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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.

Could Excelsior-Henderson be Poised for (Another) Rebirth?

Posted February 24, 2017 9:00 AM by dstrohl

On December 21, 1999, the Excelsior-Henderson Motorcycle Company, a revival of a once-storied American brand, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy after just two model years of production. Now, as RevZilla reports, a Denver-based investment firm believes the time is right for another attempt at an all-new Excelsior-Henderson, which would go head-to-head for market share against Harley-Davidson and the Polaris-owned Indian Motorcycle.

In 1928, the Excelsior Motor Manufacturing & Supply Company, which had acquired the Henderson Motorcycle Company in 1917, was the third-largest producer of motorcycles in the United States behind Indian and Harley-Davidson. Three years later, in September of 1931, company owner Ignaz Schwinn made the decision to halt motorcycle production, opting instead to focus on the company’s bicycle business while the Great Depression lingered on.

The motorcycle market remains as unpredictable as ever.

2 comments; last comment on 02/25/2017
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The $5,000 Challenge, Bathtub, Buick and Zombie Edition

Posted February 23, 2017 9:00 AM by dstrohl

There are many reasons why automotive restoration projects don’t always succeed. Sometimes, the hobbyist finds himself over his (or her) head, and frustration overwhelms interest in finishing the car. Other times, it’s a loss of funding, since a new roof takes priority over a weekend driver. Unrealistic expectations are an issue, too, since the joy of rebuilding a project car on one’s own often ends with the first frozen nut, snapped stud or no-longer available part.

The candidates in this edition of the $5,000 Challenge all have stories to tell. Some appear to have been restored (or at least preserved) by previous owners, while others are clearly works in process, abandoned before the work was completed. Some can be enjoyed while the work is carried out, while others will need a bit of effort to get back on the road. Which project is right for you?

1962 Ford Galaxie 500

See what other affordable classics are available for under $5K.

1 comments; last comment on 02/23/2017
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Oregon’s $1,000 Impact Tax on 20-Year-Old Vehicles Spiked Soon After Introduction

Posted February 22, 2017 9:00 AM by dstrohl
Pathfinder Tags: classic auto legislation Oregon
User-tagged by 1 user

Multiple Oregon state legislators said over the weekend that they would not allow a bill that would introduce a $1,000 impact tax on any vehicle older than 20 years to become law.

Introduced by the state’s House Committee on Revenue last Thursday, H.B. 2877 would have imposed the tax every five years on 20-year-old and older vehicles registered in the state. The only exemption the bill made was for vehicles registered as antiques. Revenue from the impact tax would have gone toward repairing and maintaining the state’s roads and bridges, reportedly a priority for the Oregon legislature this session.

Under Oregon law, only vehicles older than half the number of years between 1900 and the current year (for 2017, that would include vehicles older than 1959) and those used only for exhibitions, parades, club events, and similar uses qualify as antiques. Vehicles used for everyday transportation do not qualify. Oregon also allows for vehicles 25 years and older to qualify as “special interest” vehicles, but H.B. 2877 did not make an exemption for special interest vehicles.

This could simply amount to a 'classic auto' tax for enthusiasts.

16 comments; last comment on 02/23/2017
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Route 66 Suggested for Country’s Next National Historic Trail

Posted February 21, 2017 9:00 AM by dstrohl
Pathfinder Tags: classic auto highway route 66

On the heels of a bill intended to preserve Route 66 comes another piece of legislation that would secure National Historic Trail status for Route 66 and that would theoretically help preserve and rejuvenate the Mother Road.

H.R. 801, which Representative Darin LaHood of Illinois introduced earlier this month, would amend the National Trails System Act of 1968 to include Route 66 as the country’s 20th National Historic Trail. According to a statement LaHood released regarding the bill, “It is time it receives the national recognition it deserves. Designating Route 66 as a National Historic Trail would provide this highway with a permanent program to preserve, promote, and economically develop it.”

Here's to a classic thoroughfare getting its recognition.

4 comments; last comment on 02/22/2017
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Affordable Collectibles: Trucks of the ’70s

Posted February 17, 2017 9:00 AM by dstrohl
Pathfinder Tags: classic auto classified Truck

Hard to believe for some, but pickup trucks built in the ’70s are becoming collectible. One of the coolest – yet most overlooked – categories of the era, light-duty trucks, are some of the most affordable classics around. And remember: we’re talking about the Seventies, so when you start really looking, get ready to stumble across some of the weirdest special editions and greatest model names not seen before or after those years.

Chances are, you’ll probably find the trucks still in regular use and not only are most replacement parts readily available, but a few of the repop houses are making new body parts that were once only sourced in junkyards. Speaking of junkyards, the genius of collecting some of the full-size Big Three models is that the body styles ran unchanged for nearly the whole decade, which makes parts interchangeable up and down the years. So here are our favorite Gen X trucks, based on affordability, accessibility and workability. Find your favorite, and drive that monster every day.

Yep. Bring on the workhorses of the funkiest decade.

5 comments; last comment on 02/20/2017
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