Anthony Dixon

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The 12 Greatest Overlooked Cars

Nobody ever includes the Volkswagen Scirocco 16v or Jeep Wagoneer in their lists of the greatest cars of all time. Which is a mistake.


Making Sense of MINI's New 3-Cylinder Engine

The third-gen MINI Cooper has swollen outwardly-- 4.5 inches longer, 1.7 inches wider, and .3 inches taller, to be exact-- but the marque's base engine has shrunk to a 1.5-liter 3-cylinder. Which begs the inevitable question: is this bad news for hot-blooded enthusiasts?<p>We suspect the contrary …

Fuel Efficiency

2015 Legacy: Subaru's Take on the Family Sedan

Can one of our favorite quirky carmakers build a family sedan that doesn't suck?<p>Even with its fifth consecutive year of sales gains, Subaru isn't exactly threatening to overtake the big players. In 2013, the brand sold about 425,000 total cars; Toyota sold 405,000 Camrys. Which is to say that the …


This Is Where BMW Motorcycles Are Made

BMW Motorrad builds some of the world's best bikes on the world's quietest, most organized assembly line in Berlin.<p>On what is possibly the most serene assembly line in the history of manufacturing, the crew of engineers at BMW Motorrad's Berlin plant is hard at work churning out some of Germany's …


How the Mazda Miata Went from Sketch to Immortality

Our favorite little sports car hit the scene on Feb. 9, 1989.Originally published at<p><i>Bob Hall/Mazda</i><p>Just as the Ford Mustang will forever be connected to the 1964 New York World's Fair, the Mazda Miata will always be able to trace its roots back to the Chicago Auto Show. On February …

Auto Shows

Tesla hires "Hacker Princess"

EV maker goes on the offensive to secure its vehicles from intruders.Originally published at<p><i>Getty Images</i><p>Over the past decade, computer network security has been a growing field, and hackers play an important role. One of the newest employees at Tesla Motors is Kristin Paget, whose …


Sinkhole Swallows 8 Cars at National Corvette Museum

Eight Corvettes were swallowed by a large sinkhole in the main atrium of the National Corvette Museum.<p>In a fairly bizarre turn of events, a sinkhole opened up this morning inside the National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, Kentucky. Eight display cars were pulled into the hole, but luckily it …

Chevrolet Corvette

10 Insane Rides by Boutique Carmakers

These aren't just upgraded versions of the original<p>Today's restomodders, replica builders, and tuners take an obsessive approach to performance. These vehicles are modified to a level of detail so far beyond their original roots that they are better described as brand-new production cars and trucks …

Sports Cars

The BMW i8 Beats Audi in the Laser Headlight Arms Race

The opening salvo of the laser headlight wars. Originally posted at<p><i>BMW</i><p>When the production BMW i8 hits the streets this fall, it will be the first car in the world to offer laser headlight technology. Whether these state-of-the-art lights actually make it to American roads remains …


6 Things You Need to Know About Dealing With Downed Tree Limbs

With limbs crashing down all over the Eastern U.S. after yet another snowstorm, now is the time to learn how to deal with them.<p><b>1.</b> Only deal with limbs that are down on the ground or that you are sure you can work with safely. Never remove a limb hanging on a power line—call the pros to deal with …

8 Weird Gadgets to Geek Out Your Workout

There's no shortage of apps and activity trackers to monitor basic workouts. But what if you need all the data about your rock climb, weightlifting, or personal hydration? The niche fitness gadgets are coming.

Wearable Tech

Nissan Frontier Diesel Runner Concept, Revealed

Yeah, it's got a Cummins.<p>With the reveal of the Frontier Diesel Runner at the 2014 Chicago Auto Show, diesel is officially an automotive craze. Or perhaps Nissan is just trying to steal some of the thunder from GM's upcoming Canyon and Colorado midsize trucks, which will also offer diesel in the …

Auto Shows

The Chicago Auto Show is the Land of Misfit Cars—But Here's Why They Matter

Overshadowed by Detroit and New York, the Windy City's car show offers some surprisingly important oddballs.<p><b>The Chicago Auto Show is the largest car show in the country</b>. But, just as its host town is stuck in the perpetual position of America's Second City, the auto show always been overshadowed by …

Chicago Auto Show

8 of the World's Weirdest Bicycles

Why settle for a fixie when you could be riding a floating bike or a pedal-powered Ferrari?

New York City

Worlds Collide: Volvo Combines Turbocharging + Supercharging

The great turbocharger vs supercharger debate has raged for ages, splitting the choice of forced induction between two philosophically opposed setups: the former offering a revvier, higher-strung sort of boost (thanks to exhaust gases), and the latter delivering a gruntier and lower-end power …

Lotus Cars

A Wonderful Bad Idea: Drag Racing on Ice

Speeds of 150 mph and no lane divider. What could go wrong?<p>Open-wheel drag racing has lost its sense of danger. Accelerating from 0-150 faster than a GT-R gets to 60 just doesn't get the adrenaline pumping anymore. How about we lose the lane divider? That should spice things up. No? Still not …

Drag Racing

2015 Volvo V60: Welcome Back, Wagon

Despite uncertain demand, Volvo is bringing back a traditional station wagon. (And no, it doesn't look like a brick.)<p><b>On-Sale Date:</b> January 2014<p><b>Base Price:</b> $35,300<p><b>Competitors:</b> Audi Allroad 2.0T, BMW 3-Series Sports Wagon, Acura TSX Sport Wagon<p><b>Powertrains:</b> 2.0-liter turbocharged I-4, 240 hp, 258 …


Can You Revive an Old Car Battery?

How your car battery deteriorates over the years—and whether you can do anything about it.<p>Is it possible to rejuvenate a car battery by adding more acid to it? I've heard that some dead batteries can be restored.<p>You might be thinking of older batteries, which need to be periodically checked and …

10 Things You Must Know Before You Buy a Car

A former car salesman shares his secrets to help make the dealership experience a little less excruciating. Originally published at Road & Track<p><b>I sold cars for nearly four years</b>. Before you head to the dealership, you need to be prepared. Here's some advice that every shopper should know before …

Muscle Cars

2015 BMW 2 Series: A Compact Sports Car Star is Born

We loved the 1 Series Coupe. Take a ride with us in its successor, the beautifully balanced 2015 BMW 2 Series.<p><b>Base Price:</b> $33,025 to $44,025<p><b>Competitors:</b> Audi A3, Buick Regal, Mercedes-Benz CLA<p><b>Powertrains:</b> turbocharged 2.0-liter I-4, 240 hp, 255 lb-ft; turbocharged 3.0-liter I-6, 320 hp, 330 lb-ft; …


Ford, MIT, Stanford Assemble To Solve Autonomous Car Problems

Today Ford announced the equivalent of a superhero team-up for autonomous cars. The huge automaker will be working side-by-side with MIT and Stanford to solve two major problems that still stand in the way of autonomous auto technology.<p>Today Ford announced an engineering dream team to help the …

Stanford University

2015 BMW 4 Series Convertible: The Best Gets Better

It's not just the folding hardtop that separates the BMW from the competition.<p><b>On Sale Date:</b> Now<p><b>Base Price:</b> $49,675 to $55,825<p><b>Competitors:</b> Audi A5 Cabriolet, Mercedes-Benz E-Class Convertible<p><b>Powertrains:</b> turbocharged 2.0-liter I-4, 240 hp, 258; turbocharged 3.0-liter I-6, 300 hp, 295 lb-ft; …

Las Vegas

2015 Jaguar F-Type V-8 R Coupe: Put a Hardtop on It

The stunning Jag F-Type convertible earned one of PopMech's Automotive Excellence Awards for 2014. But if our first drive at the Circuit de Catalunya near Barcelona is any indication, the hardtop F-Type might be even better.<p><b>On-Sale Date:</b> Fall 2014<p><b>Base Price:</b> $99,895<p><b>Competitors:</b> Audi R8, Porsche 911 …

Nissan GT-R

2015 Kia K900: Set Sail in the Kia Yacht

Throw on your boat shoes and take a ride with us in Kia's biggest car yet.<p><b>On Sale Date</b>: First quarter of 2014<p><b>Base Price</b>: $60,400<p><b>Competitors</b>: Acura RLX, Audi A6, BMW 5-Series, Hyundai Equus, Jaguar XF Mercedes-Benz E-Class<p><b>Powertrains</b>: 5.0-liter V-8, 420 hp, 376 lb-ft; 8-speed automatic; RWD<p><b>EPA Fuel</b> …


4 Questions for Dean Kamen About Mobile Robotics

We ran into inventor and FIRST Robotics founder Dean Kamen at the DARPA Robotics Challenge in Miami.<p><b>POPULAR MECHANICS:</b> How'd you like the DRC? Did you attend both days?<p><b>DEAN KAMEN:</b> We attended only the second day. I thought the DRC was very exciting on many different fronts. First, countless people …


Is the Relationship Between NASA and Private Space About to Sour?

2014 will be the year when the space agency and private companies must find a way to work together to get astronauts safely into orbit. For boosters of the private space, there's plenty to worry about.<p><i>Editor's Note: Today, NASA announced contracts to support Boeing and SpaceX as they continue</i> …

Space Exploration

Here's Why Scientists Are Shooting Rockets at an Aurora

The best way to study the Northern Lights? Travel to Alaska with a big rocket loaded with scientific instruments.<p><b>Update</b>: Success! In the wee hours of this morning, on the seventh night of the mission's second launch window, Marilla Samara's team launched their rocket into an aurora. Data coming …

Northern Lights

Bentley Battles AMGs, Ferraris, McLarens, Scores Strong Racing Debut

From hints dropped at Le Mans to the official unveiling of their GT3 race car, I've been following Bentley's return to racing with curious fascination. And so it was nothing short of surreal to find myself halfway around the world at last weekend's Gulf 12 Hours endurance race at Yas Marina Circuit …

Le Mans

Carchaeology: 1952 Oldsmobile and the First Headlight Dimmer

Along with Cadillac, Oldsmobile introduced the idea of an automatic headlight dimmer back in the early 50s, when GM called it the Autronic Eye.<p>Oldsmobile might be history now, but back in 1952 the company­ made history along with Cadillac­ when the brands offered GM's Autronic Eye, the first …

Classic Cars

The Return of Four-Wheel Steering

A car tech trend that was ahead of its time in the 1980s is back.<p>During the late 1980s Honda lead a wave of Japanese manufacturers that introduced four-wheel steering in some sports cars. Why steer all four wheels? At lower speeds, turning the rear wheels in the opposite direction to the front …