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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.

“Mustang Sally” and the Rapid Pace of Change in the Sixties

Posted May 23, 2018 9:00 AM by dstrohl

I wanted a Ford Mustang almost more than anything when it was introduced in late spring of 1964.

It was coolness personified. The little “pony car” had dual exhausts, a small but powerful V-8, and looked like nothing else on the road.

I drooled as I read a magazine’s test drive of the Mustang, with its 225-hp V-8 and four-speed floor shift. But I could only dream about driving it when it was my turn at the wheel of my roommate’s 36-horsepower 1959 VW. We were heading south out of New Jersey on old U.S. Highway 1. Summer had ended and our destination was The University of Miami in Coral Gables, Florida.

Accompanying us on the 1,500-mile adventure was our Siamese kitten, “Mac,” who had his own box. The roof rack was loaded with suitcases. My barbell plates and dumbbells filled every inch of floor space and added 200 pounds to the car’s weight. Every nook and cranny in the trunk was stuffed to capacity.

Memories from a 1960s road trip in a classic Beetle from New Jersey to Miami.

1 comments; last comment on 05/23/2018
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GM’s Divisions Offered stylish Tachometer Options for its Mid-1960s A-Body Muscle Cars

Posted May 22, 2018 9:00 AM by dstrohl

The tachometer’s significance beyond simply serving as an add-on accessory to instill a sporty image and enhance dealer profit was manifested in the muscle-car mania of the 1960s. Drivers were using it in increasing frequency because high performance cars were more likely to be operated in situations where it would be beneficial, such as drag racing and other venues. Though tachometers (and in some cases additional gauges) offered for GM’s A-bodies of this era were also available in various tamer models, for this article we’ll focus on the muscle cars of 1964 to 1967.

Pontiac’s stylish optional tach for its 1964 GTO (above) had a relatively small face and it was located in the far right pod of the four on the instrument panel, but at least it was on the dash, unlike some alternative locations chosen by its competitors. That meant less eye movement from the road was required when trying to read it. Pontiac also offered an optional Rally clock that couldn’t be ordered in conjunction with the tach, and a vacuum gauge that could be installed by the dealer for the extra-cost console.

A range of driver options, straight from the '60s.

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Open Diff: How NOT to Sell Your Car

Posted May 21, 2018 10:00 AM by dstrohl
Pathfinder Tags: classic auto classified sales tips

We look at a lot of classified ads in the course of pasting together each day’s Hemmings Daily, and over time, it becomes evident that some ads exist for the rather odd purpose of driving buyers away instead of attracting them.

Sometimes, we suppose, you NEED to sell the car, but you don’t WANT to sell the car, so an ad is dutifully placed, knowing full well that the sheer lack of information, absence of pictures, or absurd asking price will eliminate any bothersome phone calls from prospective buyers. When pressed by family members, or the significant other, you can truthfully reply, “I don’t understand why it isn’t selling–I’ve listed it in Hemmings.”

To spare you the trouble of conducting such exhaustive sale-blocking research on your own, below are five helpful tips to deter buyers from inquiring about your own not-really-for-sale vehicle.

These tips feel like common sense, but they can't be that common since we need to explain them.

5 comments; last comment on 05/22/2018
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“The largest aggregation of motor vehicles ever started on a trip of such length:” Coast to Coast with the U.S. Army in 1919

Posted May 17, 2018 9:00 AM by dstrohl

Any student of the U.S. Interstate Highway System can tell you that the seeds for that network of roads were planted in the summer of 1919, when Dwight Eisenhower participated in a U.S. Army Motor Transport Corps convoy from Washington, DC, to San Francisco, California, over much of the Lincoln Highway. Thanks to the Lincoln Highway Association, we were recently pointed to this 25-minute video (silent, so put on your favorite driving music in the background) of the convoy, which the U.S. National Archives digitized and uploaded.

Watch the video on Hemmings Daily!

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New CCCA President: “We need to be focused” to Attract Younger Members

Posted May 16, 2018 9:00 AM by dstrohl
Pathfinder Tags: car club CCCA classic auto

Carroll Jensen certainly believes the Classic Car Club of America can only grow by attracting younger members. However, the newly elected president of the 66-year-old collector-car institution rejects the idea that the club should expand its definitions of Full Classics to do so.

“There’s a fair amount of members who would like to see us go beyond 1948,” she said. “And that’s not so much because what makes this period of design important extends past 1948, it’s because they would like to see us get new members. But we’re not going to be all things to all people; we truly want to focus on the Classic era.”

The exact definition of a Full Classic automobile, according to the club, has changed a few times since the club’s origins. Initially, only owners of cars built from 1925 to 1942 – and only those cars of sufficient status, as conferred by the club’s Classification Committee – were eligible for inclusion in the club. Later, that definition stretched to apply to cars built prior to 1925 that are substantially identical to 1925-up Full Classics, then again to include cars built up to 1948, and finally a few years ago to include cars built as early as 1915. Individual makes and models within those years still must go through the Classification Committee to be considered Full Classics.

Are Gen X and Millennials interested in pre-war autos? That is the challenge of the CCCA.

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