A person’s usual mode of transportation is a personal decision that often reflects his or her own values and/or status in the world. Depending on their priorities, the type of vehicle a person uses puts them into categories with other like-minded travelers, all commuting in groups of competing lifestyles.
I wonder about the priorities that interest groups have when it comes to, what I will call, the art of transportation. On one extreme, we have the environmental crusaders who generally oppose gas tanks and seek alternate, less pollutant ways to get around. However, sport car and utility vehicle aficionados sometimes have large collections of gas-guzzlers, which they enthusiastically take to the streets for their ultimate rush, regardless of the wasteful implications.
I read recently Ferrari had to recall 1,248 of its model 458 Italia sports cars because four of them had spontaneously caught fire. Investigations revealed flaws in construction, but overall these delicate speed rockets are imploding because of high temperatures incited by excessive use. They were clearly not built for common transportation, so why?
Likewise, the pioneer company of battery-powered cars, Tesla Motors, released a warning recently that perhaps 40 percent of their vehicles have an internal cable that could cause the entire car to burst into flames if it chafes against one of the fiber panels it is actually located adjacent to.
According the Institute for Highway Safety, deaths are twice as likely to occur with sport cars and smart cars than more common models.
Aside from not having a death wish, oil and gas companies thrive on this kind of obsessive dependence on fossil fuels, and it should go without saying that serving the interests of big oil is not in the interest of the general populace.
I love to speed around and get to places unnaturally fast, but I don’t want to explode in order to do it and I don’t want to be at the fuel pump every other day either. The world is already full of so much excess that it seems pointless to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on a joyride that serves no purpose beyond an ego boost.
Author: Megan Mitchell
Megan Mitchell is the managing editor of The Metropolitan. She has worked for the paper since spring 2010 as a reporter, assistant editor, Metrospective editor, and editor-in-chief respectively.