January 15, 2016

Road Trip: Auto Journalist Steve Siler on the Best Drives, Worst Drivers

Photo courtesy of Steve SilerPhoto courtesy of Steve Siler

If you’re an auto enthusiast, Steve Siler has your dream job.

The Los Angeles-based journalist travels the world, reviewing cars and hitting the auto show circuit for Car and Driver, Yahoo Autos and New York Daily News.

He recently flew to the Canary Islands to get behind the wheel of Porsche’s new Carrera; Atlanta for Mercedes-Benz’s GLC300; and Venice, Italy, to try out Audi’s updated A4 sedan, so it only made sense that we grab a few minutes to find out Siler’s favorite places to hit the road. Here’s what he had to say on a recent pit stop:

Since you’re often traveling the world to review or test drive cars, what would you consider your five favorite road trips?

  1. An Alpine run from Bavaria to Austria.
  2. Las Vegas, Nevada, to Gateway, Colorado, through Utah’s gorgeous national parks.
  3. Carmel to Los Angeles via Carmel Valley Road and Highway 46.
  4. Vancouver, Canada, to Banff.
  5. Anywhere through Tuscany, Italy.

What’s your favorite city in the U.S.?

Los Angeles. Besides being my hometown, it’s empowering for any kind of career, full of fascinating people, and very rich in automotive culture.

And overseas?

I love Barcelona, because I’m an architecture and history buff. And there’s a lot of both there.

What do you have to take on a road trip?

Protein bars, water, camera and a tripod.

When did you know you loved cars?

I’m told “car” was my first word, so …

What city has the best drivers?

New York City. How do they keep from hitting each other?

The worst?

It’s a tie between Miami and Las Vegas.

What about the worst traffic?

I think D.C. has to have the worst in my experience due to the mess of a road “grid” there. Houston and San Francisco aren’t far behind. LA is bad, too, but that’s not news, y’all. I don’t want to hear people complain about LA traffic; you know what you’re getting into.

This might be a tough one, but what’s your favorite car that you’ve ever driven?

Oh boy. Let’s see, um … That might be a toss-up between the McLaren 650S Spyder and the Mazda Miata. Wildly disparate creatures. But I love, love, love them both.

If you had to recommend one car people should consider buying – this should be an affordable example – what would it be?

The 2016 Mazda 3 or Mazda 6. They’re stylish, interesting, extremely good automobiles. They are communicative through the steering and are super fuel-efficient, too. I’ve never recommended cars as often as those two, and I’ve never heard anyone who has one complaint about them.

This article was published as part of a partnership with Marriott Traveler.

Where to follow Steve

Twitter: @silerroad
Instagram: @silerroad  
Facebook: Steve Siler Auto Scribe  
Tumblr: SilerRoad


About the Author: Marc Graser is Marriott International’s Editorial Director. A “car nerd,” he’s currently driving around Washington, D.C. in a bright green Jeep Rubicon. He may love James Bond’s taste for Aston Martins but his favorite car’s still Audi’s RS4. D.C. definitely has the worst traffic in the U.S. — and that’s coming from someone who spent 16 years driving in Los Angeles. Follow him @marcgraser