Small Car Society

Effective Living > Life Mobility

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Summary. The Small Car Society is a voice for the Small Car Movement. As millions of people around the world are looking for solutions to smaller, simpler, and more sustainable living, there’s a renewed interest in smaller vehicles because of their lower cost of ownership and low impact on the planet.

Benefits. Generally speaking, little tiny micro small mini cars have many advantages. They offer better maneuverability and easier parking. Better fuel efficiency, and fewer resources used in production make small cars environmentally friendly. Small cars are inexpensive to purchase, insure, and maintain. Finally, they look cute, happy, youthful, and are fun to drive. For these reasons and others, intelligent and thoughtful people are trading in their old cars, and purchasing small cars. Isn’t it time you considered a small car? For yourself; For the planet; Drive a small car.

“Small cars represent one of the fastest growing segments in both the U.S. and around the world.” GM President and CEO Fritz Henderson [Source|Print]

Parking Ticket Relief Program

Thank You For Driving Small! The Parking Ticket Relief Program is our way of thanking you for driving small. When someone chooses to drive a small car, we all benefit. Small cars generally make less noise. Fewer resources are used in their production and operation. They take up less space. Small cars are cute and fun to look at. In an accident, small cars are safer because they are less likely to cause significant damage to the passengers in other vehicles. A special class of tiny cars, the Neighborhood Electric Vehicles (NEVs), have a greater degree of safety because they are set to have a top speed of 25MPH. Because of all these benefits, at the Small Car Society, we believe that small car owners deserve a break when it comes to paying for parking. So, we’ve established the Parking Ticket Relief Program. You may have discovered the Small Car Society as a result of our Parking Ticket Relief Program. As a part of this program, we’re lobbying and petitioning local city governments to allow free parking for all small cars. That means no tickets and not having to pay for parking ramp access or parking meters. Until the day when we reach our goal of free parking for all tiny car owners, the Small Car Society will be selectively paying parking meters and parking tickets as we find them on small cars. We also encourage our members to randomly pay parking meters for small cars. Click here for our parking relief PDF document.

“Sometimes big problems are best solved using small solutions.” ~ [g]

The Best Cars At Any Price. Small cars are stylish and smart, and that’s why cars like the Smart Car are featured in movies such as DaVinci Code, Pink Panther, Scoop, A Good Year, Legally Blond 2, Just Married, and Agent Cody Banks 2. When other larger and more expensive cars could have been featured, producers choose smart, small, and stylish instead. Why own a mundane and average large car when you could own a small car just like the Hollywood movie stars drive?

Membership. To join the Small Car Society, simply subscribe to our free monthly newsletter, and consider joining our online Yahoo discussion group. Membership to the Small Car Society is voluntary. However, we encouraged members to donate $5 per year (as described below).

Donations. To support our work, and help promote smaller living, consider joining as a member at the $5 annual membership level. You can make a secure online donation of $5 (or another amount) with Credit/Debit card using Paypal. To help reduce our administrative costs, we also offer automated annual giving of $5 through PayPal. Although we prefer online payments, if you prefer, donations can also be sent by postal mail to Small Car Society, c/o ResourcesForLife.com, PO Box 2717, Iowa City, IA 52244-2717 USA. Thanks!

Safety. While misinformation about small car safety abounds, the fact is that small cars actually offer many safety benefits such as:

  • Accident Prevention Technology. Many small cars offer anti-lock breaks and specialized handling packages that allow the driver to avoid accidents. Smaller cars are made with fewer materials, so more money can be invested in safety features. For example, the Chevy Aveo includes three separate traction and maneuvering safety technologies (antilock brake system, stabilitrak, and traction control). The Honda Fit features Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA®) with traction control (Fit Sport with Navigation).
  • Impact Countermeasures. The Honda Fit offers six airbags as well as other safety features. Most small cars utilize high strength materials that are light weight.
  • Improved Control Through Reduced Mass. Small cars are light and nimble which means they can maneuver quickly and easily. Large cars are sometimes referred to as boats because they handle sluggishly since they have so much mass and weight that nees to be navigated. There can be a delay in the response time from when you turn the wheel and when the car starts to turn — not so with a little car.
  • Improved Stopping Distance. If you’re trying to stop a big heavy vehicle, you’ll need plenty of breaking power to slow down such a large and massive pile of metal. If you hit a patch of snow, ice, or wet pavement, your chances of slowing down in time to avoid an accident are minimal. Since many collisions are with objects such as railing, poles, cement, telephone poles, ligth posts, and similar road size hazards, safety isn’t a question of one car versus another. Instead, true safety is a matter of the effective maneuverability of your vehicle.
  • Safer For Everyone. If you’re simply concerned for your own safety and not that of anyone else, the above facts would be reason enough to get a small car. However, most of us are concerned about the well being and safety of others. For this reason, smaller cars make a good choice because they have a reduced likelihood of inflicting injury to other people (or property). Big cars present the most danger to everyone.

