(though I figure continuously improving crash protection is part of the answer)
This is mostly what I was thinking of. With the size of vehicles increasing many people are worried about driving a small vehicle due to crash safety. My opinion is, "there's always a bigger fish." Simply meaning that if you're driving an SUV for "safety" reasons getting hit by another SUV or a big rig is just as likely to get you killed as being in a small car.
Then again, I knew a woman years ago whose RX7 got run over (literally) by a pickup and she walked out of it without a scratch. Nothing is guaranteed when it comes to accidents.
As for the Accord - yeah, it was practically a compact when it was released.
I don't know. I guess individuality is what makes the world go around. We can't expect everyone to follow the same convictions we share. There are times when it would be nice to be able to keep up with the proverbial Joneses, but for daily life - it's too stressful to worry about it.
The sad moment when an economy car becomes a cushy little love mobile. The new camry is a freaking tank! My mom's 93 camry, I now know, is amazing. It's small, simple, roomy, and safe, get good mileage, is a stick shift, and has never hada problem the family didn't ask it to.
It's much nicer than the last (6- or 8-year-old) Corolla I drove. Quiet, taut suspension, more solid. And the slickest, most expensive feeling turn & wiper stalks I've ever operated. Weird observation, but there you go.
I liked the fact that the autobox upshifted (smoothly) at very low road speeds under light load. 3rd gear at 30 km/h - that's how I shift the Flea! And that's with a cold engine. I wonder if it might shift sooner when warmed up...
I used the car to go pick up the transaxle to make a taller Blackfly.
I drove a 2004 corolla ce for a while. The car was good on FE. Driving 50/50 highway/city I got like 35mpg. That was before i started doing anything to improve FE. The one thing that I didn't really like was that the suspension was on the soft side, and the steering wheel was placed for someone in the 5'10 range. Other than that the corolla is a great car.
I have noticed that cars have been getting bigger over time. You might attribute it to people getting bigger, particularly in the US. Just look at the cars over in Europe. Most of them are smaller than their US counterpart. Plus, people associate a bigger car with more luxury. It detracts from the "econobox" stereotype.
They are not making the cars to accomidate the fat people. They are making the cars bigger so they can bring in a smaller model. Yaris then corolla. Fit then civic. It doesn't matter what the car is now, most of them are designed for fat people anyway. US is 66% overweight. Just wanted to get the facts straight.