2011 ahead of the rapture
The Rapture is coming this Saturday, so it’s time to get ready. We here at AOL Autos think there are some cars you should drive before you leave us.
For those who aren’t in the know: Rapture is a controversial belief the Jesus will come to Earth and send the believers to heaven. The rest of us will suffer through earthquakes and fire, and be left watching the world crumble for several months before dying a terrible death. There are a lot of details about the post-Rapture days, but that's the deal in a nutshell.
Oh, and one preacher says it's happening this Saturday, May 21. That doesn't leave much time left to experience what the material world offers.
Here's a list of great cars that offer a fabulous experience. Since it is very hard to walk into a Ferrari or Aston Martin dealer and ask for a test drive, we tried to keep our list to attainable cars.
Godless heathens and other non-believers can feel free to test out our list at your leisure. What would you drive if it was your last day on the planet?
Before it suffered its own judgment day, the Hummer brand became a lightening rod for environmentalists who saw it as the epitome of American excess.
But it was easily the most extreme mass-produced off-road vehicle ever built. Its ability to go almost anywhere prompted General Motor’s former vice chairman Bob Lutz to declare Hummer the brand Jesus would drive: “Because it can drive through the desert, and carry all the apostles.”
The smaller models GM put out, the H2 and the H3, were polarizing to look at but super fun to drive. Especially the yellow ones, which made it feel like you were driving a giant Tonka truck.
Where to find one: Some of the rental companies, like Avis and Budget, offer Hummers to rent for the day in some locations. Otherwise, check Craig’s List or newspaper used car listings to see if a seller nearby will let you test drive theirs.
This is one of the neatest, most futuristic cars on the market right now. It’s the kind of technology all the heathens could be driving in 10 or 20 years, if the world isn’t destroyed by then.
The Volt is an extended range electric hybrid that goes about 40 miles on pure battery power before the backup gas power kicks in. It’s zippy, and sleek, and feels like you’re driving the future.
The car only seats four, though, so you might not be able to bring the whole clan for a ride. The lithium-ion battery that powers the car goes through the middle of the car, leaving an uncomfortable hump between the two back seats.
Where to find one: The car won’t be available nationwide until the end of the year. Right now, you have to go to Michigan, Washington, D.C., California, New York, Connecticut, New Jersey and Texas.
Dealers have limited quantities, so it might be hard to find. But it would be worth it.
Audi A3 TDI
Its nimble German engineering makes this car cool enough, but add in a turbo diesel engine and you’ve got unbeatable fun.
It’s fast and fuel efficient. Better yet, it has a ton of torque. You may not think you like torque, or even know what that means, but if you like the feeling of a rollercoaster when it takes off from a top of its highest peak, you’ll like the TDI.
If you drive it like an angel, you could get close to 50 mpg. Drive a little devilish, and your fuel economy will drop. But it’s your last day on Earth, so live it up a bit.
Where to find it: Supplies of diesel cars can be a little tight at dealerships, so call ahead to your local Audi dealer before asking for a test drive.
Subaru WRX STI
After offering its top-shelf WRX STI as an overseas affair for years, Subaru finally unleashed the rally-car-turned-sport-sedan on the U.S. market in 2004.
More audacious (and more hardcore) than the already good WRX, the STI packed even more power from its turbocharged engine. With a manual transmission and all-wheel drive as the only drivetrain option, the STI quickly became a hit amongst a younger crowd of racers and enthusiasts.
Today, the STI is, arguably, the best four-season sport sedan on the market, offering turbocharged thrills with one of the greatest all-wheel-drive systems on the planet.
Driving one is like sinning, without actually violating any of the commandments. It's the one Japanese car we decided we'd definitely want to drive before exiting this world for the next.
Where to find one: Any new Subaru dealership.
(By Steven J. Ewing)
Nearly 50 years after the original 911 was introduced, the sports car remains an icon for good reason: It’s beautiful to look at, even though its design hasn’t changed radically since it was introduced in 1963.
And it is a pure sports car. It is low to the ground, corners easily, and is fairly sparse inside, so your attention is focused on the road.
There are a lot of different versions of the 911, but we suggest you try out the Turbo. It’s got a “launch” feature that lets you rev the engine while you’re stepping on the brake. When you release the brake, the car takes off like a jet. Why not try it, especially if it’s your last day on Earth?
Where to find one: We’d avoid the Porsche dealership, unless you're sure you know how to pronounce Porsche properly and can appear to be a serious buyer with a ready checkbook (don’t mention anything about that end-of-the-world stuff). If the Porsche dealer has already closed his doors for the Apocalypse, check Craig’s List or used car pages to hunt this one down. You'll be glad you did.