A Colonel Bogey Salute From Dodge to Uncle

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While every other car company is doing its best to clap loudest for Stalin – building electric cars for which there is no real market (while pretending there is one or will be, just around the corner) in order to solve problems which don’t exist, but which will create problems that didn’t exist – Dodge has built the Redeye.

The only battery this thing has is the one which starts up the 797 horsepower supercharged 6.2 liter Hemi V8.

There is no place to plug it in. 

You fill it up with the highest octane gas you can find.

You won’t have to wait long, either  – whether at the pump (less than five minutes) or getting to the next one. The Redeye – which has 90 more horsepower than the 707 horsepower Challenger (and Charger) Hellcat that sent countless caravans of metrosexual snowflakes into a cataleptic state or shaking and shivering to a therapist’s couch – will get you to 60 in even less than the regular Hellcat’s three seconds.

Punching holes in the ozone all the way.

Not really, of course.

Dodge isn’t sociopathic. Just not delusional.

And maybe just a little bit pissed.

The people in charge there know the only threat posed by powerful internal combustion engines – even ultra-powerful ones like the Redeye’s – is to the febrile neurosis of people who have been rendered neurotic by a relentless juggernaut of Fake News about vehicle emissions (almost nonexistent and no longer a problem vis-a-vis air quality since at least the mid-’90s) and also by the shibboleth of our era – “climate change” – which is being used as the catch-all pretext to corral and limit everything, including our mobility.

But never the mobility of our betters, which ought to tell you something about “climate change.”

Dodge also knows that people don’t need to have their palms greased with bribes (the polite term is “subsidy”) to buy cars like the Hellcat Redeye. They will beg dealerships to sell them one  – at full MSRP.

It is not necessary to mandate the production of Redeyes, either – or even run-of-the-mill Challengers and Chargers. There is profit there.

An honest one.

Despite the mandates which discourage the manufacture of such cars (the smallest engine you can get in either car is a 3.6 liter V6, no turbochaged Viagra necessary) and which make the purchase of such cars artificially more expensive than they would otherwise be.

The opposite of electric cars.

Which exist as other than curiosities only because of the mandates and regulatory ukase which gives them birth and the multi-tiered subsidies which keep them alive. There is not only no case to be made for EVs, there is no need for them.

The “gas crisis” has been solved. America is on the cusp of becoming the word’s leading producer and possibly a net exporter. What comes out of the tailpipes of gas (and diesel) burning cars is often literally “cleaner” than the surrounding air. It is certainly not “dirty.”

“Climate change” is the last, desperate attempt by the anti-car Antifa to kill the car – before people wise up and get angry.

Only Dodge hasn’t bent a knee . . . yet.

But with Sergio gone, that may change.

Sergio Marchionne was the guy in charge of FiatChrysler (FCA) until his unexpected and extremely untimely death back in July. Untimely, because Sergio was the only big-time car executive to publicly refuse to drink the Electric Car Kool Aid.

The Redeye was almost certainly conceived – and approved for production – while Sergio was still among us. It is a kind of Colonel Bogey salute to the EV dementia sweeping the land.

The regular Hellcat isn’t neglected, either. It gets another 10 horsepower for the new model year – bumping the output of its 6.2 liter supercharged V8 to 717 horsepower.

And that’s not the end of it. There’s an Elephant in the room. The Hellephant.  It makes the 797 Hellcat Redeye seem almost Prius-ish.

1,000 horsepower.

This snowflake-melting marvel of internal combustion is an a la carte (and in a crate) version of the supercharged Hemi that’s only available over the counter – wink, wink – and won’t (for now) be installed at the factory.

But you could install it at home.

Al Gore just had an aneurism. That sound you heard was him hitting the floor. Someone call the meat wagon.

Or maybe not.

The Hellephant – named in honor of the original 426 Hemi of the ’60s and early ’70s, which was (and is) known to its fans as the . . . Elephant engine – is also precisely 426 cubic inches, just to slam home the point.

Dodge showed off the  . . . possibilities of the Hellephant by installing one in an emissions-exempt ’68 Charger, which offered the original dual-carbureted 426 Hemi as its top gun engine, back in the day.

