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Original Mini Cooper – Sun Valley, CA

August 23rd, 2010 by Mike

I recently had the opportunity to go exploring in the streets of Sun Valley during a recent trip. Walking around, sun blazing, I began to recognize a common theme of expansive properties, dirt yards, roosters, mammals, at least three vehicles per household, at least two of them sitting immobile with the hoods up, horse trailers, boats and Sea Doos, all with months of dirt on them, baking in the sun.

I happen upon a yard full of kiddie pools with gangs of ducks wading in them and feel the need to remind myself that I’m only 15 minutes from Downtown LA. Across the street, behind a locked gate, is this great looking Mini of the vintage variety. As I’m admiring it, and enjoying the fact that it’s on Dayton wire wheels, the owner pulls up riding a mini 80cc dirtbike with extra loud exhaust mods. Late twenties/early thirties, shirtless, silver chain around his neck, heavily tatted, arriving home from the liquor store with a large grocery bag in hand (meaning he rode to the store on public roads with no helmet, and shopped in the store with no shirt on). He’s polite and thanked me for complimenting the car and then proceeded to open up the gate to expose two trailers on the property (Airstream and regular RV). There is no house to be found.

Maybe he lives in the Airstream and cooks meth in the RV? Or maybe he’s just a nice guy with no hangups about living in a trailer in a dirt lot as long as he can have his dream car. Weigh in below with your thoughts.


Mystery Car – 10 FRWY Eastbound, Mid-City LA

July 28th, 2010 by Mike

What’s black, slilver and comes in 3 sizes? The awesome Man on the Move T-shirt you will win if you name the make and model of the fleeing classic pictured here. Throw down after the jump.

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Ford Model AA Stake-Bed Truck – Rose Avenue, Venice (CA)

May 24th, 2010 by Mike

Walking around my hood looking for interesting cars is a bit like shooting fish in a barrel. If you get sick of GT3s and SEL 6.9s and MG Midgets and Austin Minis, there’s always this elderly Ford truck (circa 1930) with handicap permit in the front and living quarters in the rear. Built Ford Tough takes on a whole new meaning when you see one of these ~ 80 year old workhorses still going strong.

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GMC Syclone – 2nd Street, Long Beach

May 12th, 2010 by Mike

Our buddy Jim Bauer took this photo, which sums up almost everything I lusted after in 1991. I kinda still want one. The idea of a fast pickup truck that’s not meant for carrying anything is laughable, but 0-60 in 4.6 is not. Point blank, this truck and its GMC Typhoon SUV counterpart were every bit as fast as many exotic vehicles of the time. Like the Buick Grand National GNX and Ford Model T, the Syclone was available in any color so long as it was black, which is the first indication that it’s awesome. And much like the GNX, the Syclone would occupy one of the many spaces in my fantasy joke-but-not-really-a-joke barn. This is of course after my definitely-not-a-joke barn is full of MB 500Es, CLK Black Series’, Aston Martin Lagondas, Lamborghini Espadas, Apteras, G-Wagens and Kleemann/MB turbodiesels. Hey a guy can dream right?

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Lada Riva – Kiev (Ukraine)

April 26th, 2010 by Mike

Not exactly the spitting image of modern civilization, this rugged Lada Riva appears as tired as its Eastern European backdrop. The Fiat 124-based sedan, also known as the Classic in the west (Signet in Canada), has sold more than 18 million copies since 1969 thanks in no small part to its low price tag, rugged design and easy-to-fix components.


Greystone Mansion Concours d'Elegance – Beverly Hills, CA

April 19th, 2010 by Mike

The funny thing about most car shows is the car people. I’m blown away by the irony of walking through a lot full of incredible cars so tastefully kept (or restored) and then meeting the owners, dressed in Mom jeans and ergonomic sneakers, sporting wet-gelled hair.

Personally, I prefer to live in a fantasy world where every dude who drives an Aston Martin chooses his clothing and cocktails using the same discrimination with which he chose his vehicle.

Taking the shuttle bus up to Beverly Hills’ Greystone Mansion and walking onto the Concours d’Elegance grounds was like stepping into that fantasy world. The inaugural event, produced in conjunction with Gooding & Company, featured more than 100 cars and motorcycles. Fred Astaire’s 1927 Rolls-Royce and Rita Hayworth’s 1953 Cadillac were among them. I hope you enjoy the photos and video as much as we enjoyed the catered food and champagne, mansion tour, fashion show and best of all, the gentleman with the grey beard and leather jacket who hand-cranked his vintage Rolls Royce to a roaring start during the show, to much enthusiastic applause.


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Mystery Ride – Vista Street, West Hollywood

April 6th, 2010 by Mike

I’ll give you a hint…it was only sold on these shores for one year and needed to change its name as not to conflict with one of the General’s popular models. Weigh in below with a make and model for your free Man on the Move t-shirt.


Lost Cause – Lincoln Blvd, Venice CA

March 25th, 2010 by Mike

So my girlfriend sees this rust bucket Porsche in a gravel parking lot on her way down Lincoln one day. She tells me about it, and instantly I’m imagining a long hood version of our buddy Mike Burroughs’ mean, rusty E28. I call Jim Bauer and, within milliseconds, he’s ready to make an offer. He’s got visions of a non-operating early body (69-73) to restore, or at least scrap body panels from. Both of our dreams were smashed upon arrival at the gravel lot. No motor, hence the SUV ride height. The interior looks like a mini garbage dump. And there’s just enough body damage and terminal rust on each panel to make it not worth the effort. But somehow, especially sitting in between a Jeep Cherokee and Honda Fit, this Porsche is still a gorgeous sight.

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German classics – Lincoln Blvd, Santa Monica

March 9th, 2010 by Mike

I’m not sure what it is about the Venice/Santa Monica border but it’s like a magnet for independent German auto mechanics. Including the guy I use, there are 7-8 indy establishments within walking distance from my house, usually with interesting cars on the lot. This spot in particular, called Glassers Auto Body, always catches my eye, mainly because of the aging Mercedes 450 SEL 6.9 and rotting BMW 2800 that have been sitting 3 millimeters from each other for years now. It’s a shame that two cars with so much historical significance are left in this condition, but even more of a shame that they’re not being driven. Oh well, at least they look pretty, even in this state.

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Mystery Ride – 405 North, Seal Beach (LA)

March 4th, 2010 by Mike

This handsome little coupe blew by me on the freeway. Like one of those gun fights from the Wild West, I whipped out my 3G and fired off this picture fast as I could. The car looks and feels like a vintage European, possibly with an Italian body design (Zagato, Bertone, Pininfarina, etc). You know the drill – name that car and get a super cool Man on the Move t-shirt.