“Trabantimino” : Liz Cohen

This is “Trabantimino” which is a based on an East German Trabant and now looks like it would feel at home on a Transformers movie. The car is now powered by a Chevy El Camino engine and the body separates to reveal the chassis using a collection of hydraulics.

The car was created by artist Liz Cohen as part of an exploration into DIY culture and a playful mix of identities and has one first place and special recognition awards in the Main Street Showdown Supershow that is held every year in New Mexico.





Liz Cohen was formely a photographer and during the 8 year project she took time to hybridize herself by taking photos, similar to those in found in car magazines, of herself in a bikini. After doing most of the hard work on the car by herself she was able to show herself not only as the bikini clad model but also as the car mechanic behind the project.


Liz Cohen (Source : Salon94)

Liz Cohen (Source : Salon94)



You can see more of Liz’s work by heading over to Salon94.


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The Bat Rod

Bat Man has always been know to have the coolest and fastest rides and this beautiful rod could be no exception. Unfortunately this is only a computer generated 3D model that was created by Mark La Frenais, but who knows, maybe one day…


If you would like to see more of his creations then you can hop over to his website which has a showcase for his talent.




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1954 Buick by Troy Trepanier

This 1954 Buick was the idea of Hal Wing and he approached Troy to build the car for him. Hal’s idea was to take a 1954 Buick and marry it up with G55 AMG running gear to create this beautiful car you see here which is known as the G54.

The car is powered by the G55′s 5.4 liter supercharged V8 which caused a few issues when trying to connect the engine’s ECU in a different configuration that it was originally designed for.





The car is finished in two-tone Chocolate Brown and Cognac Peal colors which look fantastic together. The interior of the car is finished in stitched brown leather together with many of the parts from the G55 AMG. Troy’s aim was to craftily combine the great looks of the ’54 Buick with the performance and quality that you would expect from a Mercedes.




Fitted to each corner of the Mercedes styled 5 spoke wheels fitted with the original Buick center-caps.





If you want to see more about this car then head over to the Rod Authority.

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1934 Ford Coupe

This is a 1934 Ford Coupe has a custom chopped and channel body all fitted to a bespoke tubular chassis.

The car is powered by a ZZ350 GM Performance Parts create engine delivering around 600 horsepower. The matching lime green butterfly flaps are fitted to the Demon carburetors and the power is delivered to the road via a Turbo 350 3-speed transmission.





Fitted at the rear are 20 inch one piece polished Mickey Thompson HR-1 wheels and at the front are two smaller 18 inch HR-1 wheels.





Inside the car is black leather also stitched in lime green thread. The dashboard houses a set of Classic Instrument gauges.

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Rodzilla

Now here is something you don’t see every day – its a 1928 Studebaker fitted with a 29 litre V12 turbo-charged Continental tank engine! As you can see from the pictures the chassis is not a standard one and was actually sourced from a truck as the engine alone weighs a tonne and delivers a massive 1400 HP. The builders report a quarter mile time of around 11 seconds and have developed a unique braking system especially to cope with the speed and weight of this spectacular hot rod.


The car itself does about 3.5 miles per gallon and has covered around 15000 miles so far without too many issues although if the power is applied to quickly the engine has been know to disintegrate transmissions and rear-axles!





You can see an interview with the builders via the Yokohama Motorsports You Tube channel.


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Suburu 360 Lowrider

Back in 2009 Edgar Hernandez decided that he wanted to build something a little different that would stand out from the crowd. With the help of Ruben at Audio Evolution he devised a plan to create this masterpiece from a 1969 Subaru 360 van, which was one of only 2,200 imported into the States.

The van sits on a fabricated chassis with air ride fitted to each corner to enable that ground-scraping appearance and is powered by a 1915cc VW engine.



Externally all the handles, bumpers and emblems have been shaved off with the body dropped over the custom chassis. The van actually comes with suicide doors as standard. The whole car has then been sprayed in PPG Parrot Green, which I personally love!





