Welcome to 365 Days of Motoring

An Everyday Journey Through Motoring History, Facts & Trivia

Belt up and enjoy this 365-day ride as you cruise past the most momentous motoring events in history. Packed with fascinating facts about races, motorists and the history of the mighty engine, this is a must-visit web site for any car enthusiast.

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On This Day


11th August

1896

126 years ago

Ransom E Olds tested his first gasoline-powered automobile in Lansing, Michigan, US - the body for the vehicle was designed and built by Old's friend Frank G Clark.

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1914

108 years ago

The first motor-vehicle speed trials were held on the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah, US.

View west across the Bonneville Salt Flats, Utah from the Bonneville Salt Flats Rest Area on Interstate 80.

View west across the Bonneville Salt Flats, Utah from the Bonneville Salt Flats Rest Area on Interstate 80.

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1923

99 years ago

The Ford Motor Company plant for glass manufacturing went into operation in Dearborn, Michigan, US.

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1931

91 years ago

Ferdinand Porsche applied for a German patent for his torsion-bar suspension system.

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1932

90 years ago

Ray A. Graham (45) of Graham-Paige drowned in Chatham, Ontario, Canada. After successful involvement in a glass manufacturing company (eventually sold to Libbey Owens Ford), the Graham brothers purchased the Paige-Detroit Motor Company, makers of Paige and Jewett automobiles, for $4 million in 1927. Continue Reading →

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1939

83 years ago

While testing the Type 57 tank-bodied racer which had just won a Le Mans race, not far from the factory on the road near the village of Duppigheim (France), 30-year-old Jean Bugatti was killed. He lost control of the vehicle and crashed into a tree while trying to avoid a drunken bicyclist and was interred in the Bugatti family plot at the municipal cemetery in Dorlisheim. There is a monument to him at the site of the accident.

Jean Bugatti

Jean Bugatti

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1942

80 years ago

The new Waterloo bridge over the Thames, built through the London Blitz, was opened to traffic. It was the only Thames bridge to have been damaged by German bombers during the Second World War. It is frequently asserted that the work force was largely female and it is sometimes referred to as "the Ladies' Bridge". Continue Reading →

Waterloo Bridge viewed from the Golden Jubilee Bridge

Waterloo Bridge viewed from the Golden Jubilee Bridge

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1946

76 years ago

The Buick Super convertible is introduced.

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1953

69 years ago

Tazio Nuvolari (60), Italian motorcycle and racing driver, known as Il Mantovano Volante (The Flying Mantuan) or Nivola, died. He was the 1932 European Champion in Grand Prix motor racing. Dr Ferdinand Porsche called Nuvolari "The greatest driver of the past, the present, and the future."

Tazio Nuvolari

Tazio Nuvolari

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1955

67 years ago

The 4,000,000th Pontiac was produced, a Catalina hardtop coupe.

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1956

66 years ago

Influential abstract impressionist painter Jackson Pollock died at age 44 in a car crash that occurred less than a mile from his home in Springs, New York, US. He was driving under the influence of alcohol when he skidded and slid off the road before crashing into a tree. One of the passengers, Edith Metzger, was also killed in the accident, while his mistress Ruth Kligman, survived.

Jackson Pollock

Jackson Pollock

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1959

63 years ago

Daimler-Benz presented the latest versions of its 6-cylinder models 220, 220 S and 220 SE with tailfin bodies, in which the safety cage developed by Hungarian-Austrian engineer Béla Barényi was used for the first time in a car series.

Mercedes-Benz 'Fintail' 1959-67

Mercedes-Benz 'Fintail' 1959-67

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1963

59 years ago

Fred Lorenzen posted a dominant victory in the Western North Carolina 500 at Asheville-Weaverville Speedway (US), landing the ninth of his 26 career wins in NASCAR’s top series. Lorenzen, who drove a Holman-Moody Ford, led 452 of the 500 laps in lapping the field on the half-mile asphalt track. Richard Petty finished second, one lap back, with Jim Paschal third, another lap back in another Petty Enterprises Plymouth.

Fred Lorenzen - 1963

Fred Lorenzen - 1963

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1966

56 years ago

The first Chevrolet Camaro drove out of the manufacturing plant in Norwood, Ohio. The 1967 Camaro coupe was named just weeks before production; General Manager Elliot Estes, when publicly announcing the name, quipped, "I went into a closet, shut the door and came out with the name." Camaro is actually French for "comrade, pal, or chum. Continue Reading →

Chevrolet Camaro - 1966

Chevrolet Camaro - 1966

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1970

52 years ago

The Ford Pinto, a subcompact car was introduced. Initially offered as a two-door sedan, hatchback and wagon models followed in 1972. With over 3 million sold over a 10-year production run, the Pinto competed in the U. Continue Reading →

Ford Pinto (1972)

Ford Pinto (1972)

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1973

49 years ago

"American Graffiti," a nostalgic coming-of-age tale set on the streets and steeped in the car-centric culture of suburban California, was released in theaters across the US. The movie was the second full-length feature film directed by George Lucas, who would later become best known for the blockbuster hit "Star Wars" films. Set in 1962, "American Graffiti" follows a group of teenage friends who meet in the parking lot of a local drive-in restaurant on the last night before two of them (portrayed by Richard Dreyfuss and Ron Howard) are to leave town for college. Continue Reading →

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1974

48 years ago

A head-on collision between two buses killed 21 in Ankara, Turkey.

