What's The Most Obscure Automotive Or Racing Fact You Know?

Volkswagen’s sausage is actually its best-selling product.
Volkswagen’s sausage is actually its best-selling product.
Photo: WILLIAM WEST/AFP (Getty)
CountersteerYour true stories of good and bad things that happen in cars.

I am a big fan of esoteric knowledge. The kind of stuff that nobody really needs to know, that doesn’t really matter, but makes for a good talking point. And with the holidays coming up, I need some conversation pieces to distract my family from asking me when me and my husband are going to have kids despite the fact that we still live in two separate countries. What are the weirdest, most obscure racing or just general automotive facts you know?

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Most of my personal favorites come from my collection of way-too-expensive minimal-print autobiographies of race car drivers. François Cevert, one-time F1 winner best known for being Jackie Stewart’s teammate, learned how to knit as a way to calm himself down before races. Ronnie Peterson, best known for racing at Lotus, dedicated the basement of his house to raising exotic fish.

As obscure and esoteric as these are, they’re not particularly conversation starters with people who know nothing about racing and still think that I’m a NASCAR driver when I tell them that I spent most of this year going to the track.

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So, tell me. What are your favorite obscure automotive facts?

Weekends at Jalopnik. Lead IndyCar writer and assistant editor at Frontstretch. Freelancer. Novelist. Motorsport fanatic.

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DISCUSSION

While I’m not sure it qualifies as obscure, it is less known, that the alternate name for the flex disc on a drive shaft [of German cars at least] is called a “Guibo”. [Pronounced Gwee-bow] Don’t know why, but I always got a kick out of saying that. It’s important that you exaggerate the movement of your mouth when doing so. Now repeat after me: Gweeeeebooow.