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Monday
Aug252014

Cobble Beach Concours d'Elegance

Last year we had the opportunity to attend the inaugural Cobble Beach Councours in Owen Sound.

We were pleasantly surprised, and told everyone that it was a superb Concours in a truly unique location.

This year the Concours is on September 13 and 14, if you have an interest in cars, and especially classic cars we urge you to attend the Cobble Beach Concours d'Elegance.

Its a pleasant, scenic drive from the GTA. Once you arrive the scenery is spectacular, the amenities, and food courts will impress you.

In case you remain skeptical, take a moment to view our photo gallery from last year...click.

The official press release:

A car as old as Canada is set to compete in the 2nd annual Cobble Beach Concours d’Elegance

Toronto – July 16… The automotive world’s elite collectors are set to return to the shores of Georgian Bay on September 13 and 14 for another installment of the Cobble Beach Concours d’Elegance. Hailed as the crème de la crème of car shows in Canada, the second annual Concours will build on the success of its inaugural competition, rolling out a can’t miss lineup of automobiles—including a model dating all the way back to 1867.

The lush fairways and a coastal backdrop of the Cobble Beach Golf Resort will set the stage for this historic celebration.  In all, over one hundred examples of rare automotive beauty and ingenuity, curated from some of the most exclusive private collections in North America, will compete head-light to head-light in twenty-one entry categories.

 “Cobble Beach is immensely proud of our success in year one. We are committed to creating a lasting, quality show that Canada will be proud of,” says Rob McLeese, founder of the Cobble Beach Concours d’Elegance.  “We are honoured to welcome new celebrity judges and automotive personalities from across the continent in 2014, including former Pebble Beach Concours Chief Judge Ed Gilbertson, New York Times automotive contributor Mary Chapman, and Michael Spezia, Executive Director of the Gilmore Car Museum”

Adored legend Margaret Dunning, a 104-year-young car collector will also return among distinguished guests, Chief Judge John Carlson, Honorary Chief Judge Dr. Paul Sable, and Ed Lucas as Master of Ceremonies.  Incidentally, Margaret Dunning will be featured in a new book by first-time Cobble Beach judge Mary Chapman, titled Belle of the Concours.

While the Concours d’Elegance is still in its infancy in Canada, the tradition finds its origins in 17th Century French high-society, where horse-drawn carriages were paraded through the parks of Paris. It is fitting then, given its history, that a steam buggy dating back to the year of confederation in Canada be trotted out for competition as part of the newly minted Museum Class. The Canada Science and Technology Museum in Ottawa will enter their Taylor Steam Buggy, also known as Canada’s first car. In all, four museums will be making contributions with; The Canadian Automotive Museum (Oshawa), Gilmore Car Museum, (Hickory Corners, MI) and the Antique Automobile Club of America – AACA (Hershey, PA) rounding out the group.

Proceeds raised by Cobble Beach Concours d’Elegance will go to the Sunnybrook Hospital Foundation to fund a state-of-the-art helipad on the rooftop of the Toronto hospital.

McLeese says, “Our inaugural year raised over $50,000 for the Sunnybrook Foundation. We are committed to giving our very best to support this important cause dear to our hearts and community. The Sunnybrook helipad will directly affect Grey County residents by providing trauma cases faster access to medical support, ultimately saving lives.”

Tickets are on sale now. Visit http://www.cobblebeachconcours.com/ for more info.


Saturday
Aug232014

Automotive Design History

Saturday morning automotive history...enjoy!

 

 

Friday
Aug222014

Vroom Room

Good Morning,

Its Friday, its the Vroom Room, come in enjoy the cappuccino and biscotti, join the conversation, leave a comment.

We are slowly catching up to a few items that were slightly behind, while being a little whimsical during this summer that is probably breaking records for miserable climatic conditions.

The pool with the chairs is whimsical.

Hopefully in the next few weeks we will be ahead of the 8 ball.

Simply scroll down to see our whims of this past week.

