Monthly Archives: April 2013

Unlicensed Tow Truck Driver Wreaks Havoc In New York

As if it isn’t hard enough to find a place to park, an unscrupulous independent tow truck drive in Floral Park, New York, has been busted for illegally towing vehicles which were legally parked.

Police say Christopher Capurso, 22, would cruise around Long Island putting up his own “Tow Away Zone” signs at local businesses, then start towing vehicles parked in those zones. He did this without the permission of business owners, and without telling them what he was doing.

The signs had Capurso’s phone number so vehicle owners who returned to find their vehicles missing would call direct to him. Of course he demanded $200 cash only, which meant there was no record of the transaction having taken place. Police know of at least seven vehicles towed in this fashion, parked at a local dry cleaner, a church and a gym, but they fear even more people were victims.

For future reference, if your vehicle is towed be certain you verify with the business owner which towing service they use, and make certain you receive a receipt. Of course the best advice is to be certain you do not park in a “Tow Away Zone” in the first. And if you know it wasn’t a tow away zone when you parked there, before you call the towing service, better call the police, just in case.

Davis Auction A Classic Car Lover’s Dream

Texas businessman Don Davis loves classic cars, but even he can have too much of a good thing.

Davis currently owns nearly 100 classic automobiles. And not just any classic automobiles, but some of the world’s most rare super cars, sports cars and limited editions. These include a 1941 Chrysler Newport pace car from that year’s Indianapolis 500 which is valued at more than $1.2 million; a dozen or so Porche’s; a bunch of Mercedes-Benz 300 SL roadsters and coupes, and a 1967 Ferrari 330 GTS, just to name a few.

Later this month Davis will be clearing out his garage, offering 64 of his classic cars, more than half his collection, up for auction. Most of the cars he is offering at auction are duplicates in his collection, but not all of them. Some, like the Chrysler Newport are one-of-a-kind examples of automobiles the likes of which have never been seen before (or since.) Also being offered for sale is a near mint, black-on-black 1965 Cobra with the original Shelby window sticker, buyer’s order and receipt, and extensive registration records.

Another unique automotive specimen being offered by Davis is the 1967 Ferrari 330 GTS, one of just 99 ever built, powered by a 300-horsepower V-12 engine.

Davis said he is not getting out of the business of collecting classic cars, and is certainly not doing it for the money. He is reducing his collection, he said, because maintaining his fleet of classic cars has become too time consuming for him, and he prefers the “chase” of classic car collecting, to the actual owning.

Davis will place his classic cars up for auction on April 27.

Fisker Automotive Failing In Many Ways

In what is just the latest inability of Fisker Automotive to stay in business, the company announced today it was laying off three-quarters of its workforce. At one time the company had 600 people building cars but most of those had already been sent packing when the company they had been relying on for their battery tech, A123 Systems Inc., went into bankruptcy protection last year.

Since then Fisker has tried to restructure and cut back on expenses (including a reduction in their labor force) but they have been unable to produce a single vehicle. And sales of what vehicles they had produced, the $100,000 Fisker Karma have been tepid. That wasn’t helped by poor reviews of the automobile which included questions about its reliability.

Fisker has been touting a much improved, slightly more modestly priced vehicle they are naming the Atlantic coupe. But that vehicle has not yet been produced, and if something fantastic doesn’t happen soon it seems unlikely Fisker will ever get it off the production line.

The co-founder of Fisker Automotive, Henrik Fisker, left the company recently because he didn’t like the business decisions being made there, decisions being made by the CEO Tony Posawatz, brought on board from General Motors where he was chief of the electric car division. Posawatz has said he hopes to find either a buyer for Fisker or a company which will partner with them, but so far, no takers.

At one time, the height of the electric car resurgence, Fisker was considered a wonderkind of the automotive world, but now, it looks as if what some had hoped would be its greatest contribution to the world will not come to fruition.