Hooniverse Asks: What Car Conspiracies Do You Think Might In Fact Be True?

200 mpg
Did you know that there’s a car that can run on nothing but pure tap water and that the government is keeping it from the public by polluting our water with fluoride just so it won’t work? Did you also know that by hanging a disco ball from the ceiling of your car you can fool laser speed guns 99.87% of the time? Well, truth be told, neither of those myths are true. Nor is the government keeping alien technology from us to prevent flying cars, they’re just a really stupid idea.
Automotive conspiracies are almost as prevalent as conspiracies of the political kind. Your driver’s license has a tracking chip in it, putting a magnet on your fuel line will improve your mileage, Ford decided it was cheaper to pay off accident victims than to fix all the Pintos on the road. Well, actually that last one – sadly – is true. Ford has long since admitted that wasn’t the right thing to do, so cut ’em some slack, okay?
So many automotive conspiracies, at least one of them must be true, right? Which one do you think really is?
Image: Listia

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The maximum upload file size: 64 MB. You can upload: image, audio, video. Links to YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and other services inserted in the comment text will be automatically embedded. Drop files here

17 responses to “Hooniverse Asks: What Car Conspiracies Do You Think Might In Fact Be True?”

  1. neight428 Avatar

    Not to get all politicky (eeww!) but do cartelization of the dealer system and the bizarre CAFE rules count? It’s not exactly hidden how they work, but they are sufficiently confounding and obscure to the general population that certain groups keep them as awful as they are to benefit handsomely from the inefficiencies.

  2. PotbellyJoe★★★★★ Avatar

    I’ve heard theories that car manufacturers intentionally dumbed down their electric cars and decontented them in order to make electric cars look like an unpleasant alternative to people who may have been on the fence to adopting it.
    I can’t say I agree that it was intentional, but they were/are certainly crap offerings compared to what your money will buy for a standard car.
    I think Tesla is one of the few exceptions to the rule. (Although I would argue most luxury cars in the $70-100K are full of whatever manufacturer’s best and newest tech, so the marginal costs haven’t seen savings from economies of scale yet.)

    1. neight428 Avatar

      Plus Tesla is still losing money and gets a $7500 kicker from the taxman. I’ve heard the “Who Killed the Electric Car” story too, but I’d never chalk up to conspiracy that which fits the very familiar form of GM doing what GM does to a majority of the good/interesting/novel ideas that were once part of its products.

      1. PotbellyJoe★★★★★ Avatar

        Right, I’m sure it is remnant distrust from the Streetcar collusion, but it’s out there (in both senses.)

      2. Alan Cesar Avatar
        Alan Cesar

        Csaba Csere, former editor in chief at Car & Driver penned a column that in part took on the complaints levied in “Who Killed the Electric Car.” The excerpt I always remember is this:
        “When the filmmakers criticize the fuel-cell cars’ cold-weather performance, they really reveal their biases. Although some fuel-cell vehicles have trouble in below-freezing weather, so do electrics. When I asked a GM engineer in 1997 what sort of range the original EV1 might have on a winter day when the battery is cold and the heater, the defroster, the lights, and the windshield wipers would be needed, he answered, “Twelve miles.””
        Twelve. Miles.

    2. Sjalabais Avatar

      If I pull the “big makes” out of the 1056 electric cars for sale in Norway, you get the likes of Reva and Th!nk:
      Imho, the decontent-conspiracy has some roots in the simple fact that battery tech only recently advanced to produce cars with livable driving ranges. Every ounce of weight thus affected the range negatively, and an obvious strategy would be to save weight were you can. The plastic Th!nk is a great example. Ugly, tall, tiny-wheeled electric cars were on sale all through the 90s and still are today – but never in big numbers.
      The conspiracy surrounding the promising EV1 by GM, and scraping the entire lot in what many people consider a premature move is something different…but, personally, I really didn’t expect that kind of innovation from GM, Standard Oil and all.

  3. Sjalabais Avatar

    The GM streetcar conspiracy sounds somewhat reasonable and within what I could expect from a powerful company like that. (The other way around, almost all the government driven train companies in Europe that were exposed to competition over the last one and a half decade used reorganisation grands to buy bus transport companies in grand scale…that’s a real fact.)

  4. P161911 Avatar

    Colin Chapman faked his death to avoid getting caught up in the DeLorean scandal.

  5. mzszsm Avatar

    I’m kind of afraid to google this at work, so I won’t, but when I looked into it in the past it was actually true that for people which were originally identified as male in the view of the state, like on driver’s license, and then were reassigned as female DO in fact then enjoy lower car insurance premiums for identical coverage. It surprised me that it worked that way, but I guess it shouldn’t, and all you 25 and under guys here have another way “to save 15% or more on car insurance.”

  6. stigshift Avatar

    I’ve heard that Porsche and BMW actually DO equip their cars with turn signals. I have yet to see actual evidence of this, though…

    1. Sjalabais Avatar


      1.  Avatar

        Someone up here in Canada found the actuating mechanism. On a BMW M5!

        1. stigshift Avatar

          No way, eh!

  7. Tomsk Avatar

    It doesn’t seem to get discussed a whole lot (at least publicly), but I’m convinced (Convinced, I tell ya!) that most automakers are in cahoots to marginalize the station wagon here in the U.S. Think about it: Pretty much every recent effort by a manufacturer to bring a station wagon over here has consisted of limiting its appeal by limiting the configurations offered (i.e. mandatory automatic trans, mandatory AWD, only one or two engine choices compared to its sedan counterpart’s many, etc.) so that people who would buy one if they could get it with some of the same hardware that was available on the sedan on which it’s based stay away. Then, after a couple years and way, way-below-projections sales, the model is withdrawn from our market and the company gleefully says “See? See? We TOLD you Americans don’t buy wagons anymore! Now, check out our new (and completely coincidentally much more profitable) crossover!”

  8. dead_elvis Avatar

    Don’t be ridiculous. Everyone knows they fluoridate the water for mind control, man! Also, I know a guy who has one of them fancy disco ball things in his car, and he’s never had a speeding ticket, so it must work, QED.

    1. Maymar Avatar

      Well, I know we in North America consume enough coffee that there’s trace amounts of caffeine in the drinking water. So clearly, the fluoridated water is from someone eating just buttloads of toothpaste.

      1. dead_elvis Avatar

        Can’t argue with that kind of logic!