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Latest Stories in Columns

Rearview Mirror: In Search of Fellow Junkies

posted by on 22 February 2005 in Columns

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Hello, my name is Bryan (group- “Hello, Bryan!), and I’m a junkie. My addiction clouds my ability to think rationally, obscuring my ability to see a vehicle’s shortcomings if it can lure me with the scent of rich leather, the warm depth of genuine wood or the sensual touch of Alcantara. It’s not easy to say this, but I am an interior junkie, a full-fledged dashstroker.

Like so many others, the first time I tried it was in high school, in the front seat of my ’81 Rabbit. It was one of the horrible Westmoreland-built cars with the abysmally Americanized fake wood and velour interiors. That wood had to go immediately, and in no time the dash bezel was covered with a light dusting of matte black spray paint. That was about all I could afford on the four bucks an hour I earned working at the mall. A short time later, the factory headliner did what they do best, releasing itself from the roof panel and descending into my outward rear view. I couldn’t deal with the thought of pushing thumbtacks into its thin gray skin, so I pulled the entire thing out of the car, stripped all of the old material, and re-trimmed it in a nicer material. After these first two experiences, I felt pretty good, sort of “happy” in a way that I hadn’t felt before. More…

Guest Opinion: Old Money

posted by on 13 February 2005 in Columns

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My morning run takes me past what I affectionately call the “Mercedes House”. The cars change occasionally, but are usually clean, 1980s vintage Mercedes-Benz of various types. This morning, I was greeted by a 420SL in fantastic condition. You could feel the values it represented with its simple lines and robust structure. From the creamy […] More…

First In: Can James Bond Help Volkswagen?

posted by on 8 February 2005 in Columns

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Moonraker – A 1979 James Bond movie with memorable character names like “Dr. Holly Goodhead” (who thinks of this stuff anyway?) and now a major project by Volkswagen to develop more competitive vehicles for the U.S. market… More…

From the Armchair – How Lame Am I?

posted by on 31 January 2005 in Columns

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Ever since I helped bring VWvortex onto the scene back in the late ‘90’s, I’ve had an email address bearing the name of the site. We get emails all the time – from Viagra and appendage enhancement spam to suggestions or commentary on our editorial content. More…

Der Ölmesser: What To Do About The Beetle?

posted by on 25 January 2005 in Columns

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Some of you may not remember, but you’re going to have to trust me when I tell you there was a time when the New Beetle was cool… More…

Rearview Mirror: Am I the Only One Who Still Knows How to Park?

posted by on 17 January 2005 in Columns

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I’m a pretty humble guy. You won’t often hear me bragging about lap times or dyno results or wicked mods. Of course, that’s mostly because I don’t have a lot to brag about (insert modesty here). But there is one skill I am quite proud of, and that is my ability to properly park a vehicle… More…