Home / Car News / The Autopian Is Two Weeks Old: Let’s Chat

The Autopian Is Two Weeks Old: Let’s Chat

Pasted

The Autopian has been up and running since March 32nd, or precisely two weeks ago. We’d like to chat with you, the dear readers who have chosen for whatever reason to board this untested vessel piloted by two frankly not-100%-there captains. So let’s hang out in the comments, talk about cars, and chat about whatever you feel like discussing.

Torch will hop on in a bit; he’s doing Passover stuff. For now it’s Thomas Hundal— our car-obsessed news-writing contributor — and me, just chillin’ here in the comments section of a website that, just a few months ago, was just a figment of Jason and my imagination. Now I have an unbelievable number of responsibilities: editing basically all day, everyday; trying to get a moment to actually write my own articles; staring out at my driveway, praying I can get a single moment to wrench on a Jeep. Will all this work be the death of me? No, I’m pretty sure that Valiant Ute in Australia will, but running this site will definitely weaken me.

Anyway, you should ask Thomas weird stuff about infotainment systems and weird re-flashing mods and also any BMW ever built. He’s an absolute geek and I’d like you all to get to know him better.

I’d also like to get to know you better, so let’s hang out! (I’m not the only one with nothing better to do on a Friday night, right?).

Oh and here’s Thomas’s BMW 325i:

Pasted

Share on facebook
Facebook
Share on whatsapp
WhatsApp
Share on twitter
Twitter
Share on linkedin
LinkedIn
Share on reddit
Reddit

191 Responses

  1. I would love to know why sometimes I can reply to a post or a comment quite happily, other times it tells me I need to login. When I click login it just brings me to my profile page. It’s infuriating. Any thoughts on how to fix?

  2. The log in issues have been fixed. ????

    Like the format, althoigh in theory is follows along your past location. Not bad, just an observation. So AT is much more user responsive. Especially with comments from the ED staff. Hope your time commitments continue to allow it.

    DT and J are keeping a very everyman vibe to the site. Much more relatable to common folk. Will it last? I’ve outgrown my lust for unobtainable vehicles . Although I do aspire to more than $hitbox.

    One more comment. Again, I’m an old / old school guy. But…. The excessive use of four letter words does not imply class. Again, maybe I”m too old fashioned. And Ive been trapped into using “shitbox”…. My wife was shocked but completely understood….

    Love the site…..

    1. Thank you GLL.

      I myself hate cursing, but for some reason shitbox has just become “okay” to me; rolls off the tongue! I will admit that, in a story earlier today, I did tell a man to shove something up his ass, but can you blame me? The guy was trying to pressure me into selling my brother’s Mustang!

      Jason’s not an excessive curser, either. Thomas only does it hilariously.

      We don’t force it ’round these parts. We just try to call things like they are and have a good time.

      1. I must be dumb I can’t even figure out how to comment on the story so I have to reply to you comment.

        Nice not to have that dumb gray font for newbies. Hundreds of witty posts on the old site and my contributions are still barely readable…

      2. I must be dumb I can’t even figure out how to comment on the story so I have to reply to your comment.

        Nice not to have that dumb gray font for newbies. Hundreds of witty posts on the old site and my contributions are still barely readable…

      3. Used as a spice rather than a main course it’s okay. What annoyed me at Jalopnik was the juvenile snark about almost everything…probably. (“probably” after absurd assertions is even worse than the snark).
        You’re doing it very right.
        Thank you!!

      4. I will admit, I love using profanity when it feels right. And, to be completely honest, I don’t understand why it’s offensive? Personally, I suspect classist roots (talks like a sailor, etc) and I just love words, profanity included, so I won’t lie and say I won’t use them, sometimes with glee.

        Just please know it’s never meant to be disrespectful! I want you as a reader, so I hope you can periodically indulge me in this. I’ll try not to make it excessive, though, you have to remember I get carried away easily. Anyway, I appreciate talking about it.

        1. As Mark Twain once said, “The difference between the right word and almost the right word is the difference between lightning and the lightning bug.” And that includes swear words. Sometimes nothing else will do.

        2. I tell my kids a modified version of that famous old axiom: GRATUITOUS profanity is the crutch of the inarticulate motherfucker. We’re as foul-mouthed a household as ever made a longshoreman blush, but we endeavor to use it cleverly, dare I even say tastefully. Entertainingly, the way Torch does so well.

          That motherfucker is articulate!

        3. My hypothesis on profanity is as follows:

          There are some words that are genuinely offensive, mainly because they have historically been used to demean or harm groups of people. Those are actually bad words.

          But then there are the classic swear words, shit and fuck. Now…shit doesn’t mean anything that poop doesn’t mean. Fuck doesn’t mean anything that screw doesn’t mean. These two seem to have just been arbitrarily chosen as bad words. And I think I know why.

