Updated: Reader Suggestions for a Project Car

by | Apr 29, 2021

Today’s Post by Joe Farace

In a previous post called ‘Welcome to My Garage: Video‘ I asked for reader suggestions about what would be a great project car for me now that my garage is partially empty since the departure of my long-gone but not missed CLA 250. (It was a pretty car, though.) Today’s vlog contains some of these reader suggestions along with my opinion on each of them. It may include a few cars and terms you might not be familiar with. To explain…

If you’re not familiar with the term “captive import” let me give you a quick and dirty definition: Captive import is a marketing term and strategy for a foreign-built vehicle that’s sold under the name of an importer or a domestic automaker through its dealers. For example, rebadged versions of the Mitsubishi Starion were marketed in North America as the Chrysler Conquest. During that era, the Dodge Colt was a rebadged variant of the Mitsubishi Mirage subcompacts. As a Plymouth it was branded as a Champ. In the 1980’s Mary and I owned a fourth-generation Champ that we nicknamed “rollerskate.” It served us well for a long time.

Merkur was an automobile sub-brand of Lincoln-Mercury featuring cars produced by the German division of Ford of Europe. Think Mercury Capri. It’s name came from the German pronunciation of “Mercury” and from 1985 to 1989 Merkur cars were targeted at buyers of “European executive cars” in North America. After five years, the Merkur brand disappeared, making it one of the shortest-lived automotive brands in modern American automotive history.

Update: The recent purchase of Mary’s 2018 Subaru Crosstrek has shifted the dynamics of my garage and pushed her Ford Escape company car out into the driveway with the snow, which we seem to have a lot of this Spring. While Mary is on the record on hating 80’s “wedgie”—her term—cars the Starion is back on my (and her) radar for reasons that I hope to explain in an upcoming video real soon now.

If you have five minutes and 57 seconds, please check out the video below that if nothing else gives somewhat of a behind-the-scenes peek at part of my garage.

Here are some of the links to some of my comments in the vlog:

How I shot this video: The camera used was my Panasonic Lumix GH4 with G Vario 14-45mm f/33.5-4.5 lens (at 14mm.) Mic used was an audio-technica Pro 24-CM external shotgun mic. I’m always forgetting to turn off the audio-technica mic, which then chews through its $5 batteries. My friend, Barry Staver gave me a Rode MideoMic shotgun mic, that doesn’t require batteries, to replace it and it’s been a pretty good tool. I just added a wired Deity V.Lav Pre-Polarized Lavalier Omnidirectional Condenser Mic and used it to shoot my Pandemic Vlog with mixed results. Look for more videos using this mic. This video was edited on iMovie and is hosted on Vimeo.

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