NALM 2018 Bidding Open, & Throwback Thursday: 2005 Meet Video

Posted in NALM, Throwback on December 7, 2017 by tysonhugie

It’s already time to kick off bidding for next year’s nerdy Legend extravaganza, otherwise known as NALM (the National Acura Legend Meet).  The event has taken place for 13 consecutive years now, spanning the country from California to New Jersey and many places in between.  I haven’t missed one yet.  Here’s a website I’ve been managing the has a few highlights and photos/videos from each of the events.

National Acura Legend Meet WordPress

Here’s the link for the announcement and instructions on how to bid to host the event:

AcuraLegend.org Forum NALM 2018 Announcement

And to get us in the spirit of things, here’s a blast from the past:  A 7-minute video capturing scenes from the event’s first program from May 27-29, 2005 in Dallas, Texas.  Special features include a car wash activity, close-ups of some special “custom” Legends, autocrossing action shots, the banquet dinner, and a night out on the town.  Check out event organizer Lee Horton getting sideways in his G1 coupe at around 5:30.  My coupe had around 171,000 miles on the odometer.

I also happened to come across this video of destruction of a G2 sedan while browsing the ‘Tubes.  Watch at your own discretion; it’s a little graphic!

And finally, on a brighter note, check out this video my friend Pat put together of his absolutely stunning 1994 Legend GS 6-speed sedan.  Drool-worthy for sure.

Happy Thursday, enjoy the rest of your week, and keep on driving.

Best Hits of the 80s & 90s: “Radwood 2” Car Show in Anaheim, California

Posted in California, Car Show, Legend, Road Trip on December 3, 2017 by tysonhugie

Odometer (Legend):  557,148

Trip Distance:  356 Miles

Let’s take a moment to appreciate my fashion sense in this photo from circa 1990.  I’m pictured at left here with my two brothers.  Rolled up jean shorts?  Check.

Popped collars, fanny packs, and porn-staches greeted me upon arrival to “The Phoenix Club” yesterday morning just a few miles from Disneyland in Anaheim, California.  It was almost as if I’d gotten stuck in a time warp and traveled back in history 20 years.  When I saw this Delorean a few minutes later with license plate “BKNTYME,” my suspicions were confirmed.

Yesterday’s event was the most brilliantly-executed and exciting car show I have attended in years.  It was something different, and something very “me.”

Radwood” was a contrast to go from the white-collar LA Auto Show media days which I attended earlier this week, with its forever growing ego-contest and snooty “the coffee at our booth is better than yours” attitude, to a venue where cutoff jeans are appropriate, Bud Lights are readily available, and Simple Minds’ “Don’t You Forget About Me” is blasting on the loudspeaker.  I loved every minute of it.  I only wish I’d invested in a slap bracelet, Hypercolor T-shirt, or some stone washed jeans ahead of time so I could better dress the part.  One smart attendee was even taking pictures with a disposable camera!  You know, the kind that you “click,” then have to manually advance the film.

This event was born as a small show in 2016 in the Bay Area catering specifically to the era of vehicles produced from 1980 through 1999.  Now in only its second year, the event shifted venues to a place with far more capacity and still sold out well in advance.  Thanks in part to clever partnership with Jalopnik, Clarion, Japanese Nostalgic Car, Bring a Trailer, and many other sponsors, the word was spread far and wide.

Attendees traveled from all around the country to attend.  One attendee – Peter Monshizadeh – drove all the way from Overland Park, Kansas, and entered three vehicles in the show:  His Dodge pickup truck, which was towing a trailer with his Nissan 300ZX and a period correct motorcycle.  That’s dedication.

And who could forget automotive journalist extraordinaire Jason Cammisa running around in booty shorts that would make Richard Simmons jealous.  This was a sight to behold.  Jason’s immaculate BMW E30 station wagon, among many other “feature cars” including my friend Chris Hoffman’s CRX, was on display in the main tent area near the stage.  Jason ended up taking home an award – a 1985 Nintendo game cartridge glued to a plaque, of course – for his Bimmer, and it was well deserved.  His enthusiasm added to the fun and atmosphere of the program.

I was in good company in the Honda/Acura family.  My friend Rob Pia proudly showed his immaculate, 130,000-mile 1994 Legend sedan in glistening Cashmere Silver Metallic, and next to him my friend Chris Green parked his award-winning 1986 Honda Prelude with only 50,000 miles on the odometer.