          The use of these words gives kids an opportunity to be rebellious in a way that’s completely harmless. Most of the time they get away with it, and it scratches that rebellion itch. Then when they do get caught by a grown-up in authority over them, they get in trouble for it. That maintains its status as a taboo, reinforcing the rebellion outlet.

          So our duty as “responsible adults” is to keep up the charade and lecture the kids any time they say shit or fuck, otherwise they’ll need to do rails of cocaine to scratch that rebellion itch.

          1. English has some fascinating aspects to it because of 1066. If you take synonyms, one from Anglo-Saxon and the other from Norman French, the French derived term is always considered ‘classier’. Some examples: eat vs. dine, hit vs. strike, house vs. mansion. English is the only language with its own inferiority complex.

  3. I gotta say, you guys have surprised me with the breadth and volume of content. At first, I kinda metered my drop ins so I wouldn’t run into the dreaded “nope, nothing new yet!” That hasn’t been a problem! I’m enjoying getting introduced to new writers and their voices a heckuva lot.

    Hang in there, I think you guys are cooking with gas on this.

  4. You’ve exceeded all of my expectations (except for copy-editing, which could use a little work) and I couldn’t be happier with this site. I love the eclectic expertise that’s here and your stable of contributors (including/especially you and Torch) is fantastic. I hope you can score a few more J alums like Mercedes and Graverobber and maybe even Tom McP. I don’t know what your monetization plans are, but I hope they don’t involve too many ads. I love the non-intrusive Optima sponsorship (my next batteries will be Optimas) and I’d much rather pay a monthly subscription than look at damned ads. Have you thought about expanding your merchandise efforts? Like, maybe co-branded wrenching tools with someone like Tekton? Or maybe have affiliate links for your sponsor(s) so we can buy Optima batteries and other stuff directly through this site and score you a cut of the sale? There are so many better options than pop-ups and slideshows and the like. I’m on here every day, multiple times a day, and I read nearly everything that gets posted, and I hope your traffic keeps growing. I know you all must be working your asses off keeping this thing going, but it’s great so far. Thank you for all your efforts and for your passion to deliver the best auto-enthusiast site ever.

    1. Thank you! To Torch and me, we’re not even 1/100th the site we want to be yet. We’re super happy with our contributors, and the level of expertise and insight they provide; at some point we want some staffers with strong voices and lots of love for cars to hop on here and delight you each and everyday.

      I find myself in a weird spot in that I know some readers came here to read me, but I’m searching for writers, helping them develop stories, then editing them (I realize copy-editing isn’t optimal, but that was a conscious decision on our part to get started (at least while we’re lean, content has to remain king)). But I have a plan in place that will drastically improve it without adding too much burden to our process.

      For now, we’re getting our feet underneath us, figuring out our needs, and then developing a growth plan. We’ve got lots of different strategies for monetization, many unconventional. We will not be sacrificing the user experience to keep or coffers full, because that defeats the whole purpose.

      Thank you for the support! <3

    2. First, thanks so much for the support and kind words and, most of all, reading and being part of the community! That’s why we’re doing this, after all. As far as revenue streams go, we’ll be looking into all these options, but we never want to impair the user experience. Can’t hurt to buy some Optima batteries!

  5. I just want to take a second to publicly thank both of you for the opportunity to contribute something to this delightful madhouse. I’m having a terrific time, and finally, I get to blather about junky old cars to someone besides my wife, whom I’m sure is grafetul as well. You’re both a pleasure to work with/for, and it’s an honor to be here.

    (But for the love of all that’s twin-carburetted, can we get comment reply notifications?)

      1. By “learning” David means he DMs me with some quote and asks if I know what the hell this is and I find myself schooling this adult on crucial human culture like the Swedish Chef and the Blues Brothers. How did this happen?

        1. Mix a fresh young engineer and a talented worldly mentor. Add writers from across demographics, blend in a mix of auto dorks, taillight techie geeks, word nerds, and general good folks.
          Promise something great, allow to congeal like 20 year old motor oil, then plaster across the interwebs, sit back and watch the fun!

  6. I cannot express enough appreciation for what you all are doing! I am not a person that can recite the Brake Horsepower, Stopping Distance, and Tire Size of every new model; nor do I care. You all are filling a gap that many of us have searched for. Nothing against the stats game that some of the manufacturers and larger publications promote, but that is not what makes a vehicle memorable to me. I see a Lincoln Blackwood every morning and still get excited about it. Open the “tailgate” on that thing and BAM you are in a whole new world of luxury. That is what excites me about what you all are doing. The unique. The things that the “artists” put into their automotive creations. You all are able to highlight the nuance of the mundane that most overlook. The content has been great and am happy to continue to support you. My closest is literally full of blipshift shirts, but looking forward to adding in more Autopian creations! If you can get on board with a license plate frame, I will take 5!

