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Archive for the ‘Editorial’ Category

PostHeaderIcon Make All Commercial Vehicles Electric NOW!

As a self-proclaimed petrolhead and someone who works in the auto industry, I spend most of my time defending the honor of internal combustion engine in all its variants. We car guys believe that the “burning stuff”, with all their complexity and messiness of operation, have a soul that the electric motor can never match. That said, there are a few types of cars I think must go electric ASAP.

And commercial vehicles are at the top of my list. Let me give you a bit of perspective why I hate these things and why I think it is in everyone’s interest if they bite the bullet and go electric. I live in a busy metropolis, in a busy neighborhood, on a busy street. My apartment is located just above a grocery store. And it’s great, for the most part, as it means anything I need is only a few steps away at all times.

But every morning I wake up to the bang and clatter of rickety old trucks and pickups bringing fresh produce to the shop. Sometime I open the window to yell at them, but in doing that I have to breath lungfuls of CO2 and other noxious gases because, of course, most of these trucks run on diesel. And it doesn’t pay for the driver to shut the engine while dropping off packages, so he let it run… right under my goddamn window!

I think you are starting to see where I’m coming from. I believe car makers should first address the issue of commercial and public transportation vehicle and make all of them electric before moving on to personal cars. Just think of the benefits. The army of commercial vehicles that marches around every city every day consumes an enormous amount of fuel and pumps tons of unsavory emissions into the air. Don’t get me wrong. I have nothing against what they do. They provide an invaluable service, bringing us fruits and chicken and cereal and yogurt and wine. It’s just that there are ways now to make them more efficient and less irritating to the citizens.

By converting or replacing all commercial vehicles with electrically-driven ones we can drastically improve the quality of life in big cities. You have only to do a quick mental calculation to realize the benefits. When you go out today just count the number of delivery trucks and pickups you see on your way. We’re not even going to take into account the government vehicles – police cars, municipal vehicles, etc. Now imagine how much quieter the city would be if the combined noises of all those vehicles were to be eliminated. The same goes for the quality of the air. Needless to say, with quieter and cleaner vehicles to operate, delivery drivers themselves would be happier people, which goes a long way to make them less obnoxious.

It makes a lot of sense. Delivery vehicles usually have a fixed schedule, meaning they are less susceptible to the main Achilles heel of electric motoring which is charging time and range anxiety. The fixed routes and schedules of these vehicles mean we can devise efficient plans vis-a-vis their charging cycles and driving range. And since these are usually sizable vehicles, there is ample room for large battery packs. So come on law makers. Instead of picking on our personal automobiles and restricting them with ever-tightening emission regulations, ban all fossil fuel commercial vehicles and make them all electric.

I, for one, would appreciate it!

The post Make All Commercial Vehicles Electric NOW! appeared first on Motorward.

PostHeaderIcon 70 Years of Porsche – Celebrating an Icon

If you think about it, there aren’t that many instantly recognizable products, out there – things that you would look at and right away know their identity and character. For a car to achieve that status, of being a global icon, it has to be something really special. And that is everyone respects and admires Porsche. It is the automobile equivalent of the Coca-Cola bottle, or the iPhone.  

Now, that quality of being a highly recognizable icon – a celebrity car, if you will – belongs only to the 911, which is the face of Porsche. But over the past 70 years the German manufacturer has made a great number of other amazing sports cars that deserve, at the very least, a salute. That’s what we’re going to try to do here. We want to pay homage to the greatest car maker of them all through a brief look at Porsche’s history and evolution.

Yes, yes, that puts us in the Porsche camp rather than the Ferrari camp if a division is absolutely necessary. But we reckon an unbiased, objective observer of facts would still give that lofty title to Porsche.

Ferrari is often praised as being the vision of a genius taken to amazing heights. Well, that is also the case with Porsche. For something to become iconic it needs to be the vision of just one man and not the work of a committee. 70 years ago Ferry Porsche made his vision a reality by making the 356. A groundbreaking sports car by the standards of its time, the 356 featured a four-cylinder VW Volkswagen flat engine – granted, not the most glamorous of choices, but something that went on to achieve cult status. Since the beginning Porsche knew he wanted to form a proper business, as shown by the fact even his first model came in a bunch of variants such as coupe, cabriolet, and speedster, a tradition that continues to this very day with every single model the company produces.

People also talk about Ferrari being a family business. Porsche is also like that, though it’s not talked about very often. For instance, did you know that when they decided to return to Stuttgart from Gmünd, where they’d set up shop at the outbreak of World War II, the first Porsche office was established in the family villa? These little anecdotes are what make this brand so cool. In any case, the return to Stuttgart marked the beginning of Porsche’s legend. Here the iconic crest was formed, and here was born what was to become the king of all sports cars, the most recognizable automobile in history. It was the 911, though it wasn’t called that in the beginning. When it was first designed, the signature Porsche sports car was called the 901. But objections from Peugeot who had dibs on all monikers with a 0 in the middle forced Porsche to rename it. So I guess we have to thank Peugeot for their obnoxiousness!

Over the years the 911 has got a lot of stick for remaining stubbornly rear-engined. There has been even more complains about the design, which in spite of some serious changes has remained pretty much the same shape as it was first conceived. What a lot of haters don’t realize is that very stubbornness is the reason Porsche 911 is such an icon today. If it were to go with the trend and change drastically with every new version to please the public’s taste it would have been yet another faceless, characterless cars, utterly forgettable. That is not to say Porsche have been hard-headed about it. For example, being air-cooled has always been a defining feature of the 911. But when that technology had ran its course they set it aside and employed more efficient methods. That is happening again today with the hybridization and electrification of the new models.

So the 911 went to conquer the world, become the poster on many a young man’s walls, the sweetest dream, the ultimate sign of success. Owning a 911 is a social statement now. It is conclusive proof that you have made it. Of course, depending on what version of the car you choose, you are ranked on the social ladder, but that is beside the point. So large is the shadow of the 911 that for many many years it was thought by many to be the only Porsche model they made. The 914s, the 944s, the 928s, all great cars, were buried under the 911’s heavy clout. It changed, obviously, with the arrival of the modern flock of Porsche – stuff like the Boxster, the Cayenne and the Panamera. But the reason these models were successful at getting out of the 911’s shadow was because they were conceived or inspired by the 911. The Panamera is the four-door 911. And the Cayenne is the 911 SUV.

We hope this brief eulogy succeeded at shedding some light on why we think so highly of Porsche and how the brand came to be the icon that it is today. There is no time or space here to go into details about every model, or to give an account the brand’s glorious motorsport history. Suffice to say, even those who are firmly established themselves in the opposition camp cannot help but marvel at the excellence of Ferry Porsche’s original vision.

