It’s high time we take a light-hearted look at the world of posers, who hope to impress but usually end up disappointing on so many levels.

How many of you have been walking or driving along, minding your own business when all of a sudden, your car radar goes off and your “spider sense” tingles? You know, that feeling that something special might be close? It’s quite interesting and difficult to explain with words, but if you are a car person, then you know exactly what I’m talking about.

How many of you, at least at first glance, have been duped into believing that the e39 528i in front of you that sports replica M5 wheels and has an M badge is a poser and not a real M5? How about an E320 masked to look like an E55 AMG? An A6 with an RS badge on the back perhaps? German cars aren’t the only ones butchered either. We see normal Integra’s badged as Type-R’s and standard Lancer’s made to look like Evolutions and in the States I even saw a regular Ford Taurus with a SHO badge! But one cannot speak of faux cars and not mention the famous Pontiac Fiero bodykit that made it look like a Ferrari. Almost.

Now, if you’re like me, you get irked a bit followed immediately by this thought “you’re not fooling me.” It is at this point that most people stop and continue about their business. But what about the percentage of people, myself included, that actually take it a step further and have the urge to see the guy/gal that would try to pull off such a masquerade and perhaps, just perhaps, just maybe, yell out “poser!” and then drive/walk away feeling like you did the right thing and that somehow, somewhere, a “1UP” should be recorded next to your name in the sacred records of Automobilus Justificus. Anyone else out there?

The following is a true story and aims to point out yet another type of driver. I have yet to classify such a driver, so if you are feeling creative, please feel free to provide some ideas in the comments below. Now, the story.

The year was 2007 and it was a hot July afternoon. I was in Romania on a road trip with my wife and three other good friends who decided to tag along. As the driver, I had at my disposal a silver, four-door Ford Focus…which was rented. It wasn’t fast, but it did the job well and I was happy it was a manual and packed A/C. At one point in our trip, we stopped for fuel in the south-western city of Timisoara. This is where our story gets interesting.

While there, I fueled the Focus and then parked it in order to pay a visit to the mini market and purchase some treats as well as refreshments for the road. Walking towards the shop, I spotted a yellow Lamborghini Gallardo. I was 100% sure it was a Lamborghini Gallardo just as I am 100% sure that water is wet, pancakes are delicious and adding lightness in automobile construction is awesome. Also, since the year was 2007 and the Lambo wasn’t a Superleggera , (taking into consideration it might be a 2003-2007 model year) it must have been running the 5.0 V-10 and not the 5.2 V-10 which meant at best it was pushing out 513HP and worst case 493HP.

Walking up to the car I see the door open with the driver inside, texting. I was hoping to engage in some car talk with a fellow auto enthusiast, share some stories and then part ways. See, I am of the belief that all car enthusiasts are made equal and that it doesn’t matter whether you drive a raging Reventon or a Reliant Robin. One can respect each other’s tastes and opinions in cars, much the same way we can respect tastes and opinions in music that differ from our own. Back to the main subject. Here’s how it went down:

Me: Very nice Gallardo!
As Of Yet Unnamed Type Of Auto Enthusiast: Thanks.

Me: The V-10 must sound like a dream.
As Of Yet Unnamed Type Of Auto Enthusiast: It’s not a V-10 it’s a V-12.

Me: …..
As Of Yet Unnamed Type Of Auto Enthusiast: …..

Now, how many of you are feeling that “irked” sensation that I was talking about earlier? The one where you sense that the force has been disturbed and that somewhere in Sant’Agata Bolognese Italy the spirit of Ferruccio is screaming “No, no, no! Perché? Questo non è possibile!”

I know that there are individuals out there than can afford to purchase supercars knowing little to nothing about them. This driver however, I’m sure, knew the difference between what engine his Gallardo had and the engine that the Murcielago comes with. I’ve talked with people who genuinely had no idea of the numbers, figures or performance their cars were capable of. They bought them because they were pretty, expensive and hot and when asked about particulars they will honestly reply with “No idea, but it screams like thunder and goes like a jet when I mash the gas pedal.” I respect honesty.

However, just so I’m perfectly clear, what I just described above does NOT apply to everyone who owns a supercar. I have many friends and have spoken with many owners of high performance vehicles who are some of the most knowledgeable car people on earth.

So now, we are left with the following question: Why do people blatantly feel the need to be dishonest with their cars? Why do people feel the need to re-badge their vehicles and slap on ///M badges and AMG stickers?

It’s now your time to share your poser stories and perhaps your theories on why it is that posers do what they do. And while you’re at it, come up with a designation for the As Of Yet Unnamed Type Of Auto Enthusiast that I described above!

Until next time,
Happy Motoring!