Claremore, Oklahoma, United States
The horsepower wars are tightening among the Detroit Three, as the Ford Mustang, Chevrolet Camaro and Dodge Challenger are getting bigger, more powerful, and yes, more fuel efficient.
That came into sharper focus this week as more information was revealed about the most insane Challenger ever - the 707-horsepower Hellcat - followed quickly by Ford's in-depth showcase of the 2015 Mustang in Dearborn.
It's shaping up to be a golden age for enthusiasts, and what's under the hood is becoming more important than ever.
Auto enthusiasts love a good debate, whether it's Mustang versus Camaro or Ferrari against Lamborghini. But how about a battle between two very different vintages of classic pickup trucks? In this case, the fight is between a 1979 Dodge Li'l Red Express and a 1933 Ford Model 46 truck with a flathead V8.
The shootout comes courtesy of the internet series Generation Gap, and its concept is super-simple. One guy prefers classics, and the other likes newer rides. They choose a category, pick two vehicles and put them head to head. In this case, neither is exactly modern, though. The Ford is more than old enough to receive Social Security checks, and the Dodge is hardly a young whippersnapper.
Other than both being pickups, these two models were made to serve very different functions. The Li'l Red Express was basically the progenitor of today's muscle trucks, with a big V8 that made it one of the quickest new models in its day (admittedly, 1979 was a rough time for automotive performance). On the other hand, the '33 Ford was just meant to work, with little pretense for anything else. One of the hosts describes it as "the simplest, most difficult" vehicle he's driven because of the tricky double clutchwork necessary to shift gears. Scroll down to watch the video and try to decide which of these two American classics you would rather have in your garage.
Even though Chrysler will reportedly discontinue the Dodge Durango after the current model's lifespan - said to be around 2016 - that isn't stopping the automaker from improving its full-size, three-row SUV. The vehicle won't debut at the New York Auto Show until tomorrow, but images are already leaking out ahead of the embargo lift, and they show that the 2014 model is getting even more aggressive styling to go with more technology inside and out.
Dodge limited its early press shots of the new Durango to just the R/T trim level, but this new look adds a meaner look to this model with more dramatic projector-beam headlights along with a "floating" crosshair grille and a restyled fascia. At the rear of the Durango, LED racetrack taillights show a family resemblance to the Charger and Dart, while a new rear fascia adds to the styling while also allowing for an integrated trailer hitch.
On the tech side, the instrument panel looks to have been redesigned to include a standard seven-inch thin-film transistor (TFT) gauge cluster, and it also appears as if Chrysler's well-liked UConnect system has been updated with the 8.4-inch touchscreen found in other Chrysler vehicles. The 2013 model's conventional console shifter has been replaced by a rotary knob for gear selection, suggesting that there are transmission changes afoot as well. We'll have more details when the silks slide off this big boy tomorrow, so stay tuned.