The post 70 Years of Porsche – Celebrating an Icon appeared first on Motorward.

PostHeaderIcon On the Future of In-Car Luxury…

Ever since us sapiens forego the fun of hunting and gathering for the security of agricultural settlements, we’ve been perfecting the indoor. We started with our huts and extended it to our various modes of transportation. But while the interior of our houses has moved ahead by leaps and bounds, the inside of our vehicles seem to have been stuck in its roots. 

We don’t mean that in terms of design, but what we perceive as luxury and refinement. For more than a century now leather and wood have been the defining features of every luxury interior. They’re such highly-regarded symbols of refinement that we’ve found a way to bring them to our cheap, basic cars as well. Granted, the wood and leather you find in cheap cars are synthetic stuff masquerading as animal and tree skin. But still, they look the same and serve the same function. As a wise but slow man once said, it’s become such a terrible old cliche. We think it’s high time somebody came up with a new way of decorating car interiors.

There have been good efforts, of course, but not many of them have stuck. Mercedes-Benz, for instance, experimented a while ago with trims made of stone. Turned out it wasn’t a feasible idea. Aluminum has been one of the more successful replacements for wooden trims, but that too is starting to lose its novelty. In recent years carbon fiber has emerged as the hot new thing for interior trimming, but again, it was only interesting when it was new and exotic and expensive. Now, to be frank, it looks like black plastic with a checkered pattern. Another new-ish thing is suede, best known by its dominant brand Alcantara, which has been quite successful at driving luxury buyers away from leather.

Now, the look and feel of suede may not appeal to everybody. And it certainly isn’t as refined as fine leather. But in this age of environment concerns and animal welfare, it is well that the industry has come up with something to strike a balance between conscientiousness and the need to stroke one’s vanity. Novel materials aside, car makers have also been busy trying to integrate intriguing features inside the automobile. Fitting cars with a touchscreen and connectivity gear is a must now for any car maker worth its salt. And there’s been a shift toward making automatic as many of the functions as possible.

That works for mid-range cars. For luxury makers it’s trickier. They have to come up with things that nobody really needs, but everybody wants. So they put massive screens anywhere they can, devise intricate stitching patterns, and even give you the option of having the bottom of your feet massaged. Needless to say, some of these features border on being ridiculous. You probably remember the recently-unveiled Maybach Ultimate Luxury. Turns out the the most “ultimate” feature of it was a heated tray in the rear console complete with a kettle and tea cups. These are, mind you, experiments. And they’re going to get better.

The right move, it seems, is to try and form new ideas around the concept of autonomous vehicles. That seems to be the coming trend, and visionary designers can have a field day with the possibilities that it offers. When self-driving cars go mainstream, car designers – at least those who work on the interior – are going to lose their jobs to architects. The cabin of an autonomous car is, for all intents and purposes, a living room, and it needs to be decorated accordingly. It is not insane to think you can have an electronic fireplace in there, sofas, chandelier, a bar, coffee machine, built-in cigar humidor, the lot. Now that’s true luxury, not wrapping everything in wood and leather.

The post On the Future of In-Car Luxury… appeared first on Motorward.

PostHeaderIcon Touchscreen, Voice Command, Gesture Control – It’s All Rubbish

I know that the very title of this article is going to put me in the line of fire with tech-obsessed web warriors shooting from all sides. But mark my words. Pretty soon everybody is going to realize we have to go back to the old dials and buttons for in-car controls. It’s not about the technology. It’s just common sense. 

Believe me, I think this is amazing that we can now have high-def flat TVs in our dashboards with awesome graphics and more computing power than the computer they used in Apollo 13. And it is superb that we have such clever voice command systems as Alexa with which we can virtually have a deep and meaningful conversation. And it is astonishing that there is now a technology that can recognize your hand gestures and execute a command. But do we really need all of this to, I don’t know, change the radio station, or adjust the volume on the stereo?

If you have ever tried to do those extremely basic things on a touchscreen, you know what I’m talking about. Not many people are concerned about this yet because most cars still come with both a touchscreen and the old-fashioned buttons or rotary dials. But those things are becoming a relic of the past. The size of the in-dash screens are getting bigger and bigger, and even if the designers want to give you the option of a convenient volume button they don’t have the room for it.

That means you have to develop new skills just so that you can carry out some basic tasks while driving without crashing. You have to train your hand to be as steady as a surgeon, so that you can touch the right virtual button on the screen. You also need amazing peripheral vision in order to both look at the road ahead and at the screen trying to see where’s that blasted air con menu. Even when you do locate the menu, you have to have the reflexes of a ninja to touch the right button the right number of times. And that is if you don’t suddenly go over a bump and your hand placement get all messed up, or your fingertips aren’t too cold for the capacitive sensor to register the touch.

And as bad as this is, they are now introducing pinch and zoom functions into those screens. Have you seen that new Mercedes MBUX thing?That’s going to be a good excuse for when you crash. Just tell the officer you were too busy finger banging your screen to notice the car coming the other way. Now, car makers are trying hard these days to get around these issues by introducing gesture control and increasingly sophisticated voice recognition systems, so you can execute the same commands without getting too distracted. And that really is out whole argument here. What was so awful about old-fashioned knobs and buttons? Why do we screw ourselves?

Just because we have certain technologies now doesn’t mean we absolutely have to use them everywhere. It’s like what they say about AI taking our jobs away and even threatening our very existence. Well, just don’t develop the damn thing! It’s mind-boggling how clever and how stupid human beings can be all at once.

The post Touchscreen, Voice Command, Gesture Control – It’s All Rubbish appeared first on Motorward.

PostHeaderIcon Massive Job Loss on Horizon for Auto Workers

A few weeks ago in an editorial we touched on how the electric cars going mainstream will put many tuners out of a job. If you found that article a bit gloomy, you are going to find this one downright depressing. The redundancy is not going to be limited to tuners and aftermarket specialists. It’ll be pertinent to all auto workers in all branches of the industry. 

And it has nothing to do with automation. Well, maybe a little. We all know how robots are better and more efficient at putting together electronic stuff than bulky mechanical bits. So that could theoretically make them even faster at assembling electric cars than they are at regular cars, ergo forcing the capitalist automaker to replace more of its human workers with machines – preferably AI-enabled machines that are not only more versatile, but smarter than the human workforce.

That’s the thing with these new technologies we are developing. They will invariably end up being smarter, more efficient, and more productive than we could ever be, making us to them what monkeys are to us.

But the threat electric cars pose to auto workers goes way deeper than that, and it has nothing to do with the capitalist automaker. You see, an EV, by nature, is a much simpler machine than an ICE car – one with a “traditional” internal combustion engine. Take the electric motor, for instance. It is the size of a melon, and it has basically one moving part. In the same time that it takes a current robot to assemble a gasoline engine, another specialized robot can put together five e-motors. So a job that didn’t require human expertise in the first place, maybe only in a supervisory capacity, is getting further away from the man’s reach and scope of capability.

