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1966 Batmobile - Auto News and Events

Gearhead News

Photography by Courtesy Of The NHRA

The very first Mustang ever seen in a motion picture was the '64 Wimbledon White convertible driven by "Tilly Masterson" in the classic 1964 James Bond picture Goldfinger.

A Wimbledon White convertible with a 260 V-8 was the first Mustang ever built, coming off the assembly line on March 9, 1964. Once sold to a Canadian airline pilot, it's now on display at the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan.

The first publicly shown Mustang prototype was a mid-engine, V-4-powered two-seater.

The first Ford Mustang with rack-and-pinion steering was the '74 Mustang II. All Mustangs since then have had rack-and-pinion steering.

The Chevy Bow Tie logo was supposedly lifted from a wallpaper design in a Paris hotel.

Buick's round "mouse-hole ventiports" first appeared on the hoods of '49 models.

The first known legal drag race took place in 1949 on an access road to the Santa Barbara Airport in Goleta, California. Organized by the Santa Barbara Acceleration Association with the permission of the California Highway Patrol, a half-mile of roadway was fenced off for the competition.

America's Fastest Sedan
It's no surprise that Cadillac is going to start shoving the Corvette Z06 LS6 V-8 into its smallest car, the normally V-6-powered CTS sedan-the company has been talking about it for years. But still, there's something satisfying about seeing the car, called the CTS-V (as in V-Series), in actual sheetmetal at April's New York Auto Show. The CTS-V goes into production late this year and will be on sale early in 2004.

The core of the CTS-V is the 5.7L LS6 V-8. While the LS6 knocks out 405 hp in the Corvette Z06, in the Caddy it will be rated at 400 hp (most likely due to intake and exhaust differences). The engine will be backed by the familiar T56 six-speed manual transmission making this the first Cadillac available only with a manual transmission since 1941. The limited-slip rear differential carries a set of aggressive 3.73:1 gears and the CTS's brakes have been upgraded to giant Brembo discs up front and four-piston calipers on the rear discs. The six-lug hubs mount seven-spoke 18x8.5 wheels inside Goodyear P245/45WR18 EMT run-flat tires. The all-independent suspension has been lowered, a strut-tower brace is aboard and the interior is buffed up with thicker seats, a three-spoke steering wheel and metallic trim. The only colors offered will be Light Platinum and Black Raven.

The CTS-V ought to be fully competitive with the cars like the BMW M5, Jaguar S-Type R, and Mercedes E55, while carrying a much lighter window sticker. Pricing hasn't been announced, but expect it to run somewhere in the mid-$40,000 range-about $30,000 less than its euro-weenie competition.

What's not to love about this car? It will be the most powerful Cadillac ever, it's about the size of a Camaro, and it looks rather nasty. Could it be that here's a Cadillac worth saving up to own? We eagerly await thrashing the Hell out of one of these.

When it goes on sale early next year, the 2004 CTS-V will also be the first rear-drive, V-8 powered Cadillac since it executed the Fleetwood back in '96.

It's Mystical!
For the 2004 model year, the supercharged, 390hp Ford Mustang SVT Cobra will be offered in limited numbers painted with color-shifting MystiChrome paint. According to Ford, depending on lighting conditions and viewing angles, the MystiChrome Cobra's paint appears to change from topaz green to cobalt blue to royal purple, and finally to deep onyx black. Chrome wheels and an interior finished in MystiChrome leather on the seats and steering wheel complete the package.

Only about 1,000 Cobras will be equipped with the MystiChrome package during 2004, and since the paint and stuff shouldn't affect the car's performance in any way whatsoever, we enthusiastically endorse it for people who like it.

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