Country road in England: fun brake SUV
Photo: RA Kearton / Getty Images
A curvy strip of asphalt that shines in the sun as you carve towards the horizon, your hands on the steering wheel while the corners of your mouth are drawn up.
If you mix all of this with a powerful car, regardless of whether it is a combustion or an electric car, the result is driving pleasure - at least as long as you listen to the advertising or some driving reports.
In fact, all of this is correct, but the decisive factor is the right car.
And no, that doesn't mean a Porsche 911, BMW M3 or Ford Mustang Mach-1.
Because, contrary to what the auto industry, horsepower influencers and motor press propagate, driving fun does not need six or eight cylinders, dual clutch transmissions and adaptive chassis, no sport mode and certainly no sound-optimized exhaust systems.
What applies to pizza also applies to driving
Cars are basically the same as pizza: the more there is on them, the more indefinable and tasteless they become. The shorter the list of ingredients, on the other hand, the better you can taste tomatoes, yeast dough and fine nuances of cheese. To put it another way: the fewer cylinders, accessories, electronics and the like, the better you can feel the road, the forces that act on the car - and yourself. So the complete recipe for maximum driving pleasure is very simple: good weather, winding roads Country road and a low-powered car and a manual transmission.
Yes, the vehicles with maximum driving pleasure are those that are at the bottom of the automotive food chain.
The VW Ups, Toyota Aygos and Kia Picantos of this world.
Because only the lack of power in excess and semi-automatic transmissions that shift in a matter of seconds enables real, unadulterated joy.
Effortlessly whiz down a winding country road at the wheel of a sports car?
To achieve this is about as difficult as preparing a frozen pizza - and the driving experience is interchangeable, as is the taste of the fully baked flatbread.
Hard work leads to real joy
Flying over the same country road in an underpowered small car is a lot more fun. It takes a lot of attention, feeling, and hard work. The rattling three or four cylinder has to be kept in the correct speed range, every gear change, every steering movement has to be perfect so that no valuable momentum is lost. Every curve, every incline is not just taken. It becomes a small challenge that needs to be overcome with finesse - thanks to the low performance, you rarely find yourself in the area of speeding. In the end, the result is a noisy sensory orgy that smells slightly of a clutch and makes you get out of the car with a grin.
But experiencing all of this is not all tedious. This experience is also critically endangered. Because the automotive industry uses old recipes for the electric car: it will fix more power and ensure driving pleasure. Hypercars with 5220 hp, acceleration values to 100 km / h just above - or even below - the mark of two seconds, all of this is possible. The unadulterated, hard-earned driving experience is dying out. Also because the age of manual transmissions and simple small cars is coming to an end.
However, this is not only ensured by the turn to electric cars.
The fuel-saving technology alone makes the little speedsters, the secret kings of the country roads, more and more expensive.
The right measure, namely reducing the climate-damaging emissions from traffic, therefore requires a hard sacrifice: saying goodbye to the unadulterated, honest joy of driving.
As long as it is still possible, instead of holing up in increasingly ugly SUVs and leaving the shifting to a callous machine, we should get into a small car and whiz down a country road again.
The noisy three-cylinder in your ear and a grin on your face.
So, before we do the right thing instead of the fun and drive emission-free, to experience the joy of driving again real and unadulterated.
Until we finally leave it to the car at some point.