I had the privilege of meeting a couple of ‘new’ Legend owners, too, and had some friends stop by who live in the area.  Cars from all regions were accepted and recognized.  Even the 1991 Pontiac Bonneville parked in our row with nearly an entire keyboard of buttons on its steering wheel attracted lots of attention.  Another guy named Tyson who drives a beautiful black 1997 BMW M3 introduced himself and his car to me – complete with a period correct cassette tape sitting on the center console.

But how about this?

Perhaps one of my favorite vehicles was Ryan Glass’ 1992 Ford Explorer, which started life as a pretty ho-hum Eddie Bauer edition but has been extensively and painstakingly converted into a Jurassic Park movie icon.  “Spared no expense,” were the words that came to mind as he described to me the custom wrap, brochures in the back seat, bumper and taillight protector guards, and even a pair of velociraptor-spotting goggles on the passenger seat.

As the day carried on, I reflected on how much I appreciated the laid-back and friendly vibe at Radwood.  I hope the event continues its great momentum and carries on for years to come.  I’m already starting to brainstorm ideas for next year’s trip, and it might have to be in the Vigor since I didn’t see one this year.  Now if I could just get ahold of some Reebok Pump footwear.  Below are some more pictures and a short video!

I knew the day started off right when I saw this pay phone outside my motel in Orange, California.

I put my custom wheelstand to use that my brother hand-built for me out of aluminum.

Roll-in shot, thanks to Chris in the 1986 Prelude.

Photo with Rob in ‘vintage’ motif.

Ran into my friend Grant with his beautiful Mercedes SL.  Check that fanny pack, too.

One of two super clean generation 1 Legend coupes on display.

And another.  Becki was awesome!  How much Aqua Net did she need for her hair?

Visit from Penny.

Shooting the breeze with Jalopnik’s Andrew Collins.

A visit from Fred and checking out the Clarion Legend coupe.

The aforementioned 1991 Bonneville!  With a “LeBra” on the front, of course.

Love me a big-body Benz 560 SEC.

Original owner 1990 Honda Civic 4-speed manual with over 300,000 original miles.

Just $6,635 MSRP for this thing.  I think he got his money’s worth!

My friends Felix and Matt

Love the 1990s Mitsubishi Eclipses.  What happened to Mitsubishi?

Good NSX representation, too.

Sweet CRX, but look what’s on the roof.

That’s right:  Boombox and some cassettes!

Reconnecting with the man himself:  Matt Farah and his now-969,000-mile 1996 Lexus LS400.  I drove this car a couple of years ago and blogged about it.  It’s on a quest to hit a million miles.

Oooh, love this old 5-series BMW.

2G Integras with a super clean 3G Prelude.

My friend Derek, repping a Mazda 929 sedan.

Late night drive home to Phoenix!

2017 “AutoMobility” & Los Angeles International Auto Show

Posted in California, Car Show, Legend, Road Trip, Vehicle Reviews on December 1, 2017 by tysonhugie

Odometer (Legend):  556,770

Trip Distance:  379 Miles

Greetings!  I’m jotting down a few words here from the Media Center at the Los Angeles Convention Center.  LACC is now pretty familiar turf for me, as I’ve had the opportunity to attend a number of times.  Here are write-ups from my prior LA Auto Show visits:

I had to miss 2016 due to work engagements, but I still made it to some of the social eventsRedline Reviews‘ Editor-in-Chief Sofyan Bey was kind enough to extend an invitation to me so I could be a part of the festivities this year.

After two full days about about 10 miles walked between the South Hall and the West Hall to see all the latest and greatest, I can tell you there is a lot of change brewing in the automotive industry as a whole.  Personal mobility is taking on a whole new dynamic, as technology speedily moves toward an increased focus on autonomy.  As cars become faster, safer, and more efficient, similar strides are being made in self-driving technology.  It’s no mystery, though, that I’m a driver.  Is “automobility” something I should dread or embrace?

My trek to LA started on Tuesday afternoon from Phoenix in the Legend coupe.  It’s a tried and true road warrior, and certainly a more comfortable cruiser than the 1992 Integra I drove to Utah last weekend for Thanksgiving.  The closer I got to the epicenter of the 13-million-resident LA metro area, the more congested my beautiful open roads became.  I was delayed about 35 minutes on I-10 nearing Riverside thanks to a combination of accident + commuter traffic.  Gotta love it.  In all, the 379-mile one-way trip took me close to 7 hours.

