You Will Probably Fail This Difficult Car Quiz From Jalopnik’s Trivia Night

You Will Probably Fail This Difficult Car Quiz From Jalopnik’s Trivia Night
Image: Ken Saito

Jalopnik’s second Virtual Car Trivia Night, held on Friday over the Zoom video chat software, was a huge success with roughly 75 participants from around the world. Jason Torchinsky and I wrote 40 difficult questions that stumped quite a few contestants. But will those questions stump you? Here, have a look.

Jason and I will be holding Jalopnik’s Virtual Car Trivia Night every Friday during this awful pandemic that has separated so many of us car-lovers from one another. This week, we met some folks from Australia and one guy from Indonesia.

The Indonesian reader, named Anugra, even took us outside and showed us his Daihatsu Taft! Look at this thing:

I also met a French gentleman named Frederic, who was telling me all about how he somehow wound up obsessed with Ford Windsor engines. How random?

Anyway, let’s get to the questions:

Round 1: Technical Questions”8 questions (20 Points Total)

  1. Name the three most common types of lithium ion battery cell geometries found in modern electric vehicles.

  2. Which governing body developed and implemented the first onboard diagnostic requirements in the U.S. in the 1980s (often called OBD I)? What year did the EPA first implement federal OBD II requirements (but allowed waivers for automakers to get around monitoring certain vehicle parameters), and what year was full compliance required (no waivers).

  3. What is the name for the part of the car that supports the base of the windshield and the dashboard. Which types of cars (name the body style) tend to suffer from shaking in this area, especially while driving over uneven surfaces?

  4. In the Toyota Production System, what is the term that means “mistake proofing” the manufacturing process? This term, as Toyota puts it, refers to “any behaviour-shaping constraint designed into a process to prevent incorrect operation by the user.” Toyota says this system’s “purpose is to eliminate defects by preventing, correcting, or highlighting errors as they occur ” for example, a jig that holds parts for processing might be modified to only allow them to be held in the correct arrangement.”

  5. How many spark plugs do the following engines have: 1. Mazda 12a twin-rotor rotary engine found in the SA22C and FB RX-7, among others. 2. Hemi V8 found in modern Chrysler products 3. Mazda Skyactiv-D inline-four found in the modern Mazda CX-5 4. The Nissan NAPS-Z inline-four found in the 1986 Nissan 720 pickup. 5. Nash straight eight found in the 1931 Nash 8-90 series.

  6. What is the total drag force in pounds acting on a Porsche Taycan Turbo driving at 75 mph (33.53 m/s), given that the Taycan’s drag coefficient is 0.22, its frontal area is 25.1 square feet (2.33 m^2), and ambient air density is 1.225 kg/m^3. (1N is 0.225 pounds)?

  7. What is the chassis code for the only BMW M3 sold in high volumes with a V8 engine. What is the name of that V8, what was its displacement on the base M3 of that generation and how much horsepower did it make?

  8. Often called Germany’s Corvette, the 1968 to 1973 Opel GT featured a unique take on the pop up headlight trend so popular at the time. Describe how the headlights “popped up.”

[Round 1 Answers]

Round 2: Car Badges”8 questions (8 Points Total)

  1. What animal sometimes appeared, often in groups of three, on Ford badges from the 1950s to 1970s?

  2. What are the birds on the Cadillac crest?

  3. What’s going on on the Alfa Romeo badge?

  4. What carmaker has a turtle in a puddle of urine on its badge?

  5. What was the Oldsmobile badge supposed to be?

  6. What is the English name of the constellation represented in the Subaru badge? R

  7. What is the Hyundai badge supposed to, improbably, represent?

  8. What is the image on the Lada badge?

[Round 2 Answers]

Round 3: JDM – 8 questions (21 Points Total)

  1. The R32, R33, and R34 Nissan Skyline GT-Rs all featured the legendary RB26DETT engine under their hoods. What was the cylinder layout of this engine, and what does this acronym stand for?

  2. Most Mitsubishi FTOs from the 1990s came with a tiny V6 engine. What size was that engine? Which wheels did that engine power?

  3. In 1974, Mazda launched the world’s first production rotary engine-powered bus. What was that bus called? How many passengers was it designed to carry? What engine did it have?

  4. Mazda was born in 1920 in Hiroshima, Japan as a company that sold what product?

  5. The legendary Datsun 240Z was sold in Japan as the Fairlady Z. How did Datsun initially come up with the Fairlady name?

  6. Name the co-founder of Subaru of America who later created a car named after himself that was built in New Brunswick and had a fibreglass body. What was this car named? This Subaru co-founder created a company called FasTrack International that involved doing what with unsold Subaru 360s? The Subaru Co-founder also headed up the importation of another famous foreign small car in the 1980s. Name that car.

  7. The first-gen Acura NSX, Audi A2, and first-gen Audi A8 are among the first three mass-produced cars ever to incorporate what technology?

  8. Name the four retro-futuristic vehicles built as part of Nissan’s “Pike Factory” program.

[Round 3 Answers]

Round 4: Know This Part”8 questions (8 Points Total)

Name these parts:









[Round 4 Answers]

Round 5: Random Car Stuff And At Least One Indian Car”8 questions (9 Points Total)

  1. Using only wipers that have actually appeared on production cars, what’s the theoretical maximum number of wipers a car could have? 

  2. What carmaker’s name is a verb followed by the noun that is the projectile that, when shot, causes that verb?

  3. What is the name of Mahindra’s licence-built Jeep CJ in India?

  4. What’s strange about the trunk lids of rear-engined Skodas?

  5. You need to get your luggage out of a Tatra T87. Where do you go?

  6. Where is the handbrake on a LHD Volvo P1800?

  7. How do Volkswagens, Mercedes-Benzes and other German cars often label their fuel gauges (not E and F)?

  8. Two well-known carmakers designed some of their early engines based on designs from much less well known marques: Saab and Subaru. What companies did they base their engines on? (2 points)

[Round 5 Answers]

In case you want to see, here’s a screenshot of Jason in a heated argument with a reader over the answer to question one, which we ultimately decided we’d give some leeway on. Plus or minus two, I think sounds fine.


One team that Jason and I will not be allowing to reassemble is team 11, which consisted of Zach Waldauer ,Will Crowe ,Olivier Boilard, and Anthony Corradi. Together, they scored 50 out of 66 points, which is a 76 per cent. We can all agree that this is much, much too high. Last week’s max score was a 66. Have Jason and I gone soft? We’ll have to step it up this Friday, I guess.

Anyway, here’s a ranking of the teams whose scores were submitted to my overly-full email inbox:

  1. Team 11: 50 points

  2. Team 2: 48 points

  3. Team 4: 47.5 points

  4. Team 8: 46 points

  5. Team 15: 46 points

  6. Team 1: 46 points

  7. Team 3: 44 points

  8. Team 6: 41 points

  9. Team 12: 41 points

  10. Team 13: 36 points

  11. Team 16: 34 points

  12. Team 17: 29 points

  13. Team Kyle, Grant, Peter, Mike: 29 points

There’s no accountability when it comes to scoring, by the way. So whatever numbers the contestants give me, I assume they’re being truthful. There’s no prize for winning, so it doesn’t really matter. It’s all about having fun and hanging out.