What's The Most Useless Car Fact You Know?

Illustration for article titled What's The Most Useless Car Fact You Know?
Photo: Bill Pugliano/Liaison (Getty Images)

If there’s one thing I love, it’s a good useless fact. You know the ones I’m talking about: those things that do not improve your life in any way but that are fun to share with people because it gives the impression that you have an encyclopedic knowledge. So, I want to know the most useless—but fun—car facts you have jangling around in your brain.

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See, I love these facts, but I run out of them all the time. I know a truly stupid amount about, say, race car drivers of the 1970s, but it’s incredibly rare to come across someone who will care about the fact that Ronnie Peterson collected exotic fish in his basement without me having to explain who Ronnie Peterson is and why they should care. They don’t.

The only truly fun facts I have are related to food, since that’s something all of us humans can relate to. But I spent so many years telling my family that monkeys eat their bananas upside-down that they can’t even think about a banana without repeating that fun fact back to me because I’d done it so damn much. It’s getting that way with my new ciabatta bread fun fact: that ciabatta is not some ancient form of bread making but was instead invented by an Italian dude in the 1980s who was just tired of French people flexing on his countrymen with their baguettes. My mom has specifically stopped purchasing ciabatta because I will repeat this fact to people every time I eat it.

As you can tell, I need to expand my repertoire, and it’s about time I start learning goofy but fun car facts. Tell me about Lyndon B. Johnson’s amphibious car or the invention of, like, the cigarette lighter. Tell me the story of how that weird little manufacturing flaw made it into the car you own. I want to know.

Weekends at Jalopnik. Managing editor at A Girl's Guide to Cars. Lead IndyCar writer and assistant editor at Frontstretch. Novelist. Motorsport fanatic.

DISCUSSION

paaron
Paaron

I contest your premise: there are no useless car facts. Torch would vouch for this in between researching VW taillights.