Happy Mother’s Day

Auto|One Group would like to gently remind you that this Sunday is mother’s day. We repeat; THIS SUNDAY IS MOTHERS DAY, DON’T FORGET!! SHE BROUGHT YOU INTO THIS WORLD, SHE CAN DAMN WELL TAKE YOU OUT OF IT! Now that we have gently reminded you of your plans this weekend we can continue.

A little while ago I shared with you my experiences with my father and how it influenced/ fueled my passion for cars. I was gently reminded by my mother that she is also a gear head. She steered my upbringing but blames the results on my father. Allow me to present the necessary evidence.

Once upon a time in 1973 my parents needed a new car but dad was afraid to pull the trigger on something fun. He cited the oil crises, economy, resale value, shag rug values and everything else you could do to try and sway my mother into an economy car. My father wanted her to see a base model Ford Maverick 4 door sedan that he was interested in buying. It had an automatic transmission and something called the “thriftpower six”. It had green paint- not a very nice shade with cream coloured bumpers. This was the norm in the early 1970’s for a car trying to look good even though it was not. I think he told mom it had power windows as a selling feature.

Dad took mom to the dealership to see the car he had picked out. Mom saw what he was pointing at and said no way, end of story, back to the drawing board. On the way back home amidst an awkward silence they passed by a Datsun dealership. Mom saw a gorgeous sleek 2 door sports car sitting in the showroom and told my dad to pull in. She immediately fell in love with the 1973 Datsun 240Z in British racing green its long hood, sculpted roof line and short trunk. The price was about the same as the Ford Mavrick but the sporting heritage was undeniable. Automobile magazine called it one of the best cars of the 1970’s. They bought it on the spot.  Score one for mom!

Mom worked for the Victorian Order of Nurses during this period and was assigned to do house calls for people who could not leave the house. She happily drove this rear wheel drive manual transmission car year round while answering house call. Mom rarely got stuck (we will get into her winter driving skills later). This Datsun remained with the family lovingly until my parents moved to New York. The car was not allowed to travel to the big apple because during the late 1970’s cars had a shelf life of 7 seconds before they were stolen.

This car was replaced by a silver Datsun 280zx that mom instead have the turbo box ticked on the build sheet. This was mom’s car that she used to carpool with me. While everyone else was getting dropped off to school in wood panel station wagons (predating SUV’s and minivans) I would get dropped off in a Japanese turbocharged rear wheel drive manual transmission sports car with a T-top roof. Does this make my mom a cougar?… I hope not. Regardless she loved it and so did I.

For any mothers wondering how this worked out there, let me tell you that the pros far outweighed the cons. Let’s examine them:

Pros of carpooling in a sports car:

  • You can only take 3 children.
  • Children are limited in their ability to squirm around and cause trouble because there is no room to move.
  • Hockey practice for more than one child is out of the question. No room for more than one hockey bag
  • Whining children are met with downshifting and the spooling of a turbocharger.
  • No cup holders to put food and juice boxes in equals no eating or drinking in the car.

Cons of carpooling in a sports car:

  • Explaining to a child that if you come to a complete stop in snow you will never get the car moving again.
  • Having that child tell their mom that you don’t stop at stop signs and skid up and down hills.
  • Having that child’s mother call you and question your driving habits/ skills.

I should mention that my Mom has never had an accident. She reminds me of this a lot… I’m sure your mothers remind you of that or similar driving flaws that you have inherited as well. Your mother always has your best interests at heart. Happy Mother’s Day!

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My automotive degeneracy…

My name is Sam. I have friends. They race in demolition derby’s. I get them cars.

Now that we have that cleared up I can tell you a story of how I came to own a 2003 Mazda Protégé5 with 320,000kms.

Auto|One Group took possession of the above mentioned car back in October. It was a trade in that was valuated based on scrap weight… I bought the car sight unseen to use in a demolition derby. It is a manual transmission, 4 cylinder and a wagon. This car would cleanup at a demolition derby.

The issue was the car ran pretty well. It had power windows, a sunroof, brakes and smoke didn’t pour out from under the engine when it was stopped at a light.. It appeared to be in better shape than my current car. On a whim I had my mechanic check the car out so I would know what it would take to put it on the road. Everything seemed to be okay- not great, but okay. I had my winter beater! For the record I consider gas to be maintenance on a winter beater. This is not an easy life for a car.