It was on display at the recent Specialty Equipment Manufacturers Association (SEMA) show.

Just imagine what a new Charger or Challenger infused with Hellephant power might be like. And it probably would pass smog check – even if not technically legal. Modern IC engines run so cleanly it’s become almost impossible to snuff yourself with one by running the engine with the garage door closed – and their “impact” on air quality and such is nearly nil, in inverse proportion to the hysteria about “climate change.”

Just imagine what Hellephants roaming the roads might do to Nancy Pelosi and Hillary Clinton’s state of mind. The knowledge that some of us – the serfs – might actually be driving the kinds of vehicles they are doing their very utmost to make certain are available only to them.

Here’s mud (or red) in their eyes.

God bless you, Sergio.

. . .

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74 COMMENTS

  1. I will say this: At a minimum, Sergio had both vision and a sense of what the market wants. And this is one thing that is missing from the whole lot of the rest of the programmers.

    Did I just say “programmers”? That’s because the only visions they have are telling US what WE want, and the collective orgies they will have when they have to pass along those reimbursements to the Climate Control Police for (maybe) missing on the CAFE fatwas.

    Yeah, Sergio had balls…Each one was big enough that it needed two hands to hold. God bless you, Sergio Marchionne. We owe you a debt of gratitude.

  2. I watched Jay Leno on his YouTube channel do a video on this beast. It is basically the Challenger Demon (which had a limited production run). It has the same engine block and everything as the Demon. They just backed off the crazy 840hp horsepower tune , and also removed the racetrack options in the car. I did see a Demon in person at the county fair car show this year. What an impressive car. They really have stayed with the heritage. It was sitting next to a classic Challenger from way back. Big, beautiful, and totally Merica’!

  3. Funny thing about this article, last night I happened to catch Jay Leno’s Garage which featured the Hellcat Redeye. Now I know what the Redeye means and why it was designated so.
    Man I wish I could afford one of those, sphincter tightening for the ANTIFA/ Tesla crowd, beasts. Where I grew up in a small Northern Michigan town, young male, who was either not married or drafted(during the Viet Nam debacle) owned a 60’s era muscle car. From Buick Stage II to road Runners, The Judge,Chevellle SS396, Super Bird w/440/Six pack….would light up the tires rather quickly, even some home built version….back then we had Auto Shop….the horror, so some would build their own. I Knew one guy who went through three cars within a year and half…..not wrecked but always trading up to newer and quicker cars, ended up with the new Z-28 metallic green with the big white racing stripe.
    No political correctness need apply.
    I always liked the ‘Cuda, 70-72 vintage which apparently was the body style basis for these new beasts.
    All those non PC cars are now considered collectables for those with million dollar bank accounts. Shame. Like ’59 Les Paul going for $75,000.

    One of the problems I was told by an old Dodge/Plymouth mechanic at a dealership was that the old 426 Hemi needed weekly tune ups to perform right. He preferred the 440/6 pack ( reference to the number of brews you could buy?)
    Now if the Hellephant engine is only going to be a crate version, would Chrysler offer to sell to the customer a Hellcat or other version minus the engine? The customer could then order the crate engine and have it installed.

    • Hi John,

      The 440 Six Pack referred to the three two barrel carbs that fed the beast – and yes, it was the better street engine. The 426 Hemi was literally a “de-tuned” race car engine (NASCAR) that was not meant for slow-poking. It tended to foul plugs if not driven all out. It also had dual four barrel carbs!

      Reportedly, the engine was hugely under-rated, even in “de-tuned” form – making well north of 500 hp which was a huge number back then!

    • Ahh! When boys were still boys (And more so than most men today)…. Today, boys can be girls; and girls can be boys…but boys can’t be boys anymore…or just don’t want to be, nor know how!

      • Amen, Bro! The Shibboleth of today’s lamestream media is the White, heterosexual male, especially if he’s a CHRISTIAN. “Dukes of Hazard”, especially with Catherine Bach and her “Daisy Dukes” would NEVER make it on Network TV (might make it on Amazon or Netflix, where it’d be a runaway hit!).
        Dodge is making a statement that goes beyond raw horsepower and a latter-day muscle car…it’s about producing what the customer WANTS, even if for a niche market.

