Friday, October 09, 2009

My American Car Wishlist

I don't even know why I'm writing this, but I am. It serves no real purpose, but I don't feel like writing about O'Bamie getting the Nobel Peace prize (cough--JOKE--cough). Anyway....

As many of you do, I dream of the things I'd do if I somehow came into more money than God... like winning the lottery, although inevitably, none of us really even play the lottery it seems.

Some dream of exotic foreign vacations or houses, or insane shopping sprees. Truthfully, all I think about is cars. Yes if I had millions, I'd buy houses and go on vacation too, but even before I'd move, I'd buy a car-- or 10. "Great priorities," my parents would say. It's all hypothetical though. Give me a break.

So, here are the parameters I've set for myself. Buy the 10 sickest, American, in-production cars there are-- fully loaded of course. Classic cars and practical cars are lists for another time. So here we go (in no particular order). I encourage you to listen to Bob Seger and other Michigan-based tunes while reading this.

1.) Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon

Truthfully, this is currently the vehicle I'd buy right now if I could. There's nothing better than driving in the open air... especially when it's in a badass, American icon like the Wrangler. This new four door incarnation was introduced in 2005, and catches my eye on the road every time. They are a little underpowered, but obviously in this hypothethical situation, I'd immediately get rid of that 202 hp V6 and put a 6.1L Mopar Hemi in. America!

MSRP: $32k

2.) Chevy Silverado 1500 Crew Cab

My favorite trucks on the road have improved so much since my '98 2500 that it's unbelievable-- and that was an unbelievable rig. They are powerful, capable, and drop dead gorgeous. For my purposes, I would give this a 6 inch lift and some 35" BFG Goodrich's... pretty standard. Of course, I'd opt for the 6.2L V8. Yeah, that's the one that churns out 403 horses.

MSRP: $44k

3.) Lincoln Navigator L

Why the Navigator over the Escalade you wonder? Well, I like the looks of the Navigator better actually, which runs contrary to my usually GM-centric preferences. The front is almost presidential looking. Plus, I think the interiors of these behemoth are more inviting. The navigation that pops out of the dash is sick. It doesn't have as much power as the Caddy, but, this is a hypothetical remember? It would just serve as the luxo-cruiser that this 10 car collection needs. Tell me this isn't a beautiful vehicle...

MSRP: $62k

4.) Dodge Challenger SRT8

This remarkably sexy throwback muscle car had me drooling the first time I set eyes on her in a magazine. Strong lines, retro styling, and potent powerplants make the Challenger an extremely tough car to overlook. I mean just look at it!

This is a plain and simple classic muscle car. It is more aggressive than the new Camaros and Mustangs, and nothing like it has ever come out of Japan or Germany. Plus the SRT8 comes with the aforementioned 6.1L Hemi, good for 425 hp right off the factory floor. Joe Dirt would be proud.

MSRP $45k

5.) Corvette ZR1 3ZR

I can't think of anything more American than a Corvette. These beasts have been roaming the earth for over 50 years, and have evolved into near production supercars. Although not quite Ferraris, they are pretty damned close. This particular model, the ZR1, contains Chevy's big block 6.2L V8, used in the Escalade and Silverado. However, as this is of course, America, the ZR1's is supercharged, resulting in a rubber liquefying 638 ponies. These stats are ridiculous:

-- 0-60 in 3.4 seconds
-- 0-100 in 7.0 seconds
-- quarter mile in 11.3 seconds
-- 205 mph top speed

MSRP: $120k

6.) Dodge Ram 3500 Resistol Mega Cab

As much as I love Silverados, the Dodge Ram is the truck that powers America. The undisputable choice of ranchers, farmers, and anyone who needs to haul things, the Dodge Ram with its bulletproof Cummins Diesel engine can tow more, more reliably than any other 3/4 ton or 1 ton models (ie. F-350, Chevy 3500). Just ask my buddy Nate, who claims to have towed over 22,000 pounds in his 2004 Ram. Granted, cattle ranchers are known to embellish a bit, but it is rated at 19,000 pounds-- good enough to tow 12 Smart Cars. This is why Toyota Tundras are laughed at by real truckers. Also, any truck that comes out with a Resistol model is badass. Stop into your local Boot Barn if you don't know what that is.

MSRP: $50k

7.) Cadillac Escalade EXT

That's right, you didn't think I liked these. Well I do. There's something I find cool about a half truck, half SUV that looks like an Escalade. It's just the jack of all trades. Naturally, it will never see a trip to Home Depot or a dirt road, but still. The Cadillac Escalade is arguably the biggest status symbol in our country today. Everyone from soccer moms, to rappers, athletes, and CEO's take pride in their Escalades, and despite how common they seem to be, they still turn heads, especially this upgraded Chevy Avalanche version. Come on, 403 horses... you know you want one!

MSRP: $60k

8.) 2009 Pontiac G8 GXP

Okay, don't laugh at this one. I know it seems a bit out of place. But this car is for real. As we all know, the world sucks so bad in general that GM had to kill one of its children-- Pontiac. Seriously, I consider the removal of this proud brand from the road as a form of auto-murder. Hopefully, the world will stop sucking so bad in the future that Pontiac can be resurrected, even if it's only for the Trans Am, GTO, and this car, the G8.

This G8 is an aggressive, sharp muscle sedan, that would probably be overlooked if you saw one. I'd love nothing more than to challenge some punk in an Acura listening to electronical music at a red light, then torch him in this beast.

Its Corvette-shared V8 is good for 415 hp, and its cabin roomy enough to tool around town other human beings in tow. It's also been noted for its surprisingly crisp handling. 0-60 times have been clocked at 5.4 seconds.

RIP Pontiac. I'll miss you.

MSRP: $40k (but you can get one now for $35k)

9.) Dodge Viper SRT-10 Convertible

The most outlandish of all American vehicles has been, and will always be the Dodge Viper. It's severe snake-like styling and absurd V-10 power has been turning heads since the early 1990s. Far from an everyday driver, these rubber-burning reptiles are loud, ridiculously fast, and ultra-rare. I'd opt for the convertible version because so far, the only one I have in this collection is the Wrangler. Seriously, how sleazy would this be? I'd crank nothing but Eddie Money, Foreigner and Van Halen, and just cruise around trying to pick up sleazy women until this 600 horsepower monster blew out my eardrums. Love it.

MSRP: $104k

And last, but not least:

10) Cadillac CTS-V

True Statement: The CTS-V is the fastest production sedan in the world.

This is probably the best car in America, in all aspects. The CTS was Motor Trend's car of the year in 2008, and nearly everything about it is top notch. The CTS-V model is an amazing performance version of this already sporty Lexus/BMW killer.

The CTS-V's Corvette-borrowed 6.2L V8 is supercharged, and makes 556 horsepower. In a car that weighs only 4,200 lbs., this translates roughly into: THE CADDY THAT ZIGS.

How about this from Motor Trend:

"AMG's E63 Benz nails 60 mph in 4.3 seconds. The new CTS-V weighs about the same and has at least 43 more horses and 85 pound-feet more torque. You draw your own conclusions."

This car is why the tide is turning.

MSRP: $60k

If you're wondering, those 10 cars add up to $617,000. Not too bad, considering this dream of mine involves hundreds of millions. Love it.