Editor’s Note: Time flies when you’re having fun. As we close out another year, we’re spending the last week of 2016 looking at our top stories of the year. Today, we’re re-examining some of our most-read, most-popular news stories of the year.


Summit Racing To Open Fourth Super Store and Distribution Center

Summit Racing Texas Facility Northwest View

It’s just one store in one city, but it was far and away our most-popular and most-read news story this year. Summit Racing Equipment will open its fourth retail location in Arlington, TX near Dallas. Summit Racing’s existing locations are in Tallmadge, OH; McDonough, GA, and Sparks, NV.

For out-of-town gearheads and racing fanatics, visiting a Summit Racing Retail Super Store is an experience unlike most in-store shopping trips. The new Arlington store, like many things in Texas, will be Summit’s largest location.

EPA Looking to Prohibit Conversion of Street Vehicles into Race Cars

Environmental Protection Agency building sign, Washington, DC

Environmental Protection Agency building sign, Washington, DC

Racers let their voices be heard and demonstrated the powerful impact a mobilized voter base can have in a democractic society.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency proposed banning the conversion of a street vehicle into a race vehicle. That would have been game-changing for fans of motorsports, performance enthusiasts, and had far-reaching economic implications for all parties.

But everyone who cared did something about it. Elected officials took notice. And then things changed for the better. When the news first broke, a lot of people tuned in.

Volkswagen Settles with U.S. for $14.7B Over Diesel Emissions Scandal

VW logo


News of the scandal broke in 2015, but the majority of Dieselgate news events took place in 2016. There remains a bunch of public-image work to be done by Volkswagen, but the $14.7 billion settlement and VW vehicle buy-back program has everyone headed in the right direction.

Feds Seize Suspected Chinese Knockoff Parts at SEMA; Judge Orders 8 Chinese Companies to U.S. Court

Rugged Ridge Spartan Grille

For years, U.S. manufacturers of aftermarket performance parts have complained about Chinese counterfeits and patent-infringing knockoffs negatively affecting their business.

At SEMA 2016, Omix-ADA, with the help of SEMA officials and the U.S. Marshals office, did something about it.

Smokey and the Bandit Trans Am Fetches $550,000 at Barrett-Jackson 45th Anniversary Auction

(image courtesy of Barrett-Jackson)

(image courtesy of Barrett-Jackson)

A total of 1,469 collector cars sold at the 45th annual auction — none more recognizable than a Pontiac Trans Am used to promote the 1977 hit movie Smokey and the Bandit. The original movie promo car sold for $550,000 — an all-time record for Trans Ams.

The car got a boost when Burt Reynolds himself drove it onto the auction block and later signed it. Unlike Reynolds’ personal Smokey and the Bandit Trans Am, which sold for $450,000 in late 2014, this particular car was titled to the Burt Reynolds Institute for Film and Theater. It came with a certificate of authenticity from Universal Studios, a plaque from General Motors, an original Smokey and the Bandit movie script, film location maps, and other memorabilia.

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Author: Matt Griswold

After a 10-year newspaper journalism career, Matt Griswold spent another decade writing about the automotive aftermarket and motorsports. He was part of the original OnAllCylinders editorial team when it launched in 2012.