    • JohnZ,

      “I always liked the ‘Cuda, 70-72 vintage which apparently was the body style basis for these new beasts.”

      But a real Barracuda was the first generation. 14.4 square feet of rear window.

      Something you could actually see out of. No need for a backup camera. LOL 🧐

  4. Why does everything these days have to be at one extreme or another? It’s like it’s either gotta be disposable econobox junk…or super-luxury dolled-up whores….Priuses or expensive toys with the horsepower of a locomotive, which are bound for impound and cost $500/mo. to insure…. But ya can’t just buy a plain-old simple car anymore…..

    It’s kinda like politics: We may cheer when Trump dings the left a little…but ultimately, in the scheme of things, cheering one extreme because it is the opposite of another extreme which dislike even more, while it really is not beneficiail overall, is a false economy.

    I was watching a vid T’other day, where this guy was new truck shopping, and just happened across a new Ford Raptor Shelby something or other 4×4 crew cab PU with about a 3′ bed…all jacked up, with like 600 HP…. $115K 😮 which translates to $1400 a month with $20K down, and insurance, if you have a good record, of $500 a month.

    That thing’ll do more to destroy us Prius/EV-destestors than any crayon-clutching snowflake! It is nothing but a toy- not for the rich, ’cause the rich wouldn’t waste their money on it- and thus the financing…because it is aimed at those who love debt.

    They’re making vehicles that appeal to people’s vanity and irrationality and other character defects…. and regardless of which end of the spectrum appeals to one…they are all really utterly impractical, financially burdensome, and non-durable.

    Maybe I’m the only one, but I’d have no more interest in owning this Chrysler than I would in owning a Fiat 500 or a Prius…. It may indeed be the opposite of those abhorrent vehicles…but being their opposite still doesn’t make it desirable to me.

    Anyone else?

    PS. Eric, for some reason, our comments [even YOURs] aren’t showing up on the vegan menu article….

    • I wish it was more affodable. Maybe the 5.7 v8 should be the standard motor at $27k. That would be a good deal. Although in all honesty i couldn’t even afford a 10k car nor would i want to finance one. I buy in cash and can turn a wrench myself. The most i paid was $4500 and i got ripped off because i didn’t know how to wrench at the time.

      • I think a new 5.7 charger can be had for $35 msrp, which means $33’ish, or less with some incentives.
        And I’m guessing a ton of CPO’s at much less, however the V8 will be hard to find.

        • Chris, I believe (Icould be wrong, but this is what I’ve been told) that the hot ones with the power, come only in the loaded-up versions, and there is a small supply- so they go for way over MSRP… WAYyyyy over.

          One car like these (I forget which one) in the fully-optioned version you have to buy toget the high-output V-8 had an MSRP of $70K- but you have to basically bid on them at the dealers- how much over that you are willing to pay- and they end up going for well into the 6 figures. Absurd!

          • Ah! Actually, I believe it’s the Dodge SRT Challenger I’m thinking of….

            You know you ain’t getting no 800HP car for $35K… 🙂

            • Nunzio, I was replying to Mooeing, that he wished he could get a v8 version for 27K, and I think you can get real close.
              But, it would be for the standard 5.7, not the various hotter engines avail. on those cars.
              IMO, the 5.7 with the 8sp, and a ‘sport’ button, as mine has, is all I need, and I’m a power nut. I really love how it runs.

              • Sorry, Chris, I didn’t mean to imply that I thought that you thought you could get the mega-HP one for $35K… I was just stating it generally.

                And i agree- I’m sure just the plain old V-8 is fine. Can you get ’em with a stick? THAT would be sweet!

                • no issue. hard to type what we think, and people read what we mean, haha.
                  Can only get the stick in the Challenger RT or above. But it is the 5.7, so not too bad I think around low 30’s MSRP.

            • I recall a specific model with 700 HP that not only didn’t come loaded and had only one seat. No, I’m not saying it was cheap. Everything in the driveline has to be up to the engine and big, slick barely legal tires.