Wednesday was a jam-packed day of press conferences, kicking off with a BMW presentation around 8:30 and a stampede of journalists migrating from one booth to the next throughout the day.  Some of the big news this year?  Oh just a few highlights that stuck out to me:  Lexus coming out with a 3-row RX SUV.  BMW launching a convertible i8 and new M5.  Mercedes has a new CLS.  Mazda’s next-generation 6 sedan is out.  Subaru has launched its biggest SUV yet, a 3-rower called the Ascent.  Nissan’s “Kicks” replaces the Juke, and Hyundai has its own new cute-ute called the Kona.

600 horsepower, all-wheel-drive BMW?  Hotness.  Not to mention that color.

Jeep’s Wrangler comes back again looking about the same but with a completely new chassis and lots more tech.  Kia debuts its new Sorento, Infiniti shows the QX50, and Lincoln ditches its alphanumeric naming conventions for traditional names like its new Nautilus (replacing the MKX).  That’s a step in the right direction, don’t you all agree?  It was a slow-ish show for Honda & Acura, with no formal press conferences but still plenty to look at inside the respective booths.  I can’t begin to squeeze two full days of automotive news into a few paragraphs here, but check out Redline’s YouTube playlist on the auto show for a glimpse at some of the sights and sounds we enjoyed.

The vehicles on display at LAAS are only part of the appeal of the event.  It attracts some of the world’s renowned auto journalists.  Our team ended up seated in the Media Center right behind most of the Jalopnik staff, including Andrew Collins who I can thank for this awesome piece he put together about a year ago.

The after-hours activities this year were just as entertaining, with a Hyundai-sponsored party the first evening at Novo night club, and a social event in West Hollywood the following night at Doheny Room where I connected with a few fellow journalists.  All too soon, it was time to again part ways with those colleagues.  The Redline team flew out Friday morning and I made my way (90 minutes to drive 38 miles – thanks again, LA!) toward Anaheim for a car show to be held Saturday morning.  More on that to come in a future post!

Acura booth with the redesigned 2018 RLX on display

Don’t mind if I do hang out here!

I admired some of Honda’s hardware while in the booth.  These dozen or more awards are just from this year’s LA Auto Show alone!  There are boxes and boxes of things like this sitting at the corporate office in Torrance.

Fellow car geeks Brian and Chris

Some of you may recognize this ‘other’ Brian – none other than the famous Brian Cooley from CNET.

Quick shot with the Redline team (Sofyan, Peace, Rob) and Honda’s Davis Adams.

Street parking the coupe in West Hollywood!

This might just be the best motel parking space I’ve ever had.  Huge.

Bonus:  A few pics from last weekend’s Thanksgiving trip to Utah

Brother’s redoing his living room and said I could park in it.  Why not?

My nephew Locke

Cruising around some of my old stomping grounds

HUGE shout-out to blog reader Eric who had this custom embroidered Polo shirt made up for me, with the date of my 555 milestone from back in October!  Thanks, Eric!

Over and out!

 

 

 

Reader’s Ride: “Clarion Builds” 1994 Acura Legend LS 6-Speed Coupe

Posted in Legend, Reader's Ride on November 24, 2017 by tysonhugie

It’s crazy how sometimes things come full circle:  How one day you can be standing in a dealership in Nevada looking at a used car, and then after that car travels through 13 years, 51,585 miles, 6 owners, 3 U.S. states and a Canadian province, the same exact car turns up in front of your face at a show 400 miles from your house.  That’s exactly what happened with a specific car that’s been on the show circuit lately with Clarion Builds, and I’ve had some close contact with the team responsible for it.

I’m a firm believer that every vehicle out there has a story to tell.  It’s one of the reasons I’m fascinated with visiting salvage yards and poking through the relics to try and piece together the life that each one lived.  Today, I’ll share a history lesson on this one in particular.

The vehicle wearing VIN JH4KA8174RC001646 is a special car.  For one thing, it’s one of only 37 Taffeta White on Ivory Acura Legend LS coupe 6-speeds produced for the 1994 model year.  But beyond that rarity, it’s special because of its notoriety in the Legend community as one of the best-kept in existence.

