Drive Type: rwd
Cedar Rapids, Iowa, United States
The changes happening at the Petersen Museum have been making the rounds in major press, but it probably won't be until August 18, during Pebble Beach, when we get the full story on what's happening; that's where and when museum reps plan on announcing the way forward for the SoCal institution. In the meantime, the museum is still reorganizing its collection, and that means auctioning some of its showpieces at this weekend's Auctions America event in Burbank.
Three of the stars are a 1964 Shelby Cobra 289, one of less than 20 produced with a three-speed C-4 automatic transmission, a 1960 Mercedes-Benz 300SL owned by actor Robert Stack and the last 1948 Ford Sportsman 'Woodie' ever produced. The Cobra, now restored to its original white exterior and red leather interior, was a factory demonstrator that first sold for $5,250. Showing just 38,950 miles on the odometer, its pre-sale estimate is $800,000 to $1 million.
The 300SL is actually a 1957 model but wasn't titled until Robert Stack took possession in 1960. The lead actor in the The Untouchables TV series used to drive by the Sunset Boulevard Mercedes dealership to ogle the car, but couldn't justify spending the money to buy it. When he and the producer of The Untouchables won Emmys for the show, the producer, who happened to be Desi Arnaz, bought the car for Stack. He owned it his whole life, it has been left as Stack drove it and still bears the California license plate "UNTCHBL."
The Ford Mustang is already the lightest of the current crop of muscle cars, at around 3,600 pounds for a GT coupe with the six-speed manual transmission. That's almost 260 pounds less than a Chevrolet Camaro SS and about 450 pounds less than a Dodge Challenger R/T, which means the Mustang has a pretty big advantage when it comes to handling, braking, accelerating and economy. More good news: The next Mustang will be even lighter.
According to a report from Edmunds, the sixth-generation Mustang, which is set to debut at the 2014 North American International Auto Show, will shed an additional 400 pounds of body fat. That 11-percent weight reduction will be thanks to lightweight materials, with a particular focus on using stronger, but less material in construction. Aluminum will feature heavily, but Edmunds' inside source warns that there is "nothing terribly exotic" coming to the original pony car.
The other big news is that the new Mustang will be smaller overall. It's going to be 15-inches shorter than the 188.5-inch Mustang on sale today, while it'll also be 6.5 inches narrower. Shorter overhangs, both in the front and rear, are also good signs for those that want an agile Mustang.
Mark Fields' travels on the friendly skies will soon be a relatively personal affair, as the new CEO at Ford will be required to resume air travel via the company's private planes. Fields caught plenty of flak in 2007 for flying on the company's dime to visit his family in Florida. He's since flown commercial.
According to Ford spokesperson Susan Krusel, who spoke to Bloomberg, Fields (pictured above right, with Bill Ford, Jr. at center and Alan Mulally at left) will switch to private travel "for safety and to maximize his availability for company business." In addition to his new travel arrangements, the 53-year-old exec's salary and bonuses have been revealed.
Regulatory filings by Ford revealed that Fields, whose first day in the big chair was July 1, will receive a base salary this year of $1.25 million and he'll be eligible for $3.5 million in bonuses, both of which are lower than Alan Mulally's $2 million salary and $5.88 million in bonuses received last year. That's also lower than General Motors CEO Mary Barra's alleged $1.6-million salary and considerably less than Sergio Marchionne's $3.19-million fixed salary from Fiat. Despite falling short of other CEOs, Fields' new pay still represents a 33-percent increase over his pay as Chief Operating Officer.