1957 Chevy Bel Air Returned 30 Years After Being Stolen!

How often is it that you get your car back after it’s been stolen?  What about if it was stolen 30 years ago?  What about if it was a cool ’57 Chevy Bel Air?  What about if it was stolen and returned almost a year before it disappeared for 30 years?  That’s what happened to Santa Rosa, California resident Ian “Skip” Wilson.  When California Highway Patrol investigator Mike Maleta informed him that there was a 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air in a shipping container bound for Australia that might be of some interest to him.  Since U.S. Border Protection and Customs does routine checks of shipping containers bound for wherever, it may be no surprise to Customs agents.  Once they found out the car was stolen, it was handed over to the CHP to build a case.  Then, Ian Wilson received a call from Mike Maleta, a CHP investigator about the car.  The VIN matched what Ian gave Maleta, and the car was on its way to Ian’s house after a few days.  This isn’t the first time the car was stolen – it was stolen back in 1983, but returned to him without the engine and transmission.  He had bought the car back in 1975 for $375, and he hadn’t started re-rebuilding the car when it was stolen from his driveway in 1984.

The white-over-yellow hardtop now is a sparkling creamsicle orange with a Chevy 350 V8/Turbo 350 transmission setup.  It’s got disc brakes and rack-and-pinion steering.  A brand-new black leather interior complements the paint beautifully, and the slightly chromed 17-inch wheels also look sweet.  The rebuild is extremely recent, with the odometer showing nine miles showing on the odometer.

Skip had to pay just $900 for transportation, and originally was told by the DMV that he needed 30 years of back registration to get the car registered.  The state backed off for the back registration request.

Yeah, I’d pay $900 for a basically brand-new 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air.  

The Best Ads of 2013 (and 2014!)

2013 was a great year for many of us auto enthusiasts, and the automakers were great in their ads.  I’d like to share my favorite ads of 2013 with you.  I also found a couple of good ads during the Super Bowl, so those are included for your viewing enjoyment!  Enjoy!

Mercedes Benz Chicken Ad:  Mercedes-Benz is right up there with Volvo in terms of how amazing their safety tech, as well as other features is.  To demonstrate just how good the Magic Body Control (don’t ask, I don’t know the answer!) system is, Mercedes-Benz used a chicken.  Yes, a real, living chicken!  For those of you who don’t know what Magic Body Control is, Magic Body Control is a fancy name for a high-tech suspension system.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hfgBA8Iw9C8

Jaguar Eats Chicken Jaguar USA Ad:  In an obvious thumbing of its nose to Mercedes-Benz, Jaguar shot a laugh-out-loud ad of a chicken being moved around by a Mercedes-Benz engineer dancing around to some groovy music.  The chicken gets eaten by a real-life Jaguar.  Not the car, mind you.  The Jaguar from the jungles of South America.  If that grosses you out, there’s no blood, just a LOT of feathers, and one really unhappy Mercedes-Benz engineer…http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iAgJVIC9QSw

I couldn’t find the Mercedes-Benz ad that made fun of Jaguar.  It’s a shame, because it was a very funny commercial.  It showed a 2014 Mercedes-Benz S550 going along a dusty jungle road at night, when the S550 brakes to a stop.  As the S550 is stopping, the camera focuses on a jaguar (the jungle animal) running across the road, directly in front of the S550.  The S550 has a night-vision feature, which shows the jaguar bounding across the road…directly into a tree.  The Mercedes-Benz punchline?  Cat-like reflexes? We prefer Pre-Safe Braking.  If you can find this ad, please post the link to the commercial in the comments section so that other readers can enjoy it.

