Let me tell you, this epic battle is gonna make the Cuban Missile Crisis look like a kiddie squabble at the day-care center! Will Soviet-made Fiat technology triumph over 4,500 pounds of very rusty Detroit iron? Let's take a look at the combatants:
Otherwise known as the VAZ-2107, the Fiat 124-based Lada Signet was available in Canada right up through the end of the Cold War, so our own Comrade Teargaskov went up to Canada and brought back a running $200 example. This team isn't messing around; they've got a PA system in the car to crank the Hymn Of The Soviet People on the track, no doubt intimidating the other racers with the indomitable spirit of the revolutionary cadres, in addition to all the requisite red flags, hammer-and-sickle emblems, and the coolest 1921-in-Leningrad-style car numbers we've ever seen. Here's a little video that shows how seriously Total Loss Racing is taking this thing. The Lada is a simple, sturdy rear-wheel-drive machine and might rack up a lot of laps over the course of the weekend. Oh, did I mention that this race is a true 24-straight-hours event, with no overnight break to fix busted cars?
Now, when we heard that a Lada would be racing, we figured that nothing on earth could possibly challenge a Soviet car for the Index Of Effluency. Then Team Police Brutality (whose Lincoln Continental Mark VIII was one of the fastest cars at LeMons South) picked up a terrifyingly wretched '61 Cadillac sedan about two weeks ago… and figured that they had plenty of time to get it ready to race. No, really! Crazy as it sounds, they've got it most of the way there; the roll cage is installed, the engine runs, and the brakes are, uh, awaiting completion. The reason for all the urgency is that Team Police Brutality is racing to raise money to beat up breast cancer, LAPD style, and they're getting backers to pledge a buck per lap completed during the race to Susan G. Komen For The Cure. Want to join those backers? Go here and sign up! The question is, how many laps can a drum-brake-equipped rustmobile that hasn't budged for decades complete? More than the Lada? We'll find out next weekend!
Naturally, we need to make a contest out of this battle, with fabulous prizes from LeMons HQ for the winner. To enter, just put the number of laps you think each car will finish in a comment below. The course is about two miles long and the race will go a full 24 hours, so the faster cars that run the whole time might get 600+ laps. These two cars aren't going to be so fast, and they
will almost certainly might fall apart experience some technical difficulties on the track… but you never know! Win the contest and LeMons HQ will send you some shirts that they can't get anyone to buy at the races cool 24 Hours Of LeMons swag!
Total Loss Racing's 1987 Lada Signet