The Jeep was made for one specific purpose — being the vehicular backbone of the US Armed Forces. While other cars of the pre-WWII era were flaunting their curved fenders and chrome trim, the Jeep threw aesthetics out the window for a purely functional form. Designed not for speed or style or comfort, the Jeep excelled at what it was made to do: Scramble surefootedly over rough terrain and be light and compact enough to fit in anything and go anywhere. It did its job so well, that the name and basic design of the vehicle is still in production, long after the military retired it from active service.
Formula One has been a harbinger of things to come in the automotive world. Many of the features we find on cars today were first honed on the race track before filtering down to the street. But even when they're driving the future today, F1 teams are still looking ahead at innovations to come. French manufacturer Renault released their concept of what the sport might look like 10 years from now with the RS 2027 Vision concept car. LED position and lap displays, a fully-enclosed cockpit, and clear body panels that allow spectators to see the mechanicals underneath the bodywork are just a few of the ideas Renault sees finding their way into the F1 car of the future.
The names Ferrari and Lamborghini call to mind one thing: Sleek, snarling sports cars capable of speed and handling no other automobiles can match. Shrouding in mystique and legend, the raging bull and prancing stallion have produced some of the most desirable moving works of art the work has ever seen. But a closer look at the history of Lamborghini reveals a foundation in something as opposite to high-performance autos as can be imagined — tractors. Great Big Story looks at how Enzo Ferrari's slight at Ferruccio Lamborghini created one of the most intense rivalries in the automobile industry.
Dennis McCarthy knows more about the cars of the Fast & Furious franchise than anyone else — he's the guy that built them. From heavily-modded icons like Dom's 1970 DadgeCharger R/T to one-off total custom builds like the Flip Car, Dennis has made some of the best Hollywood vehicles over eight films. Dennis sat down with WIRED to talk about some of the most memorable cars and how they were made.
The Sebring International Raceway hates cars. It hates them so much that it will break them, eat them, and send the rest limping back to the pits. Stevenson Motorsports knows this and puts so much into their Audi R8 race cars that it becomes a relationship between man and machine.
It might be small, but it is fierce. Colin Furze has finally unveiled the Stig's finished bumper car, powered by a 600cc four-cylinder motorcycle engine making 100 horsepower. For its maiden voyage, the Stig set a world record — hitting 107 MPH and making it the fastest bumper car on the planet.
Just like your mattress, your pillow has a big effect on the quality of your sleep. And just like their comfortable mattress, the Casper Pillow is designed to make sure you rest well. It provides both comfort and support regardless of your sleeping position, with a firm inner core and a softer outer shell. Essentially it's a pillow within a pillow. It also won't pancake or lose shape thanks to the silky fibers it was constructed with, and is finished with breathable percale cotton to keep things cool. Take advantage of the 100 night trial and if you don't love it, Casper will give you a free refund.
Presented by Casper.
Ken Block might finally have some competition. Lee O'Donnell is the driver of the Mad Scientist monster truck and pulled off some crazy stunts behind the wheel at the Monster Jam World Finals Freestyle event. Not only did Lee pull off a backflip, he managed to stick the landing on a perfect front flip for the first time in Freestyle history.
It's alive. Colin Furze got the heart beating in the Stig's new sportbike-powered, three-wheeled bumper car. Now it's time for a flashy paint job and a day on the track with the Stig behind the wheel. Watch part one of the project here.
Eric Barone is no stranger to setting speed records. His previous record was just over 138 MPH — on a mountain bike. Eric has returned to the slopes, this time besting his previous effort by 3 MPH, clocking 141 MPH down the side of a mountain.
What kind of car do you build for the person-with-the-secret-identity who's driven everything? Easy. You ask the Mad Hatter of DIY engineering Colin Furze to think something up. Colin never disappoints, and his new ride for Top Gear's legendary test pilot the Stig is no exception: A former bumper car powered by a 600cc four-cylinder motorcycle engine making about 100 brake horsepower. Colin details the build process for the bumper car, and will unveil the Stig's new ride in Part 2, due out March 23, 2017.
With a race-bred pedigree like Porsche, picking only five concept cars is incredibly difficult. Luckily, Director of Exterior Design Peter Varga and Director of Interior Design Ivo van Hulten are the perfect two to make such a decision. From the Porsche Cayenne Cabriolet to the 918 Spyder supercar, these five concepts capture the German marque's passion.
We all know how to say Ford, Chevrolet, or Honda. But what about Citroën, Peugeot, Skoda, or Pagani? With so many different car brands in so many different languages, knowing how to pronounce the names correctly can be difficult. This guide will teach you the correct way to say them, with each company's name being said by a native speaker.
In July 1957, Fiat launched their rear-engine city car initially named the Nuova 500. The compact coupé remained in production until 1975 when it went on a 30-year hiatus. A 2007 realunch brought the Fiat 500 back to life and the rest is history. To honor its 60th anniversary, surrealistic artist Cyriak created this trippy tribute to the Italian automobile for the Geneva Motor Show.