So autonomous vehicles are going to put drivers out of work, and electric cars are going to make auto workers redundant. But it doesn’t end there. The same characteristics that make an electric car easier to build will also change its maintenance routines. An EV has few or no oily bits. Its motor is electric, its drivetrain could all be drive-by-wire, even the suspension is computer controlled. If something goes wrong with any of these parts, having them swapped with a new part produced cheaply by some Chinese company is going to make a lot more sense than having them fixed. That is, if you can find someone who will be able to fix those complex electronic devices.

What that means is, the EVs will also put a huge number of mechanics and technicians out of work. They can join their brethren from factories and transportation segments in the unemployed line.

Now, you might argue that we have experienced something like this before with the rise of automation and assembly line robots, and we turned out to be okay at the end of the day. That is a good argument, but you have to take into account that back then we still had the option of employing the masses made redundant by a new technology in another field or branch of the same industry. What makes the situation seem dire now is that the smart, super intelligent, super clever technologies are wrapping their tentacles around every single field and branch. What’s more, it was relatively easy to re-train an assembly-line worker so he or she could now work in, say, the interior trim department. But will be it easy, or even possible, to re-train them in the skills required for the new era, i.e. computer coding, robotics, artificial intelligence, network security, data collection, etc.?

The more likely scenario is the emergence of what Professor Yuval Noah Harari calls the “useless class,” ex-employees and new workforce who don’t have what it takes to be employed in any of the new fields, and can’t be trained for it either because there is a computer that does that job better, cheaper and more.

The post Massive Job Loss on Horizon for Auto Workers appeared first on Motorward.

PostHeaderIcon Car Makers April Fools’ Jokes Compilation

While we do submit that the Western culture is a superior one on account its accomplishments through the ages, we have to say some of its traditions are quite nonsensical – Halloween, for example, or April Fools’ day. But hey, it’s all for good fun, so let’s not get too grumpy about them. Let us instead check out this year’s best car-related April Fools’ jokes…

And let’s stat with Tesla and its billionaire owner Elon Musk who is getting more and more playful as he gets older. Musk decided to pole fun at the rumors that his company is losing money hand over first by faking bankruptcy. Apparently Tesla has filed for “all chapters” of bankruptcy, including chapter fourteen and a half, which is the worst one.

Porsche, meanwhile, proved once again that Ze Germans have no sense of humor. Their April Fools’ joke is a rendering of a Mission-E tractor. Ha? Das ist ein Porsche tractor. Zis is hilarious! They could have put a little bit more effort into it. Honda did.

Yes, Honda actually got a little bit carried away. They decapitated a CR-V crossover and created a “no-top” version instead of a drop-top. The thing is, what they ended up with actually looks pretty awesome. I mean, topless SUVs are never nice to look at, but this one isn’t half bad. They should think about making it.

Hyundai was another company who did good this year. We don’t mean their joke is awfully funny, but they did put a lot of effort into it. They devised a “cacao corner” on a race track so that they can analyze the i30N’s tire tracks… Yeah, like we said it’s not a very imaginative joke. But kudos nonetheless.

Aston Martin, like Porsche, decided a rendering of something silly is all they are willing to share this year. They didn’t even spend too much time thinking of something funny. I mean, an Aston monster truck? Come on…

Brits didn’t do well across the board, actually. Below you will find McLaren’s April Fools’ joke, which is more like a documentary frankly, and quite boring…

And here’s SEAT’s contribution, the Arona copper edition which is “penny powered.” Get it?

The post Car Makers April Fools’ Jokes Compilation appeared first on Motorward.

PostHeaderIcon Maintaining a Sport/Luxury Car: All About Parts

One of the things most sports luxury car owners often overlook is the fact that these cars, precisely because they are high-end and equipped with extra bells and whistles, need special attention when it comes to upkeep and maintenance. A V8 engine has more wear and tear than a four-pot, and by the same token something like a quattro Audi or BMW M model needs proper maintaining to remain in tiptop shape. 

But the good news is, with cars of this type you usually don’t have to worry about quality. Since we mentioned Audi above, let’s go with this example. Even by German standards, Audis are built exceptionally well, which means they are not going to give you any trouble with regards to quality. But they are also powerful, fun to drive vehicles, which means you are gong to use them regularly. And since you can’t bend the laws of physics, some of the parts are eventually going to go bad.

This may not be a concern if you have bought a brand-new car, but if you have gone second-hand, you need to pay special attention to the state of the vehicle’s working parts. Of course, every used car is going to need some care lavished on in order to become a reliable vehicle capable of servicing you for years. With high-quality stuff like Audis, as mentioned above, you only need to make sure the vital parts in proper working order.

Now, the cost of parts is usually the main factor that scares people off a second-hand car, or even a brand-new high-performance model. They reckon they will have to spend loads on maintaining the vehicle over the years. But that is something of the past. Yes, time was you could only source your parts from one or two shady shops in the city, and often those guys bled customers dry because they had a monopoly. But say you have an Audi quattro now, and you need, say, a simple joint for the driveshaft because it’s starting to squeak after a 100,000 miles. If you go to a shop, chances are you will end up buying the whole drivetrain assembly, from the transmission back to the differential, because they either don’t have the joint itself in stock, or it’s not economically viable for them to sell it separately.

But if, like us, you buy your Audi parts online, you don’t have to put up with that. You get the exact part that you need, and, thanks to the way things work in the world of e-commerce, you may even get some sort of a deal or a massive discount. Parts are usually the biggest expense when it comes to maintaining a sports luxury car, but if you do your research and get them at the right place, they don’t have to be.

Moreover, investing in parts could in the long run save you a lot of money by eliminating the need for trading your car in for a new model. After all, German sports car are not easy to part with. One is prone to form emotional attachment to them. The same applies to buying second-hand. If you know how to source the right parts at the right price, you can find amazing deals in the used car market and enjoy champagne motoring for lemonade money!

The post Maintaining a Sport/Luxury Car: All About Parts appeared first on Motorward.

PostHeaderIcon Connected Cars – Advantages and Pitfalls

In the wake of what happened to Facebook this past week – turned out they were collecting and misusing an enormous amount of data from their users – I think it’s high time we talked about the car-related technologies that have to do with data collection. You have probably heard the term Connected Cars, but you may not know that, in its essence, this technology works based on collecting and sharing data. So what are the benefits of this, and are they worth compromising one’s privacy?

