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

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

18th Annual Woodward Cruise

The best kind of traffic jam to be stuck in.

The Woodward Dream Cruise in Royal Oak, Michigan, is essentially the world's largest car show. Millions of people show up every year to admire and laugh at the amazing and ridiculous parade of cars in front of them.

Yes, I have been to the Woodward Cruise many times before, but this is the first time I drove my DeLorean up and down the avenue. I drove alongside Corvettes and Chevelles, Thunderbirds and Triumphs, Packards and Porsches.

I appreciated the wild amount of cheering my car garnered as I cruised, doors open. It got more attention than most. After all, I was smack-dab in the middle of John DeLorean's territory.

As I crept along, I had a strange conversation with a bystander. Yelling over the din of the rumbling V-8s, it went like this:
"Where's John?"
"In jail?"
"No, he's dead!"
"Did he die in jail?"
"No! New Jersey!"
On my second day of cruising a convertible pulled alongside me. The conversation was lighter (and cuter) as the girls filmed me for Street Sport TV (hooray!) and made Back to the Future comments.

A pair? Of feet? Hands? Eyes? It's true, I need all those to drive.Heavy police presence and huge fines hindered antics, launches and burnouts, but there were still a few bad boys willing to take the chance. Especially when egged by spectators holding signs that read, "Drive it like you got a pair!"

I eventually fell victim to this. Stopped in traffic I was provoked by the relentless badgering of an 8 year old girl. Yeah, you heard me. Soon a guy joined her, egging me to rev my engine. Over and over I resisted... then failed.

Saturday afternoon, at the Woodward Cruise, I revved the dinky 2.8 litre Peugeot/Renault/Volvo V-6 and did the DeLorean community proud. With my new aluminum water pump pulley and K&N filter, the engine revved faster than it has before. In a second I hit 7 grand. It sounded surprisingly good. Then the rpms dropped, dropped some more and then dropped some more. Right to 0.

I stalled.

Embarrassed, I nervously started it up and drove away, having proved to the crowds that the DeLorean really is that great big pile of crap they all think it is. Yay me.


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Blogger Michael Manning said...

Hi Martini: Lost my Uncle in June in Michigan. He was a brilliant auto engineer and restored Muscle Cars through last year (a 500 cu in V-8 in a 1968 Chevrolet Camaro). I regret that I never joined him for the cruise on Woodward. But I'm thrilled to read your story.

3:58:00 AM

Blogger Martini said...

I'm so sorry to hear that. You really should experience the Woodward cruise, even without him. Even if you only go once, try for the 20th. Should be huge.

11:18:00 AM

Anonymous MLB jerseys said...

That's awesome! Good to know!

6:55:00 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I never heard of this cruise! It looks awesome though! I doubt my car(s) would even make it out of the state. The big show/cruise we usually try to go to is Lead East held in Parsippany, NJ. It's a 4 day event and occasionally someone will slip out of the show and race their car up Rt. 10 which runs adjacent to the grounds. Or you can S-L-O-W-L-Y drive around the show grounds, dodging the spectators. And it's heavily monitored, so no burn outs or revving. I'll keep this cruise in mind though. I've never been to Michigan!

8:11:00 AM

Blogger Martini said...

That sounds like Woodward only on a smaller scale. I wish we had some better shows locally. They're quite small and just the typical muscle car types are there.

3:04:00 PM


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