Originally intended to document my experience of DeLorean ownership, focus is often radical and strange, boring and obtuse.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

17th Annual Woodward Cruise

The Charger! Bo & Luke's ride of choice.

Within 10 minutes of arriving, I watched as a classic muscle car performed a burnout to a cheering crowd, get pulled over instantly and handed a hefty $200 ticket. Ouch.

I've been to the Woodward Cruise before, and it sure has calmed down from the good ol' days of police in riot gear, but there was still a heck of a lot of action and bizarities.

Wanna see flames and fireballs shoot out of exhaust pipes? Check. A car covered in motherboards and computer chips named Carputer? Check. "Honey I shrunk the car" licence-plated golf cart versions of full sized vintage cars? Check. A rusty 30's hot rod powered by a behemoth Caterpillar diesel? Check. A Ford and Chevy guy getting along? Che... uh... not sure about that one.

Goodness gracious great balls of fire!The Woodward Cruise is an unbelievable experience. Not as unbelievable as say, stealing one of the retired space shuttles, launching it from your backyard and landing on Mars with it. But it IS the largest car show on Mars. I mean Earth.

And at the world's largest car show, it's not what you saw, but more likely what you didn't see. There's always a couple hundred Corvettes around. Ditto for the beautiful Olds 442. But how about something unusual, like a Studebaker Avanti. It was there. Ten DeLoreans cruising down the road bumper to bumper with their doors open? You bet. A Ford GT? Yup. A Tesla roadster? Of course. Ecto 1 from the Ghostbusters? Yuppers! A 25-foot long speed boat on a trailer sans car, driving itself??? Yes. A super-rare Buick GNX? Absolutely!

Yes, yes yes, they were all there.

When I say they were ALL there I mean it. For days every business along Woodward Avenue is packed with classic cars while more and more cruise up and down the street, bumper to bumper to bumper. Revving, yelling, cheering, and lighting up their tires.

Your insanity levels have to be measurable to enjoy the Cruise. After all, Woodward Avenue is quite literally the only place on earth where people drive from all the way across the country with the sole intention of causing, and staying stuck in, a massive traffic jam.

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Monday, August 15, 2011

Junked DeLorean

Is this DeLorean a metaphor for John DeLorean's dreams??

A friend and I stopped by a rough-looking shop in New York state on the weekend and here's what we documented: a lost DeLorean. Vin# 17009.

Seeing the destruction of an exotic car usually makes me wince, but seeing a DeLorean in a deplorable state always hurts a little worse. John DeLorean, everyone in the DeLorean community, and each car are almost like family. And seeing a car in this condition feels like someone has stabbed my adorable gap-toothed nephew in the pancreas with a rusty steak knife.

This particular DeLorean is more rare than most; it's a 1983 model, built in September '82, just one month before John DeLorean's arrest.

The engine bay was empty. We were told it had been pulled, much like an overzealous Steve Martin in Little Shop of Horrors, yanking teeth, ripping heads off dolls and smashing doors into the staff's faces. This left the frame exposed which caused the epoxy to deteriorate to a powdery state. Other miscellaneous screws and bolts were missing or rusting.

Rust. Now that's a word you don't typically associate with DeLoreans. Sad.

I couldn't assess the interior as the windows were filthy and the garage owner's son was very reluctant to let us near it despite the fact that we arrived in a DeLorean. The headliner was starting to come down and the leather seats had fuzzy seat covers over them. Probably a good idea since the driver's window was stuck open.

A large crack ran haphazardly through the windshield directly over the rearview mirror. Yet strangely, the rear louvres weren't cracked. Upon closer inspection I saw the usual full-length brace spanning the centre support.

While I understand not everyone can afford to fix their cars at the drop of a hat, it is still heartbreaking to see. And instead of letting these cars rot, the owners could have just given them to me. C'mon guys! I want to own five DeLoreans! Stop crushing my dreams!

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