              • Yeah, that’s the one I’m talking about, 8-man. Cripes-ler makes you sign a waiver when you buy it….saying you won’t install an aftermarket seat if you buy the one with no pass. seat; that you won’t run the drag tires when it’s below 20*F or some such; that you won’t use the car in an “illegal manner”, and will hard Cripes-ler harmless if you kill yerself or give it to your kid and he offs himself, etc.

                It’s insane what people are paying for ’em- especially considering that they’re Cripes-lers! People are having enough trouble with the tamer variants of them falling apart (What can one expect? Chrysler…)…imagine driving the potent version down the road at 140MPH!

                • Hi Nunz,

                  I disagree that the price is unreasonable. This is a 10 second street car. Legal for road use. And road driveable. For about $70,000.

                  Compare it with the highest-performing COPO muscle cars of the ’60s, such as L-88 Corvettes and Boss 429 Mustangs. How much did those cars cost new? The base price of a ’68 L88 was $6,500 – abut $50k in today’s money. And it had nowhere near 800 horsepower.

                  This is a very special car – and I applaud Dodge (FCA) for having the balls to build it!

      • That’s funny- I’ve paid $4500 for every vehicle I’ve owned in the last 20 years! Yeah, forget wrenching yourself (unless it’s your back! 🙂 )- On these thangs, you can’t even bleed the brakes without the proprietary equipment to reset the brake computer )Even independent shops have to take ’em to the dealer for that)- Disgusting!

        • Eastern Europeans seem to have an uncanny ability to distribute dealership software for pennies on the dollar. If it’s new we just gotta give it a year or so for the petrol nerds to hack it. Odds are if you can tune it via 3rd party you can do everything else with a laptop, DVD (from eastern europe) and a OBD cable. I was amazed when I found out all the info you can get from it, makes diagnosing problems wicked easy.

          If we can wait out the EV nazi’s the future of hotrodding will be very bright, and clean to boot.

    • Funny thing, Nunzz.. as I was reading your post, the part where you get on a whinge about extremes, the FIRST car model to compare with this new monster was…. the Fiat 500, and NO I was NOT picturing the present Fiat one-500 (despite the marque badge on the bootlid, declaring it to be a “500”, it in fact has a 1500 cc engine in it) but the OLD Fiat Cinquacento from the late 1950’s into about the late ’60’s or so. A genuine half liter displacement fourbanger wheezing through about a twenty-eight milimiter choke Solex…… top speed on a good day with a bit of a chill on was just north of 70 mph. My Morris Minor 850 was significantly faster and the unbelievably arcane Crosley Sedan, fitting the one litre overhead camshaft single-piece-block-head casting engine (I would have said powerplant, but it did not produce enough to be called that) faster yet.

      I do recall seeing the “tuned” version of that same car with a few signficant mods fitted by the works, but still 500 cc’s displacement, called the Fiat Abarth. That variant was quite the car…… for its time and displacement.

      • Oh. My. Goodness, Tionico!

        Well…us Dagos can make some good things- like spaghetti sauce and bicycles…but not cars! Darn! I’ve never seen a F(ix)I(t)A(gain)T(ony) like the one ya mentioned…I’ll have to look that up! 😮

        My idea of just a plain-old simple car, is like a 1968 Chevy Impala 4 door with a bench seat….. You can’t buy ANYTHING like that today. Most SUVs and Pick-ups today cant even carry as much cargo as one of them (And that’s the sedan….imagine the station-wagon version!); No electronics; you could pretty much rebuild the whole car with a ratchet set and a couple of screwdrivers (Not that you’d need to)…Don’t ever remember seeing one with power windows or anything like that….

        Or how about an early to mid-60’s Ford Fairlane? Inline six cyclinder….they got as good MPGs as half the cars do today; so miuch uncluttered open space under the hood, it looked like Wyoming. Just a basic simple car…but it was confortable and had plenty of room, and didn’t feel cheap or spartan, like the low-end cars of today……and the motors had real timing chains or gears…not belts!

      • The best thing about all that was, if you had some wrenches and a few other tools, you could actually fix them.
        Try that today. Hell, in some cars like the Jeep Cherokee, you can’t even replace the battery without taking the vehicle apart.
        Do they do it on purpose?

