No Limits Magazine from the Auto History Preservation Society
We Bring Auto History to Life!
- Resources for the Historian, Researcher, and the Enthusiast -
Tuesday June 10, 2014
Jim Thornton RIP, Pontiac 2+2 Story,'68 Alfa Test, '70 Charger Brochure, '57 Porsche Spyder Test, '87 Buick vs. Mustang GT - and More!

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Jim Thornton - An Original Ramcharger - Passes
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Did You Miss These?

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to See the the Article


1970 Chevelle LS6

1970 - Screaming the loudest
before you die!

ForPly vs 64 Wax Wedge

"ForPly" versus Tom Hoover's 1964 Pure Stock Max Wedge

Olds W-43 4-Valve

Don't Call Me a Hemi - 'cause I'm not! Oldsmobile's Infamous W-43

1968 Buick GS 400 Test

1968 Buick GS 400 Road Test

1966 Plymouth 383 Satellite Test

1966 Plymouth Satellite
383 4-Speed Road Test

Jim Thornton 1937-2014

One of the most influential original Ramchargers -
Jim's engineering genius helped catapult Dodge to
the forefront of the Muscle Car wars.

1965 Pontiac 2+2

There may have been faster Pontiacs - there may have even been some other big cars that could stay with it, but a 421 HO 2+2
was one awesome big car package.

1965 2+2 Convert and Hardtop

Either Convertible or Coupe - these cars looked the part.
Performance exuded from every pore of the Pontiac 2+2.

421 HO V8

Two HO 421s were available both were awesome power plants!



Jim Thornton 1937 - 2014

Jim Thornton, a key member of the legendary Ramchargers, died June 6, 2014 of cancer.  He was the technical and spiritual leader and a gifted innovator that led to the Ramchargers success. 

He joined Chrysler in 1960 and immediately became involved with the Ramchargers club car, the High & Mighty a C/Altered record holding car.  That car became obsolete because of rule changes for 1961, and Thornton led the effort to secure minor sponsorship from Dodge Division for a ’61 Super Stock.  That car defeated every car worth beating at the Nationals in Indianapolis and triggered Chrysler’s serious participation in Super Stock drag racing with the Max Wedge cars and later the 426 Hemi.

Jim led the Ramchargers from 1961 through 1967 as the primary driver, technical innovator and spark plug.  At Chrysler he was elevated to Manager, Race Vehicle Design.  His desire to make the cars ever faster resulted in numerous Ramcharger wins and Chrysler innovations.   Thornton designed the ’65 A-990 Super Stock cars and conceived the idea of relocating the wheels for better weight distribution. 

To read more about Jim Thornton - Click HERE

To read about the Ramchargers - Click HERE

1965 Pontiac 2+2 - Baddest Big Car Ever!

by Wild About Cars and AHPS Staff - reprint with permission only.

There is a test of the 1965 Pontiac 2+2 versus the Ferrari 2+2 in Car and Driver Magazine – and the 2+2 posts a 13.8 quarter mile time. "WOW, you say, that is one big, bad Poncho" – and it was. But like many tests of the era, we now know that car was heavily "doctored". Regardless, a 4,400 pound car that could crack into the 13’s on street tires and through the mufflers – that is WOW.

Looking behind the curtain, we know that the 1965 2+2 421 HO could make the mid 14s in true street trim, but an over two ton car making even that kind of time means some serious HP. More important – the car "felt" powerful. Every tester was impressed with the way the HO equipped car could pull and pull and pull, with the 421 willing to head for some serious top end rpms.

Here are some quotes from the road tests in some of the period magazines:

"In conclusion, I will say that this is the finest road machine I have ever driven – foreign cars included." Car Life Magazine, April 1965.

"A real he-man’s car, the 2+2 combines muscle and grace, in huge proportions." Motor Trend Magazine, February 1965.

". . . it is the muscular beauty of the 2+2 which is the great attraction, and the honesty with which it backs up its self-announced claim." Car Life Magazine, December 1964.

All the testers were impressed with the looks of the car, which, in 1965 was state of the art Pontiac muscle – and even more overstated than the GTO. What always impressed was the way Pontiac could make a family sedan and a high performance car have the proper "look" with just a few trim and badge changes.

To read more about the 1965 Pontiac 2+2 - Click HERE!


Other Neat Period Stories & Articles on this Car:

To see all the 1965 Pontiac 2+2 Road Tests - Click HERE

To see the Pontiac 2+2 in the 1965 Performance Brochure - Click Here!

Read All About Pontiac "Large Journal" V8s - Click Here!

Read "Made in Pontiac" The story of building Pontiacs BITD - Click Here!

Read About Jim Wangers & John DeLorean Building Pontiac's Performance Image - Click Here!



NOTE: These stories are our argument for the Automotive History Preservation Society - It is the material they have collected that allows us to bring this to you. And too much is already lost - or worse or hidden from all of us.

Go to www.ahpsoc.org and donate some dollars so
they can do their great work!


Documents from the AHPS's Digital Documents Library
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1968 Alfa Romeo 33
1968 Alfa Romeo 33 Coupe Road Test

Car and Driver Magazine tested an Alfa that would not make it to the US - mainly because it could not pass our safety requirements. Read how stunning this car's performance was and how we missed out!

Click here to read/download the 1968 Alfa Romeo 33 Coupe Test!

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1970 Dodge Hemi Charger Brochure
1970 Dodge Charger Brochure

Dodge was all over performance in 1970 - with each and every car offering a performance model. None was more aggressive in showing off their performance potential than the cars in the Charger line. Check out this awesome brochure. We guarantee you will be transported BITD and you will feel like a potential Charger buyer when you check out this brochure!

To Read and/or Download the 1970 Charger Brochure - Click HERE!

1957 Porsche Spyder Test
1957 Porsche 550 Spyder Test

Often called "the car that killed James Dean", the Spyder was the fastest Porsche one could buy in 1957. It was fast, and it could handle, but it got there by being extremely light - almost fragile. When James Dean collided with a car back then it was demolished by the impact and he was too..

To Read and/or Download this 1957 Porsche Spyder Test - Click Here!

1989 Pontiac Trans Am Turbo Photos
Modern Muscle - 1987 Regal Grand National vs. Ford Mustang LX 5.0 Drag Test

It happened quite suddenly. Performance was deader than a doornail - then suddenly it wasn't. We know now that computer controls allowed 1970s type performance from cars with engines that a few years before couldn't get out of their own way. This test solidified that performance was back. Read this Super Stock Magazine article and feel the breath of fresh air!

To Read and/or Download the GN vs. Mustang Test - Click HERE!

Check Out Techipedia - Packard Car Models Described Why do we publish "Car Models Described" in Techipedia?

You may have noticed that when you access a brand in Techipedia that there is a Section called "Car Models Described". What we do there is collect the general of car models for that brand - by year. Why? Because ever so slowly, information is getting lost and we are not going to let that happen. Check our what we are doing for "lost" brands like Packard in Techipedia!

Click HERE to go to Techipedia and see what we've done with Packard!

Check Out the Latest Uploads See What's Hot in the Automotive History Library!

In case you didn't know - the Automotive History Preservation Society operates a very special Digital Documents Library that you can access through Wild About Cars and the AHPS. Check out the over 230 thousand pages of material you can download (or just view) by clicking on the link below. Even though you don't have to be a member to view the materials, PLEASE sign up HERE and help us by DONATING by going HERE

Check out the LATEST UPLOADS - Click HERE to See the Listings.

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