Opinion

Elon Musk’s original Tesla Roadster used a two-speed transmission. It proved problematic, so he dropped the extra ratio and still delivered cars and SUVs capable of both brutal acceleration and license-endangering top speeds. So, who needs multiple gears? Gearing an electric motor to deliver strong launch torque and then spinning it fast enough for autobahn
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Overlanding has become a thing in America. Before the coronavirus pandemic tapped the brakes, people all over the country were jumping into their 4x4s and taking the road less traveled, turning away from the interstates and the neon-lit desolation of cheap hotels and fast food joints, journeying instead along the quiet back roads and trails
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In the beginning, no cars had roofs. Then the newfangled machines gained folding canvas tops, some with clear side curtains. Then Cadillac became the first manufacturer to offer fully enclosed factory bodywork. Before long, folks were looking for something in-between. Europe answered the call with canvas- or metal-covered roof openings and the patented Pytchley sunroof
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A man envisions a future of electric cars, starting with a high-powered, six-figure, midsize super sedan, followed by a platform-sharing SUV, then migrating to smaller, more affordable vehicles in mass quantities. Sales will mostly be handled online (thanks to a virtual reality app), with a scattering of factory-run boutique stores in tiny enclaves. Service will
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“If the car was invented today and we said this consumer product will improve mobility and productivity, but … it will kill 33,000 people a year in America, do you think the government would approve it for sale?” Volvo senior safety engineer Thomas Broberg’s measured iconoclasm came as the automaker defended its decision to restrict
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I’d love to know how many wheels are curbed and bumpers are tapped each year in attempts to parallel park. There’s a whole industry of rubber bumper guards built around how difficult parking alongside a curb can be; crowded cities like New York are full of them. You might catch yourself thinking, “If cars can
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As cars get packed with more technology, the way information is delivered changes, too. Analog gauges are disappearing, and screens are taking over, showing everything from your speed to a full map right in front of you. Adding to the sea of change is the head-up display; once a tech feature exclusive to luxury brands,
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Your car would be unbearable to drive without its suspension. You’d likely need a chiropractic appointment by the time you made it out of your neighborhood. Not only does a suspension support (or suspend) the weight of a vehicle, it keeps body movements under control when you hit a bump and improves ride quality by
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In May 2019, online insurance aggregator NetQuote.com did a study swabbing vehicle interior touch points for bacteria in ride-hailing vehicles, rental cars, and taxis, then compared the findings against cultures from a toilet seat. (Hint: Maybe don’t read this while eating lunch.) The results predictably tracked the level of oversight each industry gets: Taxis were
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“A mini car crash at every corner.” That’s how Mark Webber, nine-time grand prix winner, describes the battering a driver’s body takes at the wheel of a modern Formula 1 car. Why? Physics. Take Turn 13, the first part of the right-left flick onto pit straight, at Montreal’s Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, where Webber finished in
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In a recent interview with the London-based Sunday Times, vacuum-cleaner magnate Sir James Dyson admitted to spending £500 million of his personal fortune developing his electric SUV program before calling it quits last October. His proposed Dyson EV was as audacious as Elon Musk’s original Model S sedan back in 2012. With a planned range
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The 2020 Hyundai Sonata burst onto the midsize sedan scene with a striking new design, exactly the kind of strategy that could stop a few Toyota- and Honda-loyalists from driving off in another new Camry or Accord. But to make any lasting impact, the Sonata’s gotta deliver substance, too, in a well-rounded package. We’ve already
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I’ve always wanted to own an old car. Growing up, my dad and I would talk about buying a beater early 1970s Chevrolet Chevelle to repair and fix up ourselves. When I was older and shopping for my first car around 2009, I looked at countless ’80s Porsches, ’70s Mercedes, and unloved ’60s muscle cars
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How headlights illuminate the road ahead isn’t always so simple. Besides using brighter and more efficient bulbs, many new headlights actively adapt to changing road conditions. Adaptive headlights let drivers see farther, around corners, and past traffic. But how exactly do they work? What Are Adaptive Headlights? Adaptive headlights are headlights that actively respond to
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Some cars are born cool, some cars achieve coolness, and some have coolness thrust upon them. It’s a nebulous thing, shape-shifting with the zeitgeist, yet anchored by perspective and context. Thus, AMC Gremlins, Honda Preludes, and Subaru Brats are quietly bubbling up the coolness index, fueled no doubt by a heavy dose of post-modernist irony
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Hang a hard right east out of Milan and zip past the Monza racetrack, and you will encounter the charming Italian hill town of Bergamo. The Citta Alta retains its ancient cobblestone streets and Venetian walls from the time of Julius Caesar; the upper district’s narrow alleys reveal a maze of storefronts and restaurants, each
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These are vexing days. As individuals, our No. 1 priority within a sprawling nation of 328 million is to stay safe. That’s the macro picture. On the micro side, here at MotorTrend it means delivering engaging and useful information to our readers—while also understanding that buying a new car is not necessarily atop your to-do
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