Alexis de Sakhnoffsky’s designs emphasized streamlining and speed, the 14-passenger bus he drew up for White to sell to tour operators in Yellowstone—one of which will cross the auction block this fall—was intended for a far more leisurely pace.

Until 1916, visitors to Yellowstone National Park had just two options for getting around the vast space (other than horseback, of course): private automobiles and horse-drawn coaches. As Robert Goss at points out, “the mixture of the two foreign modes of travel proved incompatible,” so after the end of that season, park officials declared that horse-drawn coaches would no longer be allowed to operate within the park.

That suited Harry Child just fine. Or, more appropriately, park officials’ decision to eliminate all but one of the transportation companies—ostensibly to further reduce chaos on park roads—suited him just fine. Child owned the Yellowstone Park Transportation Company, one of the coach operators before the ban, and was able to transition to automobile-based transportation rather easily by purchasing 100 3/4-ton open-top White TEB buses, 17 White seven-passenger cars, and several support trucks.

Let's be honest, these convertible buses are just really cool.

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Which Four-Door Performer Could You Imagine in Your Driveway?

Posted September 14, 2017 9:00 AM by dstrohl
Pathfinder Tags: classic auto Discussion sedan

I’ll admit up front that I’ve always preferred vintage two-door performance cars to those with four-doors. That said, it doesn’t mean that I’d never own a four-door version, but it begs the question which one?

In my case, I think my first choice would be a 1973 or 1974 Pontiac Grand Am. Odd pick you say? Well, hear me out. I’m aware of the fact that some of the most powerful engines the 1960s and early 1970s had to offer could be optioned into four-door models from various automakers. And the HD drivetrains and HD suspensions to support them were also available. However, these hot four-door versions were rarely discernable from lesser-engine examples of the same models, except for possibly an engine displacement callout emblem or decal.

Show some classic sedans some love in this week's discussion.

17 comments; last comment on 09/18/2017
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The VW Microbus is Back, But This Time It’s Battery-Powered

Posted September 13, 2017 9:00 AM by dstrohl

“Iconic” is an overused adjective, but in the case of the Volkswagen microbus, officially the “Type 2 Transporter,” it’s a fitting one. The van, indelibly linked to the 1960s, carries a shape that’s almost universally recognized, and despite its shortcomings, restored examples of early Type 2s continue to sell for six-figure prices. Volkswagen hasn’t sold a bus here (excluding the Chrysler-built Routan minivan) since 2003, but thanks to the popularity of the brand’s I.D. Buzz concept, that changes for the 2022 model year.

Announced during the recent Monterey Car Week, Volkswagen will be building a microbus for the 21st Century, targeting the North American, European, and Chinese markets. Unlike the original, this version won’t be underpowered, and it won’t even use an internal combustion engine. The I.D. Buzz, assuming the van makes it to market with the same name, will be battery-powered, propelled by a pair of electric motors – one in each axle – producing a combined 369 horsepower and delivering the sure-footed traction of all-wheel drive.

An icon of '60s counterculture gets rebirthed and modernized for 2022.

10 comments; last comment on 09/17/2017
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Gallery: On the Ground at Musclepalooza XXVI

Posted September 12, 2017 9:00 AM by dstrohl
Pathfinder Tags: classic auto display muscle car

Changing to a rain date for an event like Musclepalooza is always a roll of the dice, but on Monday, September 4, Hemmings rolled boxcars. Sunday’s rain had passed, leaving Monday with blue skies and moderate temps, and once again the parking lot at Lebanon Valley Dragway was filled with American muscle cars both old and new, in stock and modified form.

Despite the shift in days, there was plenty of drag racing action for the fans to enjoy, ranging from 14-second cars down to a few 8-second cars. The Factory-Appearing Stock Tire (F.A.S.T.) crowd put on a show as well, and with the exception of a few oil-downs, the strip was busy from 10:00 onwards.

See all the crowdpleasers -- and this year's big winner -- on Hemmings Daily.

2 comments; last comment on 09/13/2017
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