On Saturday, March 4, the Nevada desert will be lit up with the madness of more than 300 off-road vehicles racing in one of the most famous events in motorsports: the Mint 400. This ratty old Volkswagen should be enough to keep up, right?
It’s midnight and it’s freezing. The tiny industrial park is dead and empty, save for one open garage bay. Bathed in harsh lights and fatigued by 48 hours of continuous work, six guys are dirty and bloody trying to turn the husk of an old BMW into a race car. They don’t have enough time. They don’t have the right…
Next month over 120 cars, trucks and motorcycles are leaving from Los Angeles to start the inaugural “Baja 4000.” Not a race, but almost 3,000 miles of adventure driving and little challenges this band of lunatics will try to complete in 10 days.
Ex-finance guy turned motorsports hero Bill Caswell rose to fame in 2010 by living so many of our dreams: dragging a $500 BMW from the bowels of Craigslist and racing it in big-league rallies. Now he’s back with even bigger ambitions, and somehow, still, remarkably unprepared. And I’m along for the ride this time.
The McLaren 675LT was pitched to me as the “practical supercar,” for reasons I tuned out immediately because I was too excited to drive a fucking McLaren. Then I had to put that claim to the test.
In India, southeast Asia and Far Cry 4, the three-wheeled rickshaw taxis known as “Tuk Tuks” are considered as perfectly normal means of conveyance. As far as I’m concerned, it looks like a damn deathtrap. And a lot of fun.
If you’re not familiar with the off-road vehicles Australians consider “iconic,” here’s your chance to see how well four of the all-time greatest hold up against the outback. And if you do know these trucks, you know they’ll be fun to watch.
The U.S. Geological Survey has incredibly detailed topographical maps of the entire country and now National Geographic is trying to put all of them online for free downloading. Use them to plot your next off-road adventure, make art or just ponder the majesty of our nation with.
If Porsche really wanted me to test the new Macan GTS in its natural environment they’d have sent me to the mall. But here we are playing rally cars in Colorado, on a public-road-turned race course with more turns than a small intestine.
After finally saving up for his dream car, a first-generation Acura NSX, Fred Plan wasn’t about to let it sit idle in some garage. He ended up putting a whole lot more mileage on the car than he’d planned, but his story’s a great example of “if you treat a car right, it’ll be good to you right back.”
Imagine rolling up to your high school reunion on a golden throne carried by your servants, like some pharaoh who thinks he’s a living god. That was the glorious awkwardness parking the Mercedes G500 4x4² at a Denny’s. That was only the beginning of a surreal weekend at the infamous Mint 400 off-road race with this…
Is an E36 BMW or a Lexus IS300 a better drivable tuner car? How many Jeep tattoos is too many? Why are off-road sports cars so hot right now? All this and more discussed on this week’s Smoking Tire podcast, featuring Jalopnik!
Acclaimed car nerds Freddy “Tavarish” Hernandez, Jeff Glucker, Chris Hayes and myself sat down around a few microphones to talk about off-road adventures, Freddy’s insane car collection and a few other bits of automotive news. Enjoy it right here right now!
AT Overland’s new Tacoma Habitat package looks like a really elegant solution for off-road camping comfort without the mass of a full-on RV.
The Trophy Lite we rented to race the 2015 Baja 1000 left it all on the course. Literally. If you think that looks harsh, you should read what it felt like to ride in the thing. [Image via the author]
Twelve hours in, I lost the last scraps of sanity.
The 2016 Nitto Tire King Of The Hammers is raging in Johnson Valley, California right this second and will be going strong through February 6th. If you’re interested in things that go fast, make noise, crash a lot and get driven by the same guys who build ‘em, you’re going to want to see this.
Royal Enfield is India’s main motorcycle brand. It’s known for cute quirks like odd shifter placement and reliably falling apart. But the slick-looking manageably-sized on-road/off-road Himalayan might be worth overlooking some shortcomings for.
Matt Farah and his gang of miscreants at The Smoking Tire have made a sequel to their road-trip epic All Cars Go To Heaven and it’s coming out on Christmas. This trailer is a peak at “what you do when there are no adults around,” and you’ve got three terrible but wonderful cars for an 819 mile road trip from hell.