      1. From reading through the other comments, it seems that you all are overwhelmed with running the site. I assume a major part of that is creating/editing/editing others content. My request will not help, but potentially add more. It seems that most of us are not here for the mainstream press launch coverage. What I would love to see is a running series of what we, the community, are working on. Most of us have an eclectic flair and where better to source FREE content than us! Our writing skills may be sub par, but there are some AMAZING cars that your readership have in their stables. Maybe our collections seem blah on the outside, but the nuance/passion that we put into the vehicles would be appreciated/enjoyed by others. Just a thought.

  7. My big question is, how’re YOU guys doing? I would have to think that the time and stress that go into a launch like this are overwhelming, but not only are you putting out great content–you’re interacting and and maintaining good cheer.

    I just hope you all take a moment or two to enjoy and celebrate what’s happening. Also, looking forward to developing some familiarity with the non-Torch and David crew. The best, most satisfying blogs tend to be the ones where the author would be identifiable sans byline.

    1. You’re a big peach to ask about us! I think we’re all a bit tired, but very excited about what we’re doing. I know I’m a bit ragged because tonight I was cleaning the kitchen and I accidentally poured out this wisteria syrup my wife was making and oh shit was that a bad move so I had to get Otto to take me to where the wisteria plants were to grab new flowers to get the process going again but it’s all okay now, so whew.

      Also, Passover started today, so no leavening for me because shove it, Pharaoh, let my people go and all that.

    2. When we started this business we understood the work it would take to get it running and keep it running. It’s an unbelievably taxing undertaking. I’m 30 and single with no other major responsibilities, so I’m in a good position to bear lots of load; I’m a Ram 3500. JT is in a different place in life, and yet he’s acting like a chassis cab — he’s doing SO much. I love him for it, but I sometimes worry that the site and I are being too demanding (he has a family and house and pets and, you know, normal-person responsibilities). Him being happy is very important to me and to the success of this endeavor, so if I have to replace is damn Nissan Pao’s head gasket, I’ll do it! (Seriously, that’s happening. He hit a deer, lost coolant, overheated, and blew the HG).

      Thrilled with the help we’ve gotten. Thomas impresses me regularly, and Huibert, Secret Designer, Dave Wilson, Adrian, Rex, Mark and the rest of the contributors are just good people with brains full of great car stuff.

      1. Aw, everyone look at this and feel all the love here and understand why I’m so happy this rust-addled loon is my partner here! He’s the absolute best. I know he wants to stab me like six times a day so this is even more meaningful.

  8. Absolutely love the atmosphere here so far. You guys are my heroes. If I can grow up to be half the man that both of you are combined, then I’ll feel pretty good about myself.

    I have many, many questions about electric motor control systems and am most keenly interested in how to take older ICE recreational vehicles and even agricultural equipment and converting them into full-blown electric monsters. I do not have an engineering background or a computer science background, so it seems a bit daunting. I feel like the public deserves a step-by-step guide on how to do ICE to EV conversions, presented in a way that the average tinkerer could comprehend and execute.

    That was in part my mission when starting the Electric Off-Roaders Alliance, which currently has approximately two and a half members plus a couple of bots that posted to the forums.

    I’ll be keenly watching your Jeep to EV conversion progress and might be interested in donating a 2-door JK with plenty of life left to live and nary but a speck or two of rust.

    I really hope this corner of the interweb thrives for generations to come, and I’m excited to be along for the ride.

  9. Just want to congratulate y’all on this whole thing. David, I met you last year in some parking lot in WA. We chatted and you asked me what I thought about that other website. I was like, “I really wish you and Jason would do your own thing”. And holy shit…

    Also, I just got my Autopian T-shirt today.

    1. Be careful what you wish for!

      (And thank you for the support)! Gosh I love that part of the country; I may end up moving out of Michigan soon. I’ve been here a while, and I LOVE the car culture, but I’m ready for something new I reckon. I’m not quite sure the PNW is the move, but west perhaps?

      1. IF… you keep away from the water, cars and trucks out here north of seattle can be amazingly rust free! we get maybe a week of snow each year. yes, lots of rain but hey, still better than snow for 5 months of the year. and lots of little oddities hibernating in back yards. we get brit iron from BC and the west coast was where the japanese first entered the US market. unfortunetly not the greatest for motorsports facilities, but you can’t have everything. we are isolated from the latest detroit info, but wonders of the internet, the whole world is a keystroke away.