  5. Great article Eric. Dodge is certainly trying to do it different, and it is refreshing.
    And my family just bought 2 new ones in 1.5 years, so it is working for us.
    And we are possibly buying 3rd V8 from them coming soon.

    I wonder if it’s a bunch of cool engineers at USA Dodge that work hard and smart to ‘sell’ the ideas to the brass at FCA? Seems so to me.
    “Hey cool Dodge Engineers!” put a posi option in the 300S. for all the 5.7 cars too. It brightens my day when I can spin the rears on my 300S, but only one, booooooooo…… Do I have to sign a waiver that if I go sideways and smash it that I won’t sue you? posi’s better in the snow too. ohh, keep in mind, that us old guys usually have more money than younger, and want an old school V8 that ‘rides’ good. And no 40 profile tires either. Thx.

    • I had a ’67 Chevy van, remember those with the engine between the two front seats? It had a 283 and posi…..useless on slippery Michigan winter roads.
      I wish I still had that one……
      if wished were fishes……

      • Those style of vans were so cool! All three ‘Mercan manufacturers had that style van for a while. My uncle had a Dodge version when I was a kid….loved riding in it! They disappeared really fast….even by the late 70’s, they were pretty rare.

        • Yeah, but RWD is more fun. I drive my 300 rwd in the snow, and it only has an open differential and crappy all-season tires on it.
          I justify having a little trouble with the 6-10 snow storms a year here in NY metro for the other 350 days a year we don’t.
          Even if you live in an area that gets a lot of snow, I’m assuming the roads get plowed?
          Now to be fair, I did go out and get a set of chains, just-in-case I was on a trip and got stuck somewhere, but I’ve never had to use them. Yet. They come in pretty fancy kits now, where I just leave it in the trunk.

          • I’ve seen plenty of Dodge chargers around here struggle in the winter. In MN its winter 5 months out of the year and they won’t plow until the snow stops except for the highway. If you live in a regular neighborhood expect a plow a day or 2 out from the snow fall imagine what back to back snow storms look like. I finally bought a snow blower this year after buying my first home and owning it for one year. In defense of RWD which i would like to daily drive even in the winter. I think a set of snow tires and a balanced car should be fine. My uncle drives his rx-8 all winter long.

            • Hi Mooeing,

              With the right tires – and the right person behind the wheel – a RWD car can handle snow much more capably than people have been led to believe. Ground clearance is the biggest issue – after tires.

              AWD is oversold. But that is precisely the point.

              • One of the worst things to happen to winter driving is AWD and 4WD. After they became common it seems like most people forgot how to drive in winter. Also, most of the idiots here in central MN act like the streets should be as good in January as in July. How dang stupid can you get! It’s MN winter! Of course there is snow on the roads! They can’t slow down and act like they have a brain!

              • Eric, after driving a Wagoneer with Selectrac for awhile, I realized why they were so popular
                Unless snow was simply too deep for any normal type of vehicle, those things would go top speed in snow, probably not a good idea on ice. If they’d just had good engines and transmissions they’d still be around
                I inherited a wrecked one
                If the body had been ok it would have been run much longer with a SBC and a TH 350 I had extra

                They were great hunting and fishing rigs.

                Tires are commonly the limiting factor. The Nissan 4wd pickup we owned had tires nearly twice as wide as stock and one set was really sticky, so sticky I turned onto pavement from a dirt road and it looked too black and shiny so I stomped the brakes and it stopped immediately. Damn, coulda swore that was ice. So I get out and slipped only avoiding falling cause I was still holding the door. So I carefully locked the front hubs and continued on. It was a great little truck in slick conditions. It would have been better if Nissan or anyone had made a limited slip for it.

  6. Eric,

    Did you read this?

    SEMA threatens to sue NHTSA over failure to implement replica car rules
    Daniel Strohl on Nov 2nd, 2018 at 8am
    https://www.hemmings.com/blog/2018/11/02/sema-threatens-to-sue-nhtsa-over-failure-to-implement-replica-car-rules/

    My reading of this is that, if SEMA is successful, and these fatwas are rolled back, you could actually buy a fully “retro” car, with no computers, saaaaaaafety nonsense and all the other assorted foolery that is festooned onto a modern car.

