despite what movies tell you it is nearly impossible to make a car explode using only bullets. The reason is that petrol, or gas as those in the US call it. does not burn in it's liquid form. (note: you can light a puddle of petrol because the fumes directly above it burn, and the heat from the fire makes more fumes, which then burn... etc.)
One of the things I loved about the origional mafia game was it's realistic aproach to the actual destructability of vehicles. (given the technology of the time) so seing a trailor where one of the development team said that shooting the gas tank would make a car explode just simply made me groan. In mafia 1 if you shoot the fuel tank, it starts to leak. No explosion. Just leaks.
THIS IS CORRECT!
as far as I'm aware it's the only game ever released to get this right. and in my book gets allot of cudos for this. It is therefore very sadening for me, that Mafia 2 has forgotten this in favour for the lies spread by movies and other arcade games.
I can only prey that an option can / will be added to swap the way the fuel tank behaves when shot between "movie mode" (explodes) and "Real Life" (leaks).