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Thursday, July 25, 2024

10 Car Curiosities you didn’t Know About

Motoring has a long and interesting history, with many of the innovations we now rely on coming about in unusual (and often interesting) circumstances. Let’s take a look at ten facts that are sure to pique your curiosity.

Ferrari manufactures a maximum of 14 cars a day.

Over a single year, Ferrari will usually make around 5,000 vehicles. This ensures the appropriate level of quality-control.

The man who invented cruise control was blind

Ralph Teetor was an automotive engineer who, in 1945, invented what we now call cruise control. Teetor was concerned by his driver’s habit of slowing down whenever he was speaking, so he decided to come up with an invention that would eventually find its way into automobiles of every kind.

The world’s largest speeding fine was $1,000,000

This ticket was issued to a Swede driving his Mercedes SLS AMG at more than 105mph over the limit in Switzerland.

Only 18% of Americans know how to drive manual

Polling indicates that less than a fifth of American motorists are comfortable with a so-called ‘stick-shift’. What’s more, just 5% of cars sold there are manual.

There are currently over 1 billion cars on the earth

That’s around one for every seven people, give or take. The highest concentration of car owners is in San Marino, where there’s more than one car for every person.

Bruce Wayne drives a Lamborghini Murcielago

When Christopher Nolan was deciding what sort of car his title character should drive (when he isn’t driving the Batmobile), the choice was an obvious one. In Spanish, Murcielago means, “bat”, which makes this a little bit of an Easter Egg.

Some Vauxhall Corsas have sharks hidden in them

Speaking of Easter Eggs, owners of the 2004 Vauxhall Corsa might check the side of the glove box to find a plastic shark hidden there. This has become a running gag that’s even turned up in other Vauxhalls, too. You’ll even find it hiding in the newest Vauxhall Corsa models!

The First Porsche was Electric

After decades of high-octane internal-combustion, Porsche is now joining the rest of the industry in going green. But this is actually a reversion; the first ever Porsche, the P1, actually ran on batteries.

Whale oil was once used in car transmission

Right up until the mid-1970s, oil from whales was being used as an additive in transmission fluid. In fact, after a ban was rolled out, General Motors began to experience problems with its automatic gearboxes. These problems were solved, eventually – which just goes to show that progress sometimes involves a little bit of pain!

The Ford F150 is programmed with 150 million lines of code

Dwarfing the eight million lines found in the F-35 aeroplane, the F150’s onboard computer boasts a staggering amount of proprietary code. That’s why computer scientists and engineers get paid the big bucks!

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