Car & Driver Rates Horse Carriages Higher Than Electric Cars


NYC e-Carriage Test Drive

NYC e-Carriage Test Drive

Horse-Drawn Carriage

Horse-Drawn Carriage (via Fox5)

In the ultimate showdown between horse and electric car, the horse comes out on top:

“Even the motorheads at Car and Driver say “get a horse” when it comes to Central Park.”

As NY Daily News reports:

“The magazine sent a writer to compare the traditional horse-pulled carriages and the faux-vintage electric cars that animal rights groups are pushing as an alternative — and the equines finished first.”

How can a horse-drawn carriage beat an electric car? Car & Driver’s John Pearley Huffman concludes:

“Having two brains at the controls allows the driver to interact with his customers, face to face; that’s impossible with the eCarriage. A horse just makes it a better tourist experience, even if you’re staring at the back end of it.”

Here’s more of the “test drive” summary from NY Daily News:

“As any city carriage driver could have told him, the buggies are surprisingly compact, light and make tight turns. When they’re pulled by one of the placid, experienced horses the drivers barely have to lift a finger to direct them. The hefty horses are adept at speeding up and slowing down their buggies, while the cumbersome electronic car couldn’t quite cut it in the city’s fast-moving traffic.”

One more knock on the electric car was that motorists didn’t extended the same courtesy to it as they do horse-drawn carriages.

Huffman writes:

“Combine the primitive (steering) column with replica BFGoodrich Silvertown bias-ply truck tires mounted on 6.0×24-inch Forgeline aluminum wheels and the result is hazy steering. The effort isn’t high, but the reactions are slow. That’s fine at low speeds and with no traffic, but unnerving when a squadron of Camry cabs squeezes the doorless eCarriage against a double-decker tourist bus.”

Huffman found one plus related to the electric car: it’s finish and plush interior easily trumps the horse-drawn carriages, many of which are in need of some refurbishing.

Which was more fun?  That’s always important to us.  Huffman concludes that the horse-drawn carriage was, and always will be, way more fun.

Source: NY Daily News

Category: General

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11 responses to "Car & Driver Rates Horse Carriages Higher Than Electric Cars"
  1. kdawg says:

    Sounds like they want an autonomous car, AKA Johnny Cab.

    1. Scramjett says:

      Total Recall?

  2. Mark C says:

    When they showed the first rendering of the new “Antique” electric tourist ride, I hoped it was not going to happen. It rides on a full size truck chassis. The thing is huge! It seems like it is made high so as to be a sightseeing type tour bus.

    The horse-drawn buggies are a far more intimate, romantic experience. No mechanically powered vehicle will duplicate that. And since people aren’t riding them for mere transportation, well…

  3. Horses are not zero emission.

    1. Aaron says:

      Having the horses in the city is borderline cruel. They have to walk on poorly-maintained streets, breathing noxious fumes from vehicles, being spooked by near-constant honking, etc.

      1. JRMW says:

        Know what you call a horse in America without a Job?


        There is and has been a massive glut of horses in the US for years. You literally cannot give them away. I’m using the word correctly here.

        The current hope is to relax slaughterhouse rules to help export all these unwanted horses for meat

        To be fair: These particular horses will be sent to pasture using the money from the developer who wants to build yet another homage the the rich

      2. sven says:

        Carriage horses don’t work when the temperature is above 90 degrees, below 18 degrees, or during snowstorms. Carriage horses also get 5 weeks of mandatory vacation every year on a farm, and face mandatory retirement when they reach a certain age. Meanwhile, bicycle pedicab drivers work in any weather and don’t get any paid vacations.

  4. JRMW says:

    I’m a huge EV fan but the horse drawn carriages win hands down for almost every reason. to say I hate those EVs is an understatement

    Although there are some animal rights activists in the mix, the main push for these hideous tanks is a developer who wants the uber valuable land in Central Park currently occupied by the horses. Get rid of the horses using an AstroTurf animal rights patsy and then he gets to build more luxury towers for the 0.0000001%

    Keep the horses.

    1. sven says:

      Minor correction, the developer wants to build luxury condo towers on the land that the stables for the carriage horses occupy on the upper Westside of Manhattan, next to Central Park. The stables are low-rise structures that would be replaced by skyscrapers.

      Just follow the money. It’s always about the money.

    2. sven says:

      I forgot to mention that NYClass, the group pushing the anti-carriage crusade, financed a $1 million ad campaign during last year’s mayoral election to eliminate Mr. de Blasio’s main rival in the primary, then-Council Speaker (and carriage defender) Christine Quinn. Mr. de Blasio won the primary and then went on to win the general election for NYC mayor. The main financial backer of NYClass just happens to be a real estate developer named Stephen Nislick, who wants to build luxury condo skyscrapers on the property occupied by the carriage horse stables. Coincidence? No.

      Here is a NY Times opinion piece about the subject:

  5. Bill Howland says:

    I’m of the opinion that MR. ED would say “keep the horses”.

    I’m not particularly concerned about their “Carbon Footprint”, with shoes or without.

    Stagering the feeding times should keep them ‘Zero Emission’ , for the duration of the trip anyway.