        1. Bullhead City, AZ / Laughlin, NV are hotter than the “Hinges of Hell” in the summer months. A good location for escaping the Michigan “5 months of snow”. Also the location of the steep grade used for the SAE towing capacity test.

          Probably not a “prime” location for a 30 year old… .

          Russ

      2. Kalamazoo is west, come join us!

        I grew up in Romeo and my dad worked for GM his entire career, so cars are kind of in my blood. Let me know if you’re ever on this side of the state. I’d love to buy you a local beverage or two and chat!

      3. WTF? Move west?
        Okay, may I suggest Walled Lake? That’s West of your current location.
        I’d hate to see you leave Michigan. We have such an intense car culture here!!! What exactly are you looking to move for?

        In the meantime: sleep on it and get back to me. K?

          1. Consider Bullhead City Arizona. No rust, easy registration for vehicles the casinos in Laughlin Nevada just across the river have car shows like every 2 weeks, also plenty of buffets. Not far from California and 80mph speed limits if any of your cars can go that fast.

  10. I finally figured out that if you login, and it then takes you to your profile (which, lets hope that changes and it just takes you back the the article you were on), if you click back to that article and it says “you must be logged in to comment”, hit refresh and that finally allowed me to be able to type this comment. HTH anyone having the same login issues. Have a great weekend everyone! ????

          1. Recommended procedure before taking on a repair of Lucas equipment: Check the position of the stars,kill a chicken and walk three times clockwise around your car chanting:” Oh mighty Prince of Darkness protect your unworthy servant..”

  11. Put some new rear brakes on the Ford Transit.

    Bled the rear brakes on the BMW 850 after I replaced every bushing and bearing in the rear end over the winter. Took it for a test drive and at this point I think it decided to eat both fuel pumps. Nice guy down the street towed me home. I will do some more testing tomorow, and likely pull them,

    Good job on the site. Looks like you are gathering it up and moving forward

  12. I lurked at the Other Site every day for YEARS without ever making an account. There are still a couple writers there whose work I miss, but sadly they cannot outweigh the suck; since you left, I haven’t been back once. And I made this login to tell you that and bump up your numbers, in case it helps.

    Feedback: the “leave a reply” shows up AFTER all the existing comments (on Safari/iPad), kind of painful on mobile to scroll past 100+ brilliant insights to add my own tripe.

  13. Oh well, I think I got too late for the party :-/. Will try to log in in time for the monthversary (mensiversary?).
    Since my timing is a bit off, I’ll just talk to myself for a bit 🙂
    First (and again, because once is never enough), thank you guys for all the effort you’re putting into this – it really shows. It is hard to believe that you all juggled the exit from the other place, the creation and launch of a complete and functional website, and _also_ managed truly quality content!
    I was prepared to put up with some watered down posts for a while, but everything *started* up to eleven. Then I began preparing for a “cooling off” from a theoretical burst of pre-made posts, but -again- I was wrong, the content keeps coming… I think I am dozens of articles behind by now!
    Finally – to cut short all this gushing around – it is not always that I witness the launch of a website*, and it makes me feel more of a part of it – even though my “contributions” are limited to short, inane comments on the real work. But still, feels good to forward the link to my friends knowing that “I was there” during launch!
    * Curiously enough, the other “major” website launch that I witnessed was when the Brazilian arm of jello picknick went belly up, and all the local writers banded together to build a new version (with a cooler name). They are still going strong to this day, which proves that the prospects of pulling a Martin Luther and starting your own thing are actually quite good 🙂

  14. I’m late to this two week wrap up, but want to say love this site. I don’t wrench anymore, too old and tired and never enough time, but I love the stories on this site and particularly the writing style, and I do mean that for every writer. It’s a great start and here’s hoping for nothing but continued growth and success.

    Oh and to the first and current vehicle:
    first: 1954 GMC pickup (given to me by my parents, given back when I purchased a used car. Couldn’t kill it, loved it.) Anyone start in something older?
    first owned new car: 1986 Isuzu Impulse
    current: 2016 Fusion Energi Platinum & 2014 BMW X3

  15. I love that this particular set of people is doing this. Jason and David you two are just the best.

    My one ask for this site is to always, forever, perpetually keep the list of news in chronological order with the newest at the top. Please please please please. The “featured” banner at the very top is fine, I guess, but please don’t let it grow any further than that.

    Nothing pissed me off about the old site more than the same stupid four articles continuously showing up in the list EVERY SINGLE DAY for months and months and months. Seriously, I didn’t care about how that car did in the Dakar rally yesterday, I don’t care today, and I won’t care tomorrow.

