Die-cast: Replicarz’s 1940 & ’41 Indy 500 Maseratis

Replicarz Maserati

Latest 1/43 scale Maserati racers are a colorful duo …

The late 1930s and early 1940s saw race cars developing quickly into what we would consider modern racers and Wilbur Shaw and his Boyle Special, a Maserati 8CTF, led the way at the Indianapolis 500, but others followed quickly.

In 1939 Shaw won the 500 in his Maserati with its 365-horsepower 3.0-liter straight-8 supercharged engine, and to put an exclamation point on it, repeated the win in 1940 and darned near did it again in 1941, the last 500 before WWII. But it didn’t take his competitors long to figure out Italy’s horsey Maserati grand prix cars with their lightweight aluminum bodies could conquer Indy.

Continue reading Die-cast: Replicarz’s 1940 & ’41 Indy 500 Maseratis
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2019 Volvo XC90 T6 AWD Inscription

XC90 keeps boxy, safe  family haulers tradition alive …2019 Volvo XC90

Give Volvo credit for staying true to its roots all these years. It remains the maker of boxy family hauling machines that are long on safety. Too bad for Volvo that the rest of the automotive world has caught onto the safety gig.

Well, actually the rest of the automotive world is increasingly intent on building big boxy vehicles too, call it the SUV-ing of America, and I suspect, eventually, the rest of the world. Continue reading 2019 Volvo XC90 T6 AWD Inscription

2018 Lexus LS 500 AWD

Lexus LS500 impressive and loaded … 2018 Lexus LS 500 AWD

OMG, the Lexus LS 500 is one of the most impressive luxury sedans I’ve ever driven! That’s high praise, but this car is worthy.

Starting at $79,215, including delivery, one would expect nothing less than superfine, but loaded with 11 options and packages this goes all the way to stellar. Think competitors like the Mercedes-Benz S-Class and BMW 7 Series.

Also think big bank loan, cash in the 401k and hope great-aunt Harriet hasn’t forgotten you in her will. Continue reading 2018 Lexus LS 500 AWD

2019 Hyundai Veloster Turbo Ultimate

 Hyundai Veloster a semi-hot hatch, and affordable … 2019 Hyundai Veloster

Fewer and fewer sporty coupes are available for drivers who enjoy driving, and there are fewer yet that are both snazzy looking and affordable.

Hyundai’s revamped Veloster is a good one though and meets all of the above requirements. Continue reading 2019 Hyundai Veloster Turbo Ultimate

2019 Toyota Avalon Hybrid

Avalon Hybrid  put premium on quiet, comfy and mpg … 2019 Toyota Avalon Hybrid

Comfort, beauty, interior quiet, and room coupled with great gas mileage arrives in the form of Toyota’s new Avalon Hybrid sedan.

Gone are the days where funky looking hatchbacks reminiscent of Woody Allen’s pod in Sleeper are the only vehicles available as hybrids. For the 2019 model year Toyota relaunches its full-size sedan, the Avalon, in hybrid mode. The result is noteworthy. Continue reading 2019 Toyota Avalon Hybrid

Neo’s 1960 Plymouth Valiant Wagon

Plymouth Valiant Wagon sharp in 1/43 scale … 20180620_154322

Wagons are ho-hum these days, and nearly extinct, unless you count crossovers as wagons.

But in the 1960s they were a big deal as families tried to make room for the Baby Boom generation that was rapidly filling up their sedans. At the same time, a sizeable portion of auto buyers was looking for smaller, more economical cars. Hey, all those kids needed food and sneakers too! Continue reading Neo’s 1960 Plymouth Valiant Wagon

2018 Lexus LC 500h

Beauty goes to the bone with Lexus LC 500h …lex2a

Beauty should be more than skin deep when a car crosses the $100 grand threshold and beauty goes clear to the bone with the Lexus LC 500h. This is the hybrid version of the luxury car maker’s grand tourer (GT).

I’d tested the V8 powered 2+2 screamer during the summer and was wowed by its looks, power, handling and interior design and comfort. All the good stuff remains. In fact, not much is different in this hybrid version, save the hybrid system itself and the fact it’s mated to a 3.5-liter V6. Continue reading 2018 Lexus LC 500h

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