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Can you solve this car-in-a-box puzzle? You’re in the minority if you can

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Tom Fordy
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Are you one of those people who loves to click on a puzzle to waste time, only to click off again once you realise you haven’t got the brainpower for it, convincing yourself that you haven’t got the time after all?

So far, only a third of people can figure out this particular conundrum. So you might want to stick with this one – solve it and prove you belong among clever folk.

The puzzle – published on Brilliant.org by user Puzzlefizzy Is Awesome – is this: there are three boxes, one of which contains a car, and you have to figure out which. Easy, right? Actually no. But never fear, we’ve got the solution below if it’s giving you a headache just to think about it.

Check it out:


There are 3 boxes, exactly one of which has a car. You can keep the car if you pick the correct box.

On each box there is a statement, exactly one of which is true.

Box 1: The car is in this box. 
Box 2: The car is not in this box. 
Box 3: The car is not in box 1.

Which box has the car?


Got it? Aced it? Swaggering around smugly about what a massive brain-box you are? Or no? Don’t feel bad. Only 37 per cent of people have done it.

OK, so here’s the answer….

It’s box 2 (our third guess, so we were close enough).

If it was in box 1, that would mean both the statements on boxes 1 and 2 would both be correct.

If the car was in box 3, then both the statements on boxes 2 and 3 would be correct, so it can't be that either.

In that case, it must be box 2, which means only the statement on box 3 is true. Still confused? Here’s another Brilliant.org user to explain it better than we could. With pictures and everything.

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Tom Fordy

Tom Fordy is a London-based writer. He is former men's magazine editor and is now works as a lifestyle and entertainment journalist and opinionated beard for hire. His interests include the great literary works of the 20th century, New Wave European cinema and the career of Hulk Hogan. Follow Tom on Twitter: @TheTomFordy

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