The Wacky Racers

1973 A.M.C. Gremlin. (Image courtesy NY Times)

For all my fellow petrol-heads, here’s a wonderful article this morning in the NY Times about economy cars that plagued Detroit back in the 1970s.

Some of you may remember the AMC Gremlin, the Ford Pinto, and the Chevy Vega. In contrast, Germany had already created the VW bug, some thirty years earlier, which had already solved the small-car transportation equation. The US could put a man on the moon by 1969, but still couldn’t make an acceptable small economy car by then. This fact still baffles me to this day.

My 1968 VW Convertible “Lil’Car”.

If you don’t know it by now, I have a fatal fascination for wacky automobiles and am not a motorcycle-only snob. That’s why I drive a ‘68 VW bug convertible when I’m not riding the motorcycle. (What about heat? My beloved VW is in storage during the the winter time, unlike my motorcycle. Unfortunately, the small amount of heat that she can offer from her vents is usually accompanied by fumes and carbon monoxide.) You can read more about it here.