10 Self-Driving Cars of the Not-So-Distant Future

Posted in Cool Stuff, General, Lists, Top of the Heap by Gerri | April 2nd, 2015 | Leave a Reply |

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Over the last year, self-driving cars have moved from a distant dream to a beckoning reality. Though self-driving tech will be phased in incrementally, this year promises the first wave of automation, with a quarter of global auto sales expected to incorporate self-driving tech by the 2020’s. On the legislative side, four states and the District of Columbia allow self-driving car testing, and the undeclared legal status of self-driving cars in the remaining 46 states seems to hint at the fact that “it’s legal until it’s illegal.” Check out 10 self-driving cars in the works or already on the roads today!

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The 10 Most Profitable Car Companies of 2014

Posted in General, Lists, Top of the Heap by Gerri | March 7th, 2015 | Leave a Reply |

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As providers of big ticket items, the health of the auto industry is largely a predictor of the health of the economy as a whole. In the US, 2014 was the second year in a row in which it finally looked like we were out of the recession. Confidence seemed to be high, with U.S. auto inventory stockpiles at their highest levels since 2006, and the industry seems to have successfully adapted past the unfortunate bailouts of a decade before. Cars made today are the most durable they’ve been in over a decade, with an average age of light vehicles improving to 11.4 years in the US. Both American and Chinese auto markets expanded, leading to massive profits for many auto companies. Let’s take a look at the ten most profitable last year.

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10 Awesomely Futuristic Trucks that Look like Real-Life Transformers

Posted in Cool Stuff, General, Lists, Pop Culture by Gerri | November 25th, 2014 | Leave a Reply |

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Traditionally, you might be forgiven for picturing semi-trailer trucks as square-shaped, fuel-guzzling road hogs with Godzilla-sized carbon footprints – expressing little or no regard for the environment. However, thanks to some truly outside-the-box thinking, the following incredible prototypes debunk that stereotype, switching outdated automotive designs for aerodynamic tractors, cutting-edge technological innovations and eco-friendly hybrid advances. Read on for ten real-life futuristic trucks that look like Transformers.
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The Five Worst Selling Cars Of 2011

Posted in auto industry, Car Buying, Lists, News, Rankings by Kurt Ernst | October 16th, 2011 | 3 Responses |

The 2011 Acura RL. Image: Honda

To be fair, 2011 isn’t quite over yet, so declaring five cars the worst sellers of the year prior to December 31 means opening yourself up to criticism and ridicule if a particular model bounces back. That said, it’s a fair bet that these five cars, picked by MSNBC as the worst sales performers among mainstream automobiles, won’t be rising out of the sales basement. Most are dated designs, and some soldier on simply because a manufacturer has paid for the tooling and can’t afford a new replacement model. Others are quirky for the sake of being quirky, which is never a good thing. At least Saabs were quirky for the sake of being innovative. Read More…

Allstate Confirms: Washington, DC Drivers Are The Worst

Posted in Lists, News, Newsworthy, Police, Safety by Kurt Ernst | September 8th, 2011 | 1 Response |

Image: Yuri Long

If, for some unknown reason, you really want to get into a car accident, the best place in the country to live is Washington, DC. In DC, your chance of having an accident goes up by 107 percent compared to the national average, which probably explains why so many law firms call DC home. Read More…

Which States Have The Highest Speed Limits?

Posted in driving, Lists, Road Trips, Traffic, Travel by Kurt Ernst | September 5th, 2011 | 3 Responses |

Image: Pat Hawks

From 1974 though 1987, 55 miles per hour was the national speed limit. In the early days, the limit almost made sense, since those were the dark times between our first and second gas crisises. Back then, most cars on the road weren’t getting 30 miles per gallon, so restricting speed in the name of fuel savings became the logical thing to do. Somewhere along the line, groups embraced the 55 mile per hour speed limit since it was “safer” than the old 70 mile per hour limit. When the double-nickel fell in 1987, those opposed to raising the national speed limit predicted carnage, death and highways flowing red with blood. Read More…

What Are The Fastest Roads In America?

Posted in driving, General, Lists, Promoted by Kurt Ernst | August 26th, 2011 | 4 Responses |

Image: Clarita Natoli

The 55 mile per hour speed limit is long buried in our past, alongside other great ideas like prohibition and the metric system. Today’s drivers can legally motor along at speeds ranging from 65 to 80 miles per hour, but sadly Montana has done away with “reasonable and prudent, “ since that was far too open to interpretation. Still, a posted speed limit of 70 miles per hour generally means you can get away with nearly 80 in most locations, but don’t blame us when you get written for 76 in a 70. Read More…

KBB’s ‘Top 10 Back-To-School Cars’ List Has Us Puzzled

Posted in Car Buying, Lists, Pop Culture by Kurt Ernst | August 11th, 2011 | 6 Responses |

The 2012 Hyundai Accent sedan and 5 door. Image: Hyundai

We get along fine with the staff at Kelley Blue Book, and I’ll even cop to using there pricing models on a regular basis over the past 20 years or so. They’re bona-fide industry insiders, and when they publish a list it generally has good information on it. Their latest effort, which shows the top five used and top five new cars for back to school, has us scratching our heads, wonder just what the KBB staff learned to cook in their organic chem classes. Read More…

NICB Releases Their 2011 “Hot Wheels” List

Posted in auto industry, Lists, News, Police, Tips by Kurt Ernst | August 3rd, 2011 | 3 Responses |

The National Insurance Crime Bureau keeps tab on things like car theft by state without regard to a vehicles insured status. That’s significant, because it looks at ALL car thefts, not just those that were reported to an insurance company. Each year, the NICB publishes a list of the most stolen vehicles in the United States, and the top 10 may come as a surprise.

There aren’t any exotics or luxury cars on the list, and the most valuable car in the top 10 probably doesn’t crack the $10,000 barrier. These aren’t cars stolen to order by gangs who specialize in shipping containers of hot cars to South America; instead, they’re cars that get snatched because they’re easy to steal, or have parts common to a wide range of other vehicles. Read More…

The Biggest Causes Of In-Car Arguments For Couples

Posted in driving, Lists by Kurt Ernst | July 24th, 2011 | 4 Responses |

Image: Shino

Let’s face it: if you drive with your significant other in the car, sooner or later you’re going to piss each other off. Maybe it’s the whole enclosed-space thing, or the men are from Mars and women aren’t thing, but in any case, you can plan on an argument sooner or later.

A recent study from the UK documented the most common causes of in-car arguments for couples, and although the data reflects British drivers, I’d say it applies to drivers on this side of the pond as well. In fact, I don’t think I’d even change the order of the list, which just goes to show that the Americans and British are more alike than we think (except for the British driving on the wrong side of the road, that is). Read More…