There is an argument that in the very near future we are going to have to re-define the entire notion privacy because it won’t exist as such. The proponents of this pseudo-revolution believe that the advantages of sharing your personal data with big corporations will become so enormous in the next few years, you will be willing to trade your privacy for the services they provide. You are kind of already doing that, when you allow your smartphone to get you location-based services, or when your search engine gives you results narrowed down to your street. The same will be true of connected cars.

Note that there is more to connected cars than them having internet access or smartphone integration. That’s where it starts, but the “connection” goes way deeper than that. It is mainly about vehicles being able to talk to each other, to a command center, and when we get the technology to smart roads as well. The benefits of such a system is apparent to everybody, especially those who want to make the whole self-driving thing a feasible reality. Cars being able to exchange data as to their whereabouts and speed, or talking to the a traffic command center, or other factors that have to do with safety and travel comfort will reduce the risk of them running into each other or causing jams. It also provides decision-makers with recognizable patterns that could be put to use in urban planning or building new roads.

But whose to say this vast amount of data gathered from connected cars won’t be used for sinister purposes? And we’re not talking here about a terrorist organization, or Russia, hacking into the system and bringing it to a standstill to cause chaos. We are talking about the Facebook effect. Basically, who can guarantee that this data won’t be treated by the corporations, or governments, that own it as a tradable commodity? They could sell it to advertisers, which is actually the most benign use of it, or they could give it to whatever the automotive equivalent of Cambridge Analytica is to try and affect social and political changes.

Now, you might wonder how some data about your car and how it works on the road is relevant to those grandiose ideas? Well, just Google how that Facebook data was utilized to steer the public’s angers and fears in directions desired by the the perpetrators. They did it through the use memes and GIFs for crying out loud! Vis-a-vis connected cars, it could be something as subtle and simple as choosing a route for your satnav that drives you past a billboard with a political message, or deliberately locking you inside a traffic jam when they know you are on your way to attend a rally for a candidate they don’t want to win. I know, this sounds crazy, laughable even. But such is the world we are living in right now.

But even if you are okay with all of that in exchange for more comfort and convenience, the very fact that someone behind a computer can pinpoint where you’ve been all day and what you have done should be enough to make your skin crawl. Between the smartphones and connected cars we are all like dots on a map. Next thing you know, they will come up with an on/off switch for every one of us. Honestly, this whole thing makes Orwell’s 1984 seem like child’s play.

The post Connected Cars – Advantages and Pitfalls appeared first on Motorward.

PostHeaderIcon Car Tuning in the Electric Age

If you are one of those people who still think the whole electric car malarkey is a fluke that’ll soon pass and be gone, you probably live under a rock in an oil rich state with no emission laws. For the rest of us, the EV is now a reality, and that begs the question, what will become of car tuning when everything on the road is electric and/or autonomous?

This is a question worth pondering over, since the tuning industry is a multi-billion dollar one that creates thousands of jobs of every year and plays a big role in advancing technologies and coming up with new ones. But for all its virtues, the car tuning community does not seem terribly well-equipped for the coming wave of electric cars. As it is today, the entire industry is based around a. making production cars look better, and b. making them go faster. It won’t be so clear-cut with the EVs

A brief look at what big time tuners currently have to offer for the handful of electric sedans and SUVs out there makes it clear they have not the slightest clue how to enhance the performance of these things. Short of ripping out the existing electric motor and putting in a new, more potent unit, there isn’t much they can do to it. You can’t boost the output of these motors via whatever the equivalent of turbocharging is for an electromagnetic field. And as for styling, it begins and ends with a front spoiler and a rear diffuser, maybe some wide arches.

Performance-wise, then, the tuners are dead in the water when it comes to EVs. Unfortunately, things don’t look that good vis-a-vis cosmetic upgrades, either. For one thing, many of the existing and upcoming EVs have the kind of futuristic styling that does not lend itself easily to the traditional upgrade treatments. Take the BMW i3, for example. Fitting that thing with wide arches and big aero parts only serves to make it ridiculous. What is more, the majority of people who buy electric cars have exactly zero interest in modifying them. To these people cars are nothing but an appliance with wheels.

So does all of this mean the tuning industry is on its last legs, that it will go away soon leaving thousands of people jobless? Well, for a big chunk of it that seems to be the case. Coping with the new conditions will be a gargantuan task that will require a complete makeover the business model, design procedures, and the workshops. And that is not something many of the existing tuners – most barely more than a family-run business – can manage. Our guess is that there will be a shift from modification to personalization, and that car makers themselves will have that game on the lock.

So go out there today and give your local tuner some business. Maybe next year they won’t be there, their shop replaced by a public charging station…

The post Car Tuning in the Electric Age appeared first on Motorward.

PostHeaderIcon Gird Girls and Booth Babes Ban – Who Are We Protecting?

By now I’m sure you are aware that the new Formula One season will be void of grid girls, giving you yet another reason not to watch it. The Geneva motor show, which is currently going on, is also empty of booth babes – or should we say promotional models? The decision to exclude women from such events was taken amid the uproar that resulted from the #Metoo movement, with the ultimate goal of protecting women from being objectified and harassed by boundaryless men. 

So erasing the question is, apparently, the best solution the self-involved political correctness practitioners could have come up with. They just decided in order not to have inappropriate behavior by men, women must be removed from situations that could give rise to such behaviors. Setting aside for a moment how insulting that is to both men and women – and especially to women – that sounds to us what an authoritarian regime, or a theocracy, would do. That is how they justify suppressing women in the third world. They say forcing women to cover up or banning them from mingling with men is not limitation, but protection.

You would think that the civilized western culture that likes to lecture the rest of the world on freedom and equality and all that would have found a more reasonable way to deal with this issue. But they went with prohibition, which as history tells us never really works. In fact, most of the time prohibition has the exact opposite of the intended effect. We don’t want to pretend here that we know what the optimum solution to the very real problem of inappropriate behaviors and sexual misconduct by men is. But what we are witnessing these days, and not just with grid girls and booth babes but on a global scale, does not seem to any thinking person to be the right way to go about it.

Now, some of you may ask what is the big deal with having a bunch of scantily dressed women hanging around the racing cars or leaning against shiny new cars at motoring events? Why do we need that in the first place? The reason we have booth babes and grid girls and promotional models is the same reason we have flowers on our tables and artwork on our walls. They are nice things that add a bit of color to an otherwise drab setting and make life a little bit easier to endure. I know, that sounds a helluva lot like objectifying women. But I don’t know why we think of that as a derogatory thing. If anything, that’s a compliment.

You don’t have to be a psychology major to know that showing off and wanting to be ogled is part of female psyche. Women like to be looked at and praised for their beauty. Does that give men license to make inappropriate advances? Absolutely not. But to tell women they should not wear what they want or follow their natural instincts is almost as bad as that. Let’s be honest with ourselves, shall we? Who do we think we are protecting when we, say, ban the grid girls? Are we protecting the girls from being objectified? Or are we protecting licentious men who may not be able to control themselves around beautiful women?

