Engines of Change by Paul Ingrassia
A History of the American Dream in Fifteen Cars

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...Ingrassia has done a phenomenal amount of research, and an even more impressive job of balancing history, culture and cars.
-LA Times

Synopsis

A narrative like no other: a cultural history that explores how cars have both propelled and reflected the American experience— from the Model T to the Prius.

From the assembly lines of Henry Ford to the open roads of Route 66, from the lore of Jack Kerouac to the sex appeal of the Hot Rod, America’s history is a vehicular history—an idea brought brilliantly to life in this major work by Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Paul Ingrassia.

Ingrassia offers a wondrous epic in fifteen automobiles, including the Corvette, the Beetle, and the Chevy Corvair, as well as the personalities and tales behind them: Robert McNamara’s unlikely role in Lee Iacocca’s Mustang, John Z. DeLorean’s Pontiac GTO , Henry Ford’s Model T, as well as Honda’s Accord, the BMW 3 Series, and the Jeep, among others.

Through these cars and these characters, Ingrassia shows how the car has expressed the particularly American tension between the lure of freedom and the obligations of utility. He also takes us through the rise of American manufacturing, the suburbanization of the country, the birth of the hippie and the yuppie, the emancipation of women, and many more fateful episodes and eras, including the car’s unintended consequences: trial lawyers, energy crises, and urban sprawl. Narrative history of the highest caliber, Engines of Change is an entirely edifying new way to look at the American story.
 

About Paul Ingrassia

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Paul Ingrassia, formerly the Detroit bureau chief for The Wall Street Journal and later the president of Dow Jones Newswire, is the deputy editor-in-chief of Reuters. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize in 1993 (with Joseph B. White) for reporting on management crises at General Motors, he is the author of Crash Course: The American Automobile Industry’s Road from Glory to Disaster.
 
Published May 1, 2012 by Simon & Schuster. 418 pages
Genres: History, Travel, Professional & Technical, Computers & Technology, Science & Math. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for Engines of Change
All: 3 | Positive: 3 | Negative: 0

NY Times

Good
Reviewed by Michiko Kakutani on May 30 2012

Using his nimble narrative gifts, Mr. Ingrassia turns the creation stories behind the Prius and other cars into gripping accounts of how visionary design, corporate competition and inventive engineering...

Read Full Review of Engines of Change: A History ... | See more reviews from NY Times

WSJ online

Above average
Reviewed by Joseph Epstein on May 04 2012

"Engines of Change" informed and charmed me...I ended the book...bowed by the realization of how alike my taste in cars has been with just about everyone else's.

Read Full Review of Engines of Change: A History ... | See more reviews from WSJ online

LA Times

Good
Reviewed by Susan Carpenter on May 15 2012

...Ingrassia has done a phenomenal amount of research, and an even more impressive job of balancing history, culture and cars.

Read Full Review of Engines of Change: A History ... | See more reviews from LA Times

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