On June 7, 2004, this very Legend was 10 years old and had only 6,533 miles on the odometer.  The story, as I knew it, was that the car was held for that decade as property of Honda – stashed away in a warehouse somewhere in Torrance until finally brought to light.  How the Acura dealership on Sahara Avenue in Las Vegas got ahold of it is a mystery to me, but my friend Louie who was – and still is – in Sales at that facility was happy to pull it out of the showroom for my friend Jeff and me to slobber over in the daylight.

I was 22 years old at the time, and the proud fresh owner of my own Legend – albeit far more worn in at over 100,000 miles.  I drove the 90 minutes /100 miles from St. George, Utah to Las Vegas for the preview – even though I was nowhere near being able to pay the $25,000 asking price.  Check out that odometer!

These were a few more of the photos I took at the time when Louie pulled the car out and we parked it nose-to-nose with my own coupe (and its flashy 18″ Mille Miglia chrome wheels at the time).  Remember, I was 22.

I’ve been able to piece together a rough timeline on this Legend’s lifespan from 2004-onward.

  • May 27, 2004:  Sold at Desert Southwest Region Auction as manufacturer vehicle with 6,502 miles for $23,750.  For reference, this was a year after I had bought my 1994 LS coupe with 95,000 miles for $9,500.
  • June 7, 2004:  For sale at Falconi’s Acura in Las Vegas, Nevada 6,533 Miles
  • July 2, 2004:  Located in Mountain View, California
  • July 13, 2004:  Mountain View, California at 7,622 Miles
  • July 31, 2006:  Still in California at 12,708 Miles
  • Jan 23, 2007:  Left California per forum member Raxmaxwell moved to Dayton, Ohio
  • January 24, 2008:  Rasmaxwell listed it for sale on Acura-Legend.org with 16,000 Miles
  • September 20, 2009:  Purchased by Mitch in Indiana at 19,952 Miles
  • November 26, 2009:  Sold to Frank of North Reading, Massachusetts
  • December 7, 2009:  Passed safety inspection in Massachusetts with 20,551 Miles
  • February 7, 2012:  Still in Massachusetts with 40,666 Miles
  • Unknown:  Owned by Alaeldeen in Alberta
  • Unknown:  Owned by Jay in British Columbia
  • December 8, 2015:  Listed online, posted on Bring a Trailer for $12,500 with 56,000 Miles
  • January 26, 2016:  Back in California with 56,944 Miles
  • September 23, 2017:  Shown at Japanese Classic Car Show in Long Beach, California with 58,118 Miles
  • December 2, 2017:  Scheduled to be shown at Radwood, a car show in Anaheim CA focusing on 1980s-1990s cars.  I’ll be there, and I’m bound to see it again!

Today, the car shows just as well as it did the first day in 2004 when I saw it.  The build that it has undergone under Clarion’s ownership has been comprehensive but the car remains mostly stock.  Michael Farino from Clarion Public Relations shared some details about what has been involved.  Here is what he relayed to me:

  • Engine and transmission fully serviced by AutoWave
  • Paint and body completely reconditioned and repainted in factory white by Diamond Hills Collision
  • Suspension refreshed with OE springs and KYB shocks by Niguel Motors
  • Wheels replaced with refurbished OE 5-spoke wheels
  • Tires provided by Michelin
  • Seats reupholstered in Italian leather in OE matching Ivory color scheme by Westminster Upholstery
  • Stereo system supplied by Clarion:  NX807 source unit with Clarion speakers, installed by Beach Auto Sound

To those of us in the Acura classic car collector community (Should I call that the ACCCC?), it is great to see this car getting so much love and attention.  Having a pristine Legend being shown at venues like JCCS brings light and attention to a genre of cars that is often overlooked:  the up and coming 1980s-1990s segment.  Plus it helps people learn and appreciate more about the rich history and heritage in the Acura brand now that it’s 32 years old.

Many thanks to the folks at Clarion for sharing some information about this car.  I think they deserve some recognition for the hard work and diligence in restoring, preserving, and promoting it.

Here are some other photos from the Japanese Classic Car Show last month.

And a few great photos from Larry Chen, provided to me by the Clarion team.