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1975

47 years ago

British Leyland was nationalised. It incorporated much of the British-owned motor vehicle industry, which constituted 40 percent of the UK car market, with roots going back to 1895. Despite containing profitable marques such as Jaguar, Rover and Land Rover, as well as the best-selling Mini, British Leyland had a troubled history. Continue Reading →

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1980

42 years ago

The Chrysler Corporation revived the Imperial marque after a 5 year lapse, as Frank Sinatra drove a 1981 metallic silver coupe off the assembly line in Windsor, Ontario, Canada. The Imperial fs was a rare example of automotive history, as it was one of only a handful of regular production cars bearing a celebrity's name. This limited edition Imperial was available only in Glacier Blue Crystal paint - Chrysler advertising claimed it matched the color of Sinatra's eyes - and had special fs (lowercase) external badging, with a large glovebox placard proclaiming "Frank Sinatra Signature Edition". Continue Reading →

Frank Sinatra in first 1981 Imperial built

Frank Sinatra in first 1981 Imperial built

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1985

37 years ago

The TWR Jaguar XJR-6 made its race debut in the 1000 km World Endurance Championship race at Mosport, Ontario, Canada. Manfred Winklehock was fatally injured in the crash of his 962 during the race which was won by Derek Bell and Hans Stuck driving a Rothmans Porsche 962.

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1987

35 years ago

Eugene Bordinat, Jr. (67), Ford Motor Company styling executive whose career spanned several decades, died. His favorite designs during his tenure included successful cars like the Ford Mustang and Lincoln Continental Mk III, as well as the Pinto. Continue Reading →

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1988

34 years ago

British Aerospace (BAe) purchased 'The Rover Group' for £150 million. The Rover Group plc was the name given in 1986 to the British vehicle manufacturer BL (formerly British Leyland), which had been state-owned company since 1975. It initially included the Austin Rover Group car business (comprising the Austin, Rover, Mini and MG marques), Land Rover Group, Freight Rover vans and Leyland Trucks. Continue Reading →

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1991

31 years ago

Ernie Irvan led most of the way to win the 218.52-mile race at Watkins Glen, New York (US) a tragic affair that claimed the life of veteran campaigner J.D. McDuffie. The 52-year-old McDuffie died instantly when he slid off the track and hit a steel retaining barrier.

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1991

31 years ago

Ayrton Senna won the Hungarian Grand Prix for McLaren, leading home the William’s pairing of Nigel Mansell and Riccardo Patrese.

Senna - 1991 Hungarian Grand Prix

Senna - 1991 Hungarian Grand Prix

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1996

26 years ago

The highest average speed achieved in a non-stop reverse drive exceeding 500 miles of 30.36 mph was set by John Smith, who drove his Chevrolet Caprice 501 miles in 13 hr 48 min at the I-94 Speedway, Fergus Falls, Minesota, US.

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1996

26 years ago

Geoff Bodine ended a two-year drought by winning on his hometown track in Watkins Glen, New York (US). Dale Earnhardt, driving with painful injuries, won the pole and finished sixth.

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1996

26 years ago

Jaques Villeneuve won the Hungarian Grand Prix, with Damon Hill making it a Williams 1-2. Jean Alesi was third in a Benetton.

Jacques Villeneuve, Williams, Hungaroring, 1996

Jacques Villeneuve, Williams, Hungaroring, 1996

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2003

19 years ago

Renowned ice hockey player and coach Herb Brooks died in a single-car crash near Forest Lake, Minn. It is believed that the 66-year-old sports icon fell asleep behind the wheel.

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2009

13 years ago

General Motors reported that its Chevrolet Volt Extended-Range Electric Vehicle (or E-REV) was capable of 230 mpg in city driving, more than four times the mileage of the current champion, the Toyota Prius. The Volt, which was neither a hybrid nor a battery electric vehicle, was powered by electricity 100 per cent of the time. Volt’s Voltec electric drive unit kept going when its lithium-ion battery was depleted, thanks to its on-board petrol-to-electricity-powered generator, extending its range to over 300 miles.

Chevrolet Volt

Chevrolet Volt

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2010

12 years ago

Toyota suspended auto exports to Iran indefinitely in line with global sanctions against Tehran's nuclear program.

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