    The law is in place, the fedcoat ayatollahs are dragging their heels.

    This seems to be the ideal sort of issue that The Great Orange One should spearhead.

    • Hi AF,

      Yes, I did!

      And it may come to pass… but only for low-volume (high cost) models, I’d predict. It’s analogous to the current exemption for hand-builts/kits cars.

      But the moment this threatened to go big, Uncle would put his foot down.

      Still, if the Orange One handled this correctly, it “might could work.” He could – in my opinion – shut up opponents by requiring that the cars meet reasonable emissions, so as to address (and quiet) objections about the effect on other people. Then he could waive compliance with any fuel efficiency standards at all – stating simply that people have the right to spend as much of their own money on gas they wish and their budget will allow and it’s no more the government’s proper role to interfere with that than it is to decree how many cups of coffee a person may drink each day. Then he could waive crash test compliance requirements and state that the only enforceable obligation is that a car be sound (i.e., not defective) but that the degree of its crashworthiness is – once again – a matter of private concern between the manufacturer and buyer and not the business of government in a free society any more than it is the government’s proper business to forbid people from training for marathons or lifting weights or any other activity which might entail a degree of personal risk.

    • Hi Libertarian,

      My only concern is the degree to which a person is an authoritarian collectivist!

      PS: I’ve asked you before to please refrain from using the posting area as free advertising for your web site. I’ve deleted the links as you’ve posted them, not because I object to your views or even your web site but because I object to paying to advertise your web site. Running this place isn’t free and what you’re doing is not unlike a guy who brings his vegetables to the grocery store ad sets up his own table in the produce section.

      So, please – continue to post but please refrain from using posts to plug your site. Thanks.

      • Eric, I owe you an apology. I recommended a site the other day and then two others this morning. I won’t do it again. I just thought you and all the other readers would really like those sites. Didn’t even think abut it being free advertising.

      • Whites are the most racially tolerant people on the planet. Now the chinks and blacks they are different, they are full of hatred for other races. All the good stuff that makes your lives easier came from the white minds, not the minds of the other 2 races.

    • Speaking only for myself, unless our confirmed “racist” is bringing their ideology into the public market of ideas towards setting official policy, I don’t really care what they think or how it affects their own views towards their family lineage. Also, Jewish is not only not a race it isn’t even an ethnicity within a race as Ashkenazi (European), Sephardic (Mediterranean), Yemeni (Arabic) and Ethiopian (African) peoples are all legitimately Judaic, both genetically and culturally- perhaps the word you wanted was “bigoted” or “anti-Semitic.” Although, it could be that your question was “What would a Judaic bigot say if he found out that his great-grandma was only half-Jewish?” but as most Judaic cultures follow a matrilineal line they would probably still consider themselves as Jewish as they want.

      • Spaz, don’t forget the Celtic Jews! (They do exist!)

        To answer Libertarian’s question: My cousin did some genealogy research a while back, and discovered that there’s some Jew blood in our Eye-talian fambly! It really doesn’t make me feel any warmer towards what trhe majority of Jews stand for…. Then again, I’m not a big fan of us Dagos either…or any group for that matter. I’m only a fan of those who value and pursue individual liberty and self-ownership- be they Jew or Wop…or even niggers! 😮

  7. Gotta give props to at least some of the decision-makers. They produce what people want, and they remember history. They pay respect to the past, and remind people what once was… and they bring it back to the modern age. Good for them! I see Chargers and Challengers fairly regularly, so they must be selling. I wish them luck.

      • Well … different strokes for different folks, as they used to say.

        But it is rumored that some folks actually buy a pickup for weird things like hauling stuff around.

            • So it goes with mom and pop stores.
              However, where else can you go if you want to finish out a basement, install some new lighting, find just the shade and style of carpeting, paint, everything under one roof and you don’t have to wander around outside to pick up your lumber. Or have to wait six weeks for the supplies you ordered to arrive.
              Not only that but the nearly endless choices in just about anything you could want or need and prices adjusted to your own income level.
              This is capitalism at its best, offering people huge choices all under one roof and at prices people agree on.

