Los Angeles is a melting pot of many cultures, so the car culture in Southern California is diverse as well - this place is ground zero for modified cars! Los Angeles has automotive heritage that spans from the first hot rodders and dry lakebed racers in the 1940s and 1950s to the evolution of the European and Japanese car scenes on US shores that began in the late 1960s and continues strong until today. People complain about all the smog and traffic and crappy roads in LA, but we're lucky - as far as I'm concerned, we have it all.
As Southern California car culture evolved from traditional handcrafted V8 powered hot rods to include the modification of small bore, high power output Japanese cars, our car scene truly has come full circle. It may be difficult for some to grasp this, but today, one of the most popular events in Southern California celebrating hot rods and the culture behind them
is actually run by a group of hardcore hot rodders from Japan! The event I speak of is the annual Mooneyes Christmas Party
at Irwindale Speedway
, and year after year, it captivates me like it was my very first car show. Year after year, the Mooneyes Christmas Party remains paramount in my mind as the very best hot rod event I've ever attended. Read more...
We're here at SEMA 2012 in Las Vegas! We once again arrived to the capital of customizations in the automotive world. From everything old school, to the latest in cutting edge automotive technology we'll bring you the latest and greatest in automotive aftermarket industry. Follow our @MOTORMAVENS
for our live feed with the latest photos from the show and the afterparties. We'll be posting photos of cars and models live in real time as we encounter them! Read more...
Round 5 at Evergreen Speedway
has to be one of my favorite events all year (albeit, I'm biased as a Seattle local)! Not only is it my home town, but this race track has one of the biggest bankings in the series - and just like Irwindale Speedway
, there's not much room for error. Everyone in the Northwest drifting community has witnessed a lot of crashes at Evergreen Speedway in Monroe WA throughout the years, and with something like 56 drivers registered for this event, we are sure to get one hell of a show this year! Read more...
Most of our readers already know that @MotorMavens
Crew doesn't normally do coverage of stock car racing. However, when we got the official invite and media passes to the NASCAR
Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway
(California Speedway) in Fontana this past weekend, we decided it might be interesting to experience NASCAR through the eyes of an outsider.
I was unsure of what to expect. A lot of people portray the NASCAR crowd to be a certain demographic - yielding confederate flags and trucker caps with flames on the bill, screaming "Yee-haw!" but that stereotype couldn't be more incorrect, at least at the Fontana event. Read more...
After Walker Wilkerson
finished 18th overall in the 2011 Formula D
season and barely missed the Rookie of the Year
finish, Walker knew he had to step up his game for the 2012 season. Being in the Top 20 wasn't good enough for him! He told me about how much he has learned as a driver and mechanic to keep his car maintained for each event. Which led him into big changes for the 2012 season.
While talking to Walker about his future plans, he revealed that he realized he would have to ditch the SR20DET and go V8 to be even more competitive. I was shocked but I knew that this could help him out in the long run. However, I (and many others) will miss the sound of a stroked SR20 coming out of his exhaust. Read more...
Seriously though, this year’s Formula Drift Finale was one of the greatest weekends of my life. All the media, drivers, and industry people I’ve met over the last few years all in one place to be a part of arguably the greatest drifting spectacle in US history. I say “arguably,” but I will fight you. FD Irwindale 2011 was the best thing ever. Period. (more…)
Now that you’ve heard the story behind and seen all the amazing photos from Formula Drift Las Vegas, courtesy of Oliver Petalver and Mike Kim, take a quick moment to wipe the drool from your keyboards and prepare yourselves for a short video from myself and Joe Ayala. (more…)
of the Formula DRIFT
series was held in the scorching heat of the Las Vegas Motor Speedway
where locals went to witness Rhys Millen
, in the Red Bull/Hankook Tire Hyundai Genesis,
take first place in an already competitive season. Prior to Round 6, Daijiro Yoshihara
in the Discount Tire/Falken Tire Nissan S13
was the leader in the Championship Point Standings with Justin "JTP" Pawlak
(in the Falken Tire Ford Mustang
) in second. Both failed to make it to the to the Final Four in Vegas, making the points spread even more slim.