If you have not followed our Project 200K, we urge you to take a look. Why are we still tolerating this older 2003 E500 that is almost 12 years old now? As much as we can complain about the money we have spent/invested on this car (it would make monthly payments on a new vehicle). There is a patina, character, history about an older car that we find endearing, and is priceless.

Now that the Monterey events and Pebble Beach Concours are a done deal. Have you noticed that the price of some collectible cars are at "nose bleed" heights. Creating some memorable WoW moments. Lets give credit to the auction houses for their superb marketing efforts especially when it comes to establishing provenance and credibility for the various cars being sold.

The 375 MM Ferrari owned by Jon Shirley as best of show was totally cool.

Our habitual old race cars from the Rolex Monterey Reunion...enjoy!

 

 

Thursday
Aug212014

Craftsmanship in The Showroom

The other day it struck us, there is a lack of craftsmanship in dealer showrooms. 

Think about this, almost half of the time dealers take a "trade" when they sell a vehicle. Although there is an abundance of technology and software in putting a value on a vehicle, and managing the trade in process.

There is a lack of craftsmanship dealing with the moment of truth, and closing a deal.

The attention is on salesmanship, product knowledge (up to a point) but the craft to close a deal with a trade. The innate sense of profoundly understanding that both the seller and buyer and selling and buying. In 2014 with all the technology that is available persists in befuddling a myriad of folks.

Instead of being easier, enabled by technology, it persists in being a challenge, its persists in reverting back a generation.What folks call old school.

Dealers have been taking trades for 100 years. You would imagine that by now the craft of closing a deal with a trade would be well known, understood, and practiced.

Its not the case, the seller (dealer) turns into the buyer, and the buyer (customer) turns into the seller. Think about this for a moment.

You have to wonder how much gross profit gets squandered, left on the table, when the dealer becomes the buyer of the trade, instead of the seller of the vehicle.  

Agreed, no webinar, seminar, can quickly teach the fine art and craftsmanship of dealing with a trade on a win/win basis.

Its a craft that unfortunately takes time to learn, understand, empathize the emotions, decision process, and practice.

Perhaps its the reason many dealers have a centralised showroom process.

What do you think?

 

 

Wednesday
Aug202014

427 Truck Engine

A bit of nostalgia this morning. If you have been around this business long enough you remember, and perhaps you even sold GMC trucks with 427's way back in the day.

Here is the deal:

Back in the day a GMC or Chevrolet truck with a 366, 5 speed, 9 front, 18,500 2 speed in the back, 10.00x20 tires and a 27,500 lbs GVW was the standard of the industry. These trucks sold by themselves, they had such a reputation of being the best.

At one point GM truns the 366 to a 427, as an aside this was not the same 427 as in cars, it had a tall deck block, and was used in trucks and marine applications. Although the 366 was bullet proof. The 427's were not lasting as long. 

Numerous folks at GM were scratching their heads as to why a 366 would easily last over 200,000 kms in a truck and the 427 was barely lasting 100,000 kms. 

Here is another deal:

Been in the business long enough you hopefully remember a company called McCallum that was transporting GM vehicles from the factory or rail heads to GM dealers in eastern Canada. McCallum had a numerous tractors with 427's pulling their trailers. Yes...they did not last very long the 427's.

GM in Canada enlisted McCallum to run various tests on various configurations of 427's. GM will install an engine in a McCallum truck, have the truck cover a speciifc mileage, take the engine out, replace it with another engine. Obvious do a meticulous tear down of the engine taken out of the truck. Yes...the old tachographs were helpful during the tear down.

The conclusion...not enough gas flow, the 427 required appreciably more gas than the 366. The by now iconic single 200 liter step tank with an electric fuel pump for the 366 created instances of fuel starvation with the 427. The solution...dual step tanks with dual fuel pumps.

Another deal:

In Canada, a 427, with a 5 and 4, 12 front, 38,000 in the back, with an Hendrickson suspension was the standard dump truck for countless years.

At the time GM had the medium duty truck market "locked up" with the 366 and 427.

The last deal:

Yes...the 427 were strong performers on the highway, very strong. Fuel economy...don't ask.