MiB: Taking your SuperCar to the Supermarket

This week, we geek out on cars with Hannah Elliott, who has the job that I really want: reviewing supercars for Bloomberg News.

In a broad conversation that features way too much of me in it, we discuss her process: how she decides which cars to review, her research behind those choices, and what the day(s) spent with a supercar are like. She bases her review-decision upon newness, excitement, and how pivotal or meaningful each vehicle is for their manufacturers.

Elliott describes what the new car review process is like: she approaches each vehicle as blank slate, reading nothing about it beforehand, avoiding any “chatter” in her head when she drives a new car. Then she spends a few day with each supercar as if it was her own — she links her phone to the blue tooth system, fills the car with (premium) gas, and takes the supercar to the supermarket. She emails herself contemporaneous spoken notes as she drives the car.

In her written reviews, about half of the emphasis is (obviously) on the car’s performance. The other half (surprisingly) is on the car’s usability — the seats, entertainment system, electronics, etc. The buyers of these use them as real cars, not track mules, and so how they operate in daily driving conditions actually matters.

Elliott believes cars should fulfill what automakers promise, and their “statement of intent” should be clear, the car should do what it is intended to do, and at a price that is rational to its direct competitors.

We also discuss the collectible market, including which cars have gone parabolic in value and what the next great investable cars might be. We discuss how long the gasoline engine will still be around; Expectations of auto makers is such that by 2025, every car in the lineup will either be an EV or an electric hybrid.

Her favorite books can be seen here; A transcript of our conversation is available here.

You can stream and download our full conversation, including the podcast extras, on Apple iTunesOvercastSpotifyGoogleBloomberg, and Stitcher. All of our earlier podcasts on your favorite pod hosts can be found here.

Next week, we speak with Nobel Prize-winning economist, Paul Krugman, whose most recent book is Arguing with Zombies: Economics, Politics, and the Fight for a Better Future.



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