■ ■ ■■> I
COLORADO «. 10
Another 2012 Model Year Redesign
The Crittenden Automotive Library gets an updated look but
keeps the same solid engineering under the hood!
Inside: Art, Retail, Presidential Elections, and the Pontiac Vibe
A publication of The Crittenden Automotive
Library, edited by Bill Crittenden. Tail Lights
is and will always be free of charge for elec-
tronic copies. The Library is supported by our
advertisers. If interested in advertising on the
sit e, go to
http://www. carsandracingstuff.com 'advertise, php
Cover Car: An Aston Martin V8 Vantage
The Crittenden Automotive Library Update 3-5
By Bill Crittenden — An update of the goings on of The Crittenden Automotive Library at CarsAndRacingStuff.com
By Bill Crittenden. The world's largest retailer has been a huge help to The Crittenden Automotive Library
Crushed Cars as Art 7
By Peter Fedynsky (Voice of America). New York's Guggenheim Museum has turned into something of a junkyard fea-
turing sculptures made of automobile parts by the late American artist John Chamberlain.
1979 Mercury Capri RS Public Relations Photograph 8-9
Detroit and the 2012 Presidential Election
By Bill Crittenden
The automotive industry bailout has already played a part in the 2012 Presidential Election as presumptive Repub-
lican nominee Mitt Romney had to defend what he wrote in an op-ed in 2008, published in The New York Times under
the title "Let Detroit go Bankrupt," during the run-up to the Michig an primary. You can read it at the NYT website at
Detroit, as a city and as a name, has come to represent the American automobile industry. While people refer to
Ford, GM, and Chrysler collectively as "Detroit" their operations extend far beyond even Michigan's borders. Ford and
General Motors are worldwide operations with a lot of employees working at foreign factories that can't vote in American
elections, but there are plenty of factories in the United States, outside of Michigan, whose employees might sway the
election one way or another.
Outside of the spotlight that Michigan's ballot puts on the industry most identified with the state, the ripples if the
automotive industry bailouts may still make waves in the 2012 election. Take, for instance, President Obama's (and my
own) home state of Illinois, just off the top of my head here. Would the Chrysler plant in Belvidere be in business today
if it weren't for the bailout? Illinois isn't a "battleground" state, but there are automotive factories all over the country.
Then there are suppliers whose employees are dependent upon one or the other major Detroit automakers to stay working.
How about the dealerships? How many Pontiac and Saturn employees are still out of work or are working in menial jobs
at lower incomes after the federal government pressured GM to cut some of their marques?
Americans are said to vote their pocketbooks, and how many pocketbooks are still feeling the effects, negative or
positive, of the bailout?
The Crittenden Automotive Library
r A *
The Crittenden Automotive
By Bill Crittenden
Owner, The Crittenden Automotive Library
It's been an interesting couple of
months here at The Crittenden Automo-
tive Library. First off, we've completely 3
reworked the look and feel of the site,
going with a more colorful design and
better navigation tools. There is now a
navigation bar with graphic links to some
of the most interesting sections of the site. The home page
has been simplified but still contains links to even more sec-
tions of the site.
This step was taken as a further evolution of the Li-
brary from basement hobby to serious media resource. I
prefer simple, classic designs, but one night someone had
told me that it's too simple. I preferred this to the gaudy
colors and flashy clutter a lot of other automotive sites pre-
fer, and the Library looked a lot better than a lot of similar
sites, but oversimplification had made it look like it was
still a cheap hobby site. Since that's not where I want to go
with it, so I had to compare my site to others outside the
automotive realm. What does a professional media site
have? A navigation bar, a little color, and graphics. The
Library now has all three, as well as an updated look to the
logo and top left corner of the site.
This is all part of an effort to transition from the ran-
domness of pay-per-click ads and draw in stable sponsors
that can help take the Library to an even greater level.