    If any super smart internet person tells you to switch to an algorithm-controlled article listing saying “it will drive up engagement” please throat punch them for me, tie them up, throw them in the trunk (or frunk) of something without an internal emergency release and drive them out to the desert far beyond the reach of wifi and fancy coffee. “Driving up engagement” is how we ended up on this, the shittiest of all timelines.

  16. I’m absolutely thrilled with the site. Great content, great writers, real community in the comments section.

    The comments definitely need a bit of work to provide the ability to add pictures, and I agree the whole login process is a tad clunky.

    I’m good with you guys working for some more monetization. All y’all deserve to get paid and I know full well that a single tasteful banner ad at the top of the page won’t do it. What ticks us all off at the other site is the absolute in-your-face blatancy of “we don’t care how much we wreck your user experience as long as we get a few more pennies out of it”. You’ve seen what not to do.

    There’s a lot of us rooting for you to be the premier site for car nuts of all stripes.

  17. Two weeks in and I’m still super happy with the content. Y’all have successfully cut my morning productivity down by at least 25%. Keep it weird and keep it as uncluttered as possible while making sure the compensation for you guys is there, and I think the audience will be there. I would be interested to see the YouTube channel develop as the site grows. I think that between David and Torch the personalities are there, J just didn’t emphasize it really. Whatever direction is decided on, I’ll be eagerly reading along as it develops. Thanks for jumping out on that limb and making this happen!

  18. You guys have to do something about the login. I tried to comment on David’s xj article(bitch about how AAA left me on hold for an hour while i was freezing on the Southfield, only to tell me no one is coming.)
    Now I’m trying to give my opinion about the douche bag who showed up at David’s house. Im surprised I can comment on this article.

  19. Everything is just what I expected, and that’s a damn good thing. I like the simplicity and readability of the layout a lot. And of course, the mix of raw entertainment and good, relatable tech/mechanical information is something you really don’t get anywhere else.

    Keep up the good work (Stay calm and Torch on?)!

  20. Just want to thank you and cheer you up because everything has been fantastic! Can’t wait for this site to evolve. Loving the variety (like de car designer posts) and the involvement of everyone in the comment section (specially from writers with readers).

  21. I signed up right away when I saw the announcement, but feared that it would not form a community quickly.

    I was wrong completely.

    You guys produce original ( and often frankly weird) content and have an ability to spot the fun and quirky aspects of the automotive world. I have think already that you will be very successful.

    Timing is good- Spring is here, Covid is lifting, people are desperate to get out and enjoy their cars. Today I am going to pull my old 997 GT3RS out of storage and give it its first run on some back roads. Six months of sitting is just too painful, but, hey…its Canada.

    1. Thanks! Ah the six-month Canadian hibernation, I know it all too well. The chrome-wrapped Aventadors are back at Yonge and Sheppard in Toronto, so it’s only a matter of time before all the good stuff comes out of the woodwork. Glad to hear you were able to take your 997 GT3 RS out for a rip, what an absolutely mesmerizing car. Mezger engine FTW!

  22. For long winded reasons, available upon request, I would gladly participate in almost any efforts you three would ask to monetize this site. Unfortunately your tshirts don’t come in Men’s sizes but I would gladly pay so that you can continue.
    Thank you

  23. Congratulations on making it through two weeks! You all must be tired and missing your families/pets/vintage video games/sleep. I’ve noticed the reduction in quality/goofy content at the other place-nik and a lot of dusty articles from their vault.

    If any of your staff ever need to fact-check anything with a materials engineer with 20+ years of failure analysis and auto industry experience, feel free to get back to me. Otherwise, here’s to goofy car fun and dirty fingernails. Keep it up!

  24. Absolutely enjoyed the first 2 weeks. The focus on original content over chasing the daily grind has been appreciated. It feels more like listening to a friend explain the intricacies of Saab’s front reverse lights, or how the sale of a car went south minutes after it left, or even why a Tesla landed nose first. Honestly if there were more fart jokes, Star Wars references and beer involved, it would be exactly like listening to my personal friends.

    The start up has undoubtedly been tough behind the scenes but it has definitely been successful. One change request though, could you move the reply/comment box to above the comment feed? It’s a long way to scroll sometimes.

  25. Didn’t read 200 other comments before posting this, so sorry if it has been mentioned or discussed, but your load times are sometimes awful. It took me over twenty seconds from I clicked on this article until it came through.

    (I’m on a fast connection in a big city, watching your stuff in Chrome on a mac)

    But this site is often about old technology, so I guess the kind of retro feeling of long load times doesn’t matter so much? But at some point in time, someone could get a little bored with them.

    Otherwise thanks a lot for this nice new site!