 

Road Trippage: Silver City, New Mexico & Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument

Posted in Hikes, Integra, National Parks, New Mexico, Road Trip on November 19, 2017 by tysonhugie

Odometer (Integra):  242,335

Trip Distance:  716 Miles

Imagine how simple life must have been 700 years ago.  Yesterday, I walked in the literal footsteps of the Mogollon (pronounced moga-yon) people – a band of indigenous tribes who lived off the land through subsistence farming during that era, and who left behind a glimpse of what their lives consisted of.  Being without cell signal for 5 hours gave me but a very small taste of what it would have been like to be more in tune with nature.  And I liked it.

The southwestern United States is home to some of the best-preserved historic ruins thanks to predictable weather patterns and remote geography.  Almost exactly 110 years ago, President Theodore Roosevelt set aside about 530 acres in southwestern New Mexico as part of a national monument that today resides about 40 miles north of the town of Silver City.  For us Arizonans, that makes it a pretty accessible overnight road trip destination.  And this weekend, per suggestion of (and in partnership with) Driven for Drives‘ Jason Pawela, I checked it off my list.

I broke free from the Phoenix urban grid a little after 3:00 p.m. on Friday to make my eastward trip toward the New Mexico state line.  As was to be expected, I had to fight my way out on I-10 in commuter traffic but eventually was able to set the cruise on my Integra at 75 miles per hour.  I made just one stop, at Love’s in Benson, for fuel and a stretch of the legs.  The final 50 or so miles from I-10 at Lordsburg into Silver City were lonely and even a little creepy.  My ‘Christmas tree’ of dash lights (ABS, check engine, high beams, and cruise) were the only lights I saw aside from vivid constellations under the night sky – highly visible thanks to the area’s lack of light pollution.

Saturday morning brought us crisp 45 degree temperatures and blue skies.  I met up with Jason, James L, and James Z for a hearty Comfort Inn breakfast (complete with green chili on the side – total New Mexico thing!) and then we rallied our participants for this weekend’s drive:  2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvio, 2004 Mazda 6, and 1992 Acura Integra.  It took only a few minutes to lose cell service as we headed north on twisty Highway 15.  For only a 2-liter motor, the Alfa’s 280-horsepower 4-cylinder motor develops oodles of power and James was right on my tail.  I swapped keys with Jason for a few miles and was impressed at how smoothly his (‘new‘) Mazda 6 handles given its 180k+ miles.

It’s a good thing I was a driver, because I wouldn’t have lasted 5 minutes as a passenger with these curves.  For about half that stretch, the road was narrow, with blind corners and no painted center line.  NM DOT basically says “Good luck!” and to allow for plenty of travel time (they said 2 hours) between Silver City and the ruins.

After a brief intro at the Visitor Center which probably looks today about the same as it did in the 1960s, we headed to a parking lot & trailhead 2 miles up the road.  The dwellings in the area were believed to have been occupied around the year 1275 and are still remarkably well preserved.  The Gila River running nearby was the Mogollon peoples’ source of life.  By 1874 when explorer Henry Weatherbee Henshaw discovered and wrote about the ruins, some parts of them had been damaged.  But ever since President Roosevelt’s decision to make it a national monument, the preservation has been vigilant – we weren’t even allowed to take liquids other than water on the hike, and we were asked not to touch any of the walls with our hands.

To access them, we had to hike a one mile loop which crosses several footbridges.  There was a small brook running underneath them and the sound of waterfalls made it a therapeutic experience.  A steep incline further down the trail took us up the cliffside and then we walked through a series of 5 different “rooms,” each one laid out with a unique floor plan. What struck me was the savvy use of space and the distinct feeling of temperature and brightness in each room.  The south-facing openings were optimal because they would allow some summer sunshine to enter and heat up the rooms in the winter time, but kept them shaded during the summer when the sun was higher in the sky.

Much of the Mogollon peoples’ lives remains a mystery, and part of our tour consisted of a Q&A session with ranger Connie.  Connie took the time to point out a few key features and asked us what we thought they were.  They included a grinding stone, pictograph images painted on the walls, and architectural features of the caves.  Today, there are wooden step ladders leaning to the various rooms but some of the original infrastructure – including rooftops over some of the rooms – are now gone.  It took us about an hour to hike the circle.

The return trip to Silver City was once again ‘spirited’ in nature, and we made good time thanks to being a little familiar with the terrain by now.  Lunch was at Nancy’s Silver Cafe right in historic downtown, where the 3-taco plate was just what the doctor ordered to satisfy those hunger cravings.  We parted ways by mid afternoon and I sailed off into the sunset – literally, squinting at it the whole way – returning to Phoenix.  I did make just one stop along the way, in a town called Dragoon, perhaps in hopes I’d see a fire-breathing dragon.  But I did not.  I just saw a sign about some rattlesnakes and some run-down buildings.

