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"There is one major exception to the general magical aversion to Muggle technology, and that is the car (and, to a lesser extent, motorbikes and trains).[...] It is pointless to deny that wizardkind looked with great envy upon the speedy and comfortable automobiles that began filling the roads in the twentieth century, and eventually even the Ministry of Magic bought a fleet of cars, modifying them with various useful charms and enjoying them very much indeed. Many wizards love cars with a child-like passion, and there have been cases of pure-bloods who claim never to touch a Muggle artefact, and yet are discovered to have a flying Rolls Royce in their garage."
— Many wizards begrudgingly envy cars[src]

A car (or automobile) was a Muggle wheeled vehicle usually propelled by an internal combustion engine used to transport one or more people. It was a very popular mode of transportation for Muggles, and it was known to have been used by wizards on some occasions. In the Muggle world, the usage of cars was regulated by devices such as traffic lights and parking metres.

Some Muggles viewed cars as status symbols and Vernon Dursley, in particular, tended to judge people by what type of car they drove. Harry Potter, however, felt that Vernon wouldn't have taken to Arthur Weasley even if he drove a Ferrari (a brand of the car known for top-of-the-line luxury).[1] Harry Potter was told by his uncle Vernon and aunt Petunia that his parents, James Potter and Lily Evans had died in a car crash.[2] This, however, was a lie to conceal from Harry that his parents were wizards, and they had died from Killing Curses cast by the feared Dark Wizard Lord Voldemort while trying to protect him.[3]

Wizard use of cars

A car from the 1920s

Despite generally showing disinterest or even disdain towards Muggle artefacts, many wizards are known to be envious of Muggles for their cars. The British Ministry of Magic maintained a fleet of staff cars that could be borrowed by employees, and even staunchly anti-Muggle pure-bloods had been known to purchase luxury cars such as Rolls Royces.[4]

Although a car was defined as a Muggle artefact and is therefore illegal to enchant under British wizarding law, nevertheless there were a few enchanted cars in Britain. The Ministry of Magic had cars that navigated traffic with magical ease.[4] Mundungus Fletcher "borrowed" a car to take the Weasleys to visit Arthur in the hospital on Christmas day; he had magically enlarged it to fit more passengers.[5] Ronald Weasley and Harry Potter were known to own one of these in their adult years.[6]

During the 1990–1991 school year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, Professor Arif Sikander taught seventh-year Muggle Studies students about cars, giving each student a blue model car to study for the duration of the lesson.[7]

Known cars

"You were seen. 'Two Muggles in London, convinced they saw an old car flying over the Post Office tower...'"
Severus Snape reading from the Evening Prophet[src]
Owner Enchantments Notes
Weasley family When Harry Potter and Ron Weasley used the car to fly to Hogwarts, the car crashed into the Whomping Willow and then took off into the Forbidden Forest.[8] Its whereabouts after that is unknown.
Dursley family None In 1993 Vernon Dursley got a new company car.[9]
British Ministry of Magic In 1993 the Ministry lent the cars to Arthur Weasley to transport his family along with Harry Potter and Hermione Granger to King's Cross Station.[10][11]
Unidentified Muggle taxi company None In 1994 the Weasleys were forced to call three Muggle taxis to bring them, Harry Potter and Hermione Granger to King's Cross Station.[12]
Unknown, "borrowed" by Mundungus Fletcher[5] Mundungus used this car to transport the current residents of 12 Grimmauld Place to St Mungo's on 25 December 1995.[5]
Ronald Weasley and Hermione Granger In 2017, Ron told Harry that he passed his driving test, so it is assumed that they owned a car.[6]

Appearances

Notes and references

  1. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Chapter 4 (Back to The Burrow)
  2. Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, Chapter 2 (The Vanishing Glass)
  3. Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, Chapter 4 (The Keeper of the Keys)
  4. 4.0 4.1 Writing by J. K. Rowling: "Technology" at Wizarding World
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Chapter 23 (Christmas on the Closed Ward)
  6. 6.0 6.1 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Epilogue (Nineteen Years Later)
  7. Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery, Year 7, Chapter 35 (The Auror Programme) - Muggle Studies Lesson "Cars"
  8. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Chapter 5 (The Whomping Willow)
  9. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Chapter 1 (Owl Post)
  10. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Chapter 4 (The Leaky Cauldron)
  11. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Chapter 5 (The Dementor)
  12. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Chapter 11 (Aboard the Hogwarts Express)
Muggle Studies
Muggle Studies class HM.png
Professors: Quirinus Quirrell · Arif Sikander · Unidentified male professor · Charity Burbage · Alecto Carrow · Concordia Rowle
Classrooms: Art Classroom · Fifth Floor classroom · Muggle Studies Classroom · Muggle Studies showroom · Music Classroom
Textbooks: Home Life and Social Habits of British Muggles
Subjects: Car (Model car) · Electricity · Hair spray · Light bulb · Muggle transportation · Radio · Roller Skates · Rotary phone · Rubber duck
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