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47 Songs About Cars & Driving 2021

Songs About Cars & Driving 2021

Since cars were invented, people have been singing about driving them. I mean, why not?!

If you’re one of those who love the open roads, or even if you don’t and want a song to reflect your feelings towards cars, we’ve a treat for you. We’ve narrowed down the best songs about automobiles and driving on open roads. Here are some of the best songs about cars and driving.

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Contents

“Drive My Car” by The Beatles

Song year: 1965

One of the most popular songs about driving is this classic 1965 song by The Beatles. You have probably heard its most recognizable line where Paul McCartney mimics the sound of a car’s horn.

While this song has been used in numerous car commercials, it is still a great song to listen to when you are in the car and want to hear a rock song about cars and love.

“Red Barchetta” by Rush

Song year: 1981

This classic rock song by the Canadian band Rush is all about the love of driving. The lyrics are set in a future where cars are outlawed, but some still hide away their cars from the past.

For the narrator of the song, driving with the wind in their air, the smell of the car, and everything that goes with it is a perfect way to spend the day in the country. There is even a futuristic car race near the end.

“(Get Your Kicks On) Route 66” by Nat King Cole

Song year: 1946

One of the best songs about driving is this classic from the mid-40s. It has been covered many times and has been in many movies, but it tells of a bygone era. Route 66 is a road that winds its way westward and has been the subject of many stories of cars and driving.

This song shows how important (and fun) driving has been for generations and how it lends itself to great songs from any time.

“Mercury Blues” by The Steve Miller Band

Song year: 1976

If there was ever a love song written about a car, it was this classic about a Mercury vehicle. This cover is a great rock song from the mid-70s, and it has been recorded many times by different artists. The original dates back to the early-50s.

In the song, all he wants to do is get a Mercury car. He even says that if he had money, that would be the first thing he buys.

“Fun Fun Fun” by The Beach Boys

Song year: 1964

The recognizable chorus has been used in commercials across the years, but the song itself is still as fresh as it was in 1964. It is about a girl who loves driving her father’s T-Bird car.

She loves driving fast, going to hamburger stands, and blowing off her schoolwork because driving is too much fun for her. She is going to drive the car as much as she can until her dad takes it away.

“Thunder Road” by Bruce Springsteen

Song year: 1975

This song is considered one of his best and is about freedom on the open road. In it, a girl who is locked away all the time is offered a chance to be free on Thunder Road. He wants her to discover love and the world.

He invites her to come with him in his car where they can ride to many places. Driving can be liberating, which is what Springsteen says here. 

“Get Outta My Dreams, Get Into My Car” by Billy Ocean

Song year: 1988

This song is a classic from the late-80s, and it can be listened to as a metaphor for love. However, literally, it is about turning dreams into a reality, and for Billy Ocean, it involves being with a woman he loves in his car.

The car is one of the central points of the song, and with its upbeat tempo, it is a fun song to listen to when you are driving.

“Trampled Under Foot” by Led Zeppelin

Song year: 1975

This is a funky song by the biggest rock band of the 70s, Led Zeppelin. The lyrics describe the intricate details of a car, such as the leather seats, the steering wheel, and how well it drives on the freeway.

He loves the way the car looks and drives and cannot get enough of it. He talks about wanting to work on the car and loving to do it. Of course, the lyrics could be taken to be a metaphor for love, too.

“The Distance” by Cake

Song year: 1996

This song by Cake uses car racing as a metaphor for working hard in life to reach goals you have set for yourself, even when it may seem hopeless. The song opens with a description of a car race and how everyone is striving to win.

Even when the race is over, the man keeps going because he wants to succeed at all costs. In the end, this song is about perseverance in one’s life to get what one wants.

“Low Rider” by War

Song year: 1975

A low rider is a car that is modified to rest low to the ground, and it is immortalized in this mid-70s song by the band War.  In the song, they mention how the car drives slowly down every street in the neighborhood.

Lowriders are a part of the Chicano culture in the United States, and War made it known to many around the world with their famous song.

“The Golden Age” by Beck

Song year: 2002

In Beck’s song “The Golden Age,” he describes driving in a car as a form of therapy. When life is weighing you, it is a perfect time to get in your car and go for a drive, whether it is under the moon or in the desert.

As long as the wind is in your hair, everything will be okay. The song is acoustic-guitar driven, and a classic example of Beck’s range.

“Autobahn” by Kraftwerk

Song year: 1974

While the original album version runs almost 23 minutes, this song is one of the best songs about driving, though its lyrics are very sparse and simple. The autobahn, one of the most famous highways in the world, is the subject here.