Manufacturers. Because of the numerous advantages and safety features of small cars, forward thinking and progressive auto manufacturers are designing, building, and promoting them. Here are a few of the more popular tiny little micro small mini car models and their respective manufacturers:

  • Audi A3. Although the Audi A3 is among the most expensive of the tiny cars, and it’s top fuel economy is about 30 MPG, it’s one of the most powerful small cars available with up to 250 horsepower of propulsion.
  • Chevy Aveo. With an estimated 34 MPG highway fuel efficiency and plenty of included technology, the Chevy Aveo is an economical and enjoyable car to drive.
  • Ford Fiesta. The Ford Fiesta has long been a favorite among domestic tiny cars. The European ECOnetic Fiesta achieves fuel economy up to 65 MPG in some models.
  • Honda Fit. Offering up to 35 MPG fuel efficiency, six airbags, iPod audio interface, ten beverage holders, and Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation with voice recognition, you’ll feel like you’re flying in first class. Fuel efficiency is 28 city, 35 highway, 31 average. Starts at $14,705.
  • Hyundai Accent. For under $10,000 with an accent on luxury, efficiency, and economy, the Hyundai Accent offers an abundance of power and prestige while saving the planet and some money. Fuel efficiency is 26 city, 35 highway, 29 average. Starts at $9,970.
  • Kia Rio. With extravagant appointments and an abundance of amenities, the high performance, high efficiency Kia Rio is priced at $12,145 and above. Fuel efficiency is 26 city, 35 highway, 30 average.
  • Mazda Miata MX-5. The Mazda Miata is one of the best known tiny convertible cars. The Mazda 3 offers greater fuel efficiency and a lower purchase price.
  • Mercedes SLK 300. If you don’t have the half-million dollars needed to purchase the Mercedes 617 horsepower McLaren Roadster, the Mercedes SLK 300 is a relatively economical alternative.
  • Mini Cooper. While the Mini Cooper isn’t the least expensive small car around, it may be one of the most stylish. With high performance and top speeds in excess of 120 MPH, the Mini Cooper still offers fuel efficiency of up to 37 MPG.
  • Škoda Fabia. “It is our great pleasure to introduce you to the second generation of one of the most successful models in the history of our company. The Fabia is ready to offer you even more positive emotions and pleasant experiences than its predecessor. The new generation of Fabias is again one of the foremost representatives of the small car segment.”
  • Smart Car. Small cars are definitely smart cars, and the Smart Car brand is one of the cutest and smallest available, and one of the most efficient by offering up to 41 MPG. The Smart For Two Coupe offers fuel efficiency of 33 city, 41 highway, 36 average. Starts at $11,990.
  • Tata Nano. “Tata Motors has won the Wall Street Journal Technology Innovation Award in the ‘Transportation’ category.” (source) [Tata Nano on Facebook]
  • Toyota Yaris. The excellent quality of Toyota vehicles is universally accepted and acknowledged even among their competition. The Toyota Yaris is no exception. With up to 36 MPG and a plentiful list of options, luxury and economy are combined in one. Fuel efficiency is 29 city, 35 highway, 31 average. Starts at $12,205.
  • Volkswagen VW Beetle Bug. The VW Bug is one of the cars that started the tiny car revolution back in the 1960s. Through innovation and creative design, VW impacted the automotive industry around the world. At 29 MPG, the VW Beetle isn’t the most fuel efficient. However, what it lacks in fuel efficiency it makes up for in style and quality. [Review]

Other Initiatives. While we are primarily engaged in the promotion of smaller more sustainable vehicles, we also are engaged in initiatives that encourage people to live closer to where they work, and consider walking or riding a bicycle instead of driving.

“What we’ve seen in the housing market is not so much a collapse of home values in general, but more specifically a decline in the value of large homes. The same trend is anticipated in the auto industry. Large vehicles will be increasingly difficult to sell, and their value will be rapidly declining.” ~ [g]

Resources. Below are resources for learning more about small cars.

Featured Video. Below is a video presenting the Think City vehicle.

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