It seems to us the real agenda here is to protect men from themselves. The proponents of such bans are not feminists. They are the worst kind of misogynist.  

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PostHeaderIcon Characteristics of a Good Crossover

If you watch any of the motoring shows that are on TV or the internet today, the so-called experts presenting them keep telling you that crossover vehicles are stupid. It is understandable why they say that, because car guys are all about speed and performance and cornering. And yes, in those aspects crossovers are not as good as sedans and hatchbacks. But for regular people the crossover is the ideal type of vehicle. 

That statement is corroborated by the sheer number of crossovers on the road today, and the fact that that segment is the most dynamic of them all, showing no sign of diminishing even after a decade or so since these cars became all the rage. So we would like to take some time here and try to determine what makes a good crossover. This ought to help those who haven’t made the transition yet. Some say all cars in the near future will be crossovers simply because it is a body style that makes the most sense for everyday use.

That is almost a given because who doesn’t like more capabilities? Crossovers are essentially sedans and hatchbacks with higher ground clearance and suspension that has some extra play built into it. What those mean in layman’s terms is that they have some off-road abilities and that they are by nature more comfortable than regular saloon cars. Not to mention, they are more practical as well. Compared to a full-on SUV, though, the crossover is smaller, easier to maneuver, and a LOT more efficient. They don’t take up too much space on the road and don’t use too much fuel. Which of these qualities make the crossover “stupid” we can’t work out.

in any case, what are the characteristics of a good crossover and what are the factors you need to consider when choosing one? The market, as you know, is awash with all sorts of crossovers from the four corners of the world. And while a lot of them are similar in terms of what they have to offer, you should go for the ones that give you the most for your money. That is why, right off the bat, we recommend you choose among the three-row crossovers. This gives you the practicality of a SUV in a nicer, more efficient package. Also make sure you tick the box on the options list next to all-wheel-drive. You may never use this feature, but since you are getting the extra ground clearance by default, it seems like a waste not to complement that with some extra traction.

Crossovers are, by virtue of size and bulk, safer than sedans and hatchbacks. Still, since these cars are used primarily as a family bus, one should pay attention to the safety ratings and the list of standard and available safety features. The child safety rating is of particularly high importance. Of course, if you are choosing from the newer models, 2015 onward, you are going to be automatically well covered with advanced electronics and rugged construction. You also want to make sure the crossover you choose has the latest connectivity and entertainment options. On family trips you are going to need the navigation and connectivity features, and a good audio system to keep the kids amused.

As for the powertrain, crossovers are not thirsty vehicles and can do with a small engine, as long as it has a turbocharger bolted to it. However, experience has shown us that you should avoid really tiny engines with big turbos. Those are usually pretty asthmatic and need frequent maintenance to remain in tiptop shape. With a three-row crossover a naturally aspirated V6 is the ideal choice, but a 2.0 liter turbo can also get the job done. For the smaller models, you are going to be okay with a 1.6 liter turbo, but avoid the 1.4s and 1.2s as they are not going o be very satisfying in the long run.

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PostHeaderIcon What Does the Color of Your Car Say About You?

They say the way you dress reveals many things about your character, personality, and even subconscious. By that logic, the color of your car is also of great significance in the what others think of you, and especially in forming those all-important first impressions. 

This was not the case in the olden days when automobiles came in a few different shades. The paint job has become an industry unto itself for only a few decades, with the special treatments, such as matte or glossy finishes, dating back to only a few years ago. Of course, that doesn’t mean people didn’t care about the color of their cars back then. It was the demand for more interesting colors that drove the industry forward. It’s just that the technology was slow to catch up.

So people understood that one’s car color did not necessarily represent one’s taste. But these days, with all the personalization and customization options available, the color you choose for your car reflects intimate details about you. This has to do with the stereotypes associated with each of the major colors. But another important factor is the correlation between the type and make of your car and its paint work. For example, yellow is considered by many a vulgar color for a luxury sedan, but on a sports car it is perfectly acceptable. On the other hand silver, which is a color that reflects wealth and wisdom, is more at home on a sedan than on a sports car. If you choose a silver sports car people will think you are boring and have no imagination.

Now, as mentioned a lot of are dumb stereotypes with no little support from sciences like psychology. But there is no getting away form the fact that that’s how the majority of people make judgement about others: based on stereotypes and prevalent social profiles. A color that is considered the very peak of class and prestige in one culture is completely neutral in another, and frowned upon in yet another. White is a good example of this. In some ‘third world’ countries any car you can imagine is more salable in white because of the qualities associated with this color: cleanliness, purity, beauty. But students of modern art know that the same color has a negative image, especially in architecture but also for cars, in most European countries thanks mainly to Fascism and the whole Hitler thing. And in America people think of white as bland and boring.

Some people use the color of their cars as a way to publicize themselves. It’s not just a celebrity prerogative. You don’t have to be Paris Hilton to make proper use of a pink car. Drive around your neighborhood in one, and in a few days you become the talk of the town. This is why car color is so important. Different types of people go for different shades. Say you are about to do business with someone and you know nothing about them. If they turn up at the meeting in a car with a vivid and cheery paint job (bright blue, verde green, metallic red, etc.,) you can safely assume they are of a cheery disposition. If they drive around in a black or grey car, chances are they are reserved and introverted and somewhat mysterious. Mind you, you need to take into account the cultural connotations of each color relative to where you are.

With all the options available to a customer these days, which in most cases enable you to create your own unique color,  it behooves one to be extra careful and consider the message their choice of color sends out to the world about them. This does not the freedom of choice should be curbed. This is more a question of etiquette and decorum.

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PostHeaderIcon A Bit of a Rant About Motorcycles…

I am fully aware that as a petrolhead of some standing among my like-minded fellows, I am obliged to be fond of anything with an internal combustion engine. But I can’t help saying this: I hate motorcycles with a passion! I think of them as pesky little insects with no place on public roads. When I come to power I shall ban these stupid things. 

Alright, alright, put the pitchforks down for a minute and let me elaborate. My problem with motorcycles has nothing to do with the machine itself. Well, maybe a little. The main issue though is the people, and how they use their bikes. A motorcycles can be an immensely useful thing. When I am craving a pizza after a hearty joint I rely on this vehicle’s speed and maneuverability to get it to me on time. The guy bringing me the pizza on the bike makes a living off of it. And they can be really good fun. Ask any young girl, and they will all tell you they prefer a lad with a fast bike to any Ferrari-owning gentleman. Motorcycles are exciting.

