5 things you should never say to someone who knows their cars


There are a lot of things you can say to someone who knows their cars. “Nice car!” for example, or “Wow, the time and effort you have put into maintaining and enhancing this beautiful automobile was totally worth it!” But equally, there are some things that a car lover never wants to hear. Things like…

1. “Why does it matter how fast it goes? The speed limit is 70 mph.”

First of all, having a fast car is not all about testing its top speed. What’s really important is acceleration. Sure, you may only be allowed to drive at 30mph in a lot of areas, but when you get to a 60mph zone, a fast car will waste no time crawling between the two speeds at a snail’s pace like most of the other tin cans on the motorway.

Secondly, just because a car can go 160 mph doesn’t mean it has to. A good set of headphones can go much louder than most listeners will ever have them. So why buy headphones that go that loud? Because they perform better at a lower level as well. A car with a low top speed will struggle to reach 70, but a car that can go double that speed will reach its halfway point easily.

Finally, have you ever heard of a little country called Germany? Their speed limits are a little higher than ours. Take a Fiat Punto on the Autobahn and then tell me it’s the same as a McLaren.

2. “Is it even legal to drive that thing?”

Calling a petrol head’s car ‘that thing’ is never likely to go down well, and neither is questioning its legality. Sure, some specialist cars like the Ariel Nomad just look like engines stuffed in jungle gyms (don’t say that to a car-lover either), but if they own the car, it’s likely that your automobile-knowledgeable friend is pretty sure that they can drive it.

This list of the craziest road-legal cars should clue you in on just how outrageous a car can be without being banned from the roads. Remember it the next time you feel the urge to take a dig at your mate’s tricked out wheels.

3. “Isn’t driving an automatic easier?”

Isn’t using a microwave easier? Isn’t skipping school easier? Isn’t never showering or brushing your teeth easier? Sure, all of these things might be more convenient, but that doesn’t mean they are better.

Through effective gear changes, you can actually save money by using manual transmission. And while driving an automatic requires less movement, it gives you far less control over the driving experience.

4. “Isn’t that car a bit old?”

Is Dame Helen Mirren a bit old? Is Sir David Attenborough a bit old? Is a 2005 Bordeaux wine a bit old? It’s possible for something to be old and good at the same time, you know, and cars are no different.

Some old cars might well be shabby and moments away from falling apart, but someone who knows their cars will be able to distinguish a pile of parts from a diamond in the rough.

5. “At the end of the day, a car is for getting from A to B.”

At the end of the day, this is the easiest way to wind up a car-loving friend. To them, a car is much more than just a mode of transport; it is an important part of their life. If you know your cars, then you know what we mean. And if you don’t know your cars, just make sure you remember not to say any of the five things on this list and you should be just fine.