Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Small cars

As you can see by the list of cars I've owned (and that I now own), I like small cars. This is ironic, of course, since I am anything but small myself. Now that I drive the Mini on a daily basis, I get a lot of razzing about being so tall while driving such a small car.

I'm not sure why I like small cars so much. They're generally fun to drive, since they have low polar moment and less inertia sloshing around. I like that making a car lighter creates a positive feedback loop (a lighter car can use smaller brakes, which makes it lighter, which means it can use a smaller engine, which makes it lighter...).

People often wonder why, since I'm so tall, I don't drive a big car or SUV. Being 205cm tall, the first thing I look for in a car is how roomy it is for the driver, and I have not found any correlation between exterior size and interior room. Some cars that I have looked at that have excellent room:
  • Mercedes E-class, S-class
  • BMW 3-series and 5-series
  • Mini Cooper
And some cars that have rotten interior space:
  • Porsche Cayman
  • Porsche 911 (1965-1986, 1999-on)
  • Ford Explorer/Expedition
  • Nissan Quest
Being tall has kept me out of some cars that I would have loved to own:
  • Formula Ford
  • Mazda Miata

1 comment:

SMB said...

I may have seen you once. I was on that road I've mentioned when I saw a green mini. I only got a quick glance, but it looked like the driver (male) filled up the front seat pretty well. (In height--I'm not remarking on your weight.)

Before you start feeling uncomfortable, let me assure you that I'm clear across the country now and will no longer be on that road.