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- See also: transport
- I think cars today are almost the exact equivalent of the great Gothic cathedrals. I mean the supreme creation of an era, conceived with passion by unknown artists, and consumed in image if not in usage by a whole population which appropriates them as a purely magical object.
- Roland Barthes, The New Citroën (1957)
- The geezer car should be as large as possible. If a fighter jet can't land on it, you don't want to drive it. If necessary, you should get two cars and have them welded together. You should grip the steering wheel tightly enough that you cannot be detached from it without a surgical procedure, and you should sit way down in the seat so you're looking directly ahead at the speedometer. You should select a speed in advance- 23 miles per hour is very popular- and drive this speed at all times, regardless of whether you're in your driveway or on the interstate. Always come to a full stop when you notice a Potentially Hazardous Road Condition such as an intersection or a store or a sidewalk or a tree. If you're planning to make a turn at any point during the trip, you should plan ahead by putting your blinker on as soon as you start the car. Never park the car without making a minimum of seventeen turns.
- Dave Barry, Dave Barry Turns 40 (1990). New York: Crown Publishers, p. 177-178
- Ford then embarked on a brief but successful career as a racing driver. Victory in a race at Grosse Point brought him sufficient kudos for a second company, the Henry Ford Motor Company, founded just seven weeks later. Many invested who had already lost money financing the Detroit Automobile Company. The intention — of he backers at least — was to start making a car based on the one which had been responsible for Ford's famous racing victory. Yet only four months later, Ford was asked to leave and offered a severance payment of $900. The company was renamed the Cadillac Automobile Company and manufactured a car according to Ford's design, but with a single, rather than a two-cylinder motor. After 1909, as part of General Motors, Ford's arch rivals in later years, Cadillac became one of America's most prestigious makes of motor car — the exact opposite of the reputation Ford motor cars later acquired.
- Ray Batchelor, Henry Ford, Mass Production, Modernism, and Design. 1994. p. 19. ISBN 9780719041747.
- Driving is a spectacular form of amnesia. Everything is to be discovered, everything to be obliterated. Admittedly, there is the primal shock of the deserts and the dazzle of California, but when this is gone, the secondary brilliance of the journey begins, that of the excessive, pitiless distance, the infinity of anonymous faces and distances, or of certain miraculous geological formations, which ultimately testify to no human will, while keeping intact an image of upheaval. This form of travel admits of no exceptions: when it runs up against a known face, a familiar landscape, or some decipherable message, the spell is broken: the amnesic, ascetic, asymptotic charm of disappearance succumbs to affect and worldly semiology.
- Jean Baudrillard, America (1988), pp. 9-10
- You know, when I was sixteen I was only thinking about two things: cars and girls ... I wasn't very good with girls so that kind of narrowed it down a little bit. ... Although if you had the right car, it helped with girls, too. ... I mean, Americans love cars ... They are loving their cars. And, it all started here, too. ... There is really nothing more quintessentially American than the car.
- In Los Angeles, everything is based on driving, even the killings. In New York, most people don't have cars, so if you want to kill a person, you have to take the subway to their house. And sometimes on the way, the train is delayed and you get impatient, so you have to kill someone on the subway. That's why there are so many subway murders; no one has a car.
- Then there's power. There was a time when people cooed over Ferraris that developed 200 horsepower, whereas today 2.0 litre Escorts can manage that. It's almost impossible to buy a car that won't do a hundred. (If you really want one, various Mercedes diesels make a pretty good stab at it.) Then there's the environment. The Volkswagen Beetle could kill a rain forest at 400 paces whereas today's Golf trundles around with tulips coming out of its exhaust. The gas coming out of a Saab is actually cleaner than the air that went in. That's true, that is.
- Jeremy Clarkson, Born to be Riled (1999), p. 21
- Fast, truly exciting cars are being killed off so that pretty soon the officers will all be gone, leaving us with a field full of enlisted men.
- Jeremy Clarkson, Born to be Riled (1999), p. 34
- And therein lies the reason why motor industry people don't fawn on journalists. They're in the hot seat, deciding who gets to drive what and who gets to go where. Why should they grovel when they know that without their assistance the motoring journalist is up the creek without a boat, nevermind a paddle?
- Jeremy Clarkson, Born to be Riled (1999), p. 174
- Like gun deaths, this epidemic of car-related deaths is a particularly American problem. Other countries have car deaths too, of course. But among developed and prosperous nations, America stands out in the fact that our proportion of vehicle deaths have gone up since 2010, while they’ve gone down in most of our peer nations, according to a New York Times analysis of data from the Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD). According to a report from the Governors Highway Safety Association, 2022 saw the largest number of pedestrians killed in America in more than 40 years.
- Tall trucks and SUVs with blunt hoods are particularly dangerous — 45% more likely to kill pedestrians compared to smaller vehicles with sloped front ends, according to research from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Some of these trucks and SUVs are so tall that the top of the hood aims squarely at the upper torso and neck of the average American woman.
