Men are from Mars and women are from Venus, or so it's been said; so how come we're expected to drive the same type of car when we come from different planets?
That being said, here's a list of what I believe are things that women generally want or need in cars. Of course we can't speak for the perspective of every single lady out there, but love it or hate it, it speaks from the perspective of a woman: yours truly.
I’m 5 feet flat, so as much as I love being in high places, I probably will have a hard time driving something that’s just way too big. Although I don’t wear high heels everyday, when I do wear them, I prefer to be able to actually get inside my car and vice versa. How silly would it be to see a woman in a pencil skirt trying to jump up to get inside her car. Not exactly what you would call graceful.
We women (generally) fancy tall guys, just not too tall that we need a ladder just to give you a peck on the cheek. Obviously a 6 ft tall woman and a 7 ft tall man is better to look at than a 5 ft tall woman and 7 ft tall man together. That’s just way too tricky, in so many different perspectives, if you know what I mean; the same applies to our cars.
Sure some ladies prefer to be a man and actually use a stick shift but come on, how can you put lipstick on or get that cup of coffee from the cup holder for a quick sip if you’re too busy grabbing on to the stick?
The reality is that we ladies generally do way too many things while in the car. There have been times I applied nail polish while stuck in traffic on my way to a party, or perhaps the many times I applied mascara while waiting for the red light to turn green. Now how could I have done all this successfully with having to grab onto a stick every five seconds? Impossible!
Parallel Park Assist
How often have I broken into a sweat because the only place I can park at requires parallel parking? All of a sudden I regret not giving that irritating co-worker a ride home so he could save me with this parking feat. What to do? I know people, (coughs) I assure you not me, but people, who have actually asked perfect strangers to get in their car in order to parallel park it for them. Definitely not safe and advisable, but if you weren't equipped with the skill to park this way, what are you to do?
Much like with a few auto brands out there, we want a system that automatically converts to auto-parallel park for you when needed. While it is available on some luxury cars, only one mass market automobile has such a feature in the Philippine auto industry.
A friend of mine told the story of how, when he and his girlfriend started dating, he asked when was the last time she had an oil change, to which she responded, "What? Cars need oil?"
It may seem ludicrous to most men, but really with our busy calendar of appointments to the salon, the spa, the masseuse, who has space in their calendar to map out the scheduled oil change for our car? Provide us a notification system as standard so that we know what needs to be done and at what time.
More Customization Options
Men in general like less frills. It's all about the sleek, dark suits or the monochromatic color coordination with just a touch of hue here and there.Women, on the other hand, we like color. We like accessories, we like standing out, we like personalization.
Where is this in the car industry today? Apart from having to bring the car to an auto accessories store, customizing your car to your desire from the factory is practically non-existent in the local market, unless you were buying a Rolls. Give us more options other than what engine will be in the hood. We want more options when it comes to the seat fabric, the moldings and other interior embellishments.
Long Nail-Friendly Buttons
Men have short nails. Women may choose to have short nails, but when we choose to have long nails, how difficult is it to function in a world with gadgets that are mostly made for people with blunt cut nails? Typing on a keyboard alone becomes tricky once you start growing out your nails.
For girls it's not really called fat fingers, so much as it should be called, 'long fingernails', for all the misspelt words in emails and social media comments. Make car buttons easy for short and long nails so we don't feel like we need a handy pencil in the car just to press buttons once we start growing our claws.
When men leave the house they generally bring their wallet, keys, spectacles and testicles. When women leave the house we have our wallet, keys, spectacles, the entire bathroom and some parts of the kitchen and bedroom.
How often do you see a woman out and about without a bag? Very rarely. That's because we carry a lot of stuff. Make up alone can occupy a tiny bag, then add to that medicine for the cramps, tissues and other hygienic items, slippers to change into when the feet get sore from the high heels, the list goes on.
Make us a car that has enough compartments to fit items that usually get lost underneath the seat or under a bunch of other stuff in the glove compartment.
Easier Seat and Voice Control
First of all, some of these adjustable seat controls feel like you need biceps just to make it move. Kindly make them easier to adjust for us women who don't spend all day at the gym.
Secondly, why is it always so difficult to look for the control buttons? Must the button symbol always look so difficult to guess? Give us a car that can be spoken to; one where you speak the function you need and it does it for you; for example saying "wiper" automatically starts the wiper without you having to physically pull any lever.
Of course an easy-to-see-button that you press for all voice command is recommended so your car doesn't go berserk when you go have a conversation with someone in the car using all the trigger command words.
Bisexuality By Design
No, I don't mean in relationships; or on second thought, maybe I do. What I mean is that the car should be easy enough and pretty enough for me to drive but not so much so that any of my male friends or partner will refuse to be within a meter distance from due to its emasculating characteristics.
This is a car I'd like to ride with people of the opposite sex as well, and the last thing we want is to be made fun of for having a 'girly' car. No girl wants to be perceived as a sissy so, overall, we want a car that makes it easy for us to drive and use, pretty enough that we feel happy to own it without making it too feminine that only women will ever come near it.
Auto Tire Change
Here's a feature that we really all dream of having someday. Yes, it's easy to be the damsel in distress and ask for the random man walking down the street for help as you we twirl our hair in a lost and confused look, but what if we get stranded in stretch of road not commonly passed by living things except for cows or goats? What then?
While far fetched, give us a car with a switch that automatically changes the tire for us. We don't care how it works, so long as it does it. So save us the demo, and instead make the button available in bright colours or metallic tones so we are sure not to forget where it is.
Overall, when men buy cars, they look under the hood. When women buy cars, we trust that what's under the hood is there for a good reason, but we do want something that is easy to use and looks nice. To summarize, we women want functionality, easy interface and physical aesthetics when in comes to cars.
What about you? Do you agree?