Jean Knows Cars is not just the name of this website; it's a true fact. I have been writing about cars and the car business for more than 30 years, having learned about cars at the kitchen table from my late father, Robert Lienert, who was the editor of Automotive News. At age eighteen, I bought a used car, painted it yellow, installed a toplight and a meter, and joined the Yellow Cab Company in Ann Arbor, Michigan, as an owner/operator. Five years later, I got a job at Chrysler’s test track as a test driver, welder, and mechanic in the impact lab. In 1980, I was hired as a writer at Car and Driver magazine after getting laid off at Chrysler, and in 1985 I left to establish Automobile Magazine with David E. Davis, Jr. I was the magazine’s first Executive Editor, became Editor in Chief in 2000, and added the title of President of Automobile Magazine in 2006.
I’ve been profiled in The New Yorker and have been a guest on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno. I was a guest on the Oprah Winfrey Show, teaching Oprah and her studio audience how to change a tire and to jump a battery. I was Good Morning America’s automotive correspondent from 1994 to 2000 and then did the same thing for the Oxygen network.
I have won awards for feature writing, car reviews, and my monthly Automobile Magazine column, “Vile Gossip,” including the 2007 Ken Purdy Award for Excellence in Automotive Journalism. I’m a regular on-air contributor to Fox Business Network; CNBC’s Closing Bell, Squawk Box, Behind the Wheel, and Power Lunch; MSNBC; CBS This Morning and Evening News; and CNN’s American Morning and Headline News. In fact, I would almost call myself a TV slut, but I’m proud to say that I turned Geraldo down.
All of this has taken place in a male-dominated automotive space, where I’m all too frequently the only woman in the room. I know the secret handshake, but JeanKnowsCars.com is going to be a place where you don’t have to.
I live in the Michigan countryside with my husband, Tim, and the entire food chain. You’re going to get to know my driveway and my dogs really, really well. Just keep reading.