Since the debut of cars in the late 1800s, people have developed beliefs about cars, as well as about drivers of certain cars. For some strange reason, many people believe that BMW drivers are arrogant and don't know how to drive. I don't know if that's true, but I've always been fascinated by the origin of the many perceptions that drivers have about cars and other drivers.
Although cars depreciate, many people consider theirs an asset. After all, your car helps you commute to work, pick up the kids from school and get groceries. I often wonder how the world functioned without cars. It must have been a boring place.
Some rumors about cars, as well as drivers, have been around for decades, many people are convinced that these are factual. While some rumors about cars are nothing more than interesting comments that we entertain, other rumors are true. To debunk car myths, we searched for facts to separate the misconceptions from rumors. We compiled a list of rumors that have become confirmed facts. Our search for the truth also led us to discover some questionable information about cars that we hope isn't true. Brace yourself, as we reveal rumors about cars that are true and some that should remain as rumors.
20 Enzo Ferrari Spawned Lamborghini Cars
To become one of the biggest automakers in history, Enzo Ferrari stepped on a few toes. Henry Ford agreed with Enzo to purchase Ferrari, but the Italian automaker backed out at the last minute, angering Ford, who instructed his engineers to produce the GT40, which would beat Ferrari at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Henry Ford wasn't the only man who Enzo angered, as Ferruccio Lamborghini owned a Ferrari. When Ferruccio complained to Enzo about his Ferrari 250 GT, Enzo told Ferruccio to worry about making tractors and leave him to make cars. The statement angered Ferruccio, who established Automobili Lamborghini.
19 BMW South Africa Offers Flamethrowers An An Option
South Africa has garnered a reputation for car-jackings. The activity got out of hand that it prompted an inventor to find a solution. Otherwise known as the Blaster, the flamethrower is a liquified petroleum gas installed along the sides of the vehicle, under the doors. When the driver noticed suspicious activity, he or she could flip a switch to ignite flames to spurt from the vehicle into the intruder's face.
The high price tag of the flamethrower limited its market. BMW thought that it would be a great protection feature and offered it as an option. Due to the high price, only a few hundred drivers opted for the device.
18 A Formula 1 Car Can Drive Upside Down In A Tunnel At 120mph
The average top speed of a Formula 1 car is 233 mph. Formula 1 drivers showcase incredible skill, as they compete with other drivers by maneuvering the cars at blistering speeds in corners. Although Formula 1 cars provide incredible handling and speed, not many people would expect the cars to be driven upside down.
According to Holts Auto, an F1 car produces around 3.5G while cornering, meaning that it has enough aerodynamic airforce to drive upside down in a tunnel at 120 mph. Just when you thought that an F1 car couldn't get any better, it proves that it can do the unthinkable. The drivers should do that on the track for our entertainment.
17 75% Of All Rolls Royces Produced Are Still On The Road
Car connoisseurs who want to buy a car that exudes style, luxury and opulence should opt for a Rolls Royce. The U.K manufacturer takes great pride in producing flawless vehicles, announcing that it requires six months to build each vehicle by hand to ensure perfection.
Who can argue that a Rolls Royce is anything but perfect? The manufacturer produced the first Rolls Royce in the early 1900s, and the good news for prospective Rolls Royce owners is that the cars have proven to be durable, as 75% of all Rolls Royces produces are still functioning.
16 The Biggest Speeding Fine Was $1,150,000
In case the commas or the zeros confused you, the above number is $1.15 million. Regardless of how many speeding fines you've received, I'm certain that your total for outstanding fines doesn't add up to that amount.
If you love speed and possess great wealth, it is possible for a driver to get an even bigger fine. A man in Sweden hit 180 mph and received a $1.15 million fine. In Sweden, speeding fines are proportionate to one's income. The more you earn, the slower you should drive in Sweden. I wonder if the gentleman paid the fine?
15 The World Record For Removing And Replacing An Engine Is 42 Seconds
If you thought your mechanic was good, then you ain't seen nothing yet. Some mechanics have become so skillful that they decided to time their efforts. The best part about the record is that the gentlemen in question aren't full-time mechanics.
