Fluto Shinzawa

Boating: An Unfathomable History

Although Wes Selvidge has owned Sunken Treasure for a decade and has shown it at Lake Tahoe’s annual Wooden Boat Week for each of the last five years—winning the People’s Choice Award in 2003—he knows little about its history. Selvidge acquired Sunken Treasure in 1995, after the Placer County sheriff’s dive team fished the 14-footer […]

Motorcycles: Highway Star

Its considerable charm and utility notwithstanding, Vespa’s ET4, the 150 cc scooter with which the Italian company made its return to America in 2000 after a 20-year absence, does have its limitations. Although it is ideal for puttering along winding back roads or navigating city streets, it lacks the brawn necessary for highway travel, which […]

Car of the Year 2005 Chrysler 300C

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 owners will pocket the keys to the convertible version of the Lamborghini Murciélago each year, thousands of drivers have already acquired the […]

Car of the Year 2005 Lotus Elise

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. The 6-foot-4 Harris, who had somehow managed to fold his frame into the car’s claustrophobic cockpit, placed his […]

Car of the Year 2005 Acura RL

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 extended test-drive in this sleeper candidate. It proved to be time well spent.   Although initially not eager to drive […]

Car of the Year 2005 Cadillac CTS-V

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. “I like it,” Harlan said of the car. “There’s a disconnect between the name of the car and how it […]

Feature: Finishing Touch

For eight months, craftsmen working on Solemar, a 202-foot Amels yacht, hammered and sawed and welded at a heart-pounding pace. Then on June 12, 2003, a Thursday, their frenzied efforts turned frantic as they tried to beat their deadline and enable the ship to begin its maiden voyage from Amels’ Vlissingen boatyard in the Netherlands […]

Feature: Designs of the Times

When he was 12 years old, Michael Furman snapped what he thought was his first automotive photograph. However, when he viewed the developed film, rather than the image of the bright orange 1963 Corvette that had sped through his Philadelphia neighborhood, he saw only the empty street; the shutter speed on his camera was too […]

Boating: Growth Spurt

To executives at Hinckley, the Maine builder of sailboats and jet-powered craft, the focus-group studies they conducted in 2002 confirmed what they had speculated for the last decade. Casual boaters and Hinckley dev­otees alike indicated that they wanted boats longer than 30 to 40 feet, the company’s core products, and would consider other brands when […]

Autos: Crying Uncle Sam

When the 2003 Cadillac CTS first arrived on the showroom floor, recalls John Howell, director of product development, company executives were worried as well as excited. The CTS, which featured a brash, sharp-angled exterior, was Cadillac’s first attempt at revitalizing its lineup with what it called “Art and Science” styling, and the company, with reservations […]

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