'Thor' star Chris Hemsworth takes a spin in a Formula E electric race car

The list of Hollywood actors who have transitioned to motor sports includes famous names like Steve McQueen and Paul Newman. Chris Hemsworth recently test drove a Formula E race car, so can he add his name to that list?

The actor best known for playing Thor got behind the wheel of one of Formula E’s electric race cars during the recent New York City ePrix (that’s what Formula E calls its races). While he seemed to have fun, Hemsworth probably didn’t have any of Formula E’s pro drivers worrying about their jobs.

Hemsworth played Formula One legend James Hunt in the 2013 film Rush, but that doesn’t seem to have helped his driving skills. He spun the car in one turn, and drove at a fairly leisurely pace for the rest of the lap. At least he managed to avoid hitting the wall, which can be difficult on the tight NYC ePrix track. Formula E uses temporary street circuits rather than conventional racetracks, and the New York circuit was laid out within the confines of a customs facility in Brooklyn.

“I was a little too excited, just got a little overconfident … I was just happy I found reverse and was able to get back going,” Hemsworth said of the spin. “It’s the first time I’ve done it, so that’s my excuse for all the mistakes I made!” Overall, Hemsworth said the drive was “good fun.”

Hemsworth wasn’t the only celebrity ready to take the wheel at the NYC ePrix, which was the first major motor sport event held within New York’s city limits in modern times. Richard Branson, whose Virgin conglomerate sponsors one of the teams, volunteered himself as a reserve driver. He wasn’t needed, as DS Virgin Racing driver Sam Bird won both rounds of the doubleheader in the Big Apple.

Formula E’s next stop is Montreal, where a pair of races will be run July 29 and 30. That will bring an end to the current season, with teams getting a few months off before the next season kicks off in Hong Kong in December. That season, Formula E’s fourth, will be the last before sweeping rules changes meant to improve the quality of the racing take effect for the 2018-2019 season.


Why Honor’s new screen is the hole-y grail in quest to ditch the notch

Honor will release a smartphone with an in-screen camera in the new year, a trend which is gathering momentum in the industry. Honor said it has cracked the formula, and explains what's special about its All-View Display.

The best compact cars pack full-size features in fun-size packages

The best compact cars on the market rival their counterparts in many ways, proving that bigger isn’t always better. Here, we've rounded up some of the better options available, including an SUV and an electric alternative.

Hey, Sony! If you make a PS2 Classic, it needs these games

158 million PS2 consoles were sold worldwide during its lifecycle, making it the most successful video game console of all time. It was hard, but we narrowed down the PS2's vast library of games. Here are the best PS2 games of all time.
Product Review

Boring takes a back seat as 2019 Corolla Hatchback mixes fun with practicality

We drive the 2019 Toyota Corolla Hatchback, the latest hatchback to bear the Corolla name. As the best-selling nameplate in automotive history, Toyota has high expectations to meet. This model mostly lives up to the legacy.

The redesigned 2020 Passat shows Volkswagen still believes in sedans

The sedan segment in America is shrinking, but Volkswagen still believes in it. The German firm has released a teaser sketch to preview the redesigned 2020 Passat it will introduce during the 2019 Detroit Auto Show.

Infiniti previews its leap into one of the hottest industry segments

Infiniti has released a teaser image to preview a concept it will unveil at the 2019 Detroit Auto Show. The yet-unnamed design study is an electric crossover shaped by Infiniti's newest design language.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Booze-filled ski poles and crypto piggy banks

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!

What’s next for in-car entertainment? Audi believes it knows

Audi is bringing two technologies to CES 2019. The first turns a car -- a luxury sedan, in this case -- into a drive-in movie theater. The second is presented as a new entertainment format that turns the journey into the destination.
Product Review

The all-new 3 Series proves BMW can still build a compelling sport sedan

Seat time in the entry-level BMW 330i ($41,425) and M340i xDrive ($54,995) will test the German automaker’s commitment to driving dynamics, powertrain refinement, and cutting edge technology.

California wants all-electric public bus fleet on its roads by 2040

California approved a regulation that targets an all-electric public bus fleet for the whole state by 2040. The effect of the full implementation of the regulation is equivalent to taking 4 million cars off the road.

1,000-mph Bloodhound supersonic car project finds a last-minute savior

The Bloodhound supersonic car (SSC) project has found a buyer. The project was going to be disbanded after running out of funds, but its assets were purchased by British businessman Ian Warhurst.

Ford’s prototype Quiet Kennel uses noise-canceling tech to keep dogs stress-free

Ford is ending 2018 by venturing into the doghouse market. The company's European division has built a kennel equipped with active noise-canceling technology and soundproof walls that help dogs sleep through fireworks.

Car-branded phones need to make a U-turn if they ever want to impress

Your car and your smartphone are becoming one, yet smartphones branded or co-created by car companies are a problem. We look at the history, some examples of the best and worst, then share hopes for the future.
Emerging Tech

Self-driving dirt rally vehicle offers crash course in autonomous car safety

Georgia Tech's AutoRally initiative pushes self-driving cars to their limit by getting scaled-down autonomous vehicles to drive really, really fast and aggressively on dirt roads. Here's why.