The thing is though, they are also a massive nuisance. Whether you live in a city or the country, motorcycles will always find a way to annoy you. I live in a busy metropolis, and I cannot tell you how many times I’ve been shaken awake in the middle of the night by the agonizing racket of a Kawasaki, or whatever the hell it was, passing under my apartment’s window at 200 miles an hour. And don’t get me started on traffic, and how irritating it is seeing a bike snake its way through a jam while you are sitting there, and how it is always your job as the driver of a car to watch out for them because if you hit them the rider will almost certainly be killed and you’ll have all of that to deal with.

Those living in the country are not much better off. The open spaces there act as an echo chamber for the bike’s exhaust and make it linger more as well. It could take anywhere from five to ten minutes for the noise pollution a joy rider make as he passes through a county to dissipate. All that time you have to tolerate that brain-piercing Vrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr noise poking irreparable holes in your soul. If we are not banning motorcycles from public roads, we should at the very least make them all electric to eliminate the noise. Most bikers are even unpleasant to look at, what with all that tight leather they wear and the pose they assume on the bike when going fast.

There is also an argument about motorcycles not being safe and all, but we don’t really care about that part. We’re not suggesting that a person who is so inconsiderate as to ruin everyone’s day with his loud exhaust deserves to get hurt or something… but as long as it’s their own doing… you know, maybe that’s just karma is what I’m saying. The danger is of course a big part of a bike’s appeal. That is why they are exciting and every 8 year old boy wants one. So perhaps we should wait for evolution to take care of this problem by eliminating those not bright enough to realize the risks of motorcycling, leaving us only with the considerate, conscientious riders who use their machines properly. But the problem with evolution is that it’s slow. We’d rather go for harsh punishment for the time being, see how that’ll work out…

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PostHeaderIcon Car Makers and Customer Support in the Modern Era

As much as cars and the technologies integrated into them have changed over the past 100 years, the things that have to do with their maintenance and upkeep have not. You still have to take your car to the shop upon noticing the slightest irregularity in its operation, and consult a huge paperback book if you are not familiar with a function or a feature. 

That does not fly in the age of smartphones and homepods and artificial intelligence. We are going to need a whole new system of customer care and support for the modern era – one built around the already established ways of communication. If Amazon can use drones now to deliver your packages, car makers should be able to come up with some way to make servicing and maintenance of their vehicles more convenient for the customer. The digital age has enormous potential in this regard, if companies are willing to invest in it.

Let us illuminate our point with an example: the How-To online portals created by Chevrolet, enabling owners of pretty much every model they make to learn about the features and equipment of their vehicle as easily as a few clicks or touches of fingertips. And they go down to the very last details, like how to turn systems on and off, or how to pair a Bluetooth device. It also enables the customers to keep tabs on the maintenance of their cars by creating an account and getting monthly health checkups through the vehicle’s operating system. Now that’s a service we can call modern. And it’s all online and app-based, which is how everything should be these days.

So we are making headway with such systems as described above, but it’s not enough. Of course, a major shift is on the horizon with the surge of electric cars which have a whole different set of needs when it comes to maintenance. What’s more, cars are getting increasingly more ‘connected’ nowadays, which could result in new ways the whole customer support thing works. Right now a concierge service that would get you a one-on-one support with an operator – just like what you get from your internet provider, or cable company – is reserved for the most expensive, most luxurious cars. But with the rise of AI every customer can have their own private Siri-like assistant that would answer their questions, schedule services and such, and update the car’s systems as needed.

That will probably take another decade or so to become prevalent. What we can expect right now and frankly should demand from every car maker is more online and connected services like Chevrolet’s How-To guides and remote services. Humans are getting busier and busier every day, and less patient. Any service that would save them only a few minuted everyday would be a very welcome change. This could be an area for start-ups to explore. Time is money is an old saying, but it has never been more true than in the current era!

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PostHeaderIcon Car Accessories – Aftermarket or Factory-Fit?

If you look around the options list for pretty much every single new car that comes out these days, you notice a bunch of parts and accessories that only a few years ago where the specialty of the aftermarket firms. The market for car accessories and value-added packages has grown so lucrative, car makers themselves are now taking over, putting a lot of the aftermarket guys out of work. 

For a consumer getting their parts and accessories from the original manufacturer sounds like a better deal. For one thing, these parts are designed and built by the same people who have made the car. So they work better with the car. There is also less hassle with fit and finish, seeing as these are installed at the factory or the authorized dealership. What’s more, some time a manufacturer offers accessories as a sort of bonus, throwing in some nice free options to lure the customers in.

And it’s all well and good. But there is something to be said about choosing your car accessories from the catalog of a well-known aftermarket specialist. And guess what, many of the car makers know this too, which is why often they commission these firms to build the part for them. Take the new 2019 Toyota TRD Pro series. These cars come with really fancy suspension components that play a major part in giving any SUV serious offroad capabilities. And they have been designed and built by Fox and not Toyota. Likewise, when you want to order a sport exhaust system from BMW M GmbH, their top offers always come from Akrapovic. And what is the brand of the finest leather upholstery you see on as the most expensive item on the options list? Katzkin.

The thing about the aftermarket specialists is that since they are focused on only a few specific parts, they often do a much better job, quality-wise and also creatively, than a design team who has a deadline for finishing a new hood scoop because they have to come up with some fog lights for the next model in pipeline. Aftermarket guys also have a better understanding of the latest trends and what people really want  because they run a shop and deal with the customers first-hand. Factory designers are usually cooped up in a small office for months on end.

But for us, the biggest argument in favor of going aftermarket for our car accessories needs rather than sticking with factory options has nothing to do with technicalities. We go aftermarket simply because those guys deserve the business more. Car makers are huge, greedy conglomerates with an insatiable thirst for money. Whereas aftermarket shops are often family businesses, or the result of a single guy’s toil over many, many years. We’d rather help Joey Two Wrench down the block make this month’s rent than contribute to Mopar’s growing wealth!

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PostHeaderIcon Does Anyone Watch Formula One Anymore?

For all its glitz and glamour, Formula One has never really been a spectator’s sport, has it? I mean, putting the golden age of Senna and Hunt and Lauda aside for a moment, it’s either been dominated by one man the entire season, or else the racing has been so boring, we’d rather watch the Kardashians instead… Kim’s sex tape, that is, not that horrendous “reality” show.  

In fact, this past couple of years we didn’t even notice when the season kicked off and when it finished. There is just no getting away from the fact that Formula One is getting a lot less press than it used to, and with good reason. Here, I think, we have a classic case of necessary evil. Without getting into a philosophical discussion as to the morals of the matter, let me elaborate a little what I mean by that. And please take note that my point of view is that of a regular viewer wanting to watch some cool and exciting sports event on his sad Sunday evening. I have no claim whatsoever at being a motorsport expert.

