Searching for the Chazmobile
On the past couple livestreams, I’ve been looking for cars with you all and have gotten it down to smaller groups to consider. A lot of you ( a lot ) really want me in something fast and I turned a lot of them down, so we’ll start with the sports cars that made it this far.
@titleguy1 , @MGR_99 . @Ryan93 , @MrChips , @Simmer22 , @strop , @Elizipeazie , @Xepy
(A couple mods here and there may be missing, they didn’t count against the cars)
One of the first that caught my eye was a pristine FABEL Betelgeuse. It’s a blisteringly quick GT car for its time with a V6 in the rear taking it to 145 mph in style. Its well put together with real clean lines and lightbar for days. The interior is hand-made. The thought of me owning a hand made classic would have sounded impossible a few years ago but here we are. The major drawback here is that its such a nice car that I’ll be afraid to drive it anywhere. Stuff will break on this thing and I don’t think parts will be easy to find.
That brings me to the Bermag Kanin TRI18 4S. Another car I didn’t consider would be in my range at the start is this rally monster. A fully utilized 200hp engine makes the Kanin a beast and it looks the part too. I mean, there are 37 speed holes on this thing. It was made to be driven to the limit…which isn’t something I would do often outside of the odd track day. Like the Betelguese, owning a car this rare and especially not driving it how it was built to be driven seems like a waste of a good car on me.
On the other hand, there are cars like the Halcon Salvaje GT. What is appealing here is its size indicates its not trying to do anything more than be a fun little everyday sports car. Its power perfectly matches its size. Its got sweet 80s looks with the T-top and louvres, and its got gullwing doors! Its also a bonus it they didn’t just completely sideline safety because its small. It might not be as much to this car as some of the others, but it’s a good sports car in its own right.
The Kimura K1300-C Sport-Xi is in a similar vein for me, but this one is more appealing. Moving into the 90’s, the K1300 has distinctive styling that for the most part holds up today. It is again very small and has just 100hp, making it well balanced with its solid engineering all around. It pushes all the right buttons for me.
One I didn’t expect but am pleasantly surprised to see is the legendary MM Legatus Gen.II Vivace. This is unquestionably the best driver’s car of the bunch. Timeless styling with seamless popups and great proportions are after my heart. It squeezes every inch of performance it can out of a 145hp 4 cylinder engine. Huh, It also happens to make great fuel economy. Yes its something I want to drive, but I don’t think it’s the right fit for the channel as it is just a great sports car and doesn’t really encapsulate what we’re about here.
Lastly, we have the Anhultz-Tristella Dione. It has less wow factor being a heavily tuned version of a relatively boring looking car, but Tristella did a lot to supe this thing up. It is very high strung and technologically advanced for the 80’s. The interior is nice and has a lot of space, but the performance is the main draw here. It’s a lot of car for the 80’s and it’s a lot for me too. I feel it falls into the same problems as the Betelguese with the added fact its just not as cool either, so I’ll have to pass.
So, out of the sports cars I’m considering, I think the Kimura K1300 comes out on top for being a unique with sensible performance while the others were either too much or not interesting enough for me to go after.
@Dorifto_Dorito , @mat1476 , @mcp928 , @Maxbombe
Next, we’ll look at what I saw surprisingly little of but was more interested in: oddball family cars.
Naturally the first up is a turbocharged performance car, the ACA DLX STO. The DLX STO is mean. It looks like murder. There is some archaic charm to how its engineered and designed, but hold up the stats to most other cars in the bunch and its uh…not a great anywhere but on a straight road. Doesn’t matter much to me though. Who doesn’t like carbureted engines with turbos from 1980? It is admirable how cheap and simple it is for something this unique. Its definitely got the cool factor going for it, but I think I can find something a bit nicer.