The risks become fairly obvious when you think it through: If you’re an average-sized adult hit by a sedan, you’re likely going to be hit in the legs or perhaps the pelvis. If you’re hit by a large truck or SUV, though, you’re hit in the torso, or even head and neck. And the driver may not even be able to see what they’ve hit.
Small children become invisible to the driver when they stand in front of these extra-large vehicles. Hundreds of American children have been killed off of public roadways by forward-moving vehicles, most of them trucks or SUVs — in other words, often run over by a driver who simply couldn’t see them beyond the hood.
- Trucks and SUVs today are also significantly heavier than they used to be, with the average truck ballooning 34% in weight since 1990. That’s especially bad news for any pedestrians, motorcyclists or cyclists they hit. They’re also vastly more popular, accounting at multiple points in recent years for 80% of new car sales in the US, according to JD Power data cited in a comprehensive look at ever-larger vehicles in Slate.
- The longstanding perception that bigger cars are safer is bolstered by vehicle safety ratings which look at the safety of the drivers and passengers, but don’t take into account the dangers any given vehicle poses to pedestrians, something European regulators consider. And these larger, heavier cars are harder on roads, which we all pay to maintain.
- But Cayce sees that there is a Michelin Man within her field of vision, its white, bloated, maggot−like form perched on the edge of a dealer's counter, about thirty feet away. It is about two feet tall, and is probably meant to be illuminated from within. The Michelin Man was the first trademark to which she exhibited a phobic reaction. She had been six.
- ... America aims at having a car for every citizen. I do not. I want freedom for full expression of my personality.
- Mahatma Gandhi in Jews and Palestine (July 1946), as quoted in The Gandhi Reader: A Sourcebook of His Life and Writings, p. 327
- Automobiles are like people: the cheap ones are noisy.
- E. W. Howe, Country Town Sayings: A collection of paragraphs from the Atchison Globe (1911), p. 201.
- Nine-tenths of our crimes an' calamities are made possible by th' automobile. It has unleashed all th' pent-up criminal tendencies o' th' ages. It's th' central figure in murders, hold-ups, burglaries, accidents, elopements, failures an' abscondments. It has well nigh jimmed th' American home.... No girl is missin' that wuzn' last seen steppin' in a strange automobile.... An' ther hain't a day rolls by that somebuddy hain't sellin' ther sewin' machine, or ther home, or somethin' t' pay on an automobile.... Maybe th' jails an' workhouses are empty, but that's not because th' world is gittin' better. It's because all th' criminals escape in automobiles.
- Kin Hubbard writing for his character, "th' Hon. Ex.-Editur Cale Fluhart."
Quoted in Norris W. Yeats, The American Humorist: Conscience of the Twentieth Century, Ames, Iowa: Iowa State University Press, 1964, p. 107.
- Kin Hubbard writing for his character, "th' Hon. Ex.-Editur Cale Fluhart."
- Contemporary man has tried to substitute the car for the cow pony, but it simply doesn't work. True, in a car he is mobile, and once behind the wheel he can feel the excitement of command, but nevertheless the car is bound to the road, inhibited by traffic, and frustrated by regulations essential to his safety but which he often feels rob him of the true freedom he wants.
- Louis L'Amour, The Sackett Companion: The Facts Behind the Fiction. Random House Publishing. 19 February 2009. ISBN 9780307490384.
- Averroës, Kant, Socrates, Newton, Voltaire, could any of them have believed it possible that in the twentieth century the scourge of cities, the poisoner of lungs, the mass murderer and idol of millions would be a metal receptacle on wheels, and that people would actually prefer being crushed to death inside it during frantic weekend exoduses instead of staying, safe and sound, at home?
- [J]umped out of bed and put on my best suit, got in my car and raced like a jet all the way to you.
- Here in my car, I feel safest of all. I can lock all my doors. It's the only way to live, in cars.
- When a man opens a car door for his wife, it's either a new car or a new wife.
- Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, as quoted in "48 of Prince Philip's greatest gaffes and funny moments", The Telegraph (2 August 2017)
- Our interest in your Rolls-Royce car does not cease when you take delivery of the car. It is our ambition that every purchaser of a Rolls-Royce car shall continue to be more than satisfied.
- Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud I Handbook (1955-1958), p. 14
- Looking out a dirty old window; down below the cars in the city go rushing by. I sit here alone and I wonder why.
- Automobiles go hither and yon, wherever and whenever the driver desires, without timetables. Automobiles encourage people to think they—unsupervised, untutored, and unscripted—are masters of their fates. The automobile encourages people in delusions of adequacy, which make them resistant to government by experts who know what choices people should make.
- The only way to clip the wings of the speed maniac is to furnish him with a truck that is geared for low or moderate speed and in which the power is limited, that is to say, furnish him with an electric truck. As an economic feature in the transportation of goods, the electric truck would long ago have secured the dominating position, but for the foolish notion some have derived from the gas car craze that high speed and power are essential to the moving of goods.
- “Speed Maniac New Menace to Trucks”, in Popular Electricity and the World's Advance, Volume 5 edited by Henry Walter Young, (May 1912), p. 219
- Encyclopedic article on Car on Wikipedia