Book review: Intersection Cars Now

Books on cars tend to follow a simple formula – a pretty straight narrative that is either sequenced historically or by company. In this context, Intersection‘s Cars Now maintains this by guiding the reader through a selection of today’s most notable cars via alphabetically organised car companies. ‘We go make by make, model by model, to capture a snapshot of a species evolving,’ say the authors. And as a reference book, this formula works perfectly.

Founded over a decade ago, Intersection magazine set out to challenge our relation with the car and how that is communicated. The book – the first volume written by the team – retains the visual energy of the magazine with its hundreds of original photographs and illustrations. It is also surprisingly insightful to read.






Whether we choose to drive or not, it is near impossible not to interact with the automobile. The car impacts not just on the environment and how we live, but also on our landscape, visually shaping cities – something that is even more poignant with the growing number of megacities.

Cars Now has addressed the automobile in this wider context, documenting not only sexy supercars but also highlighting the latest innovations that address our dependency on fossil fuels, and all this from a global perspective.

Additionally, with some of the leading car companies, the authors have weaved in caracrchitecture. Increasingly marques like BMW are teaming up with big names in building design such as Coop Himmelb(l)au for the Welt Munich showroom and Zaha Hadid for the Leipzig factory (where the electric i cars will be built) in a bid to create stronger brand statements.

Another interesting addition is the designer Q+A that features in some of the major car companies’ chapters. Though a little superficial, it does help add a human element to an otherwise seemingly cold industry.

Cars Now is a celebration of the automobile in all its guises. To quote the authors: ‘Call it a last hurrah for the dying pleasures of smoking tires, and a deep breath of hope for the new crop of contenders trying to extend the electric frontier.’

Nargess Shahmanesh Banks

Intersection Cars Now is published by  TASCHEN. You can also purchase the book directly from the DT bookshop.

Also read our Cars & Mobility pages which feature trends in car design and first hand interviews with leading car designer.

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