Why Are Cars Called Lemons (and Other Interesting Automobile Facts)


A lot of people think they know a lot of information about automobiles. People who work in car dealerships often like to throw out interesting bits of trivia to keep the average consumer on their toes and interested in the sales pitch. Here are just a few of the interesting car facts that are out there, so maybe at that next trip to the car lot, you can see about stumping yoursalesman!

Why Are Cars Called Lemons?

It’s a phrase you’ve likely heard many times: “Oh, I had to get rid of that car, it was a lemon!” But do you know the reason for the reference? While no one seems quite sure, the general consensus seems to point to the fact that lemons are sour and can often leave a bad taste in your mouth. This is just like a car that is more defect than it is an awesome roadster. You thought it was a good idea at the time, but buying a defective car (or taking a big bite out of a lemon) always proves to be less than satisfying. If you are in the market for used cars, do some research on the most well-known lemons to avoid so you can drive off the lot with a sweet deal.

Why is a Trunk Also Known as a Boot?

The trunk (or boot) of a vehicle is traditionally a storage place. Calling that space a trunk may simply refer to the fact that in the days of carriages, a person’s luggage was more often than not an actual trunk. In fact, the term ‘boot’ may derive from a fairly practical implication as well. Early forms of transport had straps for the servants (who traditionally rode in the rear section of the carriage or auto) to hold on to. It really was a literal term for a sort of primitive seat belt that was less about safety and more about practicality since the boot area was not enclosed and a person could easily fall off.

How Fast Was the Person Driving Who Got the First Speeding Ticket?

Unbelievably, the first speeding ticket was issued to a driver named Harry Myer in Dayton, OH who was going the super-fast speed of 12 miles per hour. Of course, in 1904, that was a pretty incredible speed. Chances are, he wasn’t driving anything flashy or even close to what we associate in modern times with speeding.

Nowadays, it’s the Hummer vehicle (not the flashy sports cars you were thinking of) that gets the most speeding tickets, with the H2 and H3 receiving more tickets than any other vehicle around. Coming in a close car length behind the Hummer? The Scion TC and XB. Bet you feel bad for pointing your finger at the muscle cars, don’t you?

Having fun bits of trivia stored away in your brain can give you something to talk about, both in the dealership and off the sales lot. Think you can find any other quirky car-related information? Put your thinking cap into drive and put the pedal to the medal, and it’s ready, set, go!