While the lyrics may be in German, it describes driving on the autobahn. As many know, the autobahn is one of the fastest highways in the world, a perfect place to drive. The song has car sound effects placed throughout it, adding to the experience.

“Shut Up and Drive” by Rhianna

Song year: 2007

Here is another song that uses the imagery of a car to stand in for something else. In this case, the lyrics take on a sensual tone. However, throughout the song, she talks about different parts of the car as if she is a car.

It has been used in movies and commercials because of its recognizable chorus where she tells the listener to stop talking and just drive.

“In My Car (I’ll Be the Driver)” by Shania Twain

Song year: 2002

Shania Twain lets her partner know that he can do whatever he likes around the house. He can even blame her for things she has nothing to do with. However, when it comes to her car, she is the boss.

She loves her car, and she says she will be the only one who gets to drive it. He has no say in the matter. It just shows how important cars and driving are to some people.

“Makin’ Thunderbirds” by Bob Seger

Song year: 1982

Instead of a song about driving cars, this song is about making them. Bob Seger’s classic rock song from 1982 is about the factory workers who made the Thunderbird car.

He sings about their appreciation for how great a car it was, and he explains how they were there in the factories making them. The song mentions how all the car-making factories moved away and people lost jobs.

“Car Song” by Elastica

Song year: 1995

A song about the love of driving is nothing new, but this song takes it in a fun direction. All she wants to do is drive around instead of doing anything else. Fords and Hondas are mentioned by name as some of the cars she wants to drive around.

The song has a driving riff that propels it forward, and it is a great song for folks who like nothing better than to drive around and have fun.

“I Live in a Car” by U.K. Subs

Song year: 1979

The title is the story of this short punk song from the 1970s. The man in the song literally lives in a car, but many people can relate to that.

It is a classic punk song with short, choppy riffs and a stripped-down sound. Even the lyrics are pretty straightforward and simple. Yet, it touches on something many people want to do (or have to do): live in a car.

“Highway Star” by Deep Purple

Song year: 1972

This hard rock song from the early 70s is sure to get you pumped up to go for a drive in your favorite car. The lyrics are focused on loving your car and driving it to the max.

The song itself is a hard rocker, and it will make you want to take your car for a fast drive around. As most songs about cars and driving go, this one is all about how powerful and fast the car is.

“Cars” by Gary Numan

Song year: 1979

As Gary Numan sings in this song, the only place he wants to be is in his car. Many people can relate to feeling safe in their car. He talks about being able to lock all the doors and how he can let people in to talk with them.

As the song shows, for many, cars offer a place of sanctuary. It is a sacred place for many because it allows them to be alone without distractions.

“Skidmarks on My Heart” by The Go-Go’s

Song year: 1981

This song takes a different approach to the theme of cars and driving. In this one, the girl is being driven mad by how much her boyfriend loves his car but seemingly not her. She mentions how everything he wants is related to his car, not her.

She even says she buys him things he will like, but he never gets her anything because he just wants to buy things for his car.

“Fast Car” by Tracy Chapman

Song year: 1988

Tracy Chapman sings beautifully from the perspective of someone who just wants to escape the life she is living. She meets someone who has a “fast car” and she tries to devise a plan to get enough money to get out of the situation she is in.

In this song, the car is a mode of salvation. It is her ticket for a better life. Yet, when she escapes, nothing gets as better as she thought it would. She even questions at the end if the car can fly away instead.

“Something Else” by Eddie Cochran

Song year: 1959

Eddie Cochran wants to win the girl but needs a car to do so, or at least he thinks so. In this classic 50s rock tune, he wants to buy a brand-new convertible but does not have the money. So, he gets a job and saves up his money.

Instead, he buys a used Ford. However, he does get the girl in the end, so it all worked out the way he wanted (and the car helped, too).

“Running on Empty” by Jackson Browne

“Running on Empty” by Jackson Browne

Song year: 1977

Using driving as a metaphor for time passing, this classic 1977 tune by Jackson Browne has been used in movies since it was released.

As the song mentions, he has been going his whole life at full speed, but now that he is older he is “running on empty.” In a way, he is the car, and after so much time on the road, he has finally run out of gas, yet he keeps going.

“Turn the Page” by Bob Seger

Song year: 1973

Being a musician means being on the road for long periods, and this 1973 classic is about all the adventures that happen along the way. Bob Seger sings about driving through the night for sixteen hours and stopping at restaurants and performing.

Traveling can be draining, as this song points out. All you want to do is rest and relax, but the trip is not over yet.