Kia Sorento How Babies are Born Ad:  This cute ad from Super Bowl XLVIII somehow showcases the Kia Sorento.  I don’t get how either.  But, it’s a cute commercial, and I think that you’ll enjoy it.  It shows a LOT of babies, and it’s got lots of clever CGI.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N4uW4lNjW4g

Volkswagen How Volkswagen Engineers Get Their Wings Ad:  Volkswagen was pretty clever with this commercial.  It makes people laugh as Volkswagen engineers get wings.  Volkswagen used to be clever…and funny in the 1960s with their commercials, and it seems like they’ve found their clever and funny bones again.  Volkswagen engineers grow wings, and at the end, one farts a rainbow.  When you’re done laughing, watch the ad. This ad is from Super Bown XLVIIII…http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ns-p0BdUB5o

Chrysler 200 Bob Dylan Ad:  This ad from Super Bowl XLVIIII showcases Bob Dylan and the stylish 2015 Chrysler 200.  It has great footage, and some cool vintage footage of Dylan back in the day.  As Bob Dylan said in the commercial, “Let Germany brew your beer, let Switzerland build your watches, let Asia assemble your phones.  We’ll build your cars.”  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KlSn8Isv-3M

Hyundai Santa Fe Every Boy’s Dream Team Ad:  This commercial is a nice one.  It’s got boys of all sizes, ages, and races jammed into it, and I like the vibe of this commercial.  While I don’t get how it showcases the Santa Fe, I still like this commercial.   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KlSn8Isv-3M

That’s all that I have for you, but I think that this should be enough for you.  If you have any that you’d like to have others see, please post them in the comments section.  I’ll watch them!

What One Sees on the Road

After a successful surgery and a minor hiccup, I am back on the road to recovery!  This means that I will start publishing every Tuesday and Friday!  This should make everybody happy, right?  I know that it makes me happy!  I’ve got plenty of captivating and funny posts just itching to be published.

While on the road to get to the hospital with my parents, I spotted something most people won’t see…ever.  No, it wasn’t a Pagani Huayra (I wish!).  It was a car transporter carrying 12 brand-new Ford Interceptor Utilities destined for, you guessed it, the California Highway Patrol!  It was one of the most amazing, cool things I’ve ever seen!  I just needed to share the pictures I took with you!  I hope that you enjoy them!

These are just two of the twelve 2014 Ford Interceptor Utilities on this car transporter!
These are just two of the twelve 2014 Ford Interceptor Utilities on this car transporter!
All of the Interceptor Utilities were destined for the CHP!
All of the Interceptor Utilities were destined for the CHP!
I'm sorry I didn't get a picture of all 12 of the Interceptor Utilities.  We were simply too close to get a picture of all 12 :(
I’m sorry I didn’t get a picture of all 12 of the Interceptor Utilities. We were simply too close to get a picture of all 12 😦

I will give you some information on the Ford Interceptor Utility.  It’s a pretty cool vehicle.  The Ford Interceptor Utility is based off of the Ford Explorer SUV, but that’s about where the similarities end.  The Ford Interceptor Utility comes standard with FWD, but sales show that an overwhelming majority of buyers buy the Interceptor Utility with AWD.  The standard engine is the 3.7-liter, 305 horsepower V6 from the Mustang.  The Explorer is a porky vehicle, but with the high-revving, powerful V6 from the Mustang, the Interceptor is no slouch.  60 mph comes up in 6.4 seconds, while 100 mph comes up in 14 seconds.  That’s with the Interceptor Utility loaded with all of the gear required by the CHP!  A six-speed automatic is the only transmission available.  The other engine option for the Interceptor Utility is a 2.0-liter four cylinder turbocharged EcoBoost engine making 240 horsepower and 270 lb-ft of torque.  This engine has seen service in everything from the Taurus to the civilian Explorer to the Focus ST to the Escape.  It’s a durable engine that feels like a V6, and it gets decent mpg in the nearly-5,000 pound Explorer.  This engine was also named one of Ward’s Ten Best Engines for 2013.  That’s a pretty lofty achievement for Ford.  The other engine, the sweet spot in my mind, is the 3.5 liter, twin turbo EcoBoost engine borrowed from the F-150.  This is one powerful engine, and it’s been proven to be barrels of fun.  It sees service in everything from the Flex to the Taurus to the F-150 to the Explorer.  It propels the portly Interceptor Utility to 60 mph in a scant 5.7 seconds.  It’s the most popular engine with the CHP, Texas State Patrol, and the Michigan State Patrol.

Don’t forget what the Crown Victoria’s headlights look like.  The CHP bought 329 in 2011 before it’s production ended, and they will likely be in service until at least 2016.

I hope that you laughed yourselves silly over Roadkill.  Let me know what your favorite episode of Roadkill was!