01st Mar2016

The Golden Age of the Automobile

by Trent

Bugatti Chiron

These may be some fighting words, but we are in the golden age of the automobile. Just yesterday, the Bugatti Chiron was announced and most of us don’t really care because it’s far beyond our means. I understand that, but there was one thing that really stood out to me, the speedo. It goes to 500…really! FIVE HUNDRED kilometers per hour! Though it’s top speed is limited to a mere 423km/h or 261 mph, that is still insane to the point where you’d never expect a production vehicle this side of Hennessey to ever reach that number when I first started driving.

That was only 14 years ago, and airbags back then basically came in two flavors(front and side). Now they have airbags in your seatbelts and Volvo, the crazy Swedes that they are, is even toying with airbags on the outside of the vehicle. We live in an age where if your new car doesn’t do 0-60 in under 4 seconds, it doesn’t get a second mention. Do you know how much work you have to do to get a 93 Civic to do 0-60 in 4 seconds?

Yes cars are becoming increasingly complicated, and heavier, but I can do 0-60 in 5.8 seconds while getting 31 mpg in a large sedan like the Lexus ES350 and yet it will feel as though I’m gliding on Ashley Furniture’s latest and greatest sofa.

If you think I’m wrong, and many of you may feel that way, look toward the future. How many RWD platforms are still being developed? Look at the movement towards autotonomous cars where you have no driving inputs at all. We’re killing the auto industry every day and these next 10-15 years will be the last hurrah with the safest, quickest vehicles on the road before we give up our ability to purchase a fun vehicle to our Prius-loving, hipster overlords. Just as we are doing now looking back to the 90’s and 80’s and saying, “They don’t make them like they used to”, we’ll be doing the same to this generation of cars before long.

Trent Bray


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