If you would like to read more about this neat little Subaru you can see it over on Mini Truckin’ Magazine.
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Kenny Francis

Kenny Francis

Kenny Francis, like so many of the drivers and crew members within the NASCAR circle, Kenny began his racing career at the age of eight whilst driving go-karts.  He was born on the 1st of December 1969 in Jacksonville, Florida and it was here  that he conquered the local tracks, gaining a state championship before moving up to the regional and national circuits.  In the late 1980’s he studied for a mechanical engineering degree at the University of Florida and it was during this time he  started to compete in the late model stock races at the local race tracks before finding himself traveling further afield to tracks in places like Myrtle Beach, South Carolina and South Boston, Virginia.  He was very successful, gaining many wins and poles but eventually it all became too much and in 1996 he decided to leave the driving to others and concentrate on the mechanical side of the sport.

He started working as a crew member with a local team who competed in the NASCAR Busch Series, learning everything from fabrication to setting up the cars. This was the beginning of his professional career.  Wanting to further his career in NASCAR racing he moved to North Carolina in 1998 where he joined the crew team with Butch Mock Motorsports with driver, Rick Mast.  The following year he was offered a job with Robert Yates Racing, working with Dale Jarrett for the season.  Kenny was well set up; he gained invaluable experience and a sound working knowledge while the team led Dale Jarrett to four wins, twenty four Top 5’s and the 1999 NASCAR Winston Cup Series (now the Sprint Cup Series) championship.  Kenny stayed with the team the following year and in 2001 he was offered an amazing opportunity to become the team engineer for the newly formed race team for the #9 Dodge, driven by Bill Elliott and owned by champion crew chief-turned-car owner Ray Evernham.  It wasn’t long before Ray Evernham became aware of Kenny’s qualities, both in the garage and at the track and Ray promoted Kenny to crew chief/team director of the #9, driven by Jeremy Mayfield for the 2002 season.  Kenny followed through on the justification of the promotion by leading Jeremy Mayfield to winning and racing his way to an appearance in the inaugural Chase for the Sprint Cup in 2004 and repeated the performance in the 2005 season.

At the start of the 2006 season Ray decided to reorganise the teams giving Kenny the job of crew chief to Kasey Kahne and the #9 Dodge team.  This was a move that was to prove successful as Kenny and Kasey started the season with two consecutive fourth place finishes in California and Las Vegas and gained their first Cup victory at Atlanta Motor speedway on the 19th of March, 2006.  From there the pair went from strength to strength, together they had a series-high of six victories, twelve Top 5’s,  nineteen Top 10s, six poles and 744 laps led, earning a place in the Chase for the Sprint Cup and giving Kasey an eighth place finish in the final points standings.  Kenny became one of four crew chiefs/team directors to compete in every chase for the Nextel Cup since its inception in 2004 and he became the only one to do so with more than one driver, the other being Jeremy Mayfield.  Kenny won the WYPALL* Wipers Crew Chief of the Race Award four times and finished 2nd in the Crew Chief of the Year 2006 final standings. In 2007 Kenny and Kasey were winless and the team underwent a change when George Gillett became part-owner but came back again in 2008 with two victories, one was the Sprint All-Star Race and the other the Coca-Cola 600.  More changes came to the team in 2009 when Richard Petty Motorsports became partial owner, renaming the team to Richard Petty Motorsports.

Kenny and Kasey had their most successful season since 2006 when they recorded two wins, seven Top 5’s and the most lead-lap finishes (27) of Kasey’s career, taking them into the Chase  for the Sprint Cup for the second time, finishing 10th overall.  In 2010 they won the second Gatorade Duel race and Kasey decided, part way through the season to leave Richard Petty Motorsports to drive the ’83 Red Bull Toyota for the final five races of the season.  Kenny stayed at Richard Petty Motorsports until the end of the season before once again joining forces with Kasey in the Red Bull Racing team.  Kenny and Kasey have been together for six seasons in 2011 and are one of the longest standing driver-crew line-up in the Sprint Cup Series.  Working well together they have accrued ten victories, thirty Top 5’s and twelve poles. They have also gained non-points victories in the 2008 All-Star event and 2010 Duels at Daytona.  These results make them a fearsome team in the Sprint Cup Series, Florida Residence: Mooresville, North Carolina

References:

http://www.redbullusa.com/cs/Satellite/en_US/Red-Bull-Racing-Team—Kenny-Francis/001242961975390