What comes next? If I can get enough sponsorship this
goes from something I do in my spare time to a full-time
occupation, and if I can build what I have so far in my spare
time, imagine what I could do if I put 50 more hours a week
The Pontiac Vibe was added as a featured vehicle.
While not as historically interesting or as popular or as cool
as the muscle cars that populate the list, I drive a 2003 Vibe,
I love the car, and through GenVibe.com I've found a whole
group of people who enjoy their Pontiac Vibes.
My car is a silver single-color all-wheel drive Vibe
with a roof rack. I've taken out the front grille and added
two big driving lights in its place. Most of the trim bits in
the interior were taken out and painted orange a year ago,
but now they will be painted a medium green.. .to match the
wheels. The wheels were trashed from 154,000 miles of
northern Illinois road salt, and I ground off the corrosion
and painted them green. Inspired by something I saw
online from Tjin Edition, where wheels are painted a wild
color on a plain color car, it looks like a real-life version of
the Library logo! While it's not SEMA Show perfect, it's
better than what was there before and it's part of a rally car
look, and rally cars get beat up. The carpet, which has been
through a toddler and a lost dog that threw up in the back
while we were trying to find its owner, is coming out.
"Powered by Toyota" appears just in front of the
door mirrors, and "associate sponsor" spots include stickers
from NOS Energy Drink (10 NOS Reward Points gets you a
whole pack of stickers) and Cub Scout/Tiger Scout logos
since one of my "co-drivers" as listed on the window is a
Tiger Scout. The rear windows, which will have the text
redone in a nicer font, include a British flag next to the
name Crittenden for me (I've never even been to Britain but
Crittenden is an English name) and an American flag with
the name Walczak for my wife (Heidi Walczak) and our 7-
year old son (Eli Walczak). Then it's going to get "The
Crittenden Automotive Library" and
"CarsAndRacingStuff.com" across the side between the
Mechanically, I'm reversing 9 years and 154,000
miles of hard commuting and sadly, some neglect based on
a very low budget. Once that's done it's still going to stay
pretty much stock as its intended role in my garage is as a
fuel-efficient daily driver. I'm mostly going to drive this
little bit of advertising around town but I hope to find a nice
twisty dirt road near me to get it really dirty at relatively
high speed as often as possible. I live near a cruise night
that pulls in over 100 cars a night every Monday, and while
I'm not going to park it front and center in the show next to
Chevelles and Shelby Mustangs I can at least tuck it in a
back corner and not have to walk four blocks to get to and
from the lot!
Continued on page A...
\ ® TOYOTA
Stock Car Racing
The Stock Car Racing
project continues for the summer.
I've narrowed the gap in NAS-
CAR top-level driver histories to
1984-2008, and all of the season
pages from 1975-2012 are online
and at least started. Once the
driver histories are done I'll have
all of the races in a large file that I
can use my computer's find and
replace functions to edit links into
and then I'll divide that out into
individual results pages and up-
load them to the site. Just as a
change of pace and a sample of
what's to come once the big NAS-
CAR series are online, I added the
2009 NASCAR Corona Series to
the site. The Corona Series, now
known as the Toyota Series, is
NASCAR's stock car series down
in Mexico. Similar to some re-
gional series up here, they run
cars with the sponsors across the
sides and numbers on the back
between the rear wheel and the
I've been uploading a
bunch of NHTSA Special Crash
Investigation reports to The Inter-
net Archive. The government has
a habit of moving things around
on their websites and losing
things every so often, and the
Internet Archive offers permanent
archival without burdening my
own server as well as direct link-
ing, which is something I can't do
with the Special Crash Investiga-
tions, which are buried behind a
Soon, hopefully in the
background while I process stock
car stats, the Library will include
over a million pages in books and
reports thanks to the assistance of
The Internet Archive and their
The Crittenden Automotive
Motorrvt'lrs. Trucks & ^Kft T Tr-i1-i1-i i rn~
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A station wagon produced by Pontiac. New for the 2003 mode) year, redesigned for the 2009 r
The Vibe was co-developed with Toyota as a station wagon version of the Corolla and based on
referred to as the Toyota Matrix . Toyota sold a right-hand drive version of the Vibe in the Japani
Manufacturing Corporation (NUMMD in Freeport, California until the venture and the Ponttac bi
The Pontiac Vibe is the subject of the forum GenVibe.com with over a half million posts as of the
Model Kits and Die Cast
200-i Pontiac vibe accelerating 0-60 (eve
March 12, 2012
This video is available under a Creative Com
Download 2004 Pontiac vibe accelerating.