    My 10 year old and I discussed the brushes on the sides of escalators during our easter vacation travels, and I told him “Well, there actually is a detail orientated guy named Jason Torchinsky over in the US, who has actually written an article on just those”, and he just asked me “Why would he do that?” 😀

  26. Glad this place exists, I just jumped ship after nearly 9 or so years… Tired of non Auto content and just basic bashing going on and nothing worth reading any longer. Seemed people weren’t really enthusiast’s any longer and just puppets riding in cars… Glad to be here.

  27. Autopian is the auto media that speaks to me. I love the Full-Oink, let the freak flag fly approach – indeed, there were small tastes in the previous pub., but this is everyone-esoteric served on baking brakes.

    The writing is about what I love, what I go fast with and what brings personal joy. I think this site is going to be kick ass if you aren’t careful. Thank you.

  28. Great site. So far so good.

    I haven’t read all the comments, but I have read a few. I read Jalopnik quite a bit over the years, and I generally liked it. What I didn’t like was when the articles would veer off topic. If I want political or social opinions, I can see it on another (ANY other) site. I love how Autopian is keeping it pure. That is remarkable and I hope it doesn’t change. And on a related/not related note, I would resist the urge to circle the lifeboats looking for more old staff from the old site. Just my opinion but that’s going to get really stale really fast and you’ll be stuck with their subpar content forever. Take your time and get it right. Great site!

  29. I missed the party.

    Overall I am impressed with the website and I wear my March 32nd shirt with pride.

    As an aging balding monkey, do you have plans for other merch? A baseball style hat would be an instant buy for me.

    There are very few minor issues that I am sure you chasing and have an ever growing list of more. The top on my list if the general speed of the site. Then again BW cost money, which I am sure will be resolved once revenue streams are set up.

    BTW – Let me know if you want the Torch with Puppies picture. I can send to the tips email if you want 🙂 Of course, you would probably then banhammer my account.

  30. front page loads fast, but the articles are another story.

    Also, please don’t fall into the false outrage of your former employer with hurr durr the car name is too long, and it makes no sense, for some bullshit that only shows on the registration/title.

  31. I’ve followed a handful of other sites over the years but could never be bothered to sign on. Aaaand those other sites seemed to be progressively racing each other to see how much advertising masquerading as articles they could just jam in there. At least one of them is now recycling old content because the new (and cheaper) staff can’t do what the old (and interesting) staff did.

    I may not agree with everything written here and I find some of it deeply weird*, but that’s the point. If I wanted some smooth-talking corporate stooge whispering in my ear about how I should buy a mall-crawling softroader** in the middle of articles about sex toys and dog care products, there’s a dozen sites anxious to cater to that need. I don’t have that need.

    I think cars are a deeply personal thing, a means of self-expression if anything. The car reflects the driver. They should provoke thought or discussion. I don’t care how goofy that sounds, because that’s what I’m here for… and that’s also what I’m getting so far.

    If the overall Autopian plan is basically, “Everything about cars except trying to sell you one, or whatever random crap Amazon has on offer,” I shall be very happy.

    PS: I did have an idea for an article or three (supposing the idea has traction, pardon the pun)
    ——————
    * I don’t quite share the same enthusiasm for headlights as others here, but that’s okay! Points conceded.
    ** I first saw “softroader” as a term here, and I totally stole it for my own personal lexicon.

  32. Just joining my humble self to what will definitely be an awesome community. Long time reader of the other site; hadn’t posted much after remaining in greys (I think I had a temp burner account, whatevs). I might not be the most prolific poster but I’ll definitely be a reader (comments and articles of course). Keep up the great work !

  33. We need somewhere where we can discuss our projects, I’m currently building a skoolie from a 40 ft flat nose Thomas school bus with a Caterpillar engine, also turning my 2001 C5 Corvette into a 2001 C5R, and I’m going to restore a 77 Corvette I bought after that. Don’t worry both are manuals.

    I picked up the Corvette after I bought an 81 Mercedes 240D with a 4-speed for my girlfriend and she didn’t like it cuz it was old even though everything worked, and it even had LED headlights and the analog clock even worked.
    So I sold that to someone from Gulfstream and I bought the Corvette.

    I would love to see other people’s projects.

  34. Overall I love where the site is going! Keep up the good work guys! The only issue I have is that the “Leave a Reply” button is at the bottom of the comments, it’s a lot of scrolling to get there.

  35. First thoughts after a couple weeks:

    Pluses
    Great content, virtually no ads (The orange guys drove me away before your new venture). I don’t mind ads, but jeez, Big Orange broke the site with them.

    What you rolled out WORKS. Doesn’t seem like community college script kiddies are doing your web dev.

    Lack of Hot Take articles
    Too many junk articles at Big Orange, driving clicks and angry thumbs by idiots.

