Honda’s silly car for women, and a look inside the Enclave

During the past weekend, I saw two interesting news stories related to women and cars. One was ridiculous, the other sublime.

The first one, the ridiculous one, announced that Honda has introduced a new car designed just for women. It’s a version of Honda’s subcompact, the Fit, and it’s called the Honda Fit She’s. Yes, it’s the “She’s.” I’m sorry, I wish I could tell you that’s a typo.

As if the name weren’t horrible enough, the She’s is painted pink. The car is available only in Japan at this time, and so far Honda isn’t saying if there are plans to sell it elsewhere. I predict that if they bring it to the U.S., it’ll bomb really bad unless the minimum age for girls to get a driver’s license is lowered to 12.

The Fit She’s does include one significant innovation: skin-protective UV-blocking window glass. The motivation behind having it in a car designed for women is wrinkle-prevention, of course, but the less vanity-based advantage of UV-blocking window glass is skin cancer prevention, something even men should care about. It ought to be used on all cars, and Honda could be an industry-leader in that regard.

Here’s the link to the pink story.

The second story, the sublime one, is about a woman who quite possibly has saved your life or the life of someone you know. It’s about Susan P. Baker, an 82-year-old epidemiologist who has spent more than 40 years studying the various causes of human death and figuring out ways to eliminate them. “To say that a car crash is an accident is to say it’s a matter of chance, a surprise, but car crashes happen all the time, and the injuries that people sustain in those crashes are usually predictable and preventable,” Baker said. We can thank her for many of the safety features we take for granted in cars today — things such as airbags, anti-lock brakes and car seats for infants and young children. See the story here.

As promised in the Oct. 26 post, some specifics about the new 2013 Buick Enclave:

The exterior design of the previous version is such a winner that Buick would be crazy to tamper too much with it. And they didn’t. For 2013, the Enclave exterior has been updated with a new hood, fenders and grille, LED daytime running lamps and taillamps, and body color front and rear fascias and rocker moldings.

Inside, climate controls are redesigned, the instrument panel and door trim have real stitching, and cool-looking ambient lighting has been added. In a move Susan P. Baker would approve of, a front center side airbag enhances passenger safety considerably by protecting drivers and front passengers in far-side impact crashes. When a car is T-boned (hit from the side), the person seated on the opposite side of the car is thrown toward the impact side. This new front center side airbag, which keeps the driver and front-seat passenger from smashing into each other, is an industry-first for General Motors.

Potential front-seat passengers will also be pleased to know that an