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2005 Pontiac Vibe
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This one owner 2005 Pontiac Vibe with 69.C
locks, ABS and a Pontiac factory sunroof. P
By Salit Auto Sales
ige Free Rotation ■ NTBS Going On Now. Print Your Coupon & Save Todayl m
IE Chip GO Horsepower 7 MPG Savings Boost Easy Installation Custom ECU Chip »wa»_<jFChi
f Sonic 1 ,4L Turbo Engine Avail, The Only Turbocharged Engine in its Class. •
lodelyear, production ended in August 2009 with the last models being of the 2010 model year. Available in base model, AWI), and
the Corolla 's "E-platform". The Toyota version of the Vibe is the Toyota Corolla Matrix , as the window sticker read, usually just
iss market as the Toyota Voltz from 2002-2004. Manufactured by the joint Toyota - Genera] Motors venture New United Motor
and were discontinued si General Motors ' bankruptcy proceedings.
beginning of 2012.
XFINITY TRIPLE PLAY
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xions Attribution 3.0 Unported fCC BY 3X0 License
0-60 feventualM in Flash Video format - 2. 1MB
00 low miles on it is certified by CARFAX to have a clean vehicle history report. This low mileage wagon comes equipped with a remote keyless entry, power windows, power door
ior to leaving our dealership this vehicle is serviced and it comes with a warranty
By Bill Crittenden
Last month, The Crittenden Automotive Library got
permission from another new source. While all our sources
are important to us, this one meant something a little differ-
ent: it was the world's largest retailer, Walmart.
I've been a fan of Mr. Sam Walton's stores and
business model for a long time now. Their advertising slo-
gan, their mantra, "Save Money, Live Better," isn't just
something cute an ad firm came up with. It really means
something to families on limited budgets.
A few years ago, my wife lost her job. Thankfully,
Walmart had just built a SuperCenter in Woodstock, Illi-
nois. We were able to afford the basics of food and house-
hold supplies, and that probably would not have been possi-
ble paying the higher prices charged by other retailers in
Walmart then further helped our family by giving
my wife a job in the darkest times of the recent economic
recession. She went from a holiday part-timer to a Person-
nel Manager in an incredibly short time, and was even in-
vited to the 2011 Shareholders' Meeting in Bentonville, Ar-
We've seen now from the other side how "Save
Money, Live Better" can motivate people to operate the
most efficient store possible to provide the best value for
other families in their communities.
Now a company as big as Walmart is helping my
family again, taking the time to acknowledge my little base-
ment operation here and allowing us to use some of its mar-
keting materials in the Library.
Aside from the indirect impact being the world's
largest retailer has on what an average car owner buys for
their automobile, they're also going to sponsor a NASCAR
race car for the first time this year, and most importantly
they operate a huge private fleet of trucks for shipping the
products we buy to the stores we shop in. Wal-Mart Trans-
portation, LLC is a large enough buyer to influence the
market for big rig trucks, and they're using their influence
to help the trucking industry turn a profit producing fuel-
efficient trucks. More pictures and articles at:
Crushed Cars as Art
By Peter Fedynsky, Voice of America
New York's Guggenheim Museum has turned into
something of a junkyard featuring sculptures made of auto-
mobile parts by the late American artist John Chamberlain.
The artist was known as a rebel who transformed cars into
vehicles that transport the imagination.
