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The Woodward Dream Cruise is billed as the largest one-day automotive event in the world. Around 1.5 million people show up on a Saturday each August and line both sides of a seven-mile stretch of historic Woodward Avenue in the outskirts of Detroit. They come to watch some 40,000+ classic, custom and muscle cars cruise all eight lanes of road at little more than idling speed. Begun only in 1995, the Cruise feels like it's been happening since the golden era of Detroit that it honors. For Detroi

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What separates an old car from a classic? In many cases, not a lot. Beautiful sheet metal, a legendary powertrain or world-class performance could make a world of difference, and so can attention to detail.

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When we think Woodward Dream Cruise, thoughts of muscle cars and golden oldies pass between our ears. But while we're all about the painstakingly restored classics, there is always a little room in our hearts for anything emanating from the land of misfit rides.

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In case you hadn't noticed, Detroit is smack dab in the middle of America, and what is America if not welcoming? While the Woodward Dream Cruise may celebrate the heyday of The Motor City's own brand of classic machinery, there's a good bit of foreign influence as well.

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If you weren't aware already, the Woodward Dream Cruise is set to rumble through Detroit this Saturday. Our friends from Autoline have already made their way over to the famed stretch of road, and are bringing their Autoline After Hours show to you live from the street.

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You have to drive something really special to stand out from the crowd at the Woodward Dream Cruise – something like a Google Street View Chevrolet Cobalt. When we spotted the Street View crew at last summer's cruise, we wondered if any shots of the vintage metal rolling around Detroit would actually make it into Google Maps or not.

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High unemployment and plunging revenue for businesses has been toughest on the state of Michigan. Even the wildly popular Woodward Dream Cruise has been hit by the region's economic despair. Several sponsors have reportedly dropped out, and some participating cities have scaled back their participation in light of budget shortfalls.

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The Woodward Dream Cruise is one of the biggest events in Michigan all year, with 1.2 million people attending and over 40,000 hot rods, exotics, antiques and oddities coming from near and far to one of the world's most storied roads. Yet each year businesses on the cruise route complain that the annual event actually hurts their bottom line. It isn't so much the weekend that kills profits as it is the fact that cruisers plug up Woodward for the entire week before the big cruise on Saturday.

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The Woodward Dream Cruise is right around the corner on this Saturday, but Chevy is arriving early with its 2008 HHR SS model that's just been revealed. Of course, we knew an SS version of the HHR was percolating thanks to countless spy photos of development mules testing here and on the Nurburgring in Germany. Nevertheless, 260 horsepower in a tall wagon is pretty exciting, especially one that goes 0-60 in 6.3 seconds and covers the quarter-mile in 14.8 seconds at 98.5 mph.

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Looks like everyone from the automotive press was in attendance at the 2006 Woodward Dream Cruise, as we found galleries galore of Dream Cruisers creeping up and down Woodward last Saturday. Readers were also snapping pics like silly, as evident by the Flickr galleries we ran across. If you were curious about what the inside of the Drinkopolis bus looks like, check out edheil's Flickr set. If you find any more galleries, let us know in the comments and we'll add them to the list.

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click on image above to enlarge

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So we've been cruising up and down Woodward Ave. for over an hour now and what we've witnessed is a plethora of soggy Dream Cruisers. The picture above says it all, as we know that most Cruisers would never dream of driving in the rain on any other day... except today. The 2006 Woodward Dream Cruise officially kicked off at 9 AM today and it's been raining almost non-stop ever since. While the showers do turn off and on unexpectedly, it's been a damp day so far to say the least. As you can see f

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