I somewhat agree about safety but I think there is a serious disconnect here. I don't know what everyone's personal feelings are about motor cycles but if we are going to compare a small gas sipping car versus a 3/4 ton gas guzzling pick ups in head on collisions....I think we will have to also compare the Smart in a head on collision with a Harley Davidson.
My personal opinion is that if DOT deems motorcycles are safe to drive at high rates of speed on all roads then how in the world can anyone deem an enclosed vehicle unsafe for our roads because it is small?
I guess we would even have to test our Tahoes, Excursions, and Suburbans against say a Good Ol' Bulldog Mack Truck.
I want motorcycle type gas mileage in an enclosed vehicle that has heat in the winter and a roof to keep me dry when it rains. If it is deemed too small for the highway at 65mph, I promise I will stay on the side roads. I've actually been eyeballing a Cushman and wondering why can't we drive those on side roads and Mopeds are allowed???
I know I'm slightly off balance in the brain...too much lead paint in my past
...but I'm getting annoyed by gas prices and it doesn't seem like the auto industry is working quick enough or good enough to combat against those prices. And when something does come along...we want to squash it because it might not be safe enough because it is a car and it must go through crash testing. I say screw the crash tests...if my friend wants to take chances on his Harley...I want to be allowed to take chances in my small car at 60 mpg.
Actually I don't think the DOT considers a motorcycle safe.... at all. And some states don't require helmets.. Oh well, Darwin's Laws eventually prevail..
My likes and dislikes on vehicles pivot around what other drivers can do to me... I used to commute on a Motorcycle... and got run off the road, pulled in front of, sandwiched out of my lane onto the white line between two cars way too often... the fun of riding the bike became constant defensive-driving which gets very tiring..
The smarty car in europe fit right in,, most cars in the city are small.. there just isn't room.. But in say NYC, virtually 80% of the vehicles are cabs and limos.. so a small car is just about like a motorcycle..
It's all personal taste,, your tollerance for risk, your willingness to drive more defensively etc... I just prefer to drive a large, tall vehicle for my regular rush-hour commute,,, and I use a VW TDI Jetta for longer drives.. can't beat 45+mpg..
I wish I could find the photo,, it's probably gone,,, but in Stuttgart, the 'authorities' made some 'smart-car' parking spots... the cars were parked sideways in a normal parallel parking spot, with the rear or front tires on the curb, and protruding onto the sidewalk a foot or so... If the sidewalk was wide enough, these spots provided two spaces where one 'normal car' would fit if parallel parked..
I'll be currious to see if the Smart car lives up to it's mileage claims too.. the hybrids haven't done as well as advertised..
To each their own....