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The Top Five Cars In Honor of Columbus Day

By Trevor Dorchies | October 10, 2011
Did you know that "Columbus Day" is celebrated in 47 of the 50 U.S. states and is always observed on the second Monday in October? (Scroll down below to see which three states abstain from observing Columbus Day.) Christopher Columbus was maritime explorer who captained four voyages across the Atlantic Ocean. Columbus is best known for his discovery of the North American continents and more specifically the Bahamas on October 12, 1492. We've compiled the top five vehicles adorning nameplates that were inspired by the idea of exploration.
5. Nissan Pathfinder

Entering production in 1986, the Pathfinder spawned from Nissan's compact pick-up truck platform. Now in its third generation, the Pathfinder is powered by a 4.0-liter V-6 engine that produces 286 horsepower, or an optional V-8 engine with 310-hp. With four-wheel drive, the Pathfinder is a very capable off-road machine that doesn't sacrifice on-road comfort.

4. Ford Explorer

Perhaps one of Ford's most visible vehicles on the road in the 1990's to mid 2000's the Explorer kicked off the SUV craze that has only recently slowed down. Today's Explorer is available either in front- or full-time-four-wheel-drive and can be mated to a 3.5-liter V-6 or a 2.0-liter turbocharged engine. Although it's based off the same underpinnings as the Ford Taurus sedan, the Explorer boasts some surprising tricks up its sleeves, making it a more capable off-roader than most other crossovers.

3. Ford Expedition

Slotted above the aforementioned Explorer, the Expedition was introduced in 1997 as a replacement for the Bronco. The last truck-based SUV to wear a Blue Oval, the Expedition rounds out the off-roading and towing capabilities of Ford's SUV lineup. Now in its third generation, the Expedition drums up motivation with a 5.4-liter Triton V-8 athat's mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. All four-wheel-drive models use a heavy-duty transfer case to relay torque produced from the engine down the drive shafts and to both front and rear axle.

2. Honda Odyssey

We recently got our hands on Honda's minivan and as fellow editor Jason Davis said the "Odyssey is a no brainer [to make this list]." The cavernous interior seats seven people comfortably and is loaded is a 16.2-inch fold-down DVD split-screen that would make most personal computer screens blush. The third row seats stow into the floor to maximize cargo room, or you can fit five LATCH-equipped child seats at the same time inside. A 650 watt 12-speaker sound-system lines the interior of the Odyssey and has other features like voice-controlled satellite GPS and a navigation system with real-time traffic updates. The 3.5-liter V-6 engine produces 248 horsepower and is mated to a five- or six-speed automatic transmission, depending on the model.

1. Land Rover Discovery (aka LR4)

The Discovery is a mid-size SUV created by British off-road giant Land Rover, and was first introduced in 1989. The LR4, as it's known in the U.S., was created with the expectations of carrying-on Land Rover's reputation of being a four-wheel-drive vehicle that could do anything and go anywhere. A wide array of off-road features are available including Terrain Response which incorporates different traction settings specifically for the environment around you. Three engines, a 2.7-liter, 3.0-liter, and 5.0-liter variant, are all available and are mated to either a six-speed manual or automatic transmission. Don't agree with our choices? Tell us what you think in the comment section below. *Hawaii, Alaska, and South Dakota do not recognize Columbus Day in any capacity.


i like those kind of models specially the Land Rover Discovery...