The Horror of Toronto's Anthropomorphic Police CarCartoons have shown us the proper way to anthropomorphize an automobile, by making the headlights into eyes and the grill into a mouth. Most of us figured that out on our own, anyway. Every once in a while, you'd see a car in real life dressed up like it was alive, with eyebrows or eyelashes above the headlights and a smile in front. In the 1950s, British Petroleum had a talking car with a friendly face in the front called Mr. Beep, which they used to teach children about traffic safety. The Toronto Metropolitan Police wanted to have an anthropomorphized talking car for their safety campaign, too, so in 1975, they made an animated version, which was kind of cute. But then in 1979, they unveiled Blinky as a real car customization. But this Blinky was completely different. For some reason, they built a long face for the car, and set it on the hood right over the windshield. The eyes did move and the eyelids blinked. Blinky talked through his nose, which was as long as the hood. The face covered the entire windshield, so Blinky couldn't be driven. In all its public appearance, Blinky was towed! Read about this abomination of a car character and the super scary safety campaign that came with him at the Autopian.
Whatever Happened to Those Corvettes That Were Swallowed Up by the Earth? What do you do when you have a disaster at your museum? You make an exhibit about it! In 2014, the world was stunned when a massive sinkhole opened up right beneath the National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, Kentucky. Eight rare and historic Corvettes were dropped into the 40-foot-deep sinkhole.Ten years later, five of those Corvettes are part of a public exhibit at the museum about the disaster and the recovery efforts, titled “Ground to Sky: The Sinkhole Reimagined.” The vehicles include one that was able to be driven away after it was raised, one restored by GM, one restored by the museum, and two that are total wrecks, beyond any restoration efforts. The exhibit also tells the tale of the recovery efforts in meticulous detail, and how some of the cars were restored to their previous glory. Get more details about the exhibit, open until September 15, at Jalopnik. (Image credit: National Corvette Museum)
The Cream of the Crop at the Goodwood Festival of SpeedSee the best cars from the Goodwood Festival of Speed that wrapped up yesterday in West Sussex, England. The show drew auto manufacturers, racers, enthusiasts, and spectators from all over the world. Autoweek was there, too, to be impressed by what 17 automakers had to reveal. Their list of what impressed them says "Coolest (Non-Race) Cars," but some of them were race cars. I suspect they meant that these cars are, or can be, street legal. The car pictured here is an MG, believe it or not (my first car was a '66 MG Midget, so I was smacked by seeing this one). MG was bought by Chinese carmaker SAIC, and this MG Cyber GTS Concept is electric. You won't be able to get one, though, if you live in the US. But this one is only ranked #6 of the coolest cars at Goodwood. For the rest, you'll have to visit Autoweek.​(Image credit: MG)
Buying a Car Shouldn't Be a "Death March of Deception" It's been so long since I bought a vehicle from a car dealer that I can't recall the details, but every day, people, especially young people with no experience and little credit history, sign their name to vehicle and loan documents they don't quite understand because they need a car. Unscrupulous car dealers with F&I (finance and insurance) departments see these customers as easy prey for car enhancements, loan enhancements, extended loan terms, and service plans they don't need. Once they settle on a vehicle, the buyer could be kept for hours until they will sign anything to get the deal done. The process for doing this is so common that it can be spelled out in a timeline, which may sound familiar, especially if you have been through the experience. Jase Patrick was taken advantage of, and later went to work for a car dealer and learned the ins and outs of wringing extra dollars from an unsuspecting buyer. Then he became the F&I department's worst enemy, advocating for new regulations against the nefarious practices that make buying a car an ordeal that damages one's budget, credit history, and trust. Read about the most common F&I scams and Patrick's fight to make things right at The American Prospect.-via Damn Interesting ​(Image credit: Mike W.) 
This Custom Harley-Davidson Is Made of Intriguing Non-Motorcycle PartsAt the Harley-Davidson Museum in Milkwaukee, you'll find a 1972 Harley-Davidson Aermacchi SS350 that is anything but ordinary. The parts of this motorcycle include a microscope, a saxophone, a pencil sharpener, stove handles, a milkshake mixer, a grapefruit juicer, and more odd objects. This steampunk conglomeration isn't just an art piece, it is a working turbocharged bike! It was a customized by J. Shia of Madhouse Motors. Shia is an artist and machinist from a long line of metal fabricators. The motorcycle on display at the museum is a part of a series of four bikes she customized called the Pareidolia Series, and half of a duo inspired by the ballet Swan Lake by Tchaikovsky. Read about this particular motorcycle and how those strange parts really work, and see the others in the series at the Autopian. You'll also find a couple of videos of Shia at work making her masterpieces. (Image credit: Madhouse Motors)
Koenigsegg Sets Acceleration Records with the Jesko AbsolutThe Jesko is a limited-edition racing car from the Swedish auto company Koenigsegg. First delivered in 2023, it comes in two models, the high-downforce Jesko Attack and the Jesko Absolut, designed for low drag. How fast is the Absolut? The product page, where you'll find the car's specifications, hints that we may never know, but we know it holds the world record in acceleration. The car proved itself on June 27th, when test driver Markus Lundh managed to set four world records with one short trip down an airfield in Örebro, Sweden. The car went from a standstill to 400 kilometers per hour in 18.82 seconds. It went from 0 to 250 miles per hour in 19.20 seconds. The entire 0-400 km/h back to 0 time was 27.83 seconds (its top speed was 412.72 km/h). It went from 0-250-0 mph in 28.27 seconds. Watch that run in all its glory and imagine being in the driver's seat. Can you get an Absolut? Absolutely not. The Jesko is limited to 125 vehicles in its entire production run, and all the manufacturing slots have been sold out for years. This video is for posterity and to draw attention to Koenigsegg, since they will produce more cars to drool over in the future. -via Digg​