Happy 75th, sub!
The '10 model year marks the Suburban's 75th anniversary, making it the longest-lived nameplate in U.S. automotive history. The original Suburban Carryall was a two-door that could seat eight or, with the seats removed, provide a 6-foot-long cargo area. Under the hood was Chevy's venerable 60hp Stovebolt Six.
To commemorate the anniversary, a limited number of Diamond Edition Suburbans will go on sale this summer with special exterior paint, 20-inch chrome wheels, and lots of goodies inside.
This Just In
•JeepSpeed has entered into a partnership with Orange Coast Chrysler/Jeep/Dodge and OC Motorsports, making OC Motorsports the exclusive home of JeepSpeed. "Through this distinctive partnership, Jeep enthusiasts are able to have all their Jeep needs met in one location, from vehicles, parts, and accessories to the full Jeep racing experience," says JeepSpeed's Clive Skilton. OC Motorsports will continue to modify new and used vehicles for Orange Coast Chrysler/Jeep/Dodge and other dealers in addition to modifying customer Jeeps and trucks. It will also launch a line of OC Motorsports JeepSpeed Performance Engines developed by JeepSpeed Challenge Sponsor ATK Engines.
•There's a battle brewing regarding safety standards for recreational off-highway vehicles (ROVs), better known as side-by-sides. The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) has been developing standards for the vehicles, encompassing rider gear, three-point seatbelts, a rollover protective structure, and other requirements. But the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is trying to establish mandatory federal standards of its own, regardless of the ANSI program. The Recreational Off-Highway Vehicle Association is asking enthusiasts to visit its website, www.rohva.org/anpr, to weigh in on the matter and support ANSI's standards rather than the more oppressive CPSC ones.
•Amarok is the name of a new compact pickup truck Volkswagen is marketing in South America and other parts of the world. Will the 2.0L truck come to the U.S.? According to Automotive News, VW is considering this, though it would face some hurdles, starting with the 25 percent "chicken tax" tariff on imported trucks that could price it out of reach of the compact market. Plus, "We don't have dealers in the markets where pickups are sold," admitted VW's American CEO.
•Andy McMillin started the 2010 SCORE Desert Series with a win at the SCORE Laughlin Desert Challenge. The third generation of desert-race McMillins (his grandfather, Corky, started racing in 1976), 22-year-old Andy in his McMillin Realty F-150 was the fastest qualifier, led after the first half of the race on Saturday, and pulled farther away from the pack of 28 SCORE Trophy Trucks on Sunday to record the fastest elapsed time in the popular race.
•You'd think they would have enough to do with the bankruptcy and all, but no. Chrysler lawyers recently served a cease-and-desist order on a Florida high school for using a stylized version of the Dodge Ram logo as its school mascot. A local Chrysler/Dodge/Jeep dealership got wind of the trouble, according to the Orlando Sentinel, and offered the services of its graphic artist free of charge to design a new logo for the school.
•Yamaha's off-highway vehicle initiative, called GRANT (Guaranteeing Responsible Access to our Nation's Trails), has provided more than $1.3 million to support the OHV community since the program started two years ago. According to Yamaha's ATV/SxS marketing manager, Steve Nessl, "We're most excited about the future of the program as we meet the continuing and expanding need for OHV support. Yamaha's OHV Access Initiative will continue to provide essential resources to OHV riding clubs, state associations, and public land management agencies at local, state, and federal levels for years to come."
•Pearse Umlauf of the National Off Road Association told us about the I Off-Road & I Vote campaign created by the California Jeep Authority (www.californiajeepauthority.com). "This simple yet powerful message defines the core values of becoming a NORA member. We have the opportunity to vote for elected officials who share the same values regarding motorized recreation. We also have the opportunity to withhold our vote for elected officials who support limiting access to our public lands. Our goal at NORA is to identify political candidates who mirror our values then publicly get behind them by letting our supporters know who to vote for. We can write letters to our elected officials until we're blue in the face, but when we influence the person holding a public office, that's when we make a measurable difference." Each new or renewing NORA member will receive a decal that says, "I Off-Road & I Vote"; get yours at www.nora-usa.com or www.californiajeepauthority.com.