Can You Make Gearheads Love The Prius?

Welcome to Must Read, where we single out the best stories from around the automotive universe and beyond. Today we have reports from Road & Track, Japanese Nostalgic Car and The New York Times.

Could you learn to love a Prius? The social science of hybridsRoad & Track

What will it take to make old-school gearheads love EVs and hybrids? For one, this researcher at Coventry University in England says they have to get sexier:

“The new Caterham Seven will have a 660cc Suzuki engine with all of 80 horsepower. People are saying, ‘Oh, this is brilliant! Back to the basics!’ Small sports cars used to be the way to have maximum performance at low speeds, and the electric engine is best suited for that now. What if an EV were to herald the return of the small sports car?” Kershaw asks. “I’m not sure enthusiasts would necessarily be resistant.”


PROFILES: JDM Legends’ 1967 Prince Skyline 2000GT-BJapanese Nostalgic Car

I have always thought the Nissan Skyline is to Japan what the Corvette is to America or the 911 is to Germany, especially in terms of heritage on the track and on the street. The purveyors of JDM porn at Japanese Nostalgic Car have a scoop on one special Skyline from the 1960s, and they also discuss what made the car so great to begin with.

Nissan deserves much of the credit for the Skyline legend, but its seeds were planted years before the merger with the Prince Motor Company. While most of Japan’s 1950s auto industry focused on affordable transportation, PMC, a spinoff of the former Tachikawa Aircraft, focused on producing luxury sedans and large commercial trucks.


Not Just a Hot Cup AnymoreThe New York Times

It's not specifically about cars, but it is about drive-throughs. And the infamous "hot coffee lawsuit" from the early 1990s may be the most misunderstood and misused court cases of the 20th century.

More than 20 years ago, 79-year-old Stella Liebeck ordered coffee at a McDonald’s drive-through in Albuquerque, N.M. She spilled the coffee, was burned, and one year later, sued McDonald’s. The jury awarded her $2.9 million. Her story became a media sensation and fodder for talk-show hosts, late-night comedians, sitcom writers and even political pundits. But cleverness may have come at the expense of context, as this Retro Report video illustrates.

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