Evolution: Mike Maier’s Blue Coupe Begins its Changes
Those of you with weak stomachs, do not like change, and believe 1978 gave us everything that we will ever need please back away now. Those of you who are still reading, welcome to 2016. This is a short story about evolution.
Many of whom who have been present during this metamorphosis have shown excitement and other have shown disgust. Over the life span of Ol’ Blue the pro-touring scene has evolved and so has Ol’ Blue. The purpose of this evolution has also changed over the years.
Going back 12 years Ol’ Blue wasn’t the old blue you know today. It was a mere gift to Mike’s wife and was nothing that would get much of a second look. It began as a “seafoam green”, 289ci with an automatic transmission. When first seen before the wedding Brianne though, “Mike sure has a lot of work to do.” After a quick 1 month to build the car it was ready to get driven to and from the wedding. It evolved into a simple performance street cruiser complete with the same 289, a toploader 4 speed, 9” rear end, blue paint, and a cleaned up interior. Over the next few years the car was a cool street car that just got driven. In 2008 the industry also began to evolve; performance parts and events alike. Good Guys Rod and Custom developed their autocross series. A couple years later the Run to the … events began to pop up around the country. During these early days most people were competing with their 350 horsepower, medium tires, and some bolt on suspension parts.
We then saw another level of evolution when people began to develop suspensions, chassis, and powertrains to get an edge on the other competitors. This drove companies that were content with leaf springs, panhard bar, bilstein shocks, and a Shelby drop to develop their knowledge of these vehicles to keep up with the trend. Now we have competitive events like Optimas Search for the Ultimate Street Car where if you want to compete you must push the envelope on development.
As the environment that we work and play in has evolved so has Ol’ Blue. What started as a stock 289 auto Mustang, evolved into a tool that we use to develop our suspensions and chassis. To develop our chassis past where it is currently, we need to be at the cusp of development. We use what we learn to fine tune and develop products for everyone. Without the evolution we(the involved industry) would still be happy with polyglass tires and eight tracks. Further, our companies would go stale and become stagnant. We would also become irrelevant to the industry.
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