We like our cars shaken, not smashed - The Good Oil
The Good Oil is an unashamed fan of a good over-the-top movie car crash. After all, The Blues Brothers is a movie we try to model our entire life on, as for a long time it held the record for most cars destroyed.
Now a new flick is waving the “we wrecked the most” banner around — none other than James Bond’s Spectre.
Rather than laying claim to wrecking the most cars, the producers are claiming to have destroyed the highest value of cars ever in a movie, namely US$37 million ($57 million) worth. “We set the record for smashing up cars on Spectre,” stunt co-ordinator Gary Powell said in an interview with UK “newspaper” the Daily Mail.
“In Rome we wrecked millions of pounds’ worth. They were going into the Vatican at top speeds of 110 [miles per hour]. We shot one entire night for four seconds of film.”
We are the world
■Two unnamed people found out the benefits of airbags the hard way in Mexico recently. Police responding to a car crash reported discovering 23 packages of “white powder containing cocaine characteristics” wrapped in foil and plastic inside the passenger airbag compartment. A clever hiding place, unless you actually, y’know, need the airbag. Which they did. The two occupants were transported to hospital, where both later died from their injuries.
■When the US’ newest Formula One team — Haas F1 — announced that French driver Romain Grosjean would be driving for them in the 2016 season, they didn’t realise they had already let the news slip. In anticipation, Haas F1 had a press release all set on its website. While the page was safe from prying eyes, the URL was not so safely hidden away and escaped into cyberspace via Twitter.
It’s Checker, mate
Do you have a soft spot for the Checker Marathon — the yellow-and-black American taxi? Have you always wanted to own one? You might get the chance if plans by US company Adamson Industries and Checker rights owner Steve Contarino come to fruition.
Although Checker ceased production of the legendary Marathon cab in 1982 (and somehow oddly stayed around until declared bankrupt in 2010), Adamson Industries continued with a restoration programme and parts supply for the car.
It is now said to be considering a limited run of two new production models based on it.
The first is the A888, a six-door, 12-seater sedan based on the Checker Aerobus built during the 1960s and 70s. The first two sets of doors are standard, with the rear doors extended to allow access into the fourth row of seats.
The second model is the Sport Pick-up Crossover, basically a Marathon ute, which looks absolutely awesome.
Contarino says he plans to build around 100 of each model, with prices ranging from US$50,000-$70,000 ($77,000-$108,000).
Both of these cars are completely and utterly pointless, so therefore, The Good Oil desires them more than anything else in the world.
At least until next week, when no doubt something equally silly will capture our imagination.
Fisker plays name game
Once upon a time there was a carmaker called Fisker. It built a plug-in hybrid called the Karma, which looked sexy from some angles (every angle except the front) and plain weird from others (umm ... the front). The Karma sold poorly, partly because it looked like a grinning, gap-toothed idiot from the front, but mainly because it had a tendency to catch on fire, not an admirable quality in a car.
Bankruptcy soon waved its middle finger at Fisker and the Karma was no more. But last year the company that owns the company that sold Fisker the battery packs that had the tendency to explod bought the manufacturer. That was a Chinese company, the Wanxiang Group, and now it has relaunched Fisker, but has renamed it Karma.
We are not sure if renaming your failed company after the one disastrous, flammable car it made is really a good idea.
Checker Motor Cars built cars from 1961-1982, but closed down in 2010.
... later, the last
Checker went out of service in New York.
Checker built only 118,210 Marathon taxis, making them hard to find today.
Checker also built 15,000 “civilian” Marathons.