Truth be known, I never really fancied being Frank Bullitt, a.k.a Steve McQueen in the 1968 movie classic. All that yumping and grinding over San Francisco hilltops would have me chucking-up out the window. And just the thought of a polo neck makes my neck itch.
But Kowalski in Vanishing Point? Now you’re talking. Anyone who’s described as: “the electric centaur, the super driver of the golden West, the last beautiful free soul on this planet” has me as their hero. And while Frank Bullitt’s ’68 Mustang Fastback does have a certain raw muscularity to it, it’s nothing as icy cool as a supercharged, refrigerator-white 1970 Dodge Challenger R/T “hopped up to over 160”.
All the squealing and tyre-smoking you got in Bullitt was also way too uncouth for a big-ass American muscle car. Kowalski and his Challenger, running flat out across the wide-open desert in a bid to get from Denver to San Fran in 15 hours, now that’s more like it.
Unless you’ve been living in the Antarctic watching penguin mating rituals for the past two years, you’ll know there’s a brand new Dodge Challenger hitting the streets this spring (right); 6.1-liter Hemi V8, 425 horsepower, more muscle than Stallone in his Rambo days.
So that’s my dream for 2008. Pick-up a new Challenger SRT8 in Denver and run flat-out to ’Frisco, trying to find that blind, kool-kat DJ called Super Soul on the radio. And yes, I’d aim to stay away from those bulldozers.