April 13, 2019

A quick drive across Europe ? Those days may be over

It's over. The era of European grand touring--the pursuit and enjoyment of elite speed across the face of the continent in powerful cars, the classic driving vacation--is finito. I've tried: From Wales to Croatia, from southern Italy to northern Scotland, and definitely not central France.

I'm worried about my car-loving friends, though. Europe's nearly airtight enforcement of speed limits threatens whole empires of make-believe: brands like Aston Martin and Mercedes-AMG; aftermarket tuners and tire makers; and all the businesses that swim like remoras next to big, expensive cars (detailing, insurance, auction houses, road- rallies). Their businesses all hang on a myth, the promise of Europe as a driving playground, which it hasn't been, really, since the 1960s.

'Europe's near-airtight enforcement of speed limits threatens whole empires of automotive make-believe.' -- Dan Neil.

August 2, 2017

Bo Stefan Eriksson, Carl Freer, and Gizmondo (not Gizmodo)

So while there was the illusion of fair exchange, there really was no exchange at all: Eriksson and Freer got diehard loyalty and free labor in exchange for Gizmondo stock, while their underlings were allowed to drive outrageous automobiles that they nonetheless didn't own. Models, supercars, diamond watches, paper stocks, parties: these were the currencies in Gizmondo nation, and everyone thought of themselves as fucking rich.

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