No Apology For My "Pathology"

Posted on July 29, 2009 by LCT Magazine

AMUSEMENT OF THE DAY: I can now add a new tattoo to my thick skin: "Pathological Disdainer."

PRIUS ENVY? At least the aforementioned label is far more clever than the deranged, dirty insults snipered at me and LCT by an unnamed Napoleonic boor (bore?) at an industry discussion forum who fulminates continuously while those of us full- and over-timers are working. But, I digress. One of the finest, well-written, and most visually attractive blogs in the industry, All Things Limousine, has an insightful discussion about large vehicles -- you know, the types of vehicles that define luxury-based chauffeured transportation.

My argument against the Toyota Prius -- once everyone calms down and gets past the politically correct hysterics -- is that compact vehicles don't belong. Otherwise, why even bother with a luxury-based chauffeured transportation industry? We can just have car services like Avis WeDriveU pick up people, including those of us more than 6-feet tall, in small vehicles like the Fit, the Prius, the VW Bug, etc., fold up our knees, and call it a day.

I actually like the Prius, especially when I see a motorist commuting in one down a Los Angeles freeway. The mileage makes sense. But as a British Columbian operator who sat in my office last month mentioned to me, completely unsolicited: The Prius is just too small to use as a green (chauffeured) vehicle. 

And, yes, I do understand the dynamics of customer demand. If someone is willing to pay good money to ride tandem on a scooter, then obviously you provide the scooter and make a profit. But don't call it a limo or lump it in with luxury-based chauffeured transportation. Label truthfully, please.

So far from being pathological, I consider my "disdain" eminently logical. -- Martin Romjue, LCT editor     

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