Monday, 8 February 2010


There is something quite disconcerting about driving an unfamiliar car.  You see, I borrowed the courtesy car from the garage today cos they had to service and MOT my car and I didn't want to take a day off in order to leave the car at the garage.  (point of fact - the car was meant to be done the Friday before last but the garage agreed to let me have the courtesy car today if I waited for the service/MOT because they had someone off sick back then.)

Anyway....I had a little red Mitsubishi Colt (2007 reg) and it really was very strange driving this car.  For a start, my car is probably particularly low to the ground and so driving this red car I felt as though I was about two metres up!!  (yes, I know that's an exaggeration, but it jolly well felt like it.) 

When I first got in the car I had to rearrange all the mirrors to suit  me and then I had to make sure that I knew where the lights, indicators and windscreen wiper controls were!! I only had the car for one day so I didn't worry too much about not finding the rear windscreen wiper control and by the end of the day I STILL couldn't figure out how to put the headlights on full beam instead of just dipped.  Fortunately I wasn't going far and so didn't need them...although I must have confused a lorry driver when I flashed to indicate that he could pull in and instead of a flash, he had two full ON beams for a couple of seconds while I scrabbled around to turn them off (and on and off again!!)

I reckon that there must be no stranger experience than that of driving an unfamiliar car - I mean if you're driving it for just one day then you don't have time to get used to the dimensions of the car or how the brakes react and little things like that.  Which certainly make parking a challenge - lets just say that I made sure that I parked away from the other cars and let them park around me!!  Hey - I wasn't wonky, I just didn't want to ding any other car or even this one!

While it was a weird experience, I did think that it was a nice little car and I did like the fact that it told me how many petrol miles I had left and how cold it was outside (1C - too cold!) - information that I don't get in my present car, so I am looking forward to having something like that when I eventually upgrade the car which is not happening any time soon.

Addendum: it IS possible to take efficiency too far - I got home with newly serviced and MOT'd car only to find a reminder for said MOT on my doormat!!!


Alice Teh said...

I'm not sure about driving an unfamiliar car but when I sat in one, I actually felt strange...

Heckety said...

Yes its very odd and everything you say is so true. I had a courtesy car before Christmas, and besides all your observations add the fact that it had no pwer when going up hill. As we live in the hills this was a problem, but I didn't actually have to make the passengers get out and push! Even driving the Hub's Peugeot feels like I'm in a humvee or some ridiculous piece of machinery!

Anonymous said...

Hey - thanks so much for stopping by. I've enjoyed my visit and I'll be back.

I love driving unusual cars, except for getting used to braking systems :)

Reluctant Blogger said...

Yes, I agree.

When my car had it's little accident last year I had a hire car for about 3 weeks and it was only towards the end of that time that I could drive in a relaxed way without worrying about braking too hard or forgetting how to turn the lights on. Then it took me weeks to get used to my own car again!

Heather! said...

LOL...I know what you mean and I hate that! 'Where's the turn signal?!' :) I always think of how it's sort of similar to the moment after you've been rolling skating (or blading, but apparently I'm stuck in the 80's!) and you put your own shoes back on...whoa! It takes ya a minute or ten to get used to them again.

Hope you are back in your own vehicle and have gotten used to it again! :)