That something nicer could be the Warren PMC Portland V10. Yep that’s a V10 alright, usually reserved for trucks, high power sports cars, and performance German saloons is in this giant late-malaise American barge. That doesn’t make it fast though, 0-60 in 8.7 seconds, extremely squishy suspension, pretty much everything you would expect. The interior is full of buttons and switches and old digital screens. I’m not sure why Warren didn’t throw in a good size V8 and call it a day when the V10 is slightly more sus. There is a lot to unpack in this car.
Now for something different, the Spander BA 1990. This is a production concept car, I’ve never seen anything like it. Have you ever seen a 5ft deep dashboard before? Or how about a plastic stripe made out of the same material as the taillight coverings? These things don’t make sense of anything but a Spander, and it pulls it off somehow. It has a very competent aluminum I5 engine and overall the BA would be a fantastic family car on paper. In reality the styling (which is a plus for me) and reliability (ok that’s not as good) kept it from really breaking out like it could have. It might be hard to find one in good shape, and the understeering may kill some of the fun in actually driving it, but its still a very promising choice.
The Warren and Spander are both great candidates, but I have to give the edge to the Spander even if purely for its creativity.
@HybridTronny , @CorsicaUnknown , @balkanski_brat
We saw an awful lot of hatchbacks. Again many were just too fast for my tastes, but some still made the cut.
I’ve already gone over the Kanin and Dione, so next up is the CZA C-151 Polje 1.8 4x4 USDM. Its…a lot smaller than it looks in pictures. Really, this could be compared to the off-roaders but as I understand it, it started out as a hatch. Its cheap and relatively straightforward in engineering though it has a bit more power than I would expect. Styling is clean and everything is in its place. Nothing too out of the ordinary, this Yugoslavian hatch would make an excellent little off-roader I could thrash around without worry.
Going down the list we have the Atera Molecule CXi. Wow putting these into groups still doesn’t help with comparing much does it? The Molecule is a happy little kei car with a soft top. Looking deeper into it, It has absolutely insane fuel economy at 57.3mpg and VVL. Maybe that has something to do with how expensive it is, let alone the used kei car tax you usually run into with cars like this. I’m not so sure about this one anymore.
Next we have the Kadett Beatbuggy. Phew, that sure is a design. What kind of car is it? Yes. This is like pure concentrated Chaz energy right here. Obviously it has its quirks to unpack, the roof is cool and I hope it holds up in the winter ok. Engineering is safely out of the sus zone, and it manages to be very cheap despite all the features. This might get a “Of course that’s the thing Chaz point’s out”, but I don’t know why it needed a window-in-window design. It could have been so much more open and the design doesn’t really necessitate it in my eyes. Sure, its small, but so is that rear side window.
Out of the hatchbacks here, I’m going to have to go with the Kadett Beatbuggy here. The Atera is suspiciously expensive and the CZA doesn’t do as much to stand out for me. There isn’t much contest.
Off-roaders and Trucks
@yangx2 , @Falling_Comet , @Tzuyu_main , @TheRoadRunner36 , @Centurion_23
This group I was perhaps the most impressed with how appealing they were as a whole, so let’s see what we got.
One of the more wildcard options is the Arak Apricia Spyder. Funky styling and very capable off road performance despite its body shape make the Apricia stand out. I feel a bit more could have been done to really make it look the part and not just an experiment but it’s a minor gripe. No front sway bar but there is a rear sway bar. I don’t think I’ve ever seen that before. The car is small but the interior is surprisingly nice. I wonder how well it dailies on top on off-roading.
Now we have the Seikatsu Lapis PROJECT VALENTINE N+. A retro car with even retro-er styling, sweet. The front is more convincing than the rear but it still looks great overall. Its small, but not kei sized. It makes modest power, but it doesn’t really need more to do what it needs to do. I just might be permanently sitting in the right lane if I get onto the highway. It may not be flashy on paper, but the biggest draw for me might be just how unkillable the Lapis is. Its bulletproof and cheap to maintain when it does fail.
When you need more SUV, you get the Yama Sharyo G4 CM. It is the most SUV. Just a beast of an engine, there is nowhere the Shayro can’t reach, and it does so with relative comfort. You can tell its off-roading prowess just by the commitment to the approach and departure angles and overall utilitarian look of the design. Ignore the gas spending, its not real. You can’t really ask for more room inside. Also would you look at that, right hand drive.