A sculpture at the entrance to the museum is made
of old car bumpers. Inside are dozens of other automobile
abstractions by sculptor John Chamberlain. He passed away
in December at the age of 84.
While the Guggenheim is not a parking garage, doz-
ens of cars have been parked, so to speak, on each level of
its spiraling space. Chamberlain reshaped the cars in a way
that's consistent with the exhibit's name, Choices. Curator
Susan Davidson explains that Chamberlain assembled mate-
rials to create three dimensional collages.
"He is able to choose the positioning of the colors,
the fit of the shapes that he brings together, the sound that
the metal makes when he assembles it," said Davidson.
She says Chamberlain used common materials in an
uncommon way. He sculpted these objects, which look like
beanbags, from urethane foam.
This abstraction is made of plastic. Aluminum foil
is the material for the towering sculpture in the Guggen-
heim foyer. But his primary resource was old cars.
Museum Director Richard Armstrong says Cham-
berlain's work is unique.
"[Chamberlain's work embodies] a free spirit that
helps define and redefine mid-20th century art," said Arm-
Susan Davidson says Chamberlain had the spirit of
an American rebel much like Rock and Roll legend Elvis
Chamberlain's works are positioned away from the
walls so viewers can see them from all sides. Freelance
writer Deborah Bearg says the sculptures offer the imagina-
tion an infinity of images.
"Everytime you're looking, you're going to see
something else," Bearg explained. "I'm sure if I walk back
through this part of it today, I'll see very different images."
The exhibit is drawing visitors from New York and
Waynette Ballengee from Louisiana says the show
initially struck her as junk.
"But as I traveled up the rotunda, it started to make
more sense to me," said Ballengee. "And I thought that it
became more interesting, as he changed the way that he
worked with the material."
Declan Kennedy, from Ireland, says he was im-
pressed with the building, not the exhibit.
"I think it just looks like a lot of scrunched up
metal. So it doesn't appeal to me," said Kennedy.
Susan Davidson says Chamberlain told her that the
secret to artistic success is insanity. He added that art and
criminality draw inspiration from the individual's own pecu-
liarities. He preferred art.
View the video for this report at
Originally published March 3, 2012
©The Crittenden Automotive Library
Sponsorships of The Crittenden Automotive Li-
brary are available for $50 a month for a text
link! Sponsoring the site gets your business
name in a prime location for exposure to the
700+ visitors a day that browse the Library as
well as linking to your site from over 20,000
automotive-related topics and articles so that
search engines can see the importance of your
business. For a more visual impact on site visi-
tors, you can place a 185x100 pixel logo or im-
age instead of a text link for $100 a month.
With the Library averaging over 700 visitors a
day and growing, this places your name ($50 a
month text link ad) in front of over 21,000 visi-
tors a week, 52 weeks a year, with your site just
one click away for about $12.50 a
week. Compare that to sponsoring a race car that
doesn't run in front of crowds of even 10,000
every weekend all year long and costs much
more than $600 a season and depends on fans
remembering the business name or website name
to type into their browser when they get home!
More information at
The 1979 Mercury Capri is available in four versions - the well-equipped base Capri, the sporty Capri RS (above), the perfon
oriented Turbo RS and the luxurious Capri Ghia. The Capri's standard powertrain is a 2.3-liter overhead cam four-cylinder ei
pled with a four-speed manual transmission. Optional powerplants include a 2.8-liter V-6, a 5.0-liter V-8 and a turbocharged
of the four-cylinder engine. Three levels of suspension - base, Radial Sport and one based on Michelin's revolutionary TRX t
wheels (above) - are also available. The broad choice of powertrains, standard rack-and-pinion steering and three suspension
add up to an extremely versatile car that can be equipped to meet a wide variety of tastes.
1979 MERCURY CAPRI RS
This photograph is part of a collection of 1979 Ford-Lincoln-Mercury photographs that
is going online in the next few weeks. More to come in the next issue of Tail Lights!