One tidbit that escaped my attention at the recent New York Auto Show was a display of humankind's never-ending optimism.
Or stupidity, depending on your perspective.
Because if there's a way to make a horrible car even worse, someone will find a way.
Ladies and Gentlemen, thanks to an Alert Reader (Dave Barry isn't the only one) may I present:
The DeLorean Electric.
The original DeLorean should have been called 'Hubris' - an awful car which ended in a variety of disasters, for investors, for employees of the Irish factory, and of course for Mr. DeLorean himself.
Not to mention for the 9,000-odd people who were saddled with these pieces of junk.
But like owners of Edsels who've been trying to convince the world for over five decades that their cars are valuable simply because they are rare - conveniently forgetting that there are a million very good reasons why they were rare to begin with - DeLorean owners have convinced themselves that they're on to something.
Folks: when they make a comedy movie franchise - not just a movie; a FRANCHISE! - based on your car, that should be a clue.
Stephen Wynne - and no, that's not the Las Vegas Steve Wynn-without-an-e - is a Liverpool-native-now-Texas-based mechanic who repairs and restores DeLoreans. He has ended up with a large collection of new-old-stock and used parts, and has also acquired the rights to the corporate name.
He decided that what the DeLorean needed was an electric powertrain.
The 400 volt AC induction motor produces some 260 horsepower, which is claimed to shove the car from rest to 100 km/h in about five seconds, with a top end of 200 km/h.
Much more than the 88 mph (141 km/h) Marty McFly and Doc Brown needed to go Back to the Future.
The battery can recharge in just 3.5 hours.
Oh wait - you don't have 240-volt / 70 amp service at your house?
Then it'd be more like 14 hours.
For a 160 km range.
Wynne says he chose the particular battery supplier because of its name.
I wouldn't even dare to make that up.
Not quite 'Flux Capacitor', but close enough. (Thank you again, Alert Reader.)
Wynne says he'll have 70 of these cars available in 2013, for $95,000 (US) a pop.
With the level of self-delusion prevalent amongst DeLorean owners, he might just sell some.
But Steve, fair warning: watch out for the Feds trying that ol' "cocaine bust entrapment" gambit.
Maybe I'll buy one myself and see if I can go back to 1955.
Then I could be the one who discovers 'Johnny B. Goode.'
Makes as much sense as an electric DeLorean...