Finding the Perfect Road Trip Car

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My first California road trip of 2018 is in the books. A few weeks back I had the chance to run up to San Luis Obispo County for a couple of days. Granted, this was in the middle of the dreadful and devastating rain storms and mudslides that were pouring through the central coast. Instead of my usual trip up Highway 101, I took the 5 for the first time ever.

This would also be my first long drive in my new sedan. Since having to give up my SUV in the summer.

A regret I will continue to have is not utilizing my big SUV for a “proper” road trip. How I wish I’d done a road trip across the country in my big car. Or, realistically, even up to Seattle or Portland. You’ve heard of a Beach Bum? I wanted to be a Car Bum and travel and live out of that beast. In my dreams.

I did, however, drive my SUV to San Francisco and San Diego. And countless of adventures in between. Having loved my trips up the coast to Solvang (or last year, Santa Maria), I questioned how this trip to San Luis Obispo would pan out. Right down to the hail and fog storm along the Grapevine I just had to get caught in.

I really hated driving in the rain or wind with my SUV. While it was a large and fairly mighty car, I still was afraid that one wrong slip or turn, and I would swerve or flip. I also admit, those brakes were hard in bad weather conditions. While it was not ideal to be driving during a storm, I felt surprisingly safe until it passed. Bonus: The windshield wipers worked much better than my old car!

Where will the open road take you?
I love to make a pit stop to PIsmo Beach, California…
For the beach views!

When I traveled in my SUV, I loved the idea of so much room to pack. So much so, by the time that I had to say goodbye to her, the car was an absolute disaster. A graveyard for water bottles, CD’s, brochures from past trips, promo sunglasses. The list goes on. Something I am loving with my more compact sedan, there is a great amount of room and it’s easy to up keep. There is not the space to keep unnecessary things hanging around. And in my case, that’s a good thing. I’m forced to clear it out whenever I get home to not run the risk of a pile-up.

Some of my favorite memories traveling in my 2004 car is all the music I would play. Unfortunately, the speakers were blowing out and if I did tune them just right, it would all just come out of the back passenger. I also did not have blue tooth or auxiliary. I had to use a USB cassette tape in the tape deck to play Spotify, and the cable did not always work.

In my 2013 car? No playback issues yet, baby–and the blue tooth really makes me feel apart of this century!

It also could be difficult parking often in the SUV. I am still getting used to pulling into “Compact” spaces. But, of course, the #1 best thing about the new car? I think we all know: The gas mileage. I filled up in San Luis Obsipo for under $45 and had over 500 miles til empty.

Stay tuned for more stories from my San Luis Obispo adventures. While I was definitely reminiscent of my SUV in the new car, I must say–I feel a lot safer in it (a hand-me-down gift from my incredible husband) and know this trip was the first of many more to come!

What kind of car do you hit the road in? If you’re in need of a great new car, I know next time we’re looking we’ll be using Check them out and let me know what you think!

And, if you have a damaged car you’re looking to get rid of, check out Car Brain! xo