Girlfriend cheat sheet: Car talk

Here are some neat tricks to get you more prepared the next time your car enthusiast boyfriend goes on a car rant.

It’s sweet when your boyfriend wants to get you involved in his hobbies and interests. Even if you’re not that into it, you still want to show him you care, right? If you’re completely clueless about cars (like me), we’ve compiled a short list of the most common car topics without the information overload.

  1. The Fast and the Furious movie franchise. This probably brought the art of car racing into the mainstream (RIP Paul Walker). I have to say the cars featured in the movies were impressive (so were Vin Diesel’s guns). Unfortunately, aside from being visually attractive, everything else about the cars are way exaggerated. If you want a more accurate representation, the Japanese manga, anime and film series Initial D would be your best bet. The 2005 Hong Kong movie spin-off would also make a perfect date night movie – he would enjoy it for the cars while you enjoy it because of Jay Chou (or Edison Chen, whoever strikes your fancy).initialD
  2. It’s not just about speed and power. When asked which of the two is more important – speed or power, car enthusiasts are quick to point out that there isn’t a single factor that takes precedence over the other. A large percentage of it also has to do with the driver’s control and handling. In short, also try to compliment your boyfriend’s driving skills and not just how good his car is.
  3. Keep an open ear and mind. Some car enthusiasts like to customise and tune their cars to suit their needs. It could either be for aesthetic reasons or for performance purposes. So, the next time your boyfriend tells you about a modification he made on his engine, take the extra effort to listen and feel the difference. I’m sure he’ll be more than happy to share the nitty-gritty with you, if you only ask. After all, he did sit through watching The Notebook with you. Twice.
  4. Know your terms. It wouldn’t hurt to know some of the keywords that would be thrown around in a conversation. For engine types, there are inlines, boxers, V6/8/10s, etc. The way the engines are powered also varies; they could be natural or turbo aspirated, supercharged, hybrid, etc. Other helpful keywords would be torque and horsepower.Tip: The best way to have this conversation is to ask your boyfriend for his engine type, “Honey, is your engine an inline, a boxer or a V6?” Not only will he be impressed that you know the types, he would appreciate the fact that you want to know more and that you came to him to ask.
  5. If all else fails, there is always Top Gear and Fifth GearThere is a reason why the British television series Top Gear is on its 22nd series and still going strong. It is the most factual, entertaining, humorous and sometimes controversial (which makes it even more enjoyable to watch) car documentary around. You’ll get a lot more tips with just an episode or two. If you’re up for some competition, Fifth Gear is Top Gear‘s closest rival on television so you can be assured of the same quality and delivery… with just different hosts.topgear

About the author

April Zara

April Zara is a Filipino-Chinese citizen of the world. She's a free spirit who strongly believes that happiness is contagious and makes conscious effort to spread it.

Her diverse work background includes years in both the publishing and fashion industries. She had a great learning journey as a writer for various publications followed by a wonderful stint as deputy editor for PETS Magazine. She moved on to pursue her interest in fashion and lifestyle as a sales and operations specialist for a fashion distributor before going back to her pet industry roots. In 2014, she co-founded Tiny Krew, a premium pet product distribution company.

She loves animals, books, Mexican food, Assassin's Creed, tattoos, and lists Shanghai as one of her favourite cities (mostly because of the climate).

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