Here are the rest of my pics from this trip, as well as a short video.  Thanks for coming along!

Getting ready to roll on out.

Welcome to the Trail of the Mountain Scenic Byway

Whoever picked purple for the lettering on this sign probably made the wrong choice.

We missed fall colors by just a few weeks…

… but in a few areas they are still very vivid.  New Mexico does get 3-4 inches of snow per winter at this elevation, according to Ranger Connie.

Visitor Center.  Entry fee is $5 per person for the hike to the ruins.

Making our way toward the dwellings.

The round hole here is where a wooden pole (supporting a roof) once would have been.

Climbing down the ladder from the largest room.

Some of the blackened ceilings in the caves are due to fires / smoke.

There’s lunch, for you foodies!

Headed home with a stop in Dragoon.

VIP HondaJet & NSX Event in Scottsdale, Arizona – November 11, 2017

Posted in Arizona, NSX on November 12, 2017 by tysonhugie

Odometer (Legend Coupe):  556,317

Odometer (Legend Sedan):  156,015

Odometer (NSX):  109,174

Got a cool $4.5 mill burning a hole in your pocket?  You might just want to look at the latest solution in business travel mobility:  A jet aircraft manufactured by Honda.  Restaurateurs, entrepreneurs, and wealthy businesspeople around the country now have the opportunity to travel in style and comfort.  The increased work-life balance, improved productivity, and reduced stress thanks to avoiding delays, layovers, security lines, loud passengers, and seat assignments are big motivators that Honda hopes will drive customers to pick up its HA-420 aircraft.

Plus, and here’s something I just learned, there are 398 airports in the United States with commercial airline service, but 3,052 airports that allow aircraft like the HondaJet to utilize.  So it truly does open the door to being in multiple places in a shorter amount of time.  “Welcome to your new corner office,” is the tagline for Honda’s foray into air travel which debuted in early 2016.

Just check out that cockpit!  Technology for days.  But does it have lane keeping assist, cruise control, or VTEC?

While such a lofty purchase won’t be making its way into my humble fleet any time soon, it’s fun to dream.  I had the opportunity at an event on Saturday night to get up close and personal with the HondaJet.  Its fine leather and high tech almost made me wonder, “How come this thing isn’t called an AcuraJet instead?”  It’s powered by the HF120 Turbofan motors, rated at 2,000-pound thrust-class with air start up to 25,000 feet, a 4.5 thrust/weight ratio, and 5,000 hours between overhaul.  That’s all a foreign language to me, but it’s said to result in best-in-class durability and reduced operating costs, something we can all surely appreciate.

Also on display in the private hangar were the ScienceofSpeed-built, stunning Nouvelle Blue Pearl 2017 Acura NSX customized for this year’s SEMA trade show in Las Vegas by Chris Willson and his team from Chandler, Arizona.  Ride-and-drive opportunities were made available on a first-come, first-served basis for attendees who wanted to take a lap around the block in Scottsdale’s Kierland area in a stock NSX.  The event was a collaborative effort by Phoenix’s 3 area Acura dealerships (Peoria, Scottsdale, and Tempe).

My friend Rob and I enjoyed hors d’oeuvres and beverages while having a look at the cars and chatting with other attendees.  And the test-drive later that evening in a “Curva Red” 2017 NSX did not disappoint.  The car drives, handles, and performs like nothing else I’ve ever driven.  If I play my cards right, I’d like to get my hands on one for a full 7-day evaluation someday.  I’ll be sure to bring you all along for the ride.

Premium parking for local NSX Club of America members was made available right in front.  I drove my 1992 NSX, of course, and was one of several “Formula Red” owners in attendance at the program.

Nice sunset overlooking the Scottsdale airport.

Ice sculpture!

Some of the night’s testers.

TLX A-Spec on display as well.

I had my Legend GS sedan out and about yesterday to clean out some cobwebs.  The car has a tendency to lose its battery charge over a few weeks’ time if not regularly started and driven, but purrs like a kitten once fired up.  I drove over to the Tempe area for a snapshot at the Mill Avenue bridge.  Temperatures were in the mid-80’s.

