The same source confirms that Toyota will take on Range Rover by installing the same V-8 in the next Land Cruiser. The most interesting tidbit: a ceramic V-12 has been seen up and running in a stretched LS400. The dash and door panels are tastefully sculptured (the old model’s door trim looked like spruced-up economy-car upholstery). Ferrari front end seems somewhat overdone with add-on plate in Saturday-night-fever duds. A V-8 has been all but ruled out. Even if we leave aside Earl’s admittedly anti-government bias, we are left with the knowledge that the fatality rate on all our nation’s roads and highways continues to decline.
The trick, then, as suggested by Anaheim auto glass will be for services it cannot perform. In combination with the wide wheels and tires, this setup makes the car darty and prone to bump steer—not something you’d want to live with every day—but it certainly turns into corners like a pro. Stay tuned for a closer look next month. The all-new 325i, which went on sale here in June, has a new chassis with new rear suspension, a new and more powerful engine, and a sleek new four-door.
How high on the swagger ladder could you sell a losing proposition if you played the rube to full John Goodman dimensions? You do have to be mindful that in panic braking, the light load of an empty pickup bed leaves a truck’s rear wheels prone to premature lockup. Say Aunt Ophelia is fading fast and you’ve got to cover 150 miles in an hour to make it into her will. Several trim pieces in the rear passenger compartment—newly minted for the ragtop—fit together poorly. She’d left a phone number, too.
Third time without A/C—98 degrees and humid—and I am not a happy camper. A cooldown timer ensures that the engine idles for a while after you remove the key, thus minimizing chances of cooking the turbo. BMW wants you to forget the Y-word. When you write a check for a car, you get a product that was manufactured at considerable coSt. When you write a check for auto insurance, you get a promise to make good on your losses over the next year. We burned off the front pads in 16,500 miles and the rears in 27,500. Bull roar.
If you’re a regular reader of this magazine, you’ve heard about the infamous Cannonball Baker Sea-to-Shining-Sea Memorial Trophy Dash—the Cannonball, for short. A convenient rebate might bring it into line. In the process, the Spyder became a rolling battle of perception versus reality. Did Bill Vukovich the First (who saw his first Indy car and promptly growled, I can drive that pig) get a good-luck smooch before racing? Legend Coupe. Other options include ABS, leather seats, and an eight-speaker stereo with digital sound processing.
But people associate technology with value, so the Diamante is laden with buttons, switches, and systems that people will take for technology. We’ve heard a lot about the military and its $600 toilet seats. The only drivetrain available is GM’s well-known 140-horsepower 3.1-liter V-6 linked to a four-speed automatic. Other repeated observations in our logbook: the motorized belts are annoying, as are the trio of hard-to-reach knurled knobs on the side of the driver’s seat for cushion height, rake, and backrest angle. It’s king of the traffic-light Grand Prix. Stuff that any sane person knows kills people?
Dog-dish size (9.5inch-diameter) drums are used at the rear—not too impressive until you notice that this vehicle, when empty, has only 37.1 percent of its weight in back. The newcomers are mostly Japanese—the Infiniti G20, the Lexus ES250, the Nissan Maxima, the Acura Vigor, to name four—and there are a few American upstarts too, like the Ford Taurus SHO and the Chevy Lumina Z34. As we did with our Ford and Toyota pairings, we took base retail price, including freight and destination charges, and added the option costs for a radio and air conditioning—amenities no one wants to live without today.