              • Trouble is if ya need a friggin washer or cotter pin….. Ya gotta walk from the truck to the cattle chute….then to where you need to go inside the store….then look through drawers of crap yerself, and hope they’ve been recently stocked, or they’ll be half empty…then to the cashier…wait on line behind some guy who’s constructing an entire town, and is buying all the stuff to do so right there and then…tell the bitch at the register you DON’T give your phone number, and you don’t have a “rewards card” and you don’t want to donate to Save The Mulattos…..then hike to the truck… and by then, the day is shot!

                Remember those mom & pop stores?! Ya pull up right in front; walk in; “Hi George, ya got a screw like this?”…”Here ya go”. “How much?” “Just take it”…. Total time spent: 5 seconds.

                One of the last of that breed- 1/2 a block from the house I grew up in, and where I’d spend most week’s allowances, after over 100 years, finally bit the dust.

                • I agree with you Nunzio! Mega sizing stores may bring lots more varieties of a given item you are seeking, but it is all cheap Chinese crap designed to be sent to the ever-growing gigantic local landfill in a few years.
                  What many people are overlooking concerning modern gizmos is that Mom and pop stores would be carrying them too if they were still around. This is like people thinking we would only have dirt roads today had not the state seized control over roads decades ago before asphalt became popular.
                  Most people are still living paycheck to paycheck just like they were before the big box stores became normal. The only difference is that now there are less self-employment opportunities for people due to the BigMacatizing of nearly everything. Freedom has suffered immensely as a result!

                  • Amen, Brian!

                    And the funny thing is: All these box stores seem to all have the same things- and if you want something different, you have to go online.

                    Back in the mom & pop days, you’d walk into a little shop, and never knew what ya might find. Independent stores all had different things. When you wanted to go shopping, you could go driving around, to stores that you normally don’t go to- or just riding around until you see an interesting looking store, and you’d go in, never knowing what unique goodies- current or NOS from 15 years ago- ya might find.

                    And you’d get personal, knowledgeable service to boot- instead of some lesbian trying to play the man.

                    • Nunz, there is a hardware store like that in my area. I’ve bought NOS oddments that were 50 years old! If they don’t have something they can probably find a way to make something else work. And, how many places carry 5 gallon pickling crocks anymore? Love that store.

                    • Oh, man, Wolfie!

                      Ironically, back in NYC in the 70’s and 80’s there were TONs of small old hardware stores on literally every street that had all kinds of ancient stuff.

                      When I was a teen once, I bought something without even noticing until later that it was no newer than the 50’s!

                      They were like museums!

                • Keep in mind that all those local hardware stores are part of one of the big three hardware store chains.
                  besides I’ve been in some local hardware stores where the service was terrible, one of the “associates” had red spikey hair and hovered at the check out.
                  There is a local lumber yard just down the street where their prices are high, if you order something, you may or may not get it and the selection is minimal.
                  I prefer to have a good selection of whatever it is I need with all the different choices.
                  And BTW not all of it comes from China either.

                  • John, every store being associated with one of the big three chains was more of a transitional thing in the 80’s and 90’s- There were lots of truly independent stores even then (and more so the further back ya’d go)- and even many which were affiliated with one of the big brands, still had a lot of their own unique things if they were independently owned.

              • Hi John,
                Keep in mind that shipping speed has increased across the board in recent years thanks to technology. That said: I still find plenty of times where I have to order things because all of the stores want to only carry items that sell quickly. My unlocked phone comes to mind, as does my Linux computers. The Linux computers Walmart used to sell had very low ram and memory. I wanted better, so I had to order it online and have it sent to me. Ditto with my phone. I did not want one that locked me into a service plan for several years with a specific carrier, therefore I had to order the phone I wanted and have it shipped to me.

                  • Actually, no John. I got my phone from a manufacturer and my computer from a place online that sells Linux laptops, but I certainly considered Amazon since I couldn’t get either locally.

                • Brick and mortar stores spent a couple decades or more carrying crap figuring people had no choice. And they correct. There was a sweet spot some time before the 1970s where the stores had to carry at least decent stuff and variety. Starting no later than the early 1980s the stores just carried crap that most people would accept. They made good money until the interwebs became mainstream.

