Love affairs make for the perfect story, but can it be with a car? Pursuits will agree this to be one of the biggest public relation coups of all time, the very single idea that has been a central premise of memorable escapades, culture odyssey and soul enrichment. It’s surprising how magnificently a car can animate the world around you, designing landscapes as per your fancies as it ferries you in comfort.
When the relationship is this earnest, you’d want indulgence to continue on the inside as an extension of self. Feelings about driving are one way in which emotions are embodied with other humans as well as material things, including aesthetics of your personal space. Such ‘automotive emotions’ are embodied within the luxury of a car, and is much more evident as you drive a bold, sporty and luxurious legacy.
And this is why I, Reena Barot, favour driving my Elantra on most occasions more than any other car in my fleet. As a corporate lawyer, I regularly shuffle between clients, cities, moods, thoughts and occasions. With such multifaceted and demanding roles, I constantly look for strong backing of the Hyundai Elantra, which is as dynamic as me.
Why the Elantra? When you’re bold, the world is full of possibilities. When you dare, you reach your goals. When you step out of the sea of sameness, you explore the extraordinary. And the Elantra takes me there. Its sleek headlamps combined with the expressive hexagonal grille create a premium look ready to leap forward. It’s length commands assertiveness and its coupe like sporty rear end is supremely admirable.
Sure the Elantra gets eyeballs rolling but as it does so, I’m mollycoddled in its premium interiors. Taking a seat inside is like entering a world of opulence that has been created exclusively for you. I’ve got the space of my bedroom and some, and the driver-centric ergonomics excite me to get behind the wheel often. It’s stylish too – like the highlights on the AC vents that always match the earning I wear. There’s also the ventilated seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, and the Infinity audio appeasement that elevate my mood and spirits, cheering me even after a challenging day. Simply put, it is a treat to watch, to own and to drive.
Over time with the Elantra, I’ve realised that it alters the perception that people have of me, making me confident and dignified. The stature of the car, both inside and outside, moving or stationary, sensuously shapes and materially projects how associates feel about the car and myself. Whilst I am driving, I am nearly always happy. Driving towards virtually anywhere makes me excited, expectant: full of hope. I often focus on ‘feelings’ being generated around the Elantra as powerful indicators of the emotional currents and submerged moral economies.
The Elantra feels alive beneath my hands, like a metal creature bred for wind and speed. It runs like a breeze and glides over surfaces like a charm. Human bodies physically respond to the thrum of an engine, the growl of a gearbox, or the whoosh of effortless acceleration, but some feel content with a smooth and powerful ride. The ultra-refined 2.0-litre engine has the grunt to keep the dynamics exciting and plush at the same time. This combined with a slick shifting automatic transmission makes driving effortless yet equally enjoyable.
The Elantra has become an article of dress without which I feel uncertain, unclad and incomplete. I’m so used to its pampering, it looking out for me and paving way for my needs that I’d never want to part ways with this beauty. For me, the Elantra is as much a cultural artefact; it is as personal as clothing or jewellery, a key part of my image and part of the ways that I present myself to the world.
Car consumption is never simply about rational economic choices, but is as much about aesthetic, emotional and sensory responses to driving, as well as patterns of kinship and sociability. Caressing the creases on the bodywork, feeling the luxurious upholstery, and availing myself with the driving prowess conjoins me with the Elantra. It’s above all machines that I’ve acquainted with, and adds to my sensory pleasure of inhabiting the physical world. It not only appeals to my ‘instinctual’ aesthetic and kinaesthetic sense, but it transforms the way I sense the world and the capacities of how I interact with that world through interceptive feelings. I not only feel the Elantra, I fare through the world with it. Truly then, an extension of myself.