Automobiles

For a few years in the early and mid-1970s, one Italian coachbuilder abandoned the voluptuous rounded forms for which Italian cars had become famous and enjoyed a brief affair with the wedge...
The wailing exhaust note of a Porsche V-10 engine is not a wake-up call option at most resorts. Nevertheless, that distinctive reveille echoes early one morning off the high walls of the Chateau...
Born in the wake of the 1961 Palace Revolt at Maranello, the Breadvan is perhaps the most instantly recognizable Ferrari—for both its quirky name and radical silhouette. This legendary car will be...
Early in Jack Smith’s writing career, the Philadelphia Inquirer dubbed him “Our man on the macho beat” for his coverage of the French Foreign Legion, pro football, and lion taming, and for surviving...
Sipping a cocktail while lounging in the Patio de Caballos at the elegant Hacienda La Boticaria Hotel near Seville, Spain, BMW board member Burkhard Goeschel gestures toward a new bronze BMW M6...
City streets, interstates, and showrooms abound with two-seaters masquerading as racecars built for the street. They are only perpetuating a myth, for tailpipes the size of toilets, a turbo or two,...
The public had yet to catch a glimpse of Speed, Style, and Beauty, the exhibit that ran from March through early July at Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts, before the controversy began. The MFA’s...
Equating a Cadillac with one of GM’s economy marques might seem like slander, but Car of the Year participant Bill Harlan intended it as a compliment when he dubbed the CTS-V a Pontiac in disguise. “...
From the outset, I was impressed with the appearance of BMW’s new-Bangled 7 Series sedan. Its unconventional lines seem to reflect the spirit of designs produced by Italy’s carrozzerias in the 1950s...
If the meaning of the Maserati Quattroporte’s descriptor is not obvious, it is Italian for “four doors,” but it does not refer to something stodgy, slow, sensible, and Omaha suburban. This is an...
Once in a rare while there appears an automobile that has it all and will go the distance, and then go beyond the farthest horizon. It must be born with a magic and with a design of perfect...
Whenever I get my hands on the latest 911, I cannot help but compare it with its predecessor. True confession: I never really loved the 996, despite using one as a daily driver for many years. It was...
Oscar Wilde argued that the only excuse for making something ugly is that it be useful, while the sole justification for an utterly useless object is its inherent beauty. This principle may obtain in...
The Chrysler 300, as proven by multiple sightings of black, white, and blue variants on the roads of Napa Valley, cannot claim exclusivity as one of its trademarks. While only several dozen fortunate...
Not long ago, Land Rover—with its Range Rover and Discovery—held a monopoly on the luxury SUV market. Then Lexus joined the fray in 1996, and before long the competition also included entries from...
Herb Harris, one of the Car of the Year participants, steered the Lotus Elise into the parking lot at the Napa Valley Reserve, killed the engine, and took a deep breath, for the hard part was next...
My favorite modern Lamborghini is the Gallardo. In fact, it is my favorite sports car, period, for reasons elucidated in last year’s Car of the Year issue. That said, the Murciélago Roadster leaves...
Bentley’s 2005 Arnage T is a lovely leftover, a mechanical souvenir from distant days when Rolls-Royce was its builder and any thought of an ownership change was just a gleam in the eye of Volkswagen...
Commonly referred to as the C6, the sixth-generation Corvette had been the subject of much speculation over the last few years. ’Vette enthusiasts may not be as fanatical in their devotion as those...
Excepting the exotic SLR, the bad boy in the Mercedes-Benz convertible clubhouse is the SL55’s bigger brother, the SL65. It is an amazing creation in terms of engineering, and its stealth factor is...
While most of our Car of the Year guests descended upon Meadowood on a Wednesday, a few, including myself, reached Napa the previous day. The Acura RL also made an early arrival, granting me an...
To publicize their company and challenge themselves, Frank M. Rinderknecht and his team at Rinspeed, an automotive aftermarket company in Zumikon, Switzerland, have built a one-off concept car each...
Although its finances were precariously stretched by participation in various racing formulas, ranging from the grueling Formula One championship to hill climbs, Maserati nevertheless committed to...
The MC12 marks a new era for Maserati, whose last international race victory came in 1967, when a Maserati-powered Cooper Formula One car won the South African Grand Prix. As a manufacturer, Maserati...
While supercar test-driving is not part of the everyday activities at the Equinox , located in southern Vermont’s Manchester Village, the resort’s Country Pursuits program does include off-road...
A side from several understated features—aluminum side mirrors and a slightly modified spoiler, for example—the Audi S4 resembles a standard-issue $28,000 A4 sedan. A punch on the gas, however,...
The airliner touches down in Bologna, a group of Italian teenagers on board cheers and applauds and then breaks into a beautiful operatic aria. This is the introduction to Italy for a visitor...
When Mercedes-Benz executives huddled together four years ago to develop plans for a brand-new model, they wisely looked no further than their own stable for ideas. After all, there they had the S-...
For the last five years, American auto enthusiasts have been able only to watch with envy as their European counterparts snapped up the Pagani Zonda C12 and the more current and more powerful Zonda S...
The interstate highway traditionally has been the playground for bikes bearing the BMW propeller. But the German manufacturer, known for producing cruisers that can complete cross-country journeys...

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