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January 15, 2013 • Events, Gear Bits, Rants and Raves

Low Emission Vehicles are Great but Style Still Matters

We are here at the North American International Auto Show and wandering the floor. There are some cool concept cars we’ve seen and some nice 2014 models that look great. There are also an abundance of small, highly economical cars on display. Here are a few examples.

And as we have seen more and more of these small, low emissions vehicles I’m left wondering… Does lower emissions have to also have to mean less style and taste?

9 Responses to " Low Emission Vehicles are Great but Style Still Matters "

  1. Are you implying that the cars pictured lack style? Personally I find cars that try to maximize storage and fuel economy and maintain safety while minimizing both physical and carbon footprint as well as ‘wallet impact’ INCREDIBLY sexy. Gas guzzlers? Fugly. It is all a matter of perspective 🙂

    • dancohen says:

      I find their QUALITIES quite attractive. The now ubiquitous bubble shape they seem to take however strikes me as increasingly meh.

      • Carly Z says:

        They are very bubble-like. I remember reading that the Prius (and copycat designs like the Honda Insight) are designed to reduce wind resistance and therefore help with fuel mileage…but when a car is as small as the ones in these pictures I wonder if the bubble design makes a major difference.

        • It does … but in the sense of trying to compensate for being so small. It is an interesting effect – larger cars weigh more and suffer for that, but they are better able to form air foils due to longer wheelbase. Shorter cars need to still have space for people and stuff, AND they are aiming for ~2x MPG of large cars, while also maintaining safety. The laws of physics only give so many paths to those goals …

  2. I love the idea of getting better mpg, but I have to admit that none of these look like they could take on a deer (buzzard, turkey, or feral hog) safely, and that is a hazard I always have to watch out for when driving where I live. =P

  3. thsu says:

    Good things do come in small packages, but these cars ain’t it. Give me a Mini Cooper instead.

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