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I told my friend that the car was not available and I licensed it in my name. That was 8 months ago. The car is now in dire need of a mechanics tender touch. Rattles, creeks, shakes, burps, squeaks all of these sounds have grudendly been tuned out by turning up the radio. Last week the antenna fell off my car in a tragic garage door accident that will not be elaborated on.

It is time to part with the car I fondly call “Rusty”. Much like pets and livestock you cannot name an animal or else you will form a bond that prevents you from doing what is right. This relationship has formed between me and Rusty. I cannot bring myself to let it suffer the brutal, bitter end of “The Fall Brawl”. This is the demolition derby held in Lindsay Ontario.

What does one do with a useless car that they love for reasons unknown? I pondered this question for quite some time. If I was a car at the end of my life what would I want to do? Well, if I was a zippy manual transmission car that had been subjected to a life of traffic, poor roads and salty winters (this car has grown up in Toronto and has lots of rust, so all apply) than I would want a cool send off from my owner. Don’t trash me in a grotesque demolition derby! Let me have fun, let me stretch my legs, dance, run jump.. LET ME RACE!! That is what Rusty is telling me through her rattles and squeaks.

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Where do I race such a beast? After some careful research I stumbled upon the 24 hours of LeMons. The cheeky name had me curious. This is the jest of it. Your car has to cost $500 or less and you need 6 drivers, no experience is necessary. Style points are awarded. This is more of an endurance race than a speed race. The tactic is to see how well your jalopy holds up against the competition and how long your car can survive while maintaining forward motion. This is all done on a race course. The course is New Jersey Motorsports Park in Millville New Jersey. August 9th-11th 2013. If you are interested in coming or racing with us email me at scomisarow@autoone-palladini.ca

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Lets send Rusty off  in style! The car will be fully prepped with a roll cage, fire extinguisher, fuel cell and race tires. More info can be found at http://www.24hoursoflemons.com/

How I came to eat, live and breathe cars. By Sam Comisarow

I’m not sure when my addiction to cars started. Rumor has it that my first word was “car”. I could also apparently name most cars from the back seat of my parents 1984 Audi 5000 before I was potty trained. By age 5 I had planned out my life, in cars. I was going to have a Lamborghini Countach before I graduated university…. Life is so sweet as a 5 year old. I was driving a 1986 Chevy pickup when I graduated college. I’m pretty sure I thought of it as a Lamborghini though, it was as much maintenance as one.

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Thats my truck, I chose to paint it that colour in high school. Deal with it!

As I said I do not know where my addiction started but I clearly remember who my dealer was. My Father; Growing up I always liked it when dad would tuck me into bed as opposed to mom. This is because dad would not read me bedtime stories with colourful drawings of rabbits or bears. He would not read me rhyming books or even tell me fairy tales. I was put to bed on a strict bedtime story diet of Road & Track, Car and Driver, Hot Rod and even the occasional boutique European car magazine. Once we had gone through all those magazines, discussed the merits of double overhead cam motors verses the traditional push rod V8 and looked at the pictures a million times we would look at cars for sale in the Classic Car Trader- I think this sheds light on my love for classic cars.

Sometimes when we had gone through all those publications and read any car brochures lying around dad would actually tell stories. Dad would tell me stories about him growing up in a small prairie town and the cars they used to own. Apparently my dad’s first car was $50. When you tell an 8 year old you can buy a car that runs and drives for $50 I think you build a false sense of reality….. What he bought for $50 didn’t even have doors, a roof or body panels for that matter. He told entertaining stories none the less.

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This is what happens when you leave me alone to read. The carpet confirms 1980’s

Unfortunately this did not stop with just bedtime stories about cars. The most exciting time of my life growing up was Valentine’s Day. Not because I got chocolate covered hearts but because it signified that the Canadian International Auto Show was about to begin. Dad would take my brother and I to the show where we would drool over all the new cars. Words cannot accurately describe how important the car show was and still is to me. That scene from the opening of little house on the prairie where the girl is running through the field all excited and care free? That is me times 50 and hopped up on pixie sticks and full sugar caffeine drinks. That is still not an accurate comparison but I liked the theme song to that show so it will work for this analogy…. It’s like getting to meet your favorite athlete or actor and getting to interview them. The first time I saw a Subaru WRX STI in person at the car show I think I cried.