Five Royal British Marines from Portsmouth practiced every day for two weeks to ensure that they were the best at removing and replacing an engine. When the five marines got to work, they removed and replaced an engine on a Ford Escort in 42 seconds. That is amazing and deserves a round of applause.
14 The Man Who Invented Cruise Control Was Blind
Self-driven cars have become a reality, but when Ralph Teetor was busy finding a solution for a car that could operate without the driver, he stumbled upon the cruise control. Teetor's 1950s electromechanical device that automated driving speed paved the way for inventions such as the GPS, active lane control and hazard anticipatory braking.
According to Smithsonian Mag, Teetor's lawyer, who was a poor driver, was the inspiration for the design. Due to Teetor's incredible inventions, he was inducted into the Automotive Hall of Fame.
13 The Highest Clocked Mileage Is 3 Million Miles
While Honda and Toyota are known for reliability and durability, one man has gone the extra mile with his vehicle, literally. If you thought that reaching 300,000 miles with your car was impressive, then you'll be shocked to discover that a man from Long Island has reached ten times that mark.
Irvin Gordon bought a Volvo P1800 in 1966 and didn't stop driving it. The 74-year old school teacher paid $4,000 for the car and reached more than 3 million miles. Throughout the years, Gordon got 857 oil changes, 30 drive belts and 120 bottles of transmission fluid, according to NY Post.
12 Ford GT Roof Broke The Crushing Machine
Automakers are pedantic about producing vehicles that can endure a lot of punishment. After all, one of the main aspects that consumers look for in a vehicle is durability. For the vehicle to be in it for the long haul, it has to tolerate a tremendous amount of pressure.
When the engineers at Ford tested the GT, they were surprised about the strength of the car. During the roof crush test, Ford engineers discovered that the material they used was so strong that the machine failed to crush the roof. The impenetrable roof was so strong that it broke the crushing machine.
11 Mercedes-Benz W125 Reached 269 MPH In 1938
More than 80 years have passed since Mercedes-Benz proved that it could produce one of the fastest cars on the road. The official speed that the Mercedes-Benz W125 reached was 269 mph. What makes the record more astonishing is that it happened in 1938. Reaching that speed in the modern era is difficult, nevermind more than 80 years ago.
The car was modified, and the driver was the 1935, 1937 and 1938 European Drivers' Champion Rudolf Caracciola, according to Car and Driver. Otherwise known as the Rekordwagen, the W125 is banked along a wall in a museum.
10 Driving A Dirty Car In Russia Is Illegal
Nobody likes seeing their car dirty, but some tolerate it due to time constraints or not wanting to wait at the car wash queue. If you drive a car in Russia, you'll have no choice but to keep it clean if you're going to avoid the authorities. Driving a dirty car is illegal in Russia.
Although that is what the law states, it seems that most of the drivers ignore it, as many cars in Russia are dirty, and the authorities haven't reprimanded the drivers. Maybe, the police aren't phased by a dirty car and have bigger problems to solve.
9 A Car Is Stolen Every 45 Seconds In The U.S.
Drivers in the U.S. need to be careful about where they park, as statistics have indicated that thieves steal a car in the country every 45 seconds. What's amazing to me is how thieves hardly ever get caught in the act. Although thieves don't discriminate about car brands or models, they have their favorites.
Statistics revealed that they stole the Honda Civic the most in 2017 followed by the Honda Accord. More than 45,000 Civic's disappeared due to theft. Ford F-150 was the third most stolen vehicle, as they got away with more than 35,000 pickups.
8 BMW M5 Engine Is So Quiet That Fake Noises Play Through The Speakers
Long gone are the days when the engine rattled so loud that it overpowered the mix-tape you played in your car during the commute. Automakers used advanced technology to make the engine quieter, allowing the driver to enjoy a peaceful ride. Some engines are so quiet that owners became concerned about the performance.
BMW fitted an engine into the M5 that was so quiet, prompting the driver to think that the car wasn't working. To ease the driver's stress, BMW linked the car stereo system's digital signal processor into the engine management system, allowing the system to simulate the sound of the V8 engine, according to CNet.
