September 2005


In the fifties and sixties, the French answer to the Volkswagen was the Citroen 2CV, the “deux chevaux”, known in the Netherlands as the lelijke eend – the “ugly duckling.” It was a tiny little piece of tin that could not be imported into the US because it presented such a patent danger to its driver and passengers, but yet its occupants enjoyed half the fatality rate of those in the largest, heaviest BMW.

Why? For the same reason that the contemporary American list of safest vehicles begins with a couple of normal sedans and includes near the top several minivans. Not until way down the list do you see a single representative of the SUV, the vehicle that most folks claim they bought for its safety.

You live longer when you’re cautious…and when you’re not King of the Road.

On the other hand, talk about going out in a blaze of glory. Check out this A. americana down the street:

Agave Americana

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