Motor Mouth Blog

Come explore the musings of your fellow car enthusiasts. Get excited about the movement we are all a part of!

Filter

A Diary From The Road – Day 5: Friends Don’t Let Friends Drive El Caminos

By Rock Jenkins, State Farm, The Drive Home II and III Driver

It was an exciting day of driving as Bill reluctantly relinquished the Camaro keys to me for our cruise through the rural backroads of Alabama and Georgia on our 300-mile trip to Greenville, SC. The Hugger Orange Camaro SS is enough to make a hot rodder’s mouth water. It slid through the forested Southern woods on Highway 78 with the hood louvers glistening in the sun, while the cammed-up 350 with headers growled along, snarling occasionally at pedestrians as I down-shifted the four-speed through small town intersections. Continue reading “A Diary From The Road – Day 5: Friends Don’t Let Friends Drive El Caminos”

Read More

The Drive Home III: Days three and four recap

By William Hall, The Drive Home veteran

An early Friday morning start from a cars-and-coffee event at the Ace Cafe Orlando allowed us some much-needed repair time for The Drive Home III team in the radiant Florida sun.

Taking umbrage at my proposed pizza-box solution for the unhinged quarter window on the 1959 Cadillac Coupe de Ville, the Concours d’Elegance of America/Kettering University team swung into action. Within an hour, they had the rear seat and side panel out of the big coupe and a repair effected. After all, they did not want to disappoint their Kettering University Bulldogs—nor the Cadillac La Salle Club of New Zealand. Continue reading “The Drive Home III: Days three and four recap”

Read More

A Diary from the Road – Day 4: Grand Reunions and High-Flying Emotions

By Rock Jenkins, State Farm, The Drive Home II and III Driver

The Day 4 itinerary included travel from Tallahassee to Birmingham with a bit of a twist. Part of the group took a direct route, while David, Tabetha, Keith, Dave, and I hatched a plot to surprise AAT Marketing Manager Ashley Bice at her house in Niceville, FL. Ashley has participated in the past Drives, but more than that she’s been the main marketing, communications, and social media strategist who has made these efforts such a success. She would have been right along with us on the Drive Home III as well, were it not for the fact that she and husband Jay are within a week or two of having their first child. (BTW, she continues to drive our schedule and provide detailed coordination for us on a virtual basis from home while she and Jay wait for the big day to arrive.) Continue reading “A Diary from the Road – Day 4: Grand Reunions and High-Flying Emotions”

Read More

A Diary from the Road – Day 3: A TRIUMPH-ant Run

By Rock Jenkins, State Farm, The Drive Home II and III Driver

Ace Cafe Orlando pulled out the hosting stops again with a great Cars & Coffee event this morning, although it took a while in the 35 degree Florida temperature for the cars to show up.

Not to waste the opportunity, our crew busied themselves with fixing the back window of the ’59 Cadillac that had dropped down from its mechanism and replacing the voltage regulator on the ’62 International Travelette. Continue reading “A Diary from the Road – Day 3: A TRIUMPH-ant Run”

Read More

The Drive Home III: Day two – when problems arise

By William Hall, The Drive Home veteran

Any old car, especially those yanked from museums and displays and thrust into winter’s cold, must undergo a shakedown period. The cars on the America’s Automotive Trust/North American International Auto Show’s winter road rally to Detroit are no different, and now that we have some miles on them, little problems are starting to pop up.

The first was rather unexpected. The rear axle of the dually truck pulling the support trailer had a wheel-bearing failure, and was sidelined for a short time. A quick call to Hagerty Roadside Assistance got the truck off the road and repaired within hours. Of course, with the support truck temporarily down, this set the stage for drama with the other cars. Continue reading “The Drive Home III: Day two – when problems arise”

Read More

A Diary from the Road – Day 2: Fast and Furious

By Rock Jenkins, State Farm, The Drive Home II and III Driver

Day 2 found us moving up the eastern Florida coast from Ft. Lauderdale to Orlando. A leisurely 188-mile drive with six cars and our support vehicle, a 2016 Ford F-350 pulling a 36 ft trailer. Other than the usual I-95 weekday traffic it was a ho-hummer, except the El Camino seemed to struggle at highway speed with my pedal nearly to the floor and burp a backfire or two through the carburetor every so often in protest. When we made a stop, I reported the struggle to my partner Bill Hall and astutely asked why I was carrying 350 lbs of sandbags (for our displays) in the bed of my truck. I didn’t have a good answer so we moved the bags to the support truck trailer and it made a measurable difference in the El Camino’s performance. Continue reading “A Diary from the Road – Day 2: Fast and Furious”

Read More

The Drive Home III: Day one – bomb cyclone

The Drive Home III team assembled in Dania Beach, Florida. Derek Klein photo.

By William Hall, Drive Home veteran

It’s day one of the Drive Home III, and the annual winter classic-car road rally put on by America’s Automotive Trust and the North American International Auto Show in Detroit is ready for launch. Or is it detonation?

Lest I risk burying the lead on this story, it should be noted—at least for posterity—that we are about to drive these classic cars through the outer vortices of Winter Storm Grayson. That name makes this winter hurricane sound like a civilized English butler, so let’s go with the term The Washington Post prefers: “bomb cyclone.” Continue reading “The Drive Home III: Day one – bomb cyclone”

Read More

A Diary from the Road – Day 1: The Sendoff

By Rock Jenkins, State Farm Insurance, Drive Home II and III driver

Welcome to sunny Fort Lauderdale! Well, not quite, but the Drive Home III crew made the best of windy, rainy and cool weather with two great sendoff events on Day 1. The morning began with a hotel briefing for our expanded crew. Returning from last year: David Madeira, Vice Chair of the America’s Automotive Trust; Bill Hall, auto journalist for Hemmings Motor News and ClassicCars.com (driving the 1969 Camaro SS); videographer/photographer Derek Klein; and me (driving the 1972 El Camino). Continue reading “A Diary from the Road – Day 1: The Sendoff”

Read More

The Drive Home III: Home, on the road

Four of the seven participating vehicles outside The Creative Workshop in Dania Beach, Florida. Photos by Jason Wenig.

By William Hall, Drive Home veteran

If you’ve been an avid reader of the Hemmings Daily for the past couple years, you know that the New Year brings the promise of this humble correspondent sitting on his hands on a cold vinyl bench seat, peering through a frosted windshield as an ornery old V-8 engine struggles to warm-up in a motel parking lot somewhere in arctic America. Yes, it’s the third iteration of The Drive Home – the mid-winter vintage vehicle road rally by America’s Automotive Trust and the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS), to travel the wintry byways of the U.S. en route to the annual auto show in Detroit. Continue reading “The Drive Home III: Home, on the road”

Read More

A Diary from the Road: The Call to Adventure Part Deux

By Rock Jenkins, State Farm Insurance, Drive Home II and III driver

A year has flown by since the final team celebration dinner for the The Drive Home II when America’s Automotive Trust CEO David Madeira turned to me over margaritas and said, “So you’re in for next year, right?” Although somewhat exhausted from 10 days of driving and not sure how I would sell it to my wife, David is a hard guy to say no to, so I chirped, “You bet…”

State Farm is a major sponsor of America’s Automotive Trust and LeMay – America’s Car Museum, which is how I earned my driver slot for last year’s trip from Boston to Detroit. Oh, and also the fact that while watching the cars depart at the first Drive Home kickoff in Tacoma in 2016, I told David I wanted to drive in the next one and he called my bluff. Continue reading “A Diary from the Road: The Call to Adventure Part Deux”

Read More