Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Pope Goes Green with M-Class Hybrid

Pope Benedict XVI will be the proud new owner of a greener Popemobile than his current G-class. It seems that Mercedes-Benz is equipping his Big-Pointy-Hattedness with a hybrid version based on the next M-class that will have the ability to travel up to 18.5 miles solely on battery power. That may not seem like much, but when you consider that the Vatican is approximately a half mile wide by just over a half mile long, you understand that he can have a wild night out with nary a worry.

The new Popemobile will likely again feature bullet resistant glass ("transparent armor" in industry speak) and myriad other security features. The power will come with a lithium-ion battery pack coupled with a 60-horsepower traditional fuel engine.
The Non-Poped 2012 ML
The current totally Poped-out ML

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The Economy Has Affected Everyone

Poor Petra Ecclestone had to not only settle for her second choice home in Bel Air-adjacent Holmby Hills (near the PlayBoy Mansion) but she wasn't able to cough up the $150-million asking price and could only manage to scratch and save her pennies to the tune of a reported $75-million.  You may have guessed who the 22-year old's father is, F1 Big Man on Campus Bernie Ecclestone, who himself has to somehow make due with a bank account of only $4-billion, but we hope that soon things start looking up for the clan and that Petra can someday buy the home of her dreams and not have to spend every waking moment wondering where her next meal will come from... or at least how long it will take the personal chef to locate her among the 57,000 sq. ft. house.

For the record, the home was formerly the largest private residence ever built in the United States when it was new, and was a custom creation made for Aaron Spelling, Producer and Creator of every TV show you can imagine from the 1970's through the 90's and became the lonely home for his wife and her staff after his passing in 2006.

Via TMZ: Candy Spelling Unloads Mega Mansion

Monday, June 13, 2011

Portland, Oregon Art Museum Knows How to Party

The Portland Art Museum is hosting a truly historic exhibit called 'The Allure of the Automobile" that is being guest curated by former Petersen Museum honcho Ken Gross from now through September. The cars featured include some of the most valuable, rare and desirable marques ever to grace the pavement (tho sadly most of these are no longer allowed move under their own power). The exhibit features everything from a Jaguar XK-SS personally owned by legendary car fanatic (and actor so I'm told) Steve McQueen, a Bugatti Type 57S in brand-appropriate black over yellow, a boner-inducing 1939 Talbot Lago, a prototype 1953 Porsche 550 (!!!), 1931 Duesenberg SJ convertible from my home state of Indiana, and my personal favorite, a 1961 Aston martin DB4GT Zagato bodied coupe, among several other stunners to a tune of 16-total vehicles on display.

The OregonLive website has a full  list of vehicles here.
The New York Times posted a cool story about how they maneuvered these beasts into the museum here.
Finally, the Exhibit homepage is here.

If you're local, or car-crazy enough to make the drive out to Stumptown, you may want to time your visit around one of the free weekend special events that feature specific makes every weekend for the duration of the show.

Cars in the Park is free and will take place Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
June 18: All Chevrolet
June 25: Italian Cars
July 2: Muscle Cars
July 9: American Vintage
July 16: Hot Rods
July 23: Mercedes & BMW
July 30: All Ford
August 6: Porsche
August 13: All English
August 20: Rod and Custom
August 27: Mopar
September 3: Two-Seaters @Meters
September 10: Green Cars

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