Wednesday, January 27, 2010

2010 AMSOIL Street Rodder Road Tour First Glance

AMSOIL has once again signed on as title sponsor for the 2010 Street Rodder Road Tour presented by Street Rodder Magazine. It's an event that takes street rod enthusiasts around the country to various destinations in a series of tour legs. Each year a custom-built street rod leads the way. This year a ’27 Roadster Pickup built by Zane Cullen and crew at Cotati Speed Shop will have the honors, with Jerry Dixie leading the pack of impressive street rods in the Roadster. Each year the AMSOIL Street Rodder Road Tour inevitably captures the attention of every city it travels through, and has seen tremendous growth and success in the years since it began.

Over the Christmas holidays AMSOIL received an invitation to visit the Santa Rosa facility where the '27 Roadster is being assembled. Though everything is under wraps till you see it first in Street Rodder magazine, Cullen and crew do awesome work, as these other photos here attest.

Along the way exclusive visits to street rod shops, manufacturing facilities and some amazing car collections fill in the miles on the road. And once more, the Road Tourians will visit the AMSOIL Center, this time in mid-August on their way to Bonneville.

If you or someone you know is a fellow street rod enthusiast, it’s definitely worth your while to try to make it on one of these tours. It’s the trip of a lifetime that won’t soon be forgotten…or as most who participate say, "a trip that won’t ever be forgotten."

The 2010 AMSOIL Street Rodder Road Tour schedule is as follows:

The Cruise to Ocean City Tour: May 15-23
Charlotte, NC to Cruisin’ Ocean City, MD

The Speed King Tour: May 28-June 6
MSRA Mid-America Nationals in Springfield, MO to NSRA East Coast Nationals in York, PA

The Vintage Air Tour: June 19-27
Vintage Air in San Antonio, TX to NSRA Rocky Mountain Nationals in Pueblo, CO

The Factory Five Racing Tour: July 11-18
Factory Five Racing in Wareham, MA to Syracuse Nationals in Syracuse, NY

The Intercity Lines Tour: July 30-August 8
Street Rodder Magazine in Orange County, CA to NSRA Street Rod Nationals in Louisville, KY

The Dynamat Tour: August 8-16
NSRA Street Rod Nationals in Louisville, KY to Bonneville Speed Week in Wendover, UT

The Canadian Classic Cars Tour: September 10-19
NSRA Nationals North in Kalamazoo, MI to NSRA Northeast Nationals in Burlington, VT

The Sherm’s Plating Tour: October 9-17
Sherm’s Plating in Sacramento, CA to the NHRA California Hot Rod Reunion in Bakersfield, CA

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Report From MPMC

The 2010 MPMC Media Trade Conference has moved to a brand new location, the recently renovated Radisson Suites Hotel in Covina, CA. Now in its ninth year, the Motorsports Parts Manufacturers Council (MPMC) has created a premiere event which enables its member companies to orchestrate three days of face-to-face meetings with members of the media, both print and electronic. MPMC is a subset of the Specialty Equipment Manufacturers Association (SEMA) whose annual car show in Vegas each November becomes a Mecca for performance and car enthusiasts worldwide.

The SEMA Show, because of its enormous size, is not the ideal forum for editors and journalists to get suitable face time with companies. For this reason MPMC was created to set aside a quieter space in time for making more intimate, undistracted presentations. Over a period of three days companies can have as many as forty meetings, not to mention the after hours opportunities for conducting additional business with one another.

One of the aims of the MPMC has been to raise public awareness for motorsports. Followers of AMSOIL INC. are well aware of the long time friendships we have forged within the various racing communities at all levels from the grass roots on up. (Recommended reading: the AMSOIL Racing Blog.)

As in years past AMSOIL representatives Ed Newman, director of advertising, and Karl Dedolph, director of aftermarket products, have enjoyed the privilege of being able to share the AMSOIL Story, new products and information resources for future technical articles that the media use to educate their readers and viewers. With its long history in synthetic lubrication, and as developer of the world's first synthetic motor oil to meet American Petroleum Institute certification standards, the company has decades of experience and welcomes opportunites like this to educate both consumers and the industry.

Wednesday evening the MPMC hosted a Performance Aftermarket Seminar at the NHRA Motorsports Museum at the Pomona Fairplex. The stroll back in time to the early years of rodding and motorsports history brought back many memories for all of us. The event included a panel discussion with industry leaders addressing contemporary issues. The nostalgic environment and optimistic observations by the panel left many feeling renewed confidence as we enter the new year.

Top right: Panel discussion at NHRA Museum. Left: The helmet of Bobby Unser is but one of many great racing legends recognized at the museum. Bottom: Ed Newman outlines new products and highlights information from for editors of Street Rodder magazine.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

AMSOIL Now Exclusive Official Oil of Laconia

Good things come in threes, and this month AMSOIL became the Exclusive Official Oil of the Laconia Bike Week after inking similar arrangements with the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally and Daytona Bike Week.

Laconia is not only North America's third largest motorcycle rally, behind Sturgis and Daytona, it is also the oldest, a respected rally point for bikers every summer now celebrating its 86th year. The 2010 Laconia Bike Week in New Hampshire will be held this year from June 12-20.

The origins of the Laconia Bike Week go back to a 1916 gathering of 300-400 motorcyclists who spent several days at Weirs Beach in Laconia enjoying the sights of Lake Winnipesauke and the White Mountains unofficialliy starting the first year of Laconia Motorcycle Week. Motorcyclists had been gathering at the Weirs for a number of years and in 1917 the first sanctioned Gypsy Tour was held in Laconia at Weirs Beach. Hill Climbs were held on Tower Hill Street while other races took place anywhere they could.

