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2017 New York Auto Show: America First

This week I took a stroll around the New York Auto Show. What did I notice? American metal is stealing the show! Sure, the new E-class convertible looks great. The 911 Targa is just awesome. The all-new BMW 5-series continues its march toward perfection. However, all of these European cars appear tame and boring when compared to what is on the turntables over at the Big Three displays. When it comes to performance cars, America has suddenly “Trumped” the rest of the world! American cars are great again!

We are living in the 2nd Gilded Age of American horsepower. New cars from Ford, GM, and Chrysler have taken the performance wars to a whole new level. The industry has not seen anything like this since the late 1960’s when excessive American horsepower ruled the roads. Make no mistake, America is back and raising the performance bar to an astounding level. The Dodge Demon, Ford Mustang Shelby and GT, Chevrolet Corvette ZR1, and Camaro ZL1 all have preposterous amounts of horsepower. Like their muscle car forefathers, these new cars have massive amounts of raw power. But unlike the 1960’s, these modern American missiles are world-class cars.  They are well designed, good looking, and have fit and finish that rivals Europe’s best.

I’ve not had the pleasure of getting behind the wheel of the Dodge Demon but I can only imagine it’s a similar experience to reaching “Ludicrous Speed” on Spaceball One:

Here are the key performance stats on the new Demon:

Zero to Sixty in 2.3 seconds. Zero to one hundred in 5.1 seconds. It can do the quarter mile in 9.65 seconds at 140 miles per hour. The V8 produces 840 horsepower with 770 foot-pounds of torque! This is no ordinary muscle car, it’s a hypercar that blows the doors off a multi-million dollar Pagani Huayra.  You can buy it for less than $100,000!

Lee Iacocca is smiling and you should be too!

The New York Auto Show at the Jacob Javits Center

The new Mercedes E400 Cabriolet

The new G550 with a factory lift kit!

The new Acura NSX…its back!!!

Alfa Romeo is also back with a vengeance!

The new Bugatti

The new GT3, the best that Zuffenhausen has to offer!

The new Demon

The new Ford GT

The Shelby Mustang

Note the Recaro seats!

Now this is a Camaro!


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5 Responses to 2017 New York Auto Show: America First

  1. Philip Richter April 25, 2017 at 8:32 am #

    Peter, these are all great points! Sports Car Market publisher Keith Martin and I have long talked about that the “thrill” does not need to be found at 175 mph. In fact, there is so much to enjoy by rowing through the gears of a Mercedes 190E 16V on a back country Connecticut road. Keith derives great pleasure from driving old Alfa Romeo’s around Oregon. I also find that my old BMW motorcycles are way more enjoyable than riding new bikes. The power to weight ratio of these older machines is just right whereas all the new bikes are just so stupidly overpowered. You also picked up on the three best roads in America: The PCH, the Blue Ridge Parkway, and the Dragon! I need to drive those four cars you mentioned. Turtle Garage is looking forward to your guest writer appearance on the site!

    Make no mistake, American cars are back.

  2. Peter Neissa April 24, 2017 at 9:25 pm #

    The Shelby Mustang GT350R’s value with respect to performance is hard to beat by any standard, be it value, performance, and looks. The Dodge Demon is…the devil’s own fast car. American cars have finally arrived. Yet, to fully “enjoy” what these cars are capable of, one must head to the track. No street or highway in America can accommodate any of these new supercars even at their mid-level rev range. So as American muscle flexes its power it is engendering a new market, the “slow-go-fast car.” This new buyer slash new market is for the driver who wants to feel equally connected to machine and road for more than 2.3 seconds, perhaps, dare I say for more than 15 minutes? This new breed of driver/market wants to feel a car’s performance, but not have to wait for it until it “kicks-in” at 175 miles per hour at Laguna Seca. This new breed of driver wants to feel a car handle at the edge of the envelope on the Blue Ridge Parkway in Virginia, the Pacific Coast Highway from Santa Cruz to Carmel, or the Tail of the Dragon while crossing over from North Carolina into Tennessee. One can move through a tight s-curve at 35 miles per hour and be pushing the envelope and be exhilarated by a car’s performance. If you don’t believe me, try Route 125 crossing over the Middlebury Gap in Vermont and you will know more about yourself as a driver and your car’s ability to perform. Some manufacturers are well aware of this new rising tide and are now bringing cars to market and the good news about it is that most of the cars are less than 60k: The Mazda MX-5RF, Toyota 86, Nissan 370Z coupe, and yes, even a brand new Porsche 917 Cayman. Let the good times roll!

  3. Mike Kovac April 24, 2017 at 6:11 am #

    Dare I say the Lincoln Continental looked smashing inside and out. Sadly, at $80k fully loaded, most of these will end up as livery car specials.

    • Philip Richter April 25, 2017 at 8:25 am #

      Mike, I totally agree. The new Lincoln is stunning. The door handles and the rear door and quarter panel give it the look of an old Mulsanne Bentley. The new Continental is yet another great product coming out of Detroit.


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