    Concerns
    Not enough writers – y’all going to burn out. Seriously. Passion is great, but spread it out a bit; give a few wannabes a chance to write (short-term gigs) and see if they stick. Call them three-month interns. If you only focus on your own content, and editing the same, burn-out (or much worse) will follow. Hatch a few more careers in automotive journalism. It would be nice to bring over a couple of folks that still write over there, but wait it out, attrition will continue at that place.

  36. There is currently no way for me to put sweet, greasy American greenbacks directly into your sweet, greasy grabby-grabs. My only option is to buy T-shirts, which I’ve done but it seems like a rather inefficient way of transferring my vast wealth right into The Autopian’s gaping, baby-bird-like coffers. I understand that even the best banks rarely accept deposit by dump truck, but have you considered at least slapping up a Patreon or something?

    1. First vehicle I owned was a ‘71 Westfalia pop-up VW bus.
      >did my first engine-swap 2weeks after I bought it, replacing the anemic 1300 with a dual-port 1600 so I didn’t have to piss everyone off in 1st gear driving home in the mountains.

      30 years later I thrash another boxer, albeit water-cooled: ‘02 WRX

    2. First ride is a tough question. First regularly driven? Or first owned?
      * The first car I was the primary driver of was a 1977-ish Ford Courier pickup. 5-speed, purchased at the highway department’s vehicle auction. But that was my folks’ car – I just drove it every day during HS. Floor totally rusted thru so we pop-riveted in some scrap sheet magnesium to keep my feet dry. Carb was mis-adjusted so I could make it backfire at-will, which was hilarious to a 17-year-old me (and my friends.) Hilarious shitbox, but very useful.
      * The first car I ever owned was a 1963 Ford Galaxie with a 289 V8. Nice big back seat… Did an engine-out overhaul on that 289, but somehow I was never able to get the trans pan to seal correctly and it kept dripping ATF on the hot exhaust, blowing smoke continuously. Finally got fed up trying to fix it and unloaded it. 🙁

      Current-
      * DD: 2016 BMW X5 40e (PHEV);
      * Fun: 2001 BMW 330Ci (5-speed, original owner)

  37. IF… you keep away from the water, cars and trucks out here north of seattle can be amazingly rust free! we get maybe a week of snow each year. yes, lots of rain but hey, still better than snow for 5 months of the year. and lots of little oddities hibernating in back yards. we get brit iron from BC and the west coast was where the japanese first entered the US market. unfortunetly not the greatest for motorsports facilities, but you can’t have everything. we are isolated from the latest detroit info, but wonders of the internet, the whole world is a keystroke away.

  38. I emailed your super-cool car designer guy (Adrian?) a very specific request involving electric lawn mowers. But if he ever has the time, I’d also like his take on an off-roadie CyberVAN. He might hate the low-poly aesthetic of the Cybertruck, and I’m not in love with it either. But I think it works much better on a van. Guess we can’t post pictures here yet? Was going to post a render. Well. Whatever. It looks kind of like this:
    ______
    / |
    -O———O

    Only slightly cooler.

    Anyway, that whole thing you guys have going on there with him and the automotive-designs-by-request thing is absolutely funtastic. Great idea. How’d you meet the guy?

    1. I’m not one of the cool insiders like Jason & David. There’s some sort of initiation ceremony involving hoods and spanking paddles and being sprinkled with rust from one of Davids lawn ornaments that I haven’t been invited to yet.

      Which is to say I haven’t seen your email.

  39. I, for one, am astonished at the amount of quality content you guys have managed to put out these last two weeks.

    I’m not sure if others have mentioned it, but the pictures on the site seem to load pretty slow. It looks to me like the reason is the photos always load in full resolution, even when you don’t click on them. Still way faster than that one awful orange site, tho.

      1. It’s not the ads. The server’s short on resources (maybe physical, definitely synthetic) and is basically making connections wait in line. Once things get started it’s pretty fast.

        Definitely hoping they can keep the ad load sane, even if it goes up some. Every time I turn my ad blocker off for the other site, it just gets painful to use and I end up turning it right back on.

  40. I haven’t commented here at all yet, which I’m a little ashamed of, but I’m reading the articles and you guys are putting out great stuff. Already loved Torch & Tracy’s take on stuff, but I’m been very pleasantly surprised about the other posts from experts in the industry. Fascinating stuff for sure. Keep it up, you’re one of the few non-social media tabs that is always open in my browser.

  41. Love the site so far, it’s really what I hoped it would be! Pure car culture, in an approachable environment embracing the curious and weird. I really hope it’s financially viable and it keeps attracting a good crowd.
    On a related note, my brake drum is firmly rusted to the back wheel on our second car. I really beat the hell out of them but I can’t get them off of there. Any tips from one of you rust masters out there?

