4 Weird Automotive-Branded Tech Things You've Never Heard Of
Ford Simulator, anyone?
Automakers have had the weirdest ways to brush with technology, including (but not limited to) simulators, branded laptops, and more recently, Twitch car reveals. This article takes a look at some of those oddities.
Acer Ferrari Laptops
If you were old enough to remember the days of Windows XP gaming, Doom 3, and Half-Life 2, this may sound vaugely familiar. This was due to the fact that in the mid-2000s, Acer started sponsoring the Ferrari Formula One team. And predictably, this spawned Acer Ferrari laptops.
Generally going for the higher end of the market (much like a Ferrari), these laptops ranged in cost from $500 to over $2000. Heck, some models (like the example shown in the video below) had legitamate carbon-fiber on the lids. Check out a modern-day review of it below:
Ford Simulator (Series)
More marketing ploy than anything else, Ford Simulator was nonetheless one of the more weirder things to come out in the tech-crazed 90s. Although it stayed true to its name by hosting a simulator that allowed you to drive different Ford models (and in some instances, Jaguars, since Ford owned Jaaaag at the time), the main purpose of this was to be a marketing tool. For that end, Ford Simulator had a full menu showing the different available Fords for that model year, as well a prices, features, and etc. The series ran from 1987 to 1996. Here's a comparison below of how far it came:
Top Gear MobileGgames
Yes, it's That Top Gear. BBC released a couple of games for Android/IOS over the years, the only one still available on the App Store and Google Play is a rather simple game called Donut Dash.
The goal of the game was to hold on the screen to do donuts around the imfamous TG Production Office to prevent caravans (of all things) from destroying it (and collecting doughnuts along the way. If a caravan touched the Office in the middle or you flew off the game area, it was Game Over. You could choose from a variety of TG creations, including the Hovervan, Marauder, and more.
Interestingly, the game (released in 2016) used Clarkson-era vehicles after he left with James and Richard...
Various Branded Phones
You probably saw this coming, or knew about some of these. Companies like OnePlus, Vertu, and Motorola have teamed up with McLaren, Ferrari, Land Rover, Bentley, and Lamborghini to put their logos on smartphones and jack up the price.
As you can see, some results were decent, others, not so much.