Power Behind the Wheel: Creativity and the Evolution of the Automobile

Walter J. Boyne, Author, Lucinda Lewis, Photographer Stewart, Tabori, & Chang $40 (240p) ISBN 978-1-55670-042-2
Clearly enjoying his subject, Boyne ( The Leading Edge ) offers here a lively portrait of man's second best friend, tracking the automobile from its creation to the present. The book is accompanied by some 200 elegant photographs: a 1938 Jaguar SS-100 gleaming beneath the Golden Gate Bridge, a beetle VW production line, French soldiers touring in a huge Peugeot in 1918, Cadillacs, Packards, Model T's, Cords, Bentleys, Austins, Ferraris, Bugattis. Boyne discusses such far-flung issues as the fuel crisis of the 1970s, bank-robber Clyde Barrow's fondness for the Ford V-8, the ``visceral impact'' that the Jaguar XK-120 had on the automotive worldand its relationship to the equally influential Datsun 240Zas well as considerations of the pros and cons of solar, steam and electrically powered vehicles. There are chapters on classic car restoration, on engine and body design and an amusing discourse entitled ``Nobody's Perfect: Quirks of the Road,'' which touches on some notable failures including the Bond mini-car, the Dymaxion and the Tucker 48, and asks the eternal question: ``Are four wheels necessary?'' First serial to Motor Trends ; Literary Guild alternate. (October)
Reviewed on: 10/01/1988
Release date: 10/01/1988
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