    1. Sit on your butt facing your wheel. Lay back, look up over your chest, and kick the living crap out of that wheel, alternating between 3 O’Clock with your right foot and 9 O’Clock with your left. You’ll get it.

    2. Soak it in PB B’Laster overnight, apply a torch near the mating surfaces, wail on it from the sides with a sledge like it owes you a briefcase full of Benjamins until you can slip a pry bar in, then work your way around the perimeter until the whole thing pops. Proper tools and equipment can make a world of difference, even if they’re bought at a place with a name similar to Hazard Fraught Tools

  42. Just chiming in to add to the heaps of praise, I started reading Jalopnik before I even got my license back after a decade of non-driving a little over a decade ago, and this certainly captures the essence of everything I love about car culture. Humble, fun, interesting, knowledgeable, and fantastically relateable. Without the inspiration of the writers of this site, and others that moved on to TheDrive/CarBibles, I would never have ended up with a first gen Montero that I rolled 300k miles in Moab, or the current daily 335ix GT.
    We just did the oil filter housing gasket last weekend, not so fun.

    Keep up the great work, good to have a new “first tab refreshed” site after my usual news.

  43. Jason and David, I am glad I finally found your site. When you left the other place, it became bland. I am not a wrencher, but I enjoy reading automotive stories on off-the-wall topics. This site is now at the top of my list.

  44. Thank you for doing this. So far so good. Some growing pains, but overall the product is excellent.

    Did “they” get to keep the orange? I noticed the “new” orange is more red?

    Been with you both since the beginning. Keep up the great work!

    1. Yeah, I had to leave orange behind. The Autopian’s colors are that turquoise you see in the main logo, and red for accent and workhorse use.

      When the logo is the full word, it’s Turquoise; when it’s just the ‘A’ version, it’s red. Turquoise is the landscape, red is the figures on it, if that makes sense.

      Anyway, I have all kinds of design parameters I really need to write up, but thanks for noticing!

  45. Thanks David! Perfect timing, I just finished throwing a Turner intake on my 325i. Will it make any actual power? Who knows? A little more induction noise above 3,000 RPM sounds nice though, plus the new intake fixes a small post-MAF air leak. I just have to finish up a driveline refresh and this high-mileage sports sedan should be back on the ground again. What’s everyone else up to this weekend?

    1. I for some reason have recently gotten bit by the ‘aesthetics are important too, right?’ bug. So my 2012 MINI Cooper Clubman has been receiving a small list of purely cosmetic changes. It feels strange, but also perhaps is proof I’m really starting to settle in with the thing after 6 years. On that note, a parts delay is keeping me from doing the last round of changes this weekend.

        1. Body color taillight bezels vs. OEM black and some dash bits of a different color. Since MINI (especially during its 2nd BMW-MINI generation) went a little nuts with their configurator back in the day, there are a lot of OEM options to choose from, including some special edition, limited run stuff.

      1. I’ve owned a 2006 base Mini Cooper for, gosh, as long as the site’s been live (And the title just came–a NYS DMV speed record). I both enjoy driving it and want to burn it to death because things keep breaking (To be fair, it was $1200 and I’m a dope).

          1. Guilty as charged. What I try to do a few times a year is buy an undervalued $1000 beater, fix the most horrible parts, then trade said beater for a 60s/70s/80s semi-beater. The Mini may wreck that flow.

      2. I had an all black 2011 Copper Clubman and I fell head over heels in love with that car. So much character, good build quality and go kart handling.

        I wrote it off after a year by taking a wet roundabout too fast (it was a road I didn’t know and it was dark) and stuffing it through a fence. The insurance wouldn’t let me buy it back, and it broke my heart.

        Needless to say it’s back on the road somewhere, and if I found another like it (all black, roof rails, chilli pack, big wheels) I’d probably buy it.

        1. My current Clubman is actually my 2nd Clubman because the 1st Clubman was totaled via a box truck performing a pseudo-pit maneuver on me on the highway. I hope you find your 2nd Clubman eventually! 🙂

    2. My hat is off to you; I’ve been working on cars for 35 years, and the one car that finally made me say “Nope, I’m selling this thing right now before something else goes wrong and it defeats me utterly” was a 2005 E46 325i. I can’t even begin to imagine what one newer than that is like. A man’s got to know his limitations, and one of mine is post-1990s German cars. You’re a braver man than I am, Gunga Din.

      1. Thanks Mark! Honestly, BMWs have their quirks but there are so many resources out there that they’re usually pretty joyous to work on. It only starts getting bad once you get into the first-generation turbo cars. Wastegate repair on an N54 calls for 10 hours of book labor, so that’s about as fun as the ball pit at DashCon.

Leave a Reply