Le’ts start from the good old days when Formula One was the most badass sport out there, attracting the likes of the above-mentioned legends. Those guys were comic book characters by today’s standards. They were not regular human beings, at least as we know men these days. They strapped themselves to vicious, monstrous machines with only a flimsy helmet to protect them, wrestling a heavy steering wheel and changing gears manually as they battled each other, braving atrocious weather and badly designed tracks with more death traps in them than the Amazon – the jungle, not the shop.

And those evil circumstances are exactly why today we call that period the golden age. Yes, a lot of those good guys died. There have been countless fires, disfigurements, and amputations. But the whole thing was about as good as spectacles ever get. Being a Formula One driver in the 70s and 80s was the closest you got to being a real-life superhero. And as tragic as those deaths were, I for one reckon those guys would not have it any other way. I mean, that’s how I would like to go: not as an old man on a hospital bed with tubes in my genitals, but as a young hero admired by friends and feared by foe, crashing at 300 km/h into a barrier on a difficult corner of a famous race track. I’ll take that kind of heroic death over a long and boring life any day of the week.

At any rate, rules changes after that. Cars got safer. Drivers were asked to wear more protective gear than an astronaut. And they kept introducing new driving aids and safety features to the point that if you are good at playing Gran Turismo on your PlayStation you have a real shot at making it in real motor racing. But hey, at least the likes of Vettel and Ricciardo are safe and sound to enjoy the enormous sums they are paid for pushing some buttons once a week. Thank heavens for that!

Another necessarily evil exorcised out of Formula One in recent years was the banishment of Bernie Ecclestone. Yes, he was a dictator, and sure, he did bend the rules left and right. But at least during his reign F1 was still watchable, if just for the rivalry between the magnificent drivers of the era. Granted, they were no Hunt and Lauda, but head-to-head battles between Häkkinen and Schumacher are still among the best Formula One moments of all time. But Bernie was too old-school for the health and safety-obsessed snowflakes that are in charge of things now. So they wrestled control of the sport out of his hands and are now busy turning it into the Real Housewives of Monte Carlo. The new regulations about the closed cockpit and all that nonsense aside, there is even talk these days of banning the grid girls and the champagne popping ceremony at the podium because they might offend four people with a Twitter account.

You wanna save F1? Stop the pussification of men…

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PostHeaderIcon Car Games – Realism vs Fun

Though I resent the connotations the word ‘millennial’ has come to evoke these days, there is no getting away from the fact that I am one. Us ‘millenis’ grew up watching the computers take over the world, keeping track of it all mostly through the evolution of video games. Those of us with an automotive fixation know history mostly by association with car games of a given era, and likely with which Need For Speed was all the rage back then. 

Now, as computers become more and more sophisticated and take the whole gaming experience to higher levels, developers try to utilize that enormous power to create ever more realistic games. And while that is technologically brilliant and quite marvelous engineering-wise, one has to ask oneself are these new breed of realistic simulations as fun as the old, crude versions? This permeates to all genres, but with car games in particular the issue is more glaring.

If you think about it, the most enjoyable parts of driving has to do with the noise and acceleration and how easy it is to go through a bend quickly, preferably with a bit of an oversteer to spice things up. You don’t think about the brake bias or the steering ratio or the exact percentage of grip you need for a given corner. You want to have fun and unwind, not do mental calculations. Well, unless you are a race car drive or something. But even they would want to savior a nice drive and keep the technical stuff for the track. Why is it, then, that car games are shifting more and more towards boring technicalities and as a result getting less and less fun?

Don’t get me wrong. There is a certain kind of joy to be had fiddling around with the setup of a race car and trying out different parameters to see the difference. But if you have ever tried one of those ultra-realistic car games, invariably racing titles, you know they have a steep learning curve. And even when you have mastered them instead of helping you unwind they cause you more stress when you play them! You crash so many times before you learn to finish a lap, it turns into a compulsion. On the other hand, when you play an ‘arcade’ kind of game in which you get to fool around a large city, play cat and mouse with the cops, get into drift competition, or do cool stunts, not only is it a LOT more fun, it also helps you relax and blow off some steam.

It’s not just car games, either. Take a good war game like Call of Duty. If it were to be ultra-realistic (which its higher difficulty levels kind of are) you would have thrown your PC or Xbox or PS4 out the window because the first bullet that came whizzing by would have killed you. Sometimes game developers forget that it’s all about make-believe. We like video games because the reality is often terribly boring. That is why we think of Gran Theft Auto as a much nicer car game, even though it really isn’t that, than, say, Gran Turismo. I guess for me the ideal car game would be one with a large, unlimited world to explore, good on and off-road courses, a selection of great cars, and just enough simulation in terms of physics and driving realism to present a fun challenge. It also shouldn’t be all about racing. It should have the option, but if I want to just drive around aimlessly, I should be able to that, too.

Tell us about which car games you think are the best right now in the comment section below…

Photos Courtesy of Gran Turismo/YouTube

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PostHeaderIcon When Will Electrification Reach the Low-End of the Market?

Almost all car makers now have some sort of an electrification program, whether it’s a commitment to fit all their production models with an electric motor for better efficiency, or cutting to the chase and going full electric. It’s all well and good, but if you leaf through the names of the models set to be electrified over the next few years, almost all of them belong to the upper echelons of the market. 

And that is just not where the problem lies. When yo go out on the street, what kind cars you see most of? Cheap, crappy runabouts, obviously. When was the last time you came across an Audi A8 or a Mercedes CLS in your neighborhood? It’s all Dacias and Fiats and Peugeots out there. That is why one is right in thinking car makers are attacking the issue of fuel consumption and gas emissions from the wrong side. They are starting at the very top, while what they should be doing is electrify the low-end of the market, where the masses are to be found.

Of course, we realize that electrification is expensive, or at least it used to be, and so releasing a hybrid Dacia Sandero may not be financially feasible. So you could consider all the efforts in hybridizing the luxury sedans and SUVs as baby steps toward solving the big issue. We do think, however, the time has come for car makers the world over to focus their attention on the entry-level models. It is these cars that make up the bulk of the traffic out there, and since they often lack the latest technologies – because they need to be affordable – they are the main culprits as far as air pollution and all that goes.

Electrifying basic day to day cars has another advantage, and that is enhancing the quality of life in big cities. Two of the major issues any town dweller is familiar with are soul-piercing noises and lung-puncturing pollution. And I’m sorry to say this, but cars are among the main trouble makers with regards to these issues. The guy who buys the new CLS 53 with its electrified V6, or the pure electric Tesla Model S, or the hybrid Lexus, most likely he lives out in the suburbs where it’s always nice and quiet. Why are manufacturers focused on making that already good life better, while there is even more money to be made in the bottom-end if they come up with the proper solution?