In addition, this past event made people do a double take as FD Asia
drivers Adwitya "Dio" Amandio
& Saranon "Non" Pornpatanarak
each made their U.S. debut. There was also a bit of controversy as Justin Pawlak switched seats with Tyler McQuarrie
in the Falken Tire Nissan 350Z
while McQuarrie piloted JTP's Falken Tire Nissan S15
All in all, with a nail biting points race, Rhys Millen back on the podium, new faces, and driver crossovers, you can see how someone might say that Vegas was the place to be this past weekend! Read more...
Once again Formula D
makes the stop in my hometown Seattle, Washington
! This is always one of my favorite events because, not only is it my home track, it's also where we see the Northwest grassroots drivers come out and show everyone what they're really are made of. Seattle has a way of making people rise to the occasion!
Earlier in the day, I received a phone call from Rob Primo
telling me that practice was rained out. It was very disappointing because practice is my favorite time to shoot the cars on track. Seattle strikes again. However, she can be forgiving at times. A couple of hours later I received another call from Rob. The rain had stopped and the track was dry. Practice was on again! I think you already know that I quickly grabbed my camera gear and drove straight there before Seattle had a chance to change her mind. So, I guess you can thank beautiful Lady Seattle for what you're about to see. Read more...
This past weekend, the Toyota Grand Prix
took over the streets of Long Beach, CA. This annual three-day festival of speed consisted of the Izod IndyCar Series
, the American Le Mans Series
, Firestone Indy Lights
, Toyota Pro Celebrity Race
, SCCA Pro World Challenge
Championship, and a team tandem competition
from Formula Drift
. We don't normally cover open wheel racing on Motor Mavens, but since we were all in Long Beach two weeks ago for Round 1 of the Formula Drift series, we thought it would be pretty interesting to experience the annual Long Beach Grand Prix
to show a little bit of contrast on the site.
Britain's Mike Conway (above)
emerged as the winner of the IZOD IndyCar
race. Last year, Conway fractured a vertebrae and broke his leg during the Indianapolis 500. An injury like that would spell the end of a racing career for some people, but Conway was able to overcome that incredible setback and take his first IndyCar win at Long Beach. What a way to make a comeback! Read more...
at Long Beach is just around the corner. Yes, it is already April again. As the MotorMavens Crew
gets ready for another season of tire smoking excitement, we wanted to take a look back on the 2010 season and recap the big moments as well as showcase some of the shots that didn't make it into some of the posts. Read more...
I always feel a strong sense of pride when I go to a hot rod show. Hot rodding is as American as you can get
- home grown and originating fully here in the States. Starting with young servicemen after World War II, restless and full of testosterone
, the whole sub-culture that has emerged from it has even influenced styles for clothing, current cars, and music. So, I'm pretty sure you would be hard pressed to find a car enthusiast who didn't like old American rods - there is just an appreciation for the whole lifestyle.
and I were able to make the trek down to Chehalis, WA on June 26th to attend the third annual Billetproof Hotrod and Custom Car Show
, which bills itself as the "World's Least Important Car Show!"
. Sounds a bit self-deprecating to me as it is one of my favorite hot rod shows and, since this marks the second year I have attended, it's clearly important to me.
The show is a bit different from most current hotrod shows, as you can guess by its name, because no cars with billet are allowed to participate. You might ask why, since so many parts are now being produced with this technology specifically for the custom car industry, but it's because the technology didn't exist back in the classic days of hotrodding. Only cars that are traditionally modified and those that precede 1964 are allowed to attend. Read more...
You heard it FIRST from MotorMavens.com!!! Some of our readers may remember Luke Loneberger
's Chevy LS1 turbo-engined S14 from our All Star Bash
and Megan Racing Competition
stories. Well, apparently we were just given the green light to release the big news that we've been keeping under our hats for the past couple months! Los Gatos, California based Luke Loneberger will be building Conrad Grunewald
's new competition car for the 2010 Formula Drift season - a brand new Chevrolet Camaro SS
, with Hankook
as the tire sponsor.
Apparently all of Conrad's work as a driving instructor at Skip Barber Racing School and his unmistakable presence when driving the Tanaka Racing
Corvette in Formula D last year has finally paid off. Let's also not forget - Conrad isn't a stranger to the Formula D podium! We have photos to prove it!
Thanks to Andrew and Conrad from CG Racing, we're able to present you with these sneak peek photos! Read more...