So, I got my rental yesterday. It's a Chevy Cobalt.
Let me first give you some background on my car having past. I used to drive an Aveo. If you don't know what an Aveo is, you aren't alone. I find that half the world has no idea that car exists. They are little and fuel efficient and they look a little like a box. Except mine has a trunk (some are hatchbacks) and so it's a little more car-looky and a little less box-on-wheels-looky.
I drove the Aveo for years. Her name was Scarlet, but I usually called her the MiniMobile. Because of her tininess. I could park that car anywhere. I drove it with a car seat in the middle and for the 3 months or so that Brynna rode in the pumpkin seat I had to move my seat up a notch. One notch.
The Husband drives it now with two car seats and no moved up driver's seat. Although, to be fair, he drives closer to the wheel than I do. If I could just take out the driver's seat and drive from the back, that would be great for me.
Then I got the minivan. I swore my allegiance to minivandom and pledged to never drive a mere car again. I mean, the minivan is awesome. It's a traveling dining room for one thing. There are 12 cupholders and it only seats 7. Plus, the back seat folds down into a tabley thing and you can sit in the trunk and eat on the back seat. Or you can take it out and turn it around and look out the back of the car. It's high and you can look down on car drivers. It holds everyone and I can totally truck my whole family plus three. With car seats. It drives like one of those big cars from the 70's too. Like piloting a boat. I love my minivan.
So, when the guy told me at the car rental place that he had a Chevy Cobalt for me, I was a little worried about driving something so small again, but totally unworried about fitting the kids in it because it's supposed to be a size bigger than the Aveo, right? Right?
Turns out that I have to drive with my knees bearing into the steering column to put the baby seat behind me. To put Brynna behind me, I have to drive closer than I like and she's in a booster. This morning after I dropped her off, I moved my seat back into the realm of comfortable and when I got out I noticed my seat was touching hers. Seriously. Volkswagon Beetles have more legroom in the backseat.
But for all that, it has it's perks. It knows when it's dark and turns on the headlights. This is good for me, because I pretty much wear my sunglasses 24-7 and I often don't turn on my headlights until someone honks. It knows what song the radio is playing which is wicked cool because I am constantly driving down the road thinking, "Crap! What is that song? Who sings it? Arrgghh!" Also, it turns down the radio when you slow down. Which seems like an option made for me. I dind't know anyone else did that, but I always do it and now it's automatic.
Also, it's got pick up. I mean, lots of pick up. I mean I hit the gas and it's already going somehow. It also has killer brakes, which is a good thing because between the great pick up and the fact that it wants to speed, I need to be able to stop now and then.
So, all in all. Cobalt, good car if you don't have kids. If you have kids, run. (Which brings me to an interesting side point in which I bitch for a while about the fact that if you want a family car you can't have a fuel efficient car and if you want a fuel efficient car you can't have a family car. I am convinced that this is a construct of the American automobile industry. There has to be a way to get 35 miles to the gallon and still fit in a couple-three car seats. I'm not asking for much, you know. I don't think I should have to sell my environmentalist soul just because I live in the country and have kids.)
On the other hand, I think now that there is a betrayal of Minivan Narnia in my future. I've got about 15 more years until both of my kids are driving and hopefully about 20 years until I have grandkids. So, I figure that gives me 5 years in a mid-life crisis car. I'd like red please.