I celebrated a milestone on the way home.  The sedan has almost exactly 400,000 fewer miles on it than the coupe.

Hope everyone is having a great weekend!

‘Acura Day’ Video, Integra Maintenance, TL Sale, & Infiniti for Sale

Posted in Detailing, Integra, TL on November 5, 2017 by tysonhugie

Odometer (Legend):  556,317

Odometer (Integra):  241,282

Odometer (I30):  134,609

Hold up!  What’s that Infiniti odometer reading doing in the mileage lineup?  You’ll find out shortly.  Meanwhile, let me bring you up to speed on the latest & greatest in current events.  As my readers already know, on October 13 I was hosted at Honda/Acura headquarters in Torrance, California to participate in a short “enthusiast Q&A” segment with head of Acura Public Relations, Matt Sloustcher.

This was a photo taken with senior leaders of the brand, Jon Ikeda, Jeff Conrad, and Matt (to my left) after the program, with me holding up my custom personalized Acura jersey which I was presented as a gift.  Score!

Matt and his team were kind enough to get ahold of the 8-minute video segment for me, so here it is for your viewing pleasure.  Once again, thanks to the Acura team for letting me crash the party for a day.  I had a great time.

It’s been a busy last few weeks in the garage.  I finally had a few longstanding mechanical needs on the 1992 Integra GS-R addressed by my trusted friend and Honda know-it-all, Tait, also known as “Hon-Man.”  Here were the items I had him work on:

  • Oil and filter with synthetic blend 10W30
  • Manual transmission service
  • Recharge air conditioning
  • Replace hatch struts
  • Adjust window clearances for better wind noise abatement
  • Replace short shift lever with OEM

While the car was in there, it also got a new windshield so things are finally crystal clear from the driver’s seat.  I treated the car to a full (and much needed) detail yesterday, even getting into the nitty gritty details of the engine bay and radiator support with a toothbrush.  I’ll be sure not to put that brush back in the bathroom vanity closet.

Things ended up looking pretty magnificent, if I do say so myself, for having nearly 1/4 million miles on this motor.

I even cleaned up inside the fuel filler door.  Obsessive-compulsive disorder?  Nah!

Finished product tucked away in the garage.

On Friday I bid farewell to a car from my fleet.  While I only owned it for about 6 months and 5,000 miles, my 2007 TL Type-S was an incredibly fun car.  I enjoyed taking it on a road trip this summer to the far reaches of northern Utah and southern Idaho, but in an effort to reprioritize and evaluate financials, I simply couldn’t justify keeping this car – my 7th currently.  I was only driving it on average a couple of times per month, and it had a loan racking up interest.  Time to cut it loose.

So, better to let the TL go to a long-time friend who will enjoy it more than I’m able to.  My friend Dave from the St. Louis area flew in on Friday night and drove it away on Saturday morning.  Dave is no stranger to the Acura collector hobby, as he was one of just a few of to attend the very first National Acura Legend Meet in 2005 in Dallas with me.  His 1995 Legend LS coupe has since been handed down to his daughter.  Dave made it to Amarillo, Texas by Saturday evening.  And by the time he reads this blog entry, he’ll be home sweet home.  Congrats, Dave!

Short video with some clips from taking delivery.

Quick intermission:  I’m sure by now you’ve all seen the now-viral “commercial” for a 1996 Honda Accord EX coupe that was put together by a guy in California trying to help his girlfriend sell her car.  Entertaining stuff if you get the chance!  (And the car is now shockingly in the $100k+ bid range on Ebay, thanks to this clever advertising).

Finally, how about a shift in gears – literally – in a brand besides Honda?  I recently had the opportunity to pick up a very rare and very nice 1999 Infiniti.  On the surface, it’s not much more than a rebadged, upscale 4th generation Nissan Maxima.  But this I30, priced at $31,200 when it was new 18 years ago, is equipped with an ultra-rare 5-speed manual transmission.  Only a handful of Touring models like this one were configured in such a manner.  And today, my hope is that there’s some enthusiast out there who wants to give this one a good home.

To that end, I’ve listed it on an auction site called Bring a Trailer for a 7-day, no-reserve listing.  The highest bid as of this coming Friday afternoon, November 10th will take this beauty home!

Link to Bring a Trailer Auction

Check it out, and let your friends know if they’re in the market for such a ride!