Just What In The Hell Is A Jalopnik Anyway?

Illustration for article titled Just What In The Hell Is A iJalopnik/i Anyway?

A little more than a decade ago, a man with a passion for cars, quirky writing, and hair as soft as a baby’s butt created a website. That man was Mike Spinelli, and that website was Jalopnik. But just what in the hell is a Jalopnik, and how has it evolved to become your #1 toilet reading material?


A while back, I met up with /DRIVE host and original Jalopnik Editor-In-Chief Mike Spinelli to ask him how and why he started the site, along with other important questions like what happened to high-top conversion vans and what’s going on with the /DRIVE channel and its unorthodox subscription model. We drove around Manhattan in my personal Mercedes S500, which had a fault with the parking sensors, intermittently rendering an alarm whenever we stopped. Yes, it’s annoying. No, I couldn’t turn it off, because the button broke. It has been fixed since then, so apologies all around.

Without further ado, here’s my lengthy and extremely enjoyable chat with the founding father of the largest automotive community website in the world:

Every weekday is a new episode, with lots more interesting and talkative people to ask weird, off topic questions. If you enjoy it, feel free to subscribe to my channel. Thanks!


Tavarish is the founder of APiDA Online and writes and makes videos about buying and selling cool cars on the internet. He owns the world’s cheapest Mercedes S-Class, a graffiti-bombed Lexus, and he’s the only Jalopnik author that has never driven a Miata. He also has a real name that he didn’t feel was journalist-y enough so he used a pen name and this was the best he could do.

You can also follow him on Twitter and Facebook. He won’t mind.

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Watching these three videos on succession just probably quintupled my record for the longest I’ve ever continually watched anything on Youtube. So interesting.

I’ve “cars” since I was a kid and when the interwebs became my primary source of information (2001-2003ish) I started with forums. Once I became an automotive professional I couldn’t stand the amount of fanboy-noobishness that surrounded any car forum so I left for pro-publication. That’s when I found Autoblog (2006-2007ish). I didn’t stumble upon Jalopnik til about 08.

By that point I was hardcore into reading my RSS feeds whilst pooping so Autoblog was my go to until about 2010 when I realized that the Jalopnik commenting community had so many professionals from so many different walks of life, as well as relatively few trolls.

I think we have the greatest community on the web. From the excellent staff and guest writers to the fucking awesome commenting community. Jalopnik isn’t just a news source, it’s a gathering place for people who cars. No matter how they cars, where they cars, or who they cars with.

Keep on cars.