Throwback Thursday: ’63 Impala Z11 427


By the early 60s, the era of tailfins and chrome had come to a close, and early 60s full-size Chevrolets featured cleaner, boxier lines and more modern-looking interiors. Under the hood, the Impala was available with anything from a straight-six to a big-block V8 for real performance in a big, heavy car.

By ’63, the problematic 348 V8 was gone and the big-block 409 was on its way out. Chevrolets were starting to see real competition at the tracks, however, and the Z-11 was the answer to the big-inch V8 cars coming from Ford, Dodge and Pontiac. Chevrolet took the 409 engine and bored it out to 427 cbic inches, along with special heads, valves and a new intake manifold topped by two 4-barrel Carter AFB carburetors.

The Z-11 was built for one thing and one thing only: racing. That meant it was a no-frills ...[more]

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Simple Tire Review: Nokian WRG2


 

The WRG2 is the third generation of Nokian’s innovative “All-Weather Plus” tires, with a unique asymmetrical tread pattern that can address different driving conditions, weather and road conditions. The outer shoulder is narrow, with a generous number of sipes for handling and traction, with an entirely different tread design at the inner shoulder for winter driving. The tire’s center section uses 3D sipes for handling and stability, with a “slush wedge” and polished grooves to move water and slush away from the tire footprint.

Nokian tires are designed with a unique environmentally-friendly rubber compound, utilizing cool silica, canola oil and low-aromatic, purified oils for reduced rollin ...[more]

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Highlights of North American International Auto Show


Detroit is host to the North American International Auto Show every year, where manufacturers get to roll out their newest offerings. Not surprisingly, the NAIAS draws huge crowds from all over; last year’s show brought close to 800,000 people to the city, and this year’s NAIAS promises to be a worthy follow-up to the 2013 show. A few debuts to look forward to this year: 


  • 2015 Ford Mustang: Redesigned with a lower silhouette, wider stance, facelifted grille and revamped suspension, the next-generation of the pony car will feature a standard 3.7 liter V6 that churns out over 300 horsepower, as well as an all-new 2.3 liter EcoBoost engine and an upgraded 5.0 liter V8 that yields over 420 horsepower. Even with the changes, the Mustang bloodlines are still clearly there in the overhaul ...[more]

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Throwback Thursday: 1966 Shelby Cobra 427


So…what’s a good plan for a small, lightweight British sports car with a steel tube frame and aluminum body panels? Shoehorn a Ford 427 V8 into it, of course!

The 427 Cobra started life as the AC Ace, a cute little roadster powered by a British straight-six (and later a Ford four-banger). In the early Sixties, American hot rodder Carroll Shelby and Ford were looking for a car that could compete with the Corvette on the race tracks. Shelby approached AC Cars, an agreement was reached and the first versions of the Cobra featured the Ford 260 V8, which had also been used for the Sunbeam Tiger , another Shelby brainchild.

An intermediate model used Ford’s 390 V8, but its nose-heavy weight distribution and lack of suspension tweaks made it almost undriveable in competition. The subsequent mode ...[more]

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Goodyear Wrangler vs. Mastercraft Courser


Thinking about heavy-duty all-terrain tires for your truck, 4x4 SUV or Jeep? The Goodyear Wrangler MT/R is a great tire with an excellent reputation, but the Mastercraft Courser is really worth a look too.

Tread Compound

The Wrangler really excels when it comes to tread formulation – Goodyear’s silica/rubber tread compound is sticky and flexible for traction on or off road. But look – the Mastercraft Courser also infuses silica into its tread compound.

Tread Design

The Mastercraft provides excellent traction off-road, with 12% more lateral grooves and an open groove design at the tire’s ...[more]

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Simple Tire Announces Special Military Discount


SimpleTire.com is already the best place to find cheap tires and great deals on tires for your car or truck. But now, we've added an additional discount for military personnel.

At Simple Tire, we're proud of our U.S. military and are happy to announce this offer for an additional discount on tires. We know that military men and women work hard to protect our country and give us the freedoms we enjoy in America. A discount for our military only makes sense at Simple Tire.

If you're active military and looking for tires, take a look at what Simple Tire has to offer. The Simple Tire military discount is 5% off your total purchase price. In order to claim your military discount, you'll need to verify that you're active military during the ...[more]

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How Do Mud Tires Perform In Snow


You’ve got a big set of mud tires on your truck or SUV, you should be able to go anywhere and do anything with those chunky, meaty treads, shouldn’t you? Not necessarily.

Mud tires can present several different problems when driving on snow or ice. The deep voids and chunky lugs of mud tires are designed to self-clean, meaning they eject soft mud, dirt and bits of gravel from their voids, just by centrifugal force. As tires self-clean, they have a fresh surface to bite into mud with every revolution. Think for a minute, though, about the consistency of snow that’s easy to pack into a snowball – that deep, powdery snow can easily pack its way into the voids and lugs of your mud tires and stay there, drastically cutting down on traction. When that happ ...[more]

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Throwback Thursday: 1964 Pontiac GTO


The mid 60s were a different time for the automotive industry. Performance cars had been around for ten years, but were mainly large, heavy sedans with powerful engines, without the suspensions and brakes to really enable a driver to push the envelope. That all began to change with the ’64 Pontiac GTO, however.

The GTO started as a performance version of the lightweight Tempest, available in coupe, hardtop or convertible body styles. What you got with the GTO package, however, was a 389 V8 and 4-barrel Carter carburetor, dual exhausts and dress-up parts like chrome valve covers, yielding 325 horsepower. The GTO also offered sharper handling with a larger front sway bars, wider wheels and stiffer springs; options included a four-speed manual, two-speed automatic, more powerful “Tri-Power” carburetion (thr ...[more]

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Are Winter Tires Worth It?


So what’s the difference between winter tires and other designs, such as all-season tires or mud tires?

Winter tires have come a long way since your dad’s clunky, heavy-treaded “snow tires” or “mud grips” of a generation ago. Winter tires are specifically designed with a rubber formulation that stays flexible in sub-freezing temperatures. That flexibility is essential for proper traction on dry or wet pavement either one; other tire designs will become stiffer and hard at low temperatures, encouraging wheelspin and a poor connection with the pavement.

The down side of this is that winter tires tend to harden at temperatures above about 40 degrees or so, meaning poor handli ...[more]

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Throwback Thursday: 1968 Plymouth GTX


Chrysler’s entries into the muscle car sweepstakes were heavier midsize coupes that relied on sheer pavement-pounding horsepower to deliver performance, and the Plymouth GTX was one of the earlier examples.

The GTX was introduced in ’67 as a performance version of the Belvedere, although the Belvedere body was restyled considerably for ’68. The GTX came standard with the 440 V8 and automatic transmission, with Sport Satellite interior trim (it was marketed as a “gentleman’s muscle car”). Its stablemate the Road Runner was a more bare-bones version of the Belvedere, with a lighter curb weight for quicker track times.

The GTX was also available with the legendary 426 Hemi V8; in stock form, the 426-powered GTX could run through the quarter mile in a blistering 13.5 seconds ...[more]

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