Imagine a day when every car in your neighborhood is electric, or at least electrified. Imagine hearing no nasty rattle of a diesel engine when your neighbor goes to work in the morning in his crappy hatchback, and no loud and horrible exhaust noise when his son comes back home two in the morning in his souped-up coupe. While you’re at it, imagine also all the commercial vehicles going electric, too. The truck that brings you local supermarket milk and cereal will not send a cloud of noxious gases up to your apartment window as it’s being parked in front the shop. The same goes for the bus you drive along on the street. It has gone clean and it doesn’t make a deafening racket every time it sets off.

These might sound trivial stuff to someone who doesn’t live in the city center, but they are among the main reasons why city people are often in such bad mood. By making basic cars and commercial vehicles electric we can eliminate some of the major stress factors that plague the town people. It enhances their quality of life, they find themselves in a better mood, they do better at their jobs, and as a result the whole society improves. So car makers, leave off that luxury sedan and SUV and put more of those electric motors in affordable models!

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PostHeaderIcon Elements of a Great Motoring Experience

Driving, observed superficially, is a monotonous job one needs to do in order to get to one’s destination. But with a little bit of care and effort this seemingly boring task could be turned in an amazing experience. It could refresh you, put you in a good mood, and prepare you for the day ahead. After all, there is a reason why people “go for a drive” just for the fun of it.

What you need to take into account, though, is that like everything else worth doing, there are a number of conditions to a joyful and invigorating drive. Of course, it does first and foremost depend on the mood of the driver, and not every drive can be made exquisite. But by following the practices of a great motoring experience one can ensure that all is in order when the mood strikes and the opportunity presents itself. Below we list some of the most important elements of an excellent drive…

Maintenance

What puts most people off when it comes to cars and driving in general is having to deal with mechanical niggles that requires them to spend time and money to address them. Poor condition of a vehicle can also spoil what could be the drive of a lifetime. That is why proper maintenance and upkeep of the vehicle is of utmost important. It should be the first item on a serious motorists’ list of things to check to the optimum driving experience. The best course of action, of course, is to adhere to the service timetables presented to you by the manufacturer of your car. This practice will keep the machine in tiptop condition at all times, ready to give you that sweet sensation that only driving a good car on a good road can offer.

Route & Scenery

It might seem odd that we have included the route in our list of elements of great motoring, but bear with us. It is true that unless you are setting off with the sole purpose of enjoying a drive the route you take is often not in your power to choose. But the only thing external forces can dictate to you is the destination. By taking a few minutes and studying the map on your satellite navigation system you can choose a route that is most suitable to a great drive. You want the route with the least traffic, obviously, and you can choose which route best suits your current mood. If you fancy a bit of G force, pick a road with a lot of bends and chicanes. If on the other hand you desire some serious speed, look for the route with the longest straight. And if all you want is to relax and clear your mind, pick scenic route.

Music

We don’t know why, but our favorite tunes always sound a lot better when we listen to them driving along our favourite road in a favourite car. Proper music goes a long way to enhance your driving experience, which is why we never trust the radio to do the job. These days we all have our music collection on our phones, which is ideal, because it enables us to instantly pick a tune in tune with the moos we’re in. Of course, you need to make sure your audio system is smartphone compatible for this. But even if it isn’t, there are all sort of aftermarket kits that will do the job. There is a little proviso with this element of great motoring, however, and  that has to do with how music can alter mood. While driving you want to have all your faculties focused on the job. If a song or piece of music has a profound effect on you, it’d be better not to listen to it in the car.

Driving Gear

Granted, it is kind of ridiculous to dress up and put on special gear for a drive. But if you enjoy this, by all means indulge in it. This is especially true of classic car drivers who may want to first put on their goggles and driving gloves before setting off. It is not all about personal accessories, either. Every driver can enhance their motoring experience by getting the proper smartphone kit, cup holders, even sun visors and window int. It is these little details that add up to make a big difference in the way a simple drive might feel. Some, of course, go further and modify stuff like the gear shift or even steering wheels and pedals in order to have a more “personalized” take on the task.

The Car Itself

Last but not least, the vehicle with which you go in search of that sensational drive has to have the right specs for what you are after. If have a family sedan, a nice and relaxing drive could give you a kick. If you have a sports car, a spirited drive around the B-roads is the thing to do. SUV owners find that a spot of light off-roading in the country will make them feel better about purchasing a 4×4 vehicle when they live in the city center. You don’t necessarily have to have a big, expensive car to enjoy a good drive. With the right mindset every car on every road can give you a proper driver’s high!

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PostHeaderIcon Emotional Attachment to Cars – It’s Only Natural!

Believe me, I get it. Unless you are a monumental car bore, getting emotional about a car is probably the most uncool thing you can think of. After all, what kind of person forms an attachment to bits of metal, plastic and oil? But you see, us car guys know that that exists and it’s real. Many of us have experienced it. So is there something wrong with us?

No. Well, yes, maybe. Everyone has faults and flaws. But as far as your emotional attachment to your car goes, it is only natural. Humans grow fond of people and things because those people and things satisfy certain needs they have, be it material or spiritual. I’m not saying you fall in love with your car because it gets you from A to B. You love that thing because of the memories you associate with it, because of how it once made you feel.

And that is the most natural of human behaviors. Now, some people say this should only apply to other human beings or at least other living things. But that is not necessarily true, because at the end of the day this is all about biology. We don’t really have much say in it. No matter how much poets and romantics try to convince you that it’s a matter of soul and spirit, science proves that falling in love and forming attachments are, in their essence, biochemical reactions to external stimuli.

When you fall in love with a girl, it is not her beautiful face or rocking body that causes it. It is the secretion of certain chemicals in your bloodstream those features trigger that result in that most celebrated of human peculiarities. What’s more, your brain subconsciously apprises the features and characteristics of that girl against your needs and ideals – accumulated throughout your life depending on your genome and epigenome – and decides if that person is the one to address them satisfactorily. Meanwhile your conscious mind is busy ogling those luscious lips and bangin’ bosom.

What all of that means is, you can have the same “emotions” about your pet, your phone, and indeed your car. Yes, even objects can trigger that condition in us as long as they click with certain conscious or unconscious conditions we have inside us. In fact, the word on the sidewalks of science is that in a few decades there will be robots that take better care of us physically and emotionally than any human ever could.

For me, though, forming an emotional attachment to a car is mostly about memories, what that car reminds me of… or who it reminds me of. It’s not just that we get used to them. Most of us experience our first kiss in a car, our first cigarette, or first guy trip. It is only natural that we develop feelings for them. Just make sure those feelings don’t get out of hand!

The post Emotional Attachment to Cars – It’s Only Natural! appeared first on Motorward.

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