Laconia has today established its popularity and place in the world of motorcycles. 1997 saw 225,000 motorcyclists attend Motorcycle Week. The 75th Anniversary of this oldest Motorcycle Rally in North America saw upwards of 330,000 people during the ten-day event. In 2004 rally attendance exceeded 400,000, generating an estimated 250 million dollars in revenue for the State of New Hampshire.

For AMSOIL these three leading bike rallies bring exposure to nearly 1.5 million motorcyclists a year, a significant share of the 7+ million registered motorcyclists in the American biker scene, according to U.S. Department of Transportation figures.
Check out our Motorcycle Oil Report to see why more and more bikers are choosing AMSOIL.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Park Your Car At MyAMSOILGarage

AMSOIL knows today's drivers are focused on vehicle maintenance more than ever before. This includes scheduled oil changes and regular service, which can be difficult to keep track of in your busy life. This past fall AMSOIL introduced a user-friendly feature called MyAMSOILGarage™ to help to change that. Vehicle maintenance can be monitored and scheduled through one easy-to-use source here on the AMSOIL website.

By safely storing vehicle information in a virtual ‘garage’, you can eliminate the need to enter the year, make, model and engine size each time you need product recommendations or capacities. You can also schedule oil change reminder e-mails, keep a vehicle maintenance log, and view recommended AMSOIL lubricants and filters for your specific vehicle all in one central location. These significant improvements to the standard AMSOIL Automotive & Light Truck Lookup save you time, effort and money. Let AMSOIL maintain these records in the MyAMSOILGarage™ feature so you don’t have to.

We’re hoping you’ll park your vehicles here, too, along with the thousands of other motorists we're taking care of. For more information go to MyAMSOILGarage™.

Sometimes, the best things in life really are free.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

NAIAS in Detroit Remains a Spectacle

It’s the beginning of the New Year, and car companies are pulling out all the stops to show the world their new and innovative concepts. The 2010 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit is a premier event for creating buzz and AMSOIL Director of Aftermarket Products Karl Dedolph has been present to keep an eye out for upcoming and developing trends in the industry. All eyes are on Ford, General Motors and Chrysler this year, but they aren’t the only companies capitalizing on the slowly stabilizing economy. Honda, Toyota, Audi and BMW are also aiming to garner consumer attention with hybrid, electric and luxury vehicles that appeal to all ends of the consumer spectrum. With the onset of ‘going green’ in today’s market, most car manufacturers are trying to keep ahead of the curve to incorporate this theory into their design and production.

Have we finally reached the advent of the electric car era? Roger Huntington addressed the demise of the internal combustion engine in a 1969 Popular Mechanics story titled "How Far Can We Go With The Piston Engine?" The article begins like this. "An early death for the age-old internal combustion piston engine is the prediction of some people. They say the exhaust can't be cleaned up enough to meet future air-pollution and antismog laws and that we'll be running around with batteries, steam, fuel cells and atomic engines in another ten years."

Forty years later and the NAIAS gives evidence that many very smart people have spent a lot of time and money to move the auto industry in a greener direction. The degree of cleanliness in modern diesel technologies was inconceivable in 1969. But the range of alternative solutions to the internal combustion engine is also highly in evidence this week. The outcome of all this will be anyone’s guess.

This year’s NAIAS features a special section called Electric Avenue where companies large and small have electric model vehicles available for test drives around a ¼ mile indoor track. At the turn of the last century (1900) electric cars were quieter, cleaner, and offered a much more pleasant motoring experience than the alternatives. And they could run at a pretty decent clip as well. The 1899 Belgian-built La Jamais Contente was clocked at 100 km/hour (68 miles per hour), setting a world land speed record. Its gas powered counterpart was a hand-cranked contraption that smelled, vibrated a lot and made a lot of noise. La Jamais Contente, pictured here on the left, is on display in Detroit this week.

Open to the public from January 16-24 and unlike any car show you’ve ever been to, we encourage you to try and make it out to see what’s headed your way in the auto industry. AMSOIL will continue to watch these trends as they are developed and tested, utilizing shows like this one to stay ahead of the game in today’s rapidly evolving marketplace.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Showtime in San Diego

Despite a tough couple years in Detroit, the auto industry remains committed to the future. And the best way to see where that future is headed is by seeing the cars on display at our premiere auto shows. 2010 kicked off with the 10th annual San Diego International Auto Show from December 30 to January 3 featuring hundreds of new models, concept cars, exotics, trucks, vans and alternative fuel vehicles. The last category here is ever expanding as automakers strive to quench the thirst for greener vehicle options.

The theme of this year's show was "Where the Cars ARE the Stars!” The show included a tribute to the Model T and an overview of the history of the auto industry, courtesy the La Jolla Motor Car Classic, beginning with a 1904 DeDion-Bouton and ending in the muscle car era. It's the kind of exhibit that gives a context to what the automobile is all about, incorporating nostalgia from the early years to the mid-sixties.

But the primary focus of American auto shows is a forward look, to make us dream. And one car that made us dreamy was Mike Yonemitsu's 2010 BOMEX Silver Arrow Widebody Camaro. We liked it here, of course, because Mike has taken special care to ensure this baby purrs by nourishing it tip to toe with AMSOIL fluids and lubricants.

Many opportunities existed for test drives and there were even some giveaways. The Eco-Center showcased the latest fuel-saving and environmentally friendly technologies. And the mood remained celebratory throughout.

If you've never been to one of these kinds of shows, it's worth your while to check one out. They are open to the public and designed to make you smile. Next week, Detroit's putting on the dog. And later this spring the Big Apple will once more polish some chrome for the home team. Stay tuned for coming attractions.