FOREVER FU-KING MOTORS. – Rants – Autoextremist.com ~ the bare-knuckled, unvarnished, high-electron fact…

FOREVER FU-KING MOTORS. – Rants – Autoextremist.com ~ the bare-knuckled, unvarnished, high-electron fact…


Editor’s Observe: Since nothing “new” is happening within the enterprise proper now apart from the countless hand-wringing about chips, the perpetual Daybreak of the EV Period (regardless that EV startups appear to be dropping by the wayside weekly), the low seller provides of recent automobiles, the used automobile “bubble,” the perpetual affect of sunspots on auto govt considering, and many others., and many others., and many others., we’ll add a bit of levity – and enjoyable – to the proceedings by revisiting one among Peter’s memorable Fu-King Motors columns, together with the most recent future product updates from “the boys.” Additionally, you may be taught one thing concerning the Bugatti household that you just by no means knew in On The Desk, learn Peter’s homage to Roger Penske’s profession as a high racing driver in Fumes,” and skim the most recent from the racing world in The Line,” together with the spectacular entry record for the upcoming Daytona 24 Hours. Take pleasure in! -WG


By Peter M. DeLorenzo

Detroit. A name at 3:00 a.m. doesn’t typically bode nicely. It’s both some sudden – and undesirable – unhealthy information, or it’s a improper quantity. Both means, it’s normally Not Good. However my early Monday morning name was one thing else altogether – it was none apart from Mr. James “Jimmy” Fu and Mr. S. L. “Sonny” King on speaker. I discovered it was these two straight away due to the Asian pop music on “11” within the background, which was nearly drowning them out. (However as you recognize, they really want that, as a result of yelling is their prime mode of speaking.) 

We rapidly switched to a Zoom name the place I may see an array of dancing fashions awash in LED lights throbbing within the background, which admittedly was oddly comforting at this level, as a result of in the event that they ever felt the necessity to tone it down the world would change into a fair darker place. Extra on this later.

I up to date AE readers about Fu-King Motors final fall, and earlier than that within the memorable AE interview with “Al Cantara.” And although our longtime AE readers are most likely very aware of Jimmy and Sonny by now, we have now a number of new readers resulting from my elevated Twitter presence (@PeterMDeLorenzo), so I believed it is likely to be a great time to supply some background concerning the dynamic duo. 

Mr. James “Jimmy” Fu and Mr. S. L. “Sonny” King have operated within the shadows of the large Chinese language industrial machine for years. However that hasn’t stopped these two flamboyant and noteworthy characters from changing into legends out and in of China. Mr. Fu began manufacturing mannequin automobiles and vans within the late 70s. In reality, most of the mannequin automobiles our readers performed with of their youth most likely got here from Mr. Fu. And 50 years later, I’ve pieced collectively and confirmed that he controls each toymaking concern in China by way of a labyrinthian community of mom-and-pop factories and a number of other different massive conglomerates that he lords over. Mr. King turned companions with Mr. Fu after initially supplying the elaborately detailed wheels and uncannily correct tires on Mr. Fu’s mannequin automobiles. Although the 2 have had knock-down, drag-out disagreements nearly from the very starting – at all times with the yelling – the 2 have been companions in Fu-King Motors – and finest buddies – for happening greater than 5 a long time now.

I first received to know Mr. Fu and Mr. King after they approached me on the Los Angeles Auto Present years in the past. Apparently, they’d stumbled upon Autoextremist.com after they first turned aware of the Web, they usually regaled me with the truth that they each realized English by having my ‘Rants’ columns translated for them. Once I first met them, it was an uproarious encounter as they blurted out a few of my patented phrases that they’d realized phonetically, like ‘notgonnahappen.com’ ‘halle-frickin’-luja,’ and ‘the Reply to the Query that Completely No One is Asking.’ (How they realized that final one stays a thriller to me.)

Mr. Fu and Mr. King have remained in shut contact with me ever since. As I’ve gotten to know Jimmy and Sonny, their frenetic tempo and boundless power by no means stop to amaze me. The Zoom calls I obtain at 3:00 a.m. my time are normally booze-filled stream-of-consciousness rants by Jimmy with Sonny yelling issues over his shoulder, accompanied by trendy mannequin sorts dancing to disco music within the background at their secretive Shanghai lair. And their appetites look like much more boundless. In reality, Jimmy is nonetheless keen on aspiring feminine pop stars, whereas Sonny is a very beneficiant sponsor of a feminine gymnastic academy. 

Quick American muscle automobiles are overflowing of their underground storage, which is an fanatic’s cornucopia of biggest hits. Jimmy was joyful to supply me with an replace of their Fu-King Motors fleet. They sold-off one of many three Purple Dodge Demons (every modified to ship 1000HP) to one among their finest, long-term suppliers (whose son promptly wrapped it round a light-weight pole). The 2 authentic “narrow-hipped” 427 road Cobras stay, together with the matching ‘68 L88 Corvettes. The 2 new Corvette C8s (one black, one white) are already gone. Jimmy gave his black one to his administrative assistant, and Sonny gave his white one to his newest girlfriend. No worries, Jimmy identified, as a result of they every have an upcoming Z06 on order. Their favourite scorching rods (and our readers’ favorites, judging by the mail we’ve obtained) are a few custom-built Willys Gasser replicas from the ‘60s powered by race-prepared Chevy 502 big-blocks. These final bad-ass machines – with open headers – are reserved for terrorizing the neighbors in the midst of the evening. 

Their fondness for Knob Creek Kentucky Straight Bourbon gave method to Basil Hayden’s Kentucky Straight Bourbon a few years in the past, however they let me know that they’re now consuming circumstances of champagne by the week as a result of, as Sonny stated, “the ladies prefer it.” And, after all, they nonetheless completely love their twin Gulfstream G650s (Jimmy’s is Jet Black with dayglo orange stripes; Sonny’s is Chaparral White with Midnight Blue stripes).