Another strong contender for me has to be the Innis Chief Tillamook Half-Tonner BR Sleeper. Innis has a big bro-y reputation (I’m willing to bet you know at least 1 “Kyle” that owns one), but they also make some cool stuff you might not have heard about, like this ultimate road trip truck for the Brazilian market. The styling is subtle with multiple bumpers, exposed roll cage, and golden paint. Its not a ton of power and the performance won’t totally blow your hair back, but its 1982, what are you gonna do? It does truck things very well and also sometimes does van things.
Lastly, we have the Kinusoka Super-Trekker Turbo XT. Not unlike the Apricia, the Super-Trekker is a compact offroader, and its also yellow. There is something very pleasing about how this little ute looks. It just entices you to have some fun with it. Its real cheap and reliable, which is great because they are so rare here. It may not be the most easy or safe to drive, but I really appreciate it for what it is (this is a great use of this body).
The off-roaders are in a much tighter competition, The Apricia and Super-Trekker both hit the fun factor well but I think the Trekker takes the edge between the two. The Lapis hits a cool niche that is tempting, but I think I could use a bit more car than that. The Innis checks a lot of boxes for me too, especially in the quirks range, but I have to say, as soon as I laid eyes on the Sharyo I knew that was the one to beat for the trucks, and the others fall short despite being great in their own right.
But wait, there’s more…
Amphibious GT sports cars
Strangely there is only one car in this group, and that is the Morton Korio. It is perplexing how good the Korio is at being a car when many other amphibious cars failed to be useful enough to hit the mainstream. It is expensive, but what you get for the money is a very nice looking premium interior, faster than average performance despite aero disadvantages, and oh yeah, you get your own personal yacht to go with it. It seems to be very resilient to age and easy enough to own and operate. I wonder how much I would actually take it in the water but I think once I pop the cherry I would be more comfortable with it. The 3 abreast seating seems like it would be uncomfortable when 2 would be enough but its something different, par for the course.
The Morton Korio is great but I think the Morton Korio has the Morton Korio beat in this group.
This leaves us with the Morton Korio, Yama Sharyo G4 CM, Kadett Beatbuggy, Spander BA 1990, and the Kimura K1300-C Sport-Xi.
So, lets go back to some of the things we are looking for in these cars.
Style: Well, these cars all have it in spades (at least I think they do). The Kadett might be a bit quirk overload, and the Spander might look a little gimmicky, but the others nailed it. I’m particularly impressed by the presence of the absolute unit and how well the Kimura’s styling aged. The designers at Morton seemed to think of everything when it came to mating form with function.
How do these cars drive? The Kimura again is well balanced and looks to be the most fun on roads. The Korio is probably the best on water idk, the Beatbuggy is just a competent no frills car, the Spander works but might be the most dull to drive out of this group, The Sharyo is powerful and comfortable, but a little difficult to get the most out of the engine.
The Spander also falls behind in reliability, even compared to a sports car and a boat, while the Sharyo is a tank. This is a tradeoff for how much more comfortable the Spander is compared to most of the entire field of cars we’ve seen. All of these cars are cheap enough for me, but the Beatbuggy feels like a particularly good bargain. The Kimura is the worst of the bunch to take long distances.
This is difficult, juggling stats and prices aren’t how a Chazmobile should be decided. Pure gut instinct, that’s how we’ll do it….
….and my gut is saying get the Yama Sharyo G4 CM.
It really was the car to beat when it was posted, and though some came close, nothing quite left the impression this did.
Congratulations @Chrysler a57 Multibank !
Top 15 for hosting:
9th: @mat1476 & @mcp928
13th: @Ryan93 & @MGR_99
Thank you for participating in this huge round and for being patient with me. I’m sorry this took so long to get out. I enjoyed the round but I’m gonna go ahead and say this is the last round I will host.