A Tall Guy, A Mini-Cooper and Toasted Buns

We have a guy here at work that tops out at 6’3” (he also happens to be remarkably fit – he has a beard, and we call him ‘Young Abe Lincoln’…but I digress). He’s been driving his mother-in-law’s Mini-Cooper while his pickup is in the shop. On my first day back after the wedding, I offered him a test-drive of my SMART. While it did require some amateur origami to get him into the car, he was pretty comfortable once he was in. His only complaint was that while the seat moves backwards and forwards, it doesn’t go up or down, which puts his eye level slightly above where the windshield meets the window frame. Not ideal, but he did mention that he’s had that problem in a number of other cars.

Quid pro quo, he let me go around the block in the Mini-Cooper. I had never been in one. (It really put my rusty standard-transmission skills to the test, but my dad would be proud to hear that I didn’t stall out once.) It was LOW. And the windows are SMALL. I felt cramped, especially coming straight from my SMART. I can’t imagine what it would be like to sit in the backseat, especially when Young Abe Lincoln is driving. He puts the driver’s seat practically IN the backseat to get enough legroom. I can absolutely see the appeal – it is a cute little car, but it was so different from the SMART. Just made me feel that I had made the right decision.

Who knew there was something that could make a Mini-Cooper look big?

One of the things I KNEW I wanted in my next car was heated seats, and so I splurged for the comfort package, and I am SO glad that I did, especially on the 20-degree mornings we’ve been having lately. There is nothing better than having a warm and toasty backside while the car gets itself warmed up. I have yet to use the high setting – the low setting does such a nice job.

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Comment by Ted on December 13, 2008 at 12:55am
I'm 6'3" and have been driving my Smart since Mar 18,2008. I don't have any problems getting into the car. The door opens very wide and it is very easy to step into the vehicle, easier than the Nissan Pathfinder that is my multi-passenger vehicle. My line of site is very good, except for the rear view mirror that sometimes interferes with my forward vision. There is more headroom in the Smart than in the Pathfinder, I can wear a cowboy hat in the Smart and I can't in the Pathfinder!

My wife is 5'1" and also has a Smart. I find it amazing that we can both drive the same car without having to raise and lower the seats. We have a lot of fun chasing each other down the highway and seeing the reaction of the other drivers.

Love our Smarts
Comment by Eric on December 11, 2008 at 1:55pm
I agree I love that the smart sit ups higher than most cars. And isn't it great that to upgrade to the comfort package was only like $800? You picked a great color. The other day I was following a 60's model Mini and couldn't help but laugh because I felt like a giant compared to how low that car sits.
Comment by I'm Bill.. my smart is Annie on December 11, 2008 at 12:42pm
I too drove a mini-cooper while on the waiting list for a smart. It was a copper "S" with a 6 speed. It performed awsome. However, I also felt like I was sitting on the street. If I were to put my elbow on the window , it would be pointing almost straight up. Going through a drive-threw for a burger would require looking up to the window. Everyone in other cars were also looking down in order to see me sitting beside them at the light. I have heated cloth seats in my smart, and that is an option that is well worth the money. I hope you enjoy your smart as much as I do mine. I wouldn't trade it for 2 mini's.. lol
Comment by Becky on December 10, 2008 at 8:41pm
Leslie, does your husband (husband!!!!!!!!!) know that you've been trading rides with another man?????? lol!!

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