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kenny_Francis

http://www.wypall.com/crewChiefsBios.pdf

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Joey Logano

Joey Logano (wiki commons)

Joseph Thomas Logano was born in Middletown, Connecticut on the 24th of May, 1990, the second and youngest child of Tom and Debbie Logano.  Although there were no racing connections in the family it became evident at a very early age that Joey, as he is called, was interested in cars and speed when he was allowed to drive his father’s slow moving water-spraying truck.  His father bought Joey an 8hp go-kart, adjusting the pedals so that Joey could reach them and added a roll bar for extra safety.  Joey was enthralled with the kart and drove it all day. In 1996, at the age of six, Joey entered his first quarter midget race. He had a natural talent, demonstrated when he won his first Eastern Grand National Championship in the Junior Stock Car Division in 1997, gained another championship in 1998 in a Junior Honda Division and a further three championships in the Senior Stock,  Lt. Mod. And the Lt. B. divisions, in 1998, in the New England Regional Championships before the family moved to Georgia the following year.

In 1999 Joey won a Bandolero Bandit Series championship and was delighted to find that the state of Georgia did not have the same restrictions for racing that Connecticut had so he was able to take part in races against teenage competitors including, at the age of nine, a victory in a 2000 Legends Series event.  He set a record of fourteen consecutive wins at the Atlanta Motor Speedway. In 2001, Joey won the Lowe’s Motor Speedway and Atlanta Motor Speedway Bandolero Bandits division and at the age of 12, he became the youngest driver to compete at the Pro Legends level where he went on to win a national championship.  NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver, Mark Martin, noticed Joey and was later to call him “the real deal”, saying about Joey,” I am high on Joey Logano because I am absolutely, 100 per-cent positive, without a doubt that he can be one of the greatest that ever raced in NASCAR.  I’m positive.  There’s no doubt in mind”. In 2005 Joey competed in one FASCAR (Florida Association of Stock Car Automobile Racing) Pro Truck Series race at the New Smyrna Speedway where he started in first position and finished 2nd and still only fourteen years of age he competed in, and won, in the USAR Hooters Pro Cup Series.  The following season he continued in the USAR Hooters Pro Cup Series, competing in twelve Southern Division events, winning twice at South Georgia Motorsports Park and at USA International Speedway.  He also ran in one race the USAR Hooters Pro Cup Series, Northern Division and six Championship Series races.  NASCAR relaxed their age ruling in 2007 and allowed drivers to race from the age of sixteen up in the Grand National Division and Joey took part with thirteen starts in the Camping World East Series and won five races, three poles, ten Top 5’s and ten Top 10’s and won the series championship and the “Rookie of the Year Honours.

May 2008, after reaching his eighteenth birthday, saw Joey make his debut in the Nationwide Series, the Heluva Good 200 at Dover International Speedway when he finished a solid 6th, driving for the Joe Gibbs Racing team.  On June the 14th Joey won the Meijer 300 at Kentucky Speedway, making him the youngest driver to win a Nationwide Series race.  He won again on June the 14th and drove to victory four more times in the 2008 Nationwide Series. In January 2009 Joey was defending his title in the Toyota All-Star Showdown in Irwindale, California, running second after Peyton Sellers when on the last lap he ran the leaser into the wall, he crossed the line first but was disqualified by NASCAR for driving in an unsportsmanlike manner.  Tony Stewart left the Joe Gibbs Racing team in 2008 to drive for his own team and it was announced that Joey would race in the #20 Home Depot Toyota Camry in the 2009 Sprint Cup Series, starting the season at Richmond International Raceway.  In June 2009 Joey was leading the Lenox Tools 301 at Loudon, New Hampshire in front of Tony Stewart and Jeff Gordon when the race was called off because of heavy rain, giving him the victory and making him, at nineteen, the official youngest driver ever to win at NASCAR’s top level. On the 22nd of November 2009 Joey received the official “Rookie of the Year honours”. From 2007 to 2011 Joey has taken part in 164 NASCAR’s top three Series races, gaining 9 victories, 48 Top5’s and 85 Top 10 positions showing that Joey has proved that he is more than capable of holding his own in the company of older, more experienced drivers.  He is mature but young   and impulsive and his fans love