Hyundai Tiburon
Hyundai Tiburon

The other day I was watching TV and happened to see a Hyundai car commercial (a natural thing to see, considering the show I was watching featured a Hyundai as one of the main character’s rides).  It made me think of the Hyundai Tiburon I owned up until recently, when I traded it for a new Toyota Prius C.  And I found myself saying: “Sometimes I miss my Tiburon.  That car was sexy.  There’s nothing sexy about my new Prius.”

But upon giving it further thought, I realized I had to take that statement back.  Because, like so many other things, sexy is much more than the outside package.

Sure, the Tiburon looked sexy.  I bought the 2000 model because it emulated the original prototype for the Tiburon, unlike the previous models.  And for a hatchback, you couldn’t get a car much prettier.  It had fluid and sensuous lines, a hood and side profile that reminded you of the Mach 5 (without the points over the front fenders), great ergonomics, and those sexy round “shark-eye” headlights… mmmmm.

But under the skin was nothing spectacular.  In fact, it featured technology that had been packaged into automobiles for pretty much forty years with little real change.  The interior was the same, with very familiar dash and controls, nothing that hadn’t been seen in cars for the last half-century.  And the engine achieved the same mileage as the 20-year-old Datsun I’d traded for it.

Toyota Prius C
Toyota Prius C

Compare this with the Prius C: On the outside, the car doesn’t look like anything sexy.  In fact, I’ve struggled to figure out what this car does remind me of, and so far, the best I’ve been able to come up with has been a pug.  Pugs may be cute… but they’re sure not sexy.

But then you get inside, and you see what makes this car a pleasure: An interior that reeks of modern acoutrements, such as map technology, communications features and integration with today’s personal media devices, and upgradable to add even more bells and whistles; a dashboard that monitors your car, and your driving, like never before; and under the hood, a hybrid gas-electric engine that beats the pants off of gas-powered cars in terms of efficiency, averaging almost 20 more miles per gallon than the Tiburon and being almost as peppy.  This is the stuff that the tech geek in me really appreciates: A car that’s keeping up with the latest technology.

It can be easy to just default to the obvious when it comes to snap judgements.  But sometimes you need to look a bit deeper to see the real beauty and value of something.  The Prius C may look like a smoosh-faced dog on the outside, but on the inside, it’s a lean, mean technological machine.  And to a tech geek, that is sexy.

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