We would get lots of our reading material from these car shows. I would arrive with an empty backpack at every show and by the time we were ready to leave it would be so jam-packed with brochures that it could barely be closed. Dad had a tactic he used at these shows to gain what he called insider information. He would tell a sales rep that he is a doctor (this is true) and that he is looking for a new car (not true) and does not know anything about them (also not true). This essentially made us into VIP’s at every car show-all the expensive cars on pedestals or behind velvet ropes? We sat in them. I remember one year when they actually started an Aston Martin up so we could hear the engine.

Our curriculum knew no bounds. We would visit the fire station and a train yard whenever possible. Dad would tell whoever was in charge that his kid really liked whatever transportation device was featured. We would get tours, get to sit in the vehicles and sometimes get models. After age 10 I knew that this was more for dad than me but I happily played along. For a kid who grew up in mid-town Toronto I know a lot about GM diesel locomotives, superior fire trucks and American-Lafrance pumper trucks. My brother even has memories of going to see 18-wheelers drag race. No joke highway tractors lining up and racing each other. I have also been to every new car dealer within a 75 km radius of Toronto, all before I could legally drive.

Everything I did with my dad had automotive undertones to it. Skiing? Let’s discuss all the different cars we see on the way up, and let the kid shift gears! Going to hockey? Let’s check out all the other cars in the parking lot and see who has a manual transmission.  It’s amazing how a parking lot can become a car show with the right level of enthusiasm and a lack of tinted windows.

When I was 12 years old I rode my bike into a brick wall. Don’t worry, my face broke the fall. There was some thought that my jaw was broken and I was definitely going to need stitches. My dad took me to North York General Hospital to get x-rayed and stitched up. We parked on the other side of the emergency room because dad had to see something… we diverted from the hospital emergency room and instead went to the doctors parking lot. Dad had spotted a 1995 Toyota Supra and we had to see it on the way in.. I don’t know what was more disturbing, that dad chose cars over his son’s health or the fact that the Toyota Supra was an automatic transmission. Probably the latter upset me more.  3 stitches later and some ice cream to celebrate me not having my jaw wired shut and we were debating what was better, the Toyota Supra, Mazda Rx7 or Nissan 300ZX.

According to the government and several other reputable sources I am a fully functioning adult now. My father’s influence is far reaching in my day to day life. I wake up in the morning and read all the current car news that transpired while I was sleeping. Then I go to work and deal with cars all day. I sell them, source them, advice regarding them, judge them, drive them and fantasize about owning them. I get home from work and my fiancée graciously tolerate my “what-if’s “scenarios. What if I brought this car home? Would you drive it? ect… before bed I read car magazines, blogs, look at photos and read comparisons. I then dream about cars or have nightmares about clowns until I wake up the next morning.

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The beach is cool, but my dump truck needs my immediate attention.

I’d like to thank my dad for introducing me the best career path for a person of my “substance”. At Auto|One Group we are all car people. This is merely an account of how it starts.

Toronto Classic Auction part 2 (the sequel that is better than the original)

Did you really think that Auto|One Group would not keep you in the loop about the most coveted cars at the Toronto classic car auction?!?! What’s that your saying? You feel left in the dark?

These are the top 5 most expensive purchases at the show:

1967 Corvette 427/435 convertible: You could literally eat off any part of this cars body, interior, engine bay or underneath. This was the highest horsepower corvette available at the time without going totally crazy. 427 cubic inches with 435 horse power by way of “triple twos” this meant the car had three two barrel carburetors. This car had more paperwork than your last tax audit. More awards than the Olympics hand out. More options than your stock portfolio. Sold for $184,800.

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1967 corvette 427/435 coupe, in the same condition as the number one car on the list. The only difference is this one had a fixed roof. Sorry, no surfboard sticking out of the passenger seat.  Sold for $154,000.

2006 Bentley Arnage R sedan. The pinnacle of British luxury sport…. Before the Germans came in and changed everything. 6.75 litre twin turbo V8? Check. $30,000 in options all hand crafted and installed? Check? 5,120 pounds of luxury? Check.  615 (!!!)  pounds feet of torque? Check! Ladies and gentleman, I give you number three on our list. Sold! To a newly knighted member of automotive nobility at $99,000.

Number three on the list is this beautiful Meteor Rideau Sunliner convertible. What makes this car so rare and sought after is its unique heritage. Meteor was sold by Ford in the Canadian markets. It notched in above Mercury but below Lincoln (competing with Buick and Chrysler). With less than 500 made originally there are few available today. This one has been treated to a full restoration.  Who doesn’t love a pastel orange land yacht? Boppin’ to the music in a new owner’s garage for $96,800.

Number five of the most expensive cars on the list should be no surprise if you have been following the trend with the first four.  1967 corvette convertible 427/435. This car sold for $87,450. This was a very clean car but not as many options or as high a pedigree as the first car on the list. Still, a great car if the seller wants to let me borrow it for a weekend that would be cool.

Bottom car sold was this 1980 Pontiac Parisienne. One owner car, power everything V8 power. It is everything you could want in a car… for $1,100. The interior of this car has a bright future in a brothel. The rest of the car will be appearing in a demolition derby sometime in the next two years. This car will definitely earn you Christmas cards from OPEC.

Honorable mention. This 1985 Rolls Royce Silver Spur sold for $8,800. I’m serious a Rolls Royce for $8,800! It was actually pretty decent.  You can call your friends and tell them what you bought. When they ask you for a ride through you’re going to have to explain why your car won’t stop, won’t, stop, horn won’t stop honking, lights keep flickering off and on, radio doesn’t turn off, radio doesn’t turn on, wipers are possessed and work on their own free will….. You know anything that comes with owning a luxury British car from before 1997.

Auto|One Group is always happy to sit with you and go over your options when it comes to leasing and financing the classic or near classic of your dreams. We even offer warranties for them!

Toronto spring classic car auction

Auto|One Group was at the semi-annual collector car auction. It is always a great show as there is a wide variety of cars available. This is what sets this car auction apart from all other car auctions around. From high dollar classics, high horse power muscle cars, late model European cars, mid-80’s and 90’s American, to project cars and antiques- it’s all at the show! They usually have a couple of boats and RV’s available as well.

This year they even had a plane for sale. The “Gimli Glider” is perhaps the most famous plane in Canadian history- a story known around the world in aeronautical circles. The Gimli glider is an Air Canada Boeing 767 that ran out of fuel mid-air with a full load of passengers. The pilot was an amateur glider who knew of an abandoned World War 2 landing strip in Gimli Manitoba. In an incredible feat of skill he glided the massive plane to a safe landing at the airstrip- while interrupting the drag race competition that was taking place during that day. Look it up, definitely worth the read!

Sadly the plane did not sell as it only brought $500,000 and is worth far more than that. Auto|One Group would have bought it…. But that would have meant that I would have been out of a job.

It is important to note that this auction seems to be the jump start that everyone needs in the classic car community to wake their cars up from hibernation and get them running. Usually a week or two after the auction is when we start to see more and more cars on the road, and for sale.

We finance, lease and locate all matter of classic cars. Contact us through your favorite electronic fashion for more details. If you like your cars old school than you probably like your conversations the same. We are located at 150 Oakdale road in Toronto and at 8555 Cambie street in Vancouver. Auto|One Group is happy to talk shop, discuss cubic inches chrome bumpers and cars with old school character.

Happy cruising from everyone At Auto|One Group.

best. 1980’s car. ever.

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Anything! We will lease almost anything! Want proof? Check out what we recently leased out.

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A 1983 Delorean. Yes- That car from Back To The Future. No – does not have a Flux Capasitor… Your wildest automotive dreams are just a conversation and a handshake away from being a reality at Auto|One Palladini.

I know what you are thinking. You were not doubt imagining yourself as a young Michael J Fox trying to save himself (in the future of course) and helping his dad hatch out of his nerdy goofy shell. Yes that bully Biff learned a valuable lesson. All while wearing a sweet denim jacket and self-lacing shoes. Or, maybe you’re a bit older and more mature and think of yourself as Doc Emmett Brown (played by Christopher Lloyd). Yes you are eccentric enough to pull off mad-scientist.

Either way, we don’t judge. We are car people. We are just happy that someone is enjoying one of the most storied cars in automotive history. Look up the background. John Delorean was an automotive genus and very sharp business man. John was one of more colourful businessmen that were at the top of his game when Detroit was peaking and then starting to slide, the mid to late 1960’s. his work includes perfecting the Ultramatic transmission at Packard before going to GM. At General Motors he created GTO for Pontiac. He is often credited with turning Pontiac around from being an old lady brand into General Motor’s performance brand. Among his other accolades are being one of the youngest to ever head a brand division at GM and, he still holds lots of patents that are still relevant today.  The waters get murky when he went solo and tried to start his own brand of futuristic car. I will leave that for you to enjoy on your own time. (Spoiler alert, FBI Informants!!!!)

Regardless of whether you are an automotive enthusiast or a movie buff we are just happy to accommodate people. We love helping get automotive history rolling down the road, literally. This Delorean illustrates that passion and bond that Auto|One Palladini forges with customers on a daily basis.

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Corvette, surprise! (not what you think)

At Auto|One Palladini we specialize in helping people get into the car that best meets their needs and the payments that work best. A by-product of this process is that often times we learn a great deal about the customer, their job and family.

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Recently we delivered a gorgeous 2005 Corvette to a great guy named Conrad. Conrad was purchasing this car as a toy for himself. He told me he would probably drive it only 6,000kms per year and in the summer months only. Mostly Sunday cruises with his wife or his car savvy 18 month old son who is by all accounts is an aspiring gearhead (he loves the sound of the engine). The deal was finalized on a Wednesday with the stipulation that the car was subject to a pre-purchase inspection on the following Wednesday. As usual we chatted via email prior to the pre-purchase inspection to make sure that everything was okay.  Winter is a sketchy time to drive a rear wheel drive sports car in the streets. Snow, salt, slush or in Toronto’s case rain can ruin plans for a cruise almost instantly. On Wednesday the weather looked great so we met at the predetermined shop to do the inspection.

 

While the car was having the inspection done Conrad told me about how this car was a gift to himself and he was so excited to enjoy it in the summer….his face lit up as he spoke about the long drives together………..then

 

His wife had taken their son shopping on the Sunday before the inspection and come home with a t-shirt for their 18 month old . She showed the shirt to Conrad and said “what do you think?” Conrad looked at the t- shirt and was immediately puzzled. The t-shirt said: “super big bro”. Conrad said; It’s nice but was it on sale? We only have one child”. This was Conrad’s wife’s way of saying that they were having another child. Conrad told me that one of his first thoughts was “oh no! I just put a deposit on a sports car and now I am going to be a dad again!” This left me with a pit in his stomach. Is this Conrad’s way of saying he now can’t commit to the car? For reference: if there is ever a valid excuse for going back on a deal for a high performance sports car, THIS IS IT!!!. Once the inspection was completed and the car got a clean bill of health it was time for the test drive.

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Leading up to this t Conrad had been a champ. He hadn’t backed out on the acquisition and was still committed to the deal but, sometimes a drive is needed to put things into perspective. We went for a drive on city streets and the highway. 436 horsepower to the rear wheels, manual transmission, Borla exhaust on an American classic…. All these are sublime distractions from the pressures of parenthood- especially at 5,400 rpm. Conrad brought the car back turned it off and immediately asked “when can I take delivery”. Conrad is clearly a gem and a car guy.

 

Several days later he came to Auto|One Palladini with his wife and son to see the car. His son loved the showroom and the sound of the Corvette. They say that behind good man is a better woman. Conrad’s wife is an amazing woman. I congratulation her on the new addition to the family (and the baby) and asked her how she felt about her husband getting a Corvette? She loved the car and was very excited about the new automotive addition to the family as well.

 

Happy endings are what it is all about. Auto|One Palladini once again demonstrated how it’s not about selling cars but building relationships.  Conrad got a his car fantasy and the. Conrad’s wife ( I would use her name here) got  the ultimate “remember-when-we-were-pregnant-and-you-got-a-corvette” card. Conrad’s son gets to ride shot-gun (he might be too young for that – we need to show we are aware of the rules!!!!)  in an American classic.

 

Adding new members to the family is always a good thing………… cars, children, pets or cars… we love them all.

 

 

UPDATE!!! Conrad’s wife played the “remember-when-we-were-pregnant-and-you-got-a-corvette card.” We have it on good authority that Conrad is in the midst of a walk-in closet renovation. For his wife…..and the Corvette!!!!!!

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