However the principle cause for the decision, which they received to about 20 minutes in, was that Jimmy and Sonny wished to offer me an replace on the Fu-King Motors future product cadence. The truth that they used the phrase “cadence” was a bit surprising, however Sonny stated that was as a result of they appreciated the best way I take advantage of the phrase in my columns, in order that they use it on a regular basis. “It’s all about Cadence! Cadence! Cadence!” Jimmy shouted, whereas they every banged the desk in unison. So, after sorting by way of the yelling and making an attempt to piece collectively the main points in between the disco-pop blaring within the background, we lastly wrapped up the decision at 4:30 a.m. I used to be exhausted, however I by no means get uninterested in listening to from Jimmy and Sonny. In reality, they need me to return for an prolonged go to, however I advised them I must have my affairs so as earlier than I might even think about it. I imply, actually.

So, as finest as I can inform, the timeline for what Fu-King Motors has coming has been pushed again significantly. “Was it the chip disaster?” I requested. They usually each chimed in, “No, it was the champagne… and the ladies!”

2022: To cite Sonny: “Overlook 2021, it’s over.” “What’s coming in 2022?” I requested. “Press conferences!” they stated in unison. “Canine and Monkey exhibits!” Appears logical, at this juncture. “We dangle the bait and flip the change!” I may have identified a number of linguistic disconnects at this level, however I didn’t trouble. 

2023 (2nd Quarter): The long-awaited debut of the six-wheeled, all-electric Fu-King Gargantuan SUV is for actual, they each insisted. The Gargantuan is designed to humiliate the upcoming all-electric GMC Hummer EV and “something Ford has up its sleeve to counteract the Dodge Durango Hellcat,” in keeping with Jimmy. Flaunting some unbelievable numbers: 2000HP; 10,000 lbs. and with retractable electrical step ladders (“not steps, ladders,” Jimmy insists) and “a glance that can humiliate all that different crap on the market,” added Sonny. Once I requested concerning the worth, Jimmy and Sonny answered in unison what they’d advised me earlier than: “Sufficient to make grown males cry!” 

2023 (4th Quarter): One other sudden debut: The Fu-King Motors KickBoxer. The boys’ reply to the Jeep Wrangler 392 and new Ford Bronco with “unequaled” off-road efficiency. Boasting a carbon-fiber unibody and a kaleidoscope of various variations, together with a pickup and one cryptically known as the “RumRunner Version” (“It may well conceal forty gallons of Bourbon!” Sonny chimed in), the KickBoxer might be powered by an all-aluminum, now 3.0-liter, fuel-injected, Twin-Turbo, flat eight-cylinder motor that delivers 800HP. When requested if this might presumably be construed as overkill, Sonny rapidly replied: “We want to introduce our rivals to {custom} cans of Whup-Ass!” 

2024 (1st Quarter): The all-electric semi-truck that appears eerily just like the Bison superior long-haul trucking idea that GM Styling created for the 1964 World’s Honest is a particular “go” for late within the 1st Quarter of ‘24. Once I was proven photographs of the idea, I believed they’d resurrected the designers who did the unique Bison – it seems to be so near the unique (see beneath). However this truck might be a hydrogen gas cell-powered electrical heavy truck with a variety of “700+ miles,” in keeping with Sonny. The identify? “Convoy.” (Jimmy and Sonny are big followers of the unique “Smokey and The Bandit” film and the entire C.B. radio period within the U.S. (“We simply watched it once more Saturday evening,” Sonny added.)


The Bison heavy truck idea from GM Styling was designed for the 1964 World’s Honest in New York.

2026 (1st Quarter): The event of the Fu-King Motors supercar has been fraught with issues from the start. With Jimmy and Sonny continuously at one another’s throats over the course of the idea, it’s no shock that it exists solely of their minds at this level. Oh hell, let’s simply name it for what it’s: a large Black Gap of Vaporware. The toll it has taken on Jimmy and Sonny is clear, as each time I point out it their traditional exuberant inclinations flip decidedly darkish. 

First envisioned as a high-performance, hydrogen gas cell-powered electrical hypercar, the machine – code named “Bandini” (which I got here up with) – had been reimagined as a BEV aimed squarely at Gordon Murray’s T.50 with 1+1 seating and a curb weight of 1900 lbs. However now that Porsche and Rimac Automobili have fashioned a brand new three way partnership referred to as Bugatti Rimac to construct a future hypercar, Jimmy and Sonny are apoplectic.  “Porsche and Remulac!” Jimmy pounded on the desk. (I identified that it was Rimac, not Remulac, to no avail.) “That is nothing however a German-Italian nightmare! As you prefer to say, it’s notgonnahappen dot fricking com!” The topic introduced Jimmy and Sunny to a uncommon second of silence, though the stereo was nonetheless cranking LOUD (this time with “Bounce Round” by Home of Ache). 

Then Sonny pitched in: “We’d like you to offer us course! No Zoom both! We’d like you right here! We’ll have a 3rd Willys constructed only for you! Any coloration you need!” Now that was tempting.  

Once I requested about merchandise past 2026, the boys simply shrugged and fortunately chimed in once more in unison, “It’s a large we’ll see as you prefer to say!” And, when requested if they’d any plans to import their merchandise to the U.S., the reply was as soon as once more a convincing, “By no means!” Requested why, they answered once more in unison, “An excessive amount of bullshit, an excessive amount of aggravation.” 

At that time all I may say was, “I concur.” And I hope they by no means change.

And that’s the Excessive-Octane Reality for this week.


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December 2022