Looking in the rearview mirror of a classic 2014, here are 10 things I learned reviewing vehicles for AutomotiveAddicts.com and the Florida Times-Union Drive section:
1. If you’re lonely and have a ton of spare time, buy a full-size pickup truck. You’ll have people you hardly know asking if you can hang out with them every Saturday. Of course, you will be moving couches and ferrying lumber from the local home-improvement store, but at least you’ll feel popular.
Check out our review of the 2015 GMC Canyon
2. As amazingly efficient as the new 300-horsepower turbo 4-cylinder engines are, they usually require premium fuel. While this shouldn’t stop you from helping conserve a natural resource, it will cost you a little extra at the pump.
Our review of the super AND turbocharged 2015.5 Volvo T60 Drive-E
3. In 2004, a hybrid electric vehicle with a 3-cylinder gas engine would have been something you found on the golf course; in 2014, it’s the future of fast.
Quick spin in the 2014 BMW i8
4. Picking up your daughter from high school in a bright red 2014 Dodge SRT Viper GTS has the potential to break the internet. I’ve never seen so many cell phones in my life.
5. A former 6’7” Jaguar player might be able to squeeze into the 2014 Jaguar F-Type convertible, but it’s almost impossible to close the door.
Our full review of the 2014 Jaguar F-Type Convertible
6. Minutes after you post a picture to Facebook of the 2014 BMW 435i convertible you are reviewing people you haven’t talked to in years will text wondering if you want to go out for lunch.
Our full review of the 2014 BMW 435i
7. If you’re married and have teenagers buy a fun car with FOUR doors. Hot sport coupes are satisfying when you’re flying solo, but miserable for carpooling.
8. No matter how old I get, when the dashboard tells me that the “door is ajar,” I still giggle a little.
Our trip to discover the Bold New 2015 Camry
9. When you’re wearing a sport coat and tie and driving a $100k Range Rover you start to question why you threw medical doctor off the table so fast when making college choices.
10. Jumping into a muscle car you’ve never driven and immediately pushing the TC button to disengage traction control is a lot like giving a feral cat a bubble bath. You might be fine, but more than likely, you’ll cash in a few of your nine lives.
Check out our review of the 2014 Dodge Challenger R/T Redline