7 Before The Car Industry, 15,000 Horses Rotted On The Streets Of New York Each Year
Apart from providing millions of jobs, the automotive industry has proven to be an environmentally friendly alternative. Although many environmentalists would disagree due to the excessive smoke that cars emit, it used to be a lot worse before the advent of cars.
Before we were fortunate to drive cars, horse carts were the first option to getting around town. Although horses are strong animals, they also have limits. People used their horses all the time, resulting in the horse's severe exhaustion. When horse owners couldn't use their animals anymore, they would let it rot on the side of the road. The unfortunate incidents decreased after the advent of cars.
6 BMW Recalled GPS Models Due To Drivers Refusing Directions From Female Voice
GPS navigation systems have allowed us to travel without needing to carry a map or stop at a gas station to ask for directions. The technology on some of the navigation apps has become so advanced that the GPS can tell you if there's an accident ahead or heavy congestion. You'd think that would please most drivers, but some remained unsatisfied due to the voice of the GPS.
BMW had to recall their GPS models in Germany as drivers were dissatisfied that the GPS voice was female, thereby refusing to take directions, according to Fact Retriever. Who knew that would pose such a problem?
5 The World's Oldest Car Sold For $4.6 Million
How old is old? The first built car, otherwise known as the De Dion Bouton et Trepardoux Dos-a-Dos Steam Runabout, was in 1884. Who would've thought that it was still available? Somebody took care of it for a long time and hoped that it would yield a generous profit. At an auction in Hershey, Pennsylvania, a collector thought that the oldest car in the world was worth $4.6 million.
"We were honored to have been entrusted with the sale of this most important motor car from the renowned collection of the late Mr. John O’Quinn. The world’s leading automotive collectors recognized the incredibly rare opportunity the sale represented, as was reflected in the spirited bidding and impressive result,” said in a press release Rob Myers, Chairman & Founder, RM Auctions," as reported by Huffington Post.
4 Oprah's Car Giveaway Wasn't Free
Audiences around the world were stunned to watch Oprah Winfrey hand out "free" cars to the studio audience. The cars in question were the Pontiac G-6. Although Oprah received all the credit, the stunt was Pontiac's attempt at clever marketing. The spectacle garnered a lot of media attention, resulting in a win for Pontiac, but some audience members were surprised that they had to pay to receive the car.
The car was estimated to be worth $28,500, according to List Verse, but car recipients are obligated to pay sales tax. Each studio member had an average tax bill of $6,000. Some members took out bank loans to pay for the tax.
3 Drivers In France Have To Carry A Breathalyzer Kit
Drives in France have to do an inspection of their car for several items before embarking on a journey, as the authorities expect the driver to have items in the car that the rest of the world isn't obligated to have. If you're driving in France, make sure that you have a fluorescent vest, a hazard triangle, replacement headlamp bulbs, and a rudimentary first aid kit.
The driver has to wear the high visibility vest if he or she steps out of the car after breaking down or stopping on a busy road. To prolong the driver's checklist, the authorities have also added a breathalyzer kit. Drivers in France need an unused breathalyzer kit in their car at all times.
2 Cozy Coupe Was The Best Selling Car In The US
Ford enthusiasts will be surprised to find out that the precious F-150 wasn't the best selling car in 2008, despite being the best-selling for several decades. The best selling US car in 2008 was the Cozy Coupe. According to Car Sales Base, Ford F-series, including the F-150, F-250, and F-350, sold 515,000 units in 2008, while Cozy Coupe, a toy car, sold 457,000 units.
The manufacturer made the car from plastic and equipped it with modern features such as an ignition switch and a removable fuel cap. The MSRP of the Cozy Coupe is about $50, according to Jalopnik. Who said that the US couldn't build successful, small cars?
1 The Average Car Contains Over 30,000 Parts
When you consider that a Toyota has 30,000 parts, it is amazing that the manufacturer assembles a vehicle from scratch in 17 to 18 hours. Maybe, that is the reason that automakers switched from human to machine assembling.
Although nobody enjoys car breakdowns, when you think about a car having 30,000 parts, it's remarkable that it doesn't break down more often. The next time you have a breakdown due to a defunct part be grateful that it wasn't 30,000 parts that stopped functioning. Then, you'd understand that there are worse things in life.
Sources - Word Press, CNet, NY Post & Car & Driver