If you want to know how fast it is, take it to the Bonneville Salt Flats. Once a massive, prehistoric lake, the smooth salt bottom is all that's left — and it's perfect for seeing how fast something will go. From hyper-modified everyday grocery-getters to diesel rigs and jet-powered cars, there's something for everyone. Mashable went to the Flats to speak with some of the fastest people on the planet — and they're all amateurs. They're all out here just for a chance at the record books — no championships or prizes.
People like to talk about their cars like they're an extension of themselves. More than just metal and rubber and oil, there's a connection between man and machine as close as the mind and the body. Most of these people are just talk, no matter how passionate they really are about their vehicles. Camilo Pardo is not one of these people. Camilo is on his sixth 2005 Ford GT, and the Ford GT is literally part of him — he was the lead designer at Ford's SVT Studio that designed the car.
Take the lights of nighttime Tokyo and combine them with giant robots and you'll have an idea of the dekotora culture of Japan. Translated as "decoration truck," these disco rigs put the chrome-and-steel kings of American highways to shame. Great Big Story looks and the years, money, and love this small auto subculture puts into the vehicles that make them their living.
It isn't a hoverboard, but it's nearly as awesome. Hoversurf's Scorpion-3 prototype takes their Scorpion drone platform and adds controls and seating for a human pilot. You can't get one now, but Hoversurf is crowding funding the project. Go to their website for more details.
From the mass-production Beetle to the most successful endurance race car ever produced, the company founded by Ferdinand Porsche has become synonymous with performance. The heart of any performance machine is the motor, and the unique flat cylinder arrangement Porsche is famous for produces an aural assault unlike any other. Porsche pulled five of its most iconic vehicles from the Porsche Museum and recorded the exhaust notes for an official list of the best Porsche engine sounds.
It's been available on production vehicles since mid-2015, yet Mercedes-Benz Pre-Safe Pink Noise is no less interesting today. Tapping into your body's natural reflexes, it plays a short blast of "pink noise" when it detects an imminent, high-volume collision. This causes the stapedius muscle in your ears to contract, protecting them against loud noises and reducing any potential hearing damage. Yet another safety feature that you hope you'll never have to use.
In Durham, North Carolina, there's a bridge that eats trucks by the hundreds. Located at the corner of Gregson and Peabody streets, the railroad overpass was built over one hundred years ago, at a height of 11 feet 8 inches. With modern overpasses built at 15 feet, this means serious trouble for truckers who aren't paying attention — and Jürgen Henn has made a little business capturing the crashes over the last eight years. Watch a compilation here and visit his website, 11foot8.com.
There was a time when Neptune's trident meant dominating performances at the highest levels of motorsport. Racing legends Juan Miguel Fangio and Stirling Moss helped put Maserati at the top of international motorsport with the 250F, the Formula One car which is a direct ancestor to the 3500 GT featured here. The 3500 GT was Maserati's first serially produced road car, a turn from their production of racing cars only. Owner Phillipe Reyns explains the history of this landmark Maserati and why making road cars became critical to the marquee's survival.
With over 240 horsepower, speeds that push 220 MPH, and only two wheels, piloting a MotoGP bike isn't for the faint of heart. Now imagine riding one through the snow of a ski run in the Austrian Alps. 2016 MotoGP World Champion Marc Marquez took his Repsol Honda out for a snow day, with a set of wicked looking studded tires straight out of Mad Max.
Since 1970, the Range Rover has presided at the top of the Land Rover lineup. First conceived as a slightly more road-friendly, yet still off-road capable, compliment to the utilitarian Land Rover, the Range Rover is now in its fourth generation. This retrospective looks at how the model has evolved, from the 1969 concept to the state-of-the-art vehicles of today.
No matter how rare, desirable, or esteemed a car is, history can be as important a selling point as anything else. And on top of being rare, desirable, and esteemed, Terry Larson's 1954 Jaguar D-Type has a history that is second to none. Besides being an engineering marvel, OKV2 was immediately placed into the hands of legendary driver Sir Stirling Moss for the 1954 24 Hours of Le Mans. The car went on to be wrecked and rebuilt over the course of its 60-plus years, before finally coming into Terry's hands.
Many of the things we take for granted in our current road cars — things like strong disc brakes, aerodynamic body work, and compact, powerful motors — were born on the race track. Real Engineering looks at some the greatest innovations that have come from Formula One racing, and a few others that are just now making their way into road cars.
If you thought motorcycles would be the last bastion of vehicles that required human operators, you thought wrong. Honda unveiled its Riding Assist at the 2017 CES show. Ride Assist enables the bike to keep upright at a standstill, with or without a rider. Honda also showcased its ability to operate autonomously at low speeds, as it followed an engineer outside of the test facility.
Deep in the forest, beneath rusting corrugated metal and wedged in between two trees, a 1955 Volkswagen Transporter lay sleeping. Found by chance in its resting place deep in a valley of the French Alps, this lucky VW was rescued, restored on site, and then driven down the mountain by its new owners.
Something happened to cars in the 80s. The steel boxes we were used to suddenly began to melt, sprouting smooth curves where there were once sharp edges. This lesson in automotive history explains how Europe, fuel economy regulations, and computers combined to turn the massive land barges of yesterday into the swoopy shapes of modern automobiles.