Here's The Video Finale Of My Battle With The City That Gave Me Six Weeks To Fix My Fleet Of Cars

After one of my neighbors complained, the city of Troy, Michigan told me in June that I had to fix and register my fleet of broken cars by July 31 or else. The problem was that one car needed an entire new front axle, another needed an engine rebuild, one needed to go to the junkyard, and one had the symptoms of a bad head gasket. I already wrote how this wrenching marathon worked out, but here’s what happened in video form.


This is about a month late, because after posting four videos on my progress as I worked to appease my city (which sent me a notice of ordinance violation back in June) my company, unfortunately, laid off Jalopnik’s video team. So the finale footage languished for many weeks until finally, now that I’ve already embarked on a completely different adventure on another continent, it is ready to be unleashed onto this world.

Before viewing that video above, you may want a bit of background if you’re not familiar with the situation. Here’s what the city of Troy sent my landlord back in June:

Illustration for article titled Here's The Video Finale Of My Battle With The City That Gave Me Six Weeks To Fix My Fleet Of Cars
Photo: David Tracy

Basically, the city told me that all of my cars that aren’t in a garage need to be both operational and registered. So I got to wrenching:

I sold my 1987 Jeep Grand Wagoneer, removed a Land Rover Discovery after getting it running with a new starter and battery, sent my Kia Rio to a junkyard, sold my 1948 Willys CJ-2A, and fixed my manual Jeep Cherokee XJ and 1979 Jeep Cherokee Golden Eagle (well, mostly fixed).

After telling me that I had to get the parts and tools off my driveway, the city inspector ultimately decided that my yard looks pretty enough, so all is well.

I’ll be slashing the fleet further when I return to the U.S., as my days of Jeep hoarding are coming to an end as I seek to find a bit more balance in this life of CARS CARS CARS.


(Also I bought another car in Washington state, so I need to make room for that and another donor car. More on that later).

Sr. Tech Editor, Jalopnik. Owner of far too many Jeeps (Including a Jeep Comanche). Follow my instagram (@davidntracy). Always interested in hearing from engineers—email me.


Chris Drives Old Paint

So what’s the right number of cars?

I say 6 is pretty good for a normie,when they are running. That can quickly get out of hand but 6 running is my goal.