Hot Rod September 2019

Start running with HOT ROD - the biggest, baddest, car-guy magazine in the business! We bring you the broadest performance car coverage you'll find anywhere. From one end of the smoking¹ rubber road to the other. Barn finds, hot rods, rat rods, race cars, home-built super cars, land speed racers, the latest Detroit iron, and classic muscle - if it¹s hitting the streets, you¹ll read about it here first!

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12 Números

en este número

3 min.
looking back, looking forward

Editor-in-Chief @john.mcgann Never in a million years did I think I would be writing the opening column in HOT ROD when I first set foot in the lobby of the Petersen Building as an employee in 2003. Employee isn’t technically the correct term, either; I was beginning an internship with Motor Trend under the tutelage of MT’s photographer, John Kiewicz. During my time there, I photographed every car in the long-term test fleet, participated in all the “Of the Year” shootouts, and drove a bunch of cool and (a few boring) new cars. They kept me around for five months until the internship ended. Two months later, I managed to land a salaried position with the company as the manager of the photo studio in an off-site location. “Managing the studio” meant…

3 min.
the power of failure

Network Content Director @douglas.glad I am in the unique position that my failures are public and therefore have a little more weight than someone blowing it in the privacy of their own home. Ten years ago, we would detonate an engine or forget how to install a part behind the scenes, reset, rebuild, and publish photos, captions, and data of our glorious successes. We’d make it look easy. Now, with social media and the 90-second news cycle, the pressure to get it right or be judged is high. We often hear that failure is not an option. The perception that failure is something to be avoided is the wrong interpretation. Failure is a tool for learning. Try more, fail more, fail fast, and learn from that experience. Fear of failure is the…

1 min.
andy granatelli’s pavement pounder

In the early 1960s, brothers Andy, Vince, and Joe Granatelli chose land-speed racing as the public proving ground for a new generation of Paxton superchargers. Their recent purchase of Paxton Products from the McCulloch Motor Co. brought with it a poor reputation for efficiency and reliability of a centrifugal design dating to the 1930s. Stodgy, practical Plymouth Division suffered from reputational problems of its own, at least among enthusiasts shopping for new-car excitement. Plymouth—which was always denied the powerful hemispherical V8s enjoyed by stablemates Dodge, Chrysler, and DeSoto—shared a high-performance engine, at last: 1962’s dual-quad 413 Wedge. The two companies’ mutual rehabilitation project was the twice-blown 1962 Fury photographed on the wrong side of this road by Car Craft associate editor Bud Lang. He explained the makeshift racetrack in Jean, Nevada,…

2 min.
the hot rod archives

20 YEARS AGO September 1999 (132 pages, $3.95): Fuel economy isn’t a subject that ever excited staff writers at cover-blurb meetings, except those arguing passionately against prioritizing mpg over old favorites like hp, mph, and e.t. A nationwide spike in gas prices inspired the cover story, for which we rounded up five 12-second, non-nitrous street cars, all EFI-equipped. A 17-page section followed HOT ROD’s fifth cross-country Power Tour, the first to originate in L.A. and take in Southwestern sections of old Route 66. 40 YEARS AGO September 1979 (108 pages, $1.50): Nothing here gives away the gloomy aftermath of this decade’s second energy crisis, though feature editor Bruce Caldwell’s Car Craft Nationals report acknowledged “high gasoline prices and spot shortages” en route before closing optimistically: “It will take more than a little OPEC…

10 min.
take 5 with jon kaase

Jon Kaase is an engine builder of a different sort. He bucks convention on a daily basis, motivated only by results, innovation, and pushing the limits of internal combustion. He’s the sort of guy who will stick his finger in an intake port at 7,000 rpm just to feel what the engine feels and garner a tactile take on a phenomenon previously intangible. He cut his teeth on drag racing in the 1960s, rubbed shoulders with the greats in the early days of Pro Stock, and his engines have competed in just about every form of motorsports available. From NASCAR to Mountain Motor Pro Stock and, most recently, offshore boat racing, he’s built it all. However, for all of his motorsports conquests, if you’ve heard his name, there’s a good chance…

1 min.
automotive archaeology buried aero warriors

Heading north from Alabama, there was a gentleman who had two Mopar Aero Warriors tucked away in his garage, a 1970 Plymouth Superbird and 1969 Dodge Charger 500. The Superbird was a running and driving car, but over the winter, the car is used as a shelf because there is limited space to store items. A 440 car with a four-speed, it had recently returned from the Aero Warrior reunion in Alabama. The Charger 500, however, had been buried for years behind a wall of life’s accoutrements. It took the owner and I a fair bit of time to dig out the front of the car to see what kind of condition it was in; you can see from the pictures the timeline for moving of the pieces, and the…