“Jerry Was a Racecar Driver” by Primus

Song year: 1991

Primus has always done things differently, and “Jerry Was a Racecar Driver” is no exception. It has a very unique, driving bass line, and the opening lyrics are about the titular Jerry who raced cars.

However, as the song mentions, sometimes he drove too fast and in the end, it caught up to him. The song concludes with Jerry crashing his car. It just shows you should not drive too fast.

“No Particular Place to Go” by Chuck Berry

Song year: 1964

A lot of good things can happen when you go for a random drive. Chuck Berry sings about going for a drive with no destination. On his travels, he meets a girl and goes on a date.

They drive around and end up parking to go for a walk. However, the seatbelt was jammed, so they could never get out of the car. He gets frustrated and has to bring her home.

“I Can’t Drive 55” by Sammy Hagar

Song year: 1984

This song is all about driving fast, but, as the song mentions, the risk is high. Sammy Hagar sings about getting stuck in traffic and getting impatient. So, he does an illegal move but immediately gets arrested.

The song is a hard rocker.  He sings about everything he has to do after he is arrested. Additionally, he tries to defend himself by saying it is difficult to drive slow, but that does not work.

“I’m in Love with My Car” by Queen

Song year: 1975

Queen’s drummer Roger Taylor sings this song from 1975 about his love for his car. It is a true love song for a car. He loves everything about it to the point he breaks up with his girlfriend.

He wants that extra money to buy a new carburetor instead of going on dates with his girl. Despite the silly title, it is a great song and shows just how important cars are to people.

“Mercedes Benz” by Janis Joplin

Song year: 1971

Recorded just before her death, this is a very interesting song from Janis Joplin. The song is sung acapella, and in it, she just wants a Mercedes Benz because she has worked hard her whole life and wants the car as a reward for her hard work.

It is a simple and short song, but it shows that a car is something special and means a lot, especially when you do not have much in your life.

“Chevrolet” by ZZ Top

Song year: 1972

An ode to the Chevrolet, this early 70s ZZ Top song is about traveling around in a Chevrolet and driving slowly to enjoy the ride. He even mentions that he does not need gas because he does not drive fast, which is a good switch from the fast-driving cars usually found in rock music.

The chorus praises the Chevrolet as he shouts “Hallelujah!” over and over as he mentions riding in his Chevrolet.

“Mustang Sally” by Wilson Pickett

Song year: 1965

There have been songs written about all types of cars, and Wilson Pickett wrote this one about a girl who drives a Mustang and drives it fast everywhere around town. He keeps telling her to slow down, but she will not listen to him.

He even buys her a new Mustang, but she does not listen to him, still, and continues to drive quickly everywhere.

“Camaro” by Kings of Leon

Song year: 2007

In this song by Kings of Leon, there is a woman who bought a new, black Camaro, and the guy cannot stop looking at her in her new car because he thinks she looks really good driving it.

He also mentions that the Camaro is very fast and cool, too. Maybe that is why he is thinking so much about how she drives it. He looks at her through his sunglasses and wants to be with her.

“Radar Love” by Golden Earring

Song year: 1973

The title refers to the ability of the narrator of the song who believes he knows when his girlfriend wants him home. He thinks she needs him, so he drives fast to reach her. He drives so fast that the road begins to put him into a trance.

He tries to keep his cool as he is driving, and he is listening to the radio, too. However, he believes she needs him quickly, so he focuses on getting home to her.

“Roll On (Eighteen Wheeler)” by Alabama

Song year: 1984

This song is from the perspective of a child whose father is a trucker. He watches him say goodbye to his mother and wonders when his dad will return.

However, since his father drives an eighteen-wheeler, it could be a long time because he has to drive across the country. However, he goes missing because of a giant crash. They sing a song about rolling on, and, luckily, he calls her to let her know he is all right.

“Highway Patrol” by Junior Brown

Song year: 1993

If you are speeding, a police officer is likely to pull you over, and this Junior Brown song is from the perspective of the patrol officer. He mentions how if you are speeding he will go after you.

He mentions how he has a star on his car. He says it is just his job, but it is one where he is constantly driving and monitoring the streets. It is an interesting perspective to sing from since, usually, it is from the perspective of the driver who is going too fast.

“All I Do Is Drive” by Johnny Cash

Song year: 1974

This song is about driving a truck, but it is done in a call and response manner. The main narrator is asking the truck driver if he has time for music, for love, for restaurants, and other things.

However, the truck driver says that all he has time to do is drive. He does not have time to think of those other things because he has a job to do.