                  Brick and mortar claims the internet is killing it. No, they kill themselves by carrying nothing but downgraded cost reduced crap, just too late inventory systems, and having the gall to make simple stuff special order.

                  Stores have a huge ‘right now’ advantage over the internet retailers but they blow it with their cost cutting no inventory nonsense.

                  • There’s that but there are other reasons as well.
                    Some stores are closing from mismanagement ie: Sears/K Mart.
                    The number of closings this year was slated to be twice that of last year according to one business publication.
                    There’s a;so the fact that people are looking for the best prices they can afford; what with the shrinking middle class who are shunning the higher priced items found in stores located in malls, which by the way are becoming ghost towns.

                  • Exactly, Brent!

                    So many times, I WANT to buy something local- but can’t because the local stores are stocked so poorly that even if they normally sell the item I want, chances are, they still wont have one- or, that there is just no variety…just the lowest grade Walmart/Dollar-store crap.

                    So I come home, and mockingly say as I order online “Ooooo! The internet is killing my business!”.

                    No, they are killing their own businesses, by forcing us to the internet!

                    The simplest things which you used to be able to get virtually anywhere years ago, are now unobtanium in B&Ms, and you have to go online. I had to buy a freaking feather duster online!

                    And it’s getting worse and worse. Increasingly, shopping in these B&Ms feels like being in a third-world country…. It’s getting to the point where I have to order food items online! Can’t even find a simple bottle of Habernero Tabasco sauce in any of the B&Ms ’round ‘char anymore! WTH??!!!!

                  • The auto parts stores aren’t even carrying basic universal stuff any more. bleed screws, split flanges, etc. Every time I turn around every store of every type is reducing what they stock. But they can order it for me…. If I wanted to order it and wait I would order it and wait and it would come to my door.

                    Sears… Sears and their games. They would charge less online than in the stores. So I would order online for in store pickup and often it wouldn’t be in the store. I would have to wait for it to arrive. Once they make me order online and wait they’ve opened themselves up to competition they wouldn’t experience if I could just walk in there and buy it. Just stupid nonsense. It’s the nonsense that’s killing these stores.

          • I use my pickups for cutting firewood, and hauling trash to the county dump (~28 miles 1 way), plus hauling fencing supplies and whatever around the property.

            Someday I might like to get one of those Capri slide in campers: only 7 feet wide and 8 feet long.

        • What I see up here in Northern Michigan during the summer months are the big p/ups hauling around those huge condos on wheels. You see one of those coming down the road and hope like hell they stay in their lane or the condo on wheels doesn’t begin to fish tail.
          The old geezer retires, they sell the house and buy on of these to travel back and forth from Quartzsite, Az in the winter to Michigan in the summer.
          See tons of them up here in the summer. we call ’em snow birds.

    • Anonymous, you don’t have too. Just add on full bumper-to-bumper warranty for as long as you own it. Take the one with a little deductible to bring the price down and wallah……… don’t care anymore. Don’t have trust anyone. If it breaks, and it’s likely not too. Drop it off, and say ‘fix it’. Find a dealer who makes the rental car process easy, and it becomes painless.
      My GM’s have had their fair share of ‘fixes’, but I chose a dealer who I built a relationship with, and he made the rental car process as easy as giving me the keys. Even for routine maintenance. Now to be fair, I didn’t care what car I got, so it would be old crap cars. 90% of the time, don’t care if I didn’t have any appt. that day.
      Now, I only wish GM made a V8 sedan RWD-only, and they don’t. So I suffer a little bit if I have to bring my 300 in for maint., as the rental car process is a pain at that dealer. I may even just start going 3rd party for maint., which I haven’t done in a long time (because the GM dealer was awesome).

      • So, basically making some sort of payment forever just to insure against failure of some expensive gizmo that I’ve never heard of.

        I always thought the advantage of buying a new car/truck was not having to worry about repairs for a long long time.

  8. RIP Sergio

    I hope I can get even a regular Charger or/and Challenger into my garage before they go away for good.

    These cars will go for way more then sticker. Most will be sold before they even make their way to the dealers parking lot.

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