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Here you will find random bits of me

Saturday, December 1, 2007

biting the bullitt

we were in san francisco twice this week.

on wednesday we were at the auto show as guests of nissan for the unveiling of their new gt-r and a minivan concept car: the forum.

we actually saw the forum in las vegas a month ago at the sema show. but, the gt-r has only been seen in public a couple of times.

nissan gt-r

it’s gonna be a pretty hot car!

we didn’t get to see the entire show, but we did get to see most of it.

interesting color for a lamborghini!

it was a beautiful night in san francisco and i could have walked through the city for another hour before heading back to the parking garage.

on friday we were back in the city; this time for ford day at the presidio overlooking san francisco bay and the golden gate bridge and another absolutely gorgeous day.

the golden gate club at the san francisco presidio

we met ford’s design director, freeman thomas, and got to drive some of the new 2008 products: on hand were several fords, including two bullitt mustangs and one saleen mustang, 3 jaguars, a few mazdas, a range rover, land rover and a volvo.

on our first ride, ron got behind the wheel of a mazda suv. i’m not sure what model. but, it is based on the same chassis as the ford explorer.

on our next ride, i was in the driver seat of a new jaguar xk-r.

jaguar xkr

oh, was that a sweet car! as much as i would like a new mustang (more on that later) i really enjoyed driving the jag! everything about it felt right! it was smooth, powerful and handled like a dream!

it also attracted a very attractive woman who, when we stopped to get a shot of the car with the golden gate bridge in the background, agreed to step into frame for a few shots. nothing makes a great car look better than a beautiful woman! thank you for joining me, ali!

l-r: xkr; monty; ali

upon our return, ron got behind the wheel of a new range rover, which was not much different from the 2007 “classic” we had a few months ago, but still a very nice car.

sosso with a range rover

the ride of the day, however, came next when i slipped into the driver seat of a 2008 bullitt mustang. the bullitt mustang commemorates the 40th anniversary of the movie “bullitt” starring steve mcqueen, which was filmed in san francisco. in case you have forgotten: bullitt was the first of the great car chase movies and still one of the best car chase scenes ever filmed.

every time we took out one of the cars we used the same mandated route, which drove around the north tip of the southern peninsula, under the golden gate bridge and back to the presidio; about 20-minutes in all.

the limited edition 2008 bullitt mustang

most of the route had speed limits of 25 mph. except for the brief stretch on 19th as you enter the tunnel that leads to the golden gate bridge, which is 45 mph.

when i drove the jag i was able to get my foot into it a little, but didn’t go any faster than 60 mph.

but, when we got here in the mustang, i couldn’t resist hanging my leg in it to feel all 315 horses.

as i rounded the corner from lake street the car in front of me took a wide turn and went for the right lane. that left the left lane open for me; there was no one in front of me for as far as i could see into the tunnel.

i rounded the bend, slipped it into second, checked the mirrors for police cars, waited until i was passed the other car, did another search for authorities and put my foot halfway down to the floor.

this engine sounds so sweet, but wrapped by concrete walls that surround the ingress/egress of the tunnel, the engine sounded like a nascar stocker revving up!

without stretching it out too far, i shifted into 3rd, gracefully got back onto the throttle and was lifting before i even reached the mouth of the tunnel as the speedometer eclipsed 90 mph; probably faster than any of the cars ever ran when they filmed the infamous car chase scene in the movie for which this sporty green mustang is named.

from there i calmly drove back to the presidio in time for them to start loading up the cars.

i missed a ride in the 620 horsepower saleen extreme mustang as it was giving a low tire pressure light on the left rear tire and by the time it was corrected we were too late to take it out. like i needed another 300 horsepower than the bullitt had.

we left the presidio, only slightly deflated after the thrilling rides, and headed for perry’s on union street for drinks and dinner.

it wasn’t long before the vacant seats to my right were taken up by two attractive buffalo-gals (from buffalo, new york now living in san francisco and not resembling bison in the least, thank you) who quickly became our new friends.

megan and carolyn were a lot of fun and, as it turns out, carolyn’s uncle owns slim’s, where my friend and hero, adrian belew and his power trio, will be playing on february 23rd. not only is carolyn, who also happens to work for rolling stone magazine, going to hook me up with tickets, i think she and megan and even ron are going to join me for the show! i’d better try to remember to bring earplugs for ron!

after an hour, or so, the girls were off for a previous engagement and we were working over our dinner (a thick broiled, pomegranate glazed pork chop for me and steak fajitas for ron).

after dinner we walked across the street to grab coffee from starbucks and began our drive back to the castle.

ron has been trying to get me to ford day for the past 4-years. i missed taking a ride (ride not drive, unfortunately) in a ford gt.

1 comment:

Tickledrop said...

Really enjoyed the Ford Day review Wolf. I read the title for the post and immediately thought of my wonderful husband's love for the city, hot cars and Steve McQueen. He's no longer with us but his love for these things obviously helped me form some of my passions about them also. McQueen huh. And mustangs. I like your taste.

Wow! Driving on the Presidio, comin' out of the tunnel and up around the curve... surprised you didn't drive it on up to Sear's Point, well it used to be called that, I think it's called something else now. I've always had this fantasy to drive a car really fast on the track. Not necessarily in a race, but really fast on a track. I could see how a race would add to the thrill and the drive for speed. Anyway. I enjoyed your review and sounds like you're gonna be having a mighty good time on Feb 23rd at Slims. They're playing up in Tahoe on the 22nd - but you knew that! :-] See ya at the show!