“Six Days on the Road” by Dave Dudley

Song year: 1964

Whether you drive a car or you drive a truck, you can probably relate to this song. It is about being away from home for nearly a week and just wanting to be home, so you drive through the night.

You may be getting tired, but you really want to see your family again. The narrator of the song refuses to stop until he gets home. Long trips on the road can make you homesick, and sometimes you just need to drive straight through until you are home.

“Somewhere in My Car” by Keith Urban

Song year: 2013

Feeling alone and thinking of past experiences is sung a lot in many songs, and in this Keith Urban song, a car is the main location of the memory.

It is, at its core, a love song about a sensual moment they once had in a car that he is remembering because he is without her. Cars have a special place in many people’s minds.

“Bucket T” by Ronny and The Daytonas

Song year: 1964

If you have ever wanted to fix up an old, beat-up car, then this is the perfect song for you. The whole song is about finding an old Bucket T car covered in dirt and broken down.

However, the narrator cleans it and fixes it up so he can ride it. Once it is fixed up, it looks great and turns heads because of all the time he put into it.

“Car Song” by Woody Guthrie

Song year: 1951

This may be a children’s song, but it is a funny one, too. Making the sound of a revved engine, Woody Guthrie humorously opens the song. He then goes on to describe the sounds of the car.

He also sings about how he wants to ride in the car. It is a short, simple, and funny song. It is just him and his guitar singing about a car.

“Jaguar and The Thunderbird” by Chuck Berry

Song year: 1960

This song is a short one, but it describes a race between a Jaguar and a Thunderbird. However, there is a sheriff nearby who is watching everything. Chuck Berry sings about how the sheriff becomes the third racer as he tries to stop the two cars from racing.

It is a fun song that is lively, and Chuck Berry sings about wanting the Jaguar and the Thunderbird to slow down so they will not get in trouble. However, the race does come to an end eventually.

“Daddy’s Song” by The Cardigans

Song year: 1995

One of the best ways to travel around Europe is by car, and in this 1995 song by The Cardigans, the narrator of the song does just that with a bunch of her friends.

However, the car is not hers. The car belongs to her dad, and they decide to take it all around Europe. She says she will send postcards home from the places she visits. The trip is spontaneous, too.

“A13 Trunk Road to the Sea” by Billie Bragg

Song year: 1991

This is another one of those simple songs that do not have a lot of instrumentation, but its lyrics talk about the A13, a road that travels all across the U.K.

The song itself uses the same tune as the more famous “Route 66” song. The main difference is that this one is about a road in the U.K. Traveling by car down long stretches of road to visit a bunch of cities is always something people want to do.

“I Drove All Night” by Roy Orbison

Song year: 1992

This song was written for Roy Orbison, though it was not released until after he died. Either way, it is a song from the perspective of a man who wants to see his girlfriend again, so he drives throughout the night to see her again.

He asks her throughout the song if it was all right that he was driving through the night to see her. He cannot stop thinking about her and just needs to be with her, so the answer is never given, but she was probably okay with it.

“Runnin’ Down a Dream” by Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers

Song year: 1993

Another song that uses driving as a metaphor for chasing something. In this case, a dream. Tom Petty sings about driving in his car and pushing the pedal down so he can make good time.

Yet, he seems to be cognizant that he will never get where he is trying to get to. He says that the dream he is trying to get to will never come to him.

“Rocket 88” by Jackie Brenston and His Delta Cats

Song year: 1951

This oldie is about a Rocket 88 that the narrator of the song buys. He is proud of how new it is and plans to use it to pick up a girl and some friends so they can go grab a beer and ride in style around town.

Many songs are written about getting a new car and showing it off to people, and this one, from 1951, is one of the early ones that started the trend.

“409” by The Beach Boys

Song year: 1962

The title refers to a type of car called the 409. In the song, this is the prized possession of the narrator. He saved up a bunch of money to buy it and now brags that it is the fastest car around because no one can catch it

Even when he races the car, it is always the fastest. Cars and driving are synonymous in music with being fast, and this song is a great example of that.

Best Songs About Cars, Motorcars And Driving – Final Thoughts

It does not matter if you want to listen to these songs when you are driving or when you are thinking about being on the open road.  These songs will conjure up images of driving, of cars, and of anything that goes fast on the pavement.

P.S. Remember though, none of what you've learned will matter if you don't know how to get your music out there and earn from it. Want to learn how to do that? Then get our free ‘5 Steps To Profitable Youtube Music Career' ebook emailed directly to you!

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