Another visit to Classic Throttle Shop

CTS_June_14 (63)There are some things you just do without question; acts that are almost mandatory given another related occurrence. You never change oil without also changing the filter, and you never get behind the wheel without first belting up. In what’s becoming somewhat of a similar ritual, you never make a visit to Sydney without also stopping in at Classic Throttle Shop.

CTS_June_14 (2) In the 21st century we are connected to the world in an unprecedented way – I’ll bet at least some of you are even reading this from the bathroom. The impact of technology is changing the world forever and can be felt everywhere in our society; even frontiers seemingly unrelated are being forced to adapt or die. For example, the internet is replacing newspapers as a primary method of news delivery which leaves the door open for magazines to deliver a material experience, and online shopping is apparently devastating the retail industry. Adapt or die, right?

CTS_June_14 (6)Any smart business person will tell you that a threat is often opportunity in disguise, and what we’re learning is that technology can’t deliver an experience. Industry leader Deus ex Machina is brilliant at delivering an experience, and new players like Zen Garage are fast catching up. I’m sure the Peel Microcar sitting on the shelf in this image is a hint at where I’m going with this, which is why Classic Throttle Shop has quickly become an essential Sydney destination. I wonder how many people with the necessary means stop by for a relaxing Saturday morning coffee only to spot a lithe Porsche 911 in the corner, stew over it for the weekend and then return during the week to make a purchase.

CTS_June_14 (72)Case in point – this track inspired but oh-so-clean E30 M3. It made me weak at the knees on first sight, and had I the means it would be eating away at me right now. And the fact that it was converted to right-hand drive at brand new in the UK by the dealer just sweetens it further. Continue reading

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Adelaide Motorsport Festival Media Launch

AMF_Media_Day 905The upcoming Adelaide Motorsport Festival was launched to the media last week with a display of several important racing cars on the Victoria Park circuit, including two Formula One cars that raced in the Adelaide Grand Prix in the eighties.

AMF_Media_Day 909The inaugural event, to be held on the weekend of 12-13 April, has been described as a virtual ‘museum-in-motion’ and celebrates South Australia’s rich motorsport heritage. The event commences on Saturday with the (still to be confirmed) Windy Point Hillclimb, although Sunday’s Victoria Park Sprint will be the headline component and the one that draws the crowds. A section of Wakefield Road will be used to link up a complete circuit with the permanent section of the Clipsal 500/Grand Prix circuit in Victoria Park, creating the perfect setting for the competition vehicles to stretch their legs in the heart of the CBD fringe.

AMF_Media_Day 893Ten Formula One vehicles have so far been confirmed for the event, including the first ever Lotus F1 car from 1957, a 1974 March, the Beatrice Lola Hart driven by Alan Jones in 1985, his 1980 World Championship winning Williams and the car’s shown here. It will be a rare opportunity to not just see these cars, but to hear and experience them being properly worked as their designers intended. Continue reading

Any Given Reason Burger Meet 3

BurgerMeet3 627The concept of Burger Meet is simple – a car park meet to get as many readers of Any Given Reason and their cars in the same place as possible. The emphasis is on diversity and informality, and the vague idea of standing around a car park eating burgers is about as far as the planning goes.

BurgerMeet3 525On the evening of Saturday 28th December, the readers of Any Given Reason descended on the Hagen Arms Hotel at Echunga in the Adelaide Hills to watch the sun set with burgers, beers, and of course, cars. And what a spectacular array of cars it was – but more on that later.

BurgerMeet3 518The thing that makes organising Burger Meet such an exciting, rewarding and completely terrifying experience is that I have absolutely no idea who actually reads and follows this blog. I get traffic statistics but they’re just abstract numbers and graphs, so when I put the word out that Burger Meet 3 was happening I had exactly zero idea who and how many people would actually come. I guessed about 80 cars and thought it would be pretty cool if we could fill the car park, but when streams of cars started pouring in and it wasn’t even the 6pm start-time yet, I started to get a little nervous/overjoyed. Continue reading

Driven – FPV GT RSPEC

DSC_0178At Any Given Reason we’re all about actually driving our cars as their makers intended. However, as the speeding fine that came in the post this morning attests, this is not always a feasible thing to do anymore. As alluring as the dream of you, a GT3 RS and an empty hills road is, the harsh reality is seemingly blanket 80km/h speed limits and Orwellian laser detection cameras. I feel almost ashamed to say this, but I fear that so long as you value the possession of your license, driving a GT3 on said hills roads would, for the most part, be an extremely frustrating experience and a constant exercise in self restraint. So that raises the question – is it actually possible to have fun driving slowly?

DSC_0186To answer this question I’ve arranged a drive that is quite different to what I normally do. In fact, more than just arranging a drive; I’ve organised a bit of a social experiment, if you will. The car I’ve chosen just happens to be the fastest accelerating Australian car ever made, but on this drive I really just want to find out if it’s any fun to drive at 50km/h. We’re going to go and cut a few laps of the city on a Saturday night and see if we actually enjoy the experience. It could go either way, but somehow I suspect the FPV GT RSPEC is going to be the right car for the task.

DSC_0247I’m standing waiting on Grenfell Street’s footpath for our 11pm rendezvous, the bass line of the DJ’s tunes emanate from the pub across the road; a group of tipsy girls walk past me, hardly noticing my presence as they discuss their next venue. But it’s not long until another bass line roar can be heard echoing off the buildings, and as I look up from my phone the jet black FPV stops kerbside. And it’s an especially mean looking machine in RSPEC guise – the glossy black duco offset by red striping on the bonnet and down the side, red wheels and a red spoiler, with large ‘BOSS 335’ lettering in relief. I can hardly believe that it has more street presence than the 911 Carrera that passes by as we take in the details, but it does. The humble Falcon has come a long way.

DSC_0165 Continue reading

The cars of the legends dinner

Even the biggest mysteries of the world have a way of explaining themselves. In a previous post I mused as to why there was a HDT Bathurst Torana sitting on the showroom floor of Adelaide BMW, and as it turns out it was merely there a little early for last night’s Legends Dinner. Any Given Reason reader Tom Gilbert tipped me off (thanks Tom!), and it seems that somebody had the brilliant idea to assemble some of Australia’s most important race cars in the same room as the drivers who drove them, and invite whoever was lucky enough to hold a ticket to have dinner with these automotive and human legends.

Unlike Tom I wasn’t lucky enough to hold a ticket for the dinner, so I did the next best thing – I dropped in for a 730am visit the Sunday morning after in the hope of catching a glimpse of some of these cars. There were a couple of guys from Adelaide BMW cleaning up around the showroom, and they very kindly allowed me to come in and have a look around. The solid lineup of HDT cars was very impressive.

This Torana has lived many lives. It was originally used as a rally car by Colin Bond, and was then transformed into an unbeatable sports sedan and driven by Captain Peter Janson. It’s been restored but a small patch on the roof has been left showing the many historic layers of paint that lay beneath. Does anyone have any more info on this car? Continue reading

A warehouse in Broadview – 4 Monaros and a GTHO. South Africa meets Aussie muscle.

I’m not usually one for Aussie muscle, but nonetheless I was intrigued when I stumbled upon this little collection the other day. As I was becoming disenchanted with the low quality of used cars I was browsing at a yard, my eyes wandered through a sliding garage door that was partially open. It was an old classic looking warehouse and inside were several old cars, covered in panel beaters dust. All the salesmen were busy making the hard sell to other customers, so I slipped in for a look and snapped these photos on my iPhone.

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