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Hagerty
Hagerty Employee

Never Stop Driving #2: 240 mph is insane, especially for robots

I find it incredible that human beings, who can self-propel to less than 30 mph, have brains that can absorb data at 200 mph and still process the information in time to pilot a car. Stand in awe of yourself, my friends. It's also something that machines cannot yet do.
https://www.hagerty.com/media/never-stop-driving/never-stop-driving-2-240-mph-is-insane-especially-f...
80 REPLIES 80
Tsaxman
Instructor

Great column, Larry. Partly because I have learned that any lout with a PDK can beat my **bleep** our training and millions of years of evolution have equipped us humans.
Tsaxman
Instructor

OK, that is not what I wrote. Tell Sajeev I am done commenting.
TG
Gearhead

Aw, come on - it adds a little adventure to commenting
Longroofjunkie
Instructor

How does that relate to the editorial? I don’t get it.

I have a six-speed 911, but the PDK is amazing. State-of-the-art.
71gto
New Driver

I love the story about driving the Chevelle on route 66. 20 years ago my son and I went from Chicago to California in a rented Chrysler convertible. You have now inspired me and a college buddy to drive my 77 Firebird from Florida to Ohio to attend the Trans Am nationals
Longroofjunkie
Instructor

OK, now that’s pretty cool!
lweb19
Hagerty Employee

Oh that sounds terrific. I think they just did the Bandit run, didn't they? That event looks pretty fantastic, by the way. https://tanationals.org/

If you make it, I hope you take some time to see museum and other Wright brother sites in the area.

Oh, and you didn't ask, but I can't help myself....If you come up highway 77, you can hit all sorts of fantastic roads through the Appalachians. Have fun.
Verneoz
Intermediate Driver

Larry thanks for the informative article. I have concerns about the politics behind the lunacy to force us all into a total EV transportation system. I think antique, classic, & muscle car enthusiasts who collect ICE vehicles will be victimized by this zealotry. I'd like to see some federal legislation that would protect the hobby and the industries surrounding it from this green religion.
Crankin
New Driver

Verneoz, I share your concerns.

I have loved classic cars all of my life.  I drove a 1914 Model T Ford when I was 16…bought one the same year.  No starter, no water pump, no oil pump, no fuel pump and to drive one is a real challenge.  I had to advance the spark  manually while concentrating on shifting from lo to high with my right foot.  Total immersion in the driving experience.

 

Crankin

Longroofjunkie
Instructor

No one is forcing you into anything. Please. Get real.
lweb19
Hagerty Employee

I don't think, but of course don't know, that our enthusiast cars will be victimized and outlawed thanks to new technology. All of this stuff seems additive to me. Thanks for reading.
DownByTheRivers
New Driver

Well worth the wait. Think'in. In the meantime, expand the user name so I can fit
'DownByTheRiverside.' You know I put a lot of effort into that. 👍
rickrichards1
Pit Crew

Reading the post from Verneoz makes me wonder will folks start to look down at the older autos as just junk. With so many younger people not knowing how to use a screwdriver there is no telling how their thoughts may be **bleep**.
rickrichards1
Pit Crew

if you are not going to put up the whole post it only makes me out to be someone without a total thought. You **bleep**.
rickrichards1
Pit Crew

nether of the posts were not what I wrote.
Longroofjunkie
Instructor

Double-negative….
Snailish
Engineer

The software that filters these boards has been on the fritz for a few days.

It's bleeping out things it shouldn't be.

Not sure why the software provider hasn't gone to a "last version that wasn't doing this" yet.
Longroofjunkie
Instructor

It does kind of seem like a no-brainer, doesn’t it?
Sajeev
Community Manager

@rickrichards1 sorry about the bleeps in your response, we are working on a bleeping fix in our software for this bleep. Please bear with us. 

SilentBoy741
Instructor

Although the fact that's it's happening on an article about the advancement of automation and AI does make it kind of funny.
Longroofjunkie
Instructor

No.
But if they did, who cares? Not me.
Brooklynraised
New Driver

First time trying to post, but for some reason your algorithm is **bleeping** any mention of a year/make/car I put in?!?

Snailish
Engineer

It's messed up (the software not you).

There isn't a lot of logic to what is being bleeped.
Longroofjunkie
Instructor

That’s a bleeping shame.
Ibralphers
New Driver

I agree with your ideal of keeping humans in control of vehicles on the highway. I was involved in highway/vehicle testing as an engineer in California in the 80's and 90's and can see where automated driving is coming from. But I think that those vehicles could be relegated to using their own facilities, similar to toll roads.

Another thing about the current speed at Indy. My friend Joe Ruttman's older brother Troy won the 500 in 1952 at an average speed of 128 mph and the crowd loved it. Why do they need speeds in excess of 150? So they can see bigger pile ups, more drivers killed, or so races are shorter in time making getting TV sponsors easier. I don't care to watch anymore!
Snailish
Engineer

That's how I feel about drag racing... the speeds of the 60s into 70s was watchable. Cars are too fast and tracks are mostly short and you missed it with a blink.
Longroofjunkie
Instructor

Actually, the highway is where self-driving has the easiest time to function perfectly.

Limited access, very predictable behavior, no intersections. Little speed-limit change.

Note that it’s a lot safer to drive on a highway than off of it.

It’s off the highway where you encounter far more complex situations.
Longroofjunkie
Instructor

Also, car racing is a zillion times safer now than in 1952!

Sir Jackie Stewart has been interviewed about F1 racing during his career.

The average life span of a driver was four years.

When was the last time a driver was killed at Indy?

Decades ago?
lweb19
Hagerty Employee

Lots of progress for sure, but Indycar racing is still pretty dangerous, in my view. You ever see this documentary on Dan Weldon's death?
https://youtu.be/wsgl-o7gHsM
lweb19
Hagerty Employee

It's an interesting point. The last Indy qualifying record was in 1996 at about the same speed. Then the rules makers slowed the cars down. Racers being racers figured out how to go faster. Perhaps another change is in order because I am with you.
BruceRanchero
Pit Crew

I like your op-eds but let's get real about autonomous vehicles. They have their place but in my opinion not as personal commuter transportation. One car is one car regardless of who is driving it. In many cities there is grid-lock or near grid-lock from dawn to dusk. The only solution (again in my opinion) is to reduce the number of vehicles.
Snailish
Engineer

The theory (not saying I agree with it) is that we will be in the small pod things that draft super close to each other at high speeds with the computer managing all the lane swaps and stops thus realizing perfection.
uweschmidt
Instructor

Perfection? What isthat?
Snailish
Engineer

sarcasm.

Longroofjunkie
Instructor

Nope (though that would of course help).
Snailish
Engineer

Shortage of human drivers and you have to pay human drivers.

Hub to hub is 24 hours a day 365 days a year with no rest breaks. It's the obvious place where the $ trail makes sense for self-driving.

Add in that you can repurpose existing highway lanes, what you are moving towards is a train network made up of individual cars with individual routes.

Biggest flaw is anywhere this "train" needs to intersect with real traffic. I won't be surprised to see completely walled off lanes and/or elevated routes.
Longroofjunkie
Instructor

In Australia they have Road Trains. They’ve had them forever.

No special lanes or whatever.

Be careful passing one!
lweb19
Hagerty Employee

Yeah, it might go that way. Once those trucks can operate in all weather conditions and nail a seemless pulloff if something breaks, I think we'll see those lanes in a hurray.
surf4cars
New Driver

Liked the column Larry. Some concerns in general about most articles written about EV's and autonomous driving, that seem very one sided and fawning in favor of this development in transportation. Would like to see more of the truth written about all the elements of this subject matter. A grid that can not support the EV push. Charging times and lines, cost of charging, battery disposal, ecological damage of lithium battery production, cost of purchasing and many others. Seems most authors are using their forum to express their belief in something that has no math to support the outcome. Toyota and Honda are openly expressing their concern about this push and are reserved in their production of EVs. I like you, wear the badge of an Engineering degree with dirty fingernails as my hobby. I believe that a Vehicle has many elements that appeal to our like of it, not just its speed and the ability to plug it in and have it drive for us. Hope to see a balanced approach to your publications that I saw in this one.
Longroofjunkie
Instructor

Bollocks.

Look it up.
Longroofjunkie
Instructor

I’m an Automotive Engineer, Powertrain and Chassis.

20 years of experience (I retired young).

All I can do about your comments about EVs is LOL.

What type of Engineering degree do you have?

If you think there is no math behind EVs, then I have a bridge to sell you!

More disinformation.
garymagwood
Pit Crew

Interesting column Larry, I too am astounded at he speeds attained at Indy. I'm not sure that those speeds equate to better 'actual' racing. I am convinced that really good racing can take place at under a 100mph as long as the cars are somewhat equal. Further to you FF experience, I participated in IMSA's first ever race at the Pocono 3/4 mile oval in 1969. John had just broken away from SCCA and wanted to create races and series that paid competitors. So, I loaded up my Merlyn Mk11A and joined about 35 other FFs, mostly from the US NE. Having raced only on road courses (Mosport, The Glen, St. Jovite etc.,), the oval was fairly intimidating. After 50 laps, I finished 4th without a spotter in the stands. That turned out to be a necessity for ovals. Cheers, Gary
Longroofjunkie
Instructor

Very cool!

Thanks for your post.
lweb19
Hagerty Employee

Oh wow, you got to experience the golden age of FF. There's a minimum speed where in person spectators see something otherwordly. Formula Fords are way to slooooow. Indycars maybe 25 mph too fast. It's a great debate.
audiobycarmine
Technician

In the "Not so fast" category, here's a recent article concerning Musk's claims about Tesla's autonomous system:

https://www.npr.org/2022/05/20/1100022168/elon-musks-crash-course-new-york-times-fx-hulu-twitter-tes...
lweb19
Hagerty Employee

I'm looking forward to watching this. Seems like there's a fine line between imaging and making the future happen and fraud. I was one of those who thought Tesla would fail. Then I saw Elon's rocket company land a rocket on a floating barge, which impressed the &^%$ out of me.
Sledogpilot
Detailer

Autonomous hub to hub highway = really expensive inefficient train. My brother was a locomotive engineer. Once he showed me the program that displayed the train he was called for later that night. One of the features showed how much he was pulling and gave the horsepower per ton which would let him know how hard to pull the train would be. It was approximately 1/2 h.p. or less per ton.
Longroofjunkie
Instructor

Freight trains are the most efficient way to move goods.

Elsewhere in the World, they are used more extensively than here.

My Grandfather was an Engineer at the Rock Island Lines. 49 years. Started as a conductor at 16. Lied and said he was 17.

(On the Rock Island Line, it’s a mighty good road. On the Rock Island Line, there’s a road to ride).

(Leadbelly, then others)
audiocage
Advanced Driver

Your FF: an Eagle? FYI, the (higher) banked turns at Charlotte look like a wall in an FF, too...