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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.

This or That – Summer Series: 1967 Plymouth Belvedere GTX or 1968 Shelby G.T. 500 KR?

Posted July 19, 2018 9:00 AM by dstrohl

It’s time to launch our first edition of This or That – Summer Series, beginning with a pair of go-fast convertibles: a 1967 Plymouth Belvedere GTX and a 1968 Shelby G.T. 500 KR. We know what you’re thinking already: How can a GTX compete with a Shelby? One is an intermediate; one is a pony. Our featured duo may be closer than you think despite the wheelbase and weight difference. The GTX has a high-strung 440; the Shelby has the underrated mid-year 428CJ. On the track, contemporary test reports recorded nearly identical 0-60 MPH times. And both made a visual statement while sitting in a static state at the local snack bar during date night. But let’s not forget that this is not a heads-up competition or a comparison. So before making a rash decision, here are a few details about each car (if you want to read more than we’ve provided, both vehicles were former subject material in our Hemmings Muscle Machines magazine–just click on the links above).

We hope you like convertibles, because you are getting one for free in this [totally hypothetical] scenario? What do you pick?

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Goodwood Festival of Speed Hosts Bullitt Chase Reunion

Posted July 18, 2018 9:00 AM by dstrohl

In the five decades since its release, the seven-minute car chase featured in the Hollywood blockbuster Bullitt has become the standard against which all other such scenes are judged. This year’s Goodwood Festival of Speed played host to a remarkable (and oddly unannounced) Bullitt reunion, with a Dodge Charger used in the production of the film leading the original Bullitt Mustang up the hill, the two cars appearing together for the first time in a half-century.

It was big news when the Highland Green 1968 Ford Mustang fastback that starred as the hero car in the film reemerged from long-term storage in late 2017, its owner positively identified after decades of mystery surrounding the “lost” car. The car wasn’t truly rediscovered, as it had never really been lost: Instead, its long-term owners, the Kiernan family, opted to keep the car out of sight and under the radar for a variety of reasons, including the car’s escalating value and their own reluctance to sell it.

Anyone else disappointed McQueen didn't drive in the chase reenactment?

2 comments; last comment on 07/19/2018
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U.K. Government to Start Backing Auto Restoration Apprenticeships

Posted July 17, 2018 9:00 AM by dstrohl

Less than a year after its debut, the U.K. Heritage Skills Academy — the country’s only accredited institution teaching auto restoration skills — has secured government funding allowing it to revamp its course offerings and extend those courses to adults as well as youth.

As announced earlier this week, representatives from the Federation of British Historic Vehicle Clubs were able to secure the funding from the U.K.’s Education and Skills Funding Agency. Specifically, the funding will enable the Heritage Skills Academy to meet updated criteria for the government’s Trailblazers program, which encourages groups of employers to collectively set standards for apprenticeship programs relevant to their industries.

Classic and modern auto restoration has a new curriculum, and federal funding, in the U.K.

1 comments; last comment on 07/18/2018
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So What’s the Warranty Like on that Saturn I?

Posted July 16, 2018 10:00 AM by dstrohl

Shakespeare discussed diversification as a business practice centuries before Walter P. Chrysler was born, but the modern industrial practice of diversification really got its start with economist and Nobel prize winner Harry Markowitz in the 1950s. American automakers in particular (many of which grew out of or dissolved into proto-diversification practices of the early Twentieth Century) took to the practice in the Sixties – it is, after all, how Studebaker as a company survived its tenure as an automaker and how the Hummer got its Jeep-like grille.

And, as Chrysler figured in the late Sixties, diversification would also make for good publicity. What ad agency could resist putting a Saturn I rocket on the same two-page spread as a Chrysler New Yorker (or, for that matter, a Simca)? Sure, as the fine print points out, Chrysler merely served as the prime contractor on the first stage of the rocket, but it still counts.

This post originally appeared on Hemmings Daily.

2 comments; last comment on 07/16/2018
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Pan American, the Mysterious Packard Concept Sports Car. Which Way Did They Go?

Posted July 12, 2018 9:00 AM by dstrohl

Henney Auto Body Company called it “the first truly American sports car.” Of course there might be some who would argue this notion into the ground today, despite whatever validity Henney’s claim seemed to have in 1952. But suffice to say that when Packard’s Pan American concept debuted at the 1952 International Motor Sports Show, the word was “Wow!” The concept fulfilled the American lust for a modern car that was long, sporty, luxurious, and low. Based on a standard 1952 Packard convertible, the Pan American had been chopped (the windshield), sectioned (strip of body removed and lowered) and channeled (body dropped lower on the chassis).

Pan American was more than just concept car. Its debut was a paradigm shift–a sign that Packard was aggressively re-claiming its place in the luxury realm. Pan American rose to the challenge in a stunningly beautiful execution that was also well loved without a doubt. The Pan American took top honors at this New York City show and again later at the Petersen Motorama auto show in Los Angeles. And Pan American was featured in magazines and newspapers all over the world.

A classic car enthusiast tracks down the fate of the Packard concepts that redefined the term luxury auto.

1 comments; last comment on 07/14/2018
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