Book Review

Title: Drive It Forever
Author: Bob Sikorsky
Year of Publication: 1997


Bruce’s Review:

This book, subtitled “Secrets to long automobile life,” is not specific to four-wheel-drive vehicles - it applies to every vehicle. The author preaches lubrication through much of the book, citing manufacturers, the EPA, Society of Automotive Engineers, and others. The book will tell you more about oil and gasoline than you ever wanted to know. It also has several sections on driving and maintenance techniques to get the longest life from your vehicle. Much of the book is broken into very short sections that give you tip after tip on taking care of your car. Every kid who graduates from Driver’s Ed should be required to take a class using this book.

What others say (selected passages):

Overall an excellent book. It doesn't just tell you what to do to maintain your car, but includes the science behind it, so you know WHY certain practices are good or bad. The best section is on the four causes of engine deterioration. On the down side, there is too much discussion of carburetors, and the two product plugs seem unprofessional, especially since one of them is for a product made by the publisher of the copy I purchased, ATG. Also, there is some repetition and some mild contradictions - the book is not well edited.

This book is an excellent resource for anyone who wants to extend the life of their car, especially the engine. Although some parts are out of date I highly reccomend this book - If you can check it out from a library, skim through the book and take notes on the relevant parts.

If you drive a car made after 1985, or a car with automatic transmission, 90% of the information in this book is totally irrelevant. The author discusses carburetor maitanence and the finer points of gear shifting in exhaustive detail. It seems as if Mr. Sikorsky has put a TON of padding into a book that otherwise would be a good pamphlet on effecient driving habits. For instance, he wastes nearly 40 pages discussing the properties of different oil grades. WHO CARES!?! Mr. Sikorsky claims to have all the answers on protecting your automobile investment, but if I had it to do over again; I would invest the money I spent on this book elsewhere.

A must have book. As far as I know, the guy who wrote it is the top expert in the country. It is amazing to me how few people really maintain thier second biggest investment (thier cars). He makes extending the life of your car a total science. I used to know squat about cars. Thanks to Sikorsky I do know how to maintain a car. And I can tell you from the results, his advice has really WORKED for me.

This book has some useful information, but it is very basic, generally common sense advice. The advice of this book can be summed up in 1 sentence; Change your oil and fluids often and don't drive a lot of short trips. Some of the advice is simply incorrect and reflects a reliance on folklore instead of hard data. Sikorsky is also apparently a bigger sucker than the FTC, giving ringing endorsements of products such as Slick 50 and "The Force" that have not been proven to be effective (The FTC made Slick 50 stop advertising its unproven claims of engine protection). I get the feeling that Sikorsky culled his information at random from corporate PR departments and other works. This book is derivative and will not help anyone that posseses more than a general idea of how a modern automobile functions. A much better source of general information for a lot less money is "10 ways you may be ruining your car without even knowing it." by Tom and Ray Ma! gliozzi, the Car Talk guys (, or their book, "Car Talk" (available at amazon).