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Opinion

Infernal combustion

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Here’s the problem with cars: the internal combustion engine is a stupidly old idea that should have been scrapped long before any notion of oil crisis or environmental damage. The ICE is a stupid idea — every single kind. Don’t come at me with your Wankels or your flats; using refined prehistoric goop to create a series of explosions that push several hundred pounds of steel around, thousands of times a second, not three feet from your feet, is idiotic.  

That’s just fuel. Then there’s engine oil.

The engine needs oil to keep it cool, lubricated, and clean. Oil has to go somewhere after it does its lubricating thing, so it drops down into an oil pan. Oil is a pain in the ass. It’s dirty, gets everywhere, and the only reason this ancient piece of sloppy engineering uses oil is to prevent itself from self-destructing — great design.

There are few design flaws worse than the oil pan that sits lower than any other component in the undercarriage. How did this dimwitted idea pass inspection? It only takes one protruding rock to rip out the pan. Did no one, at the very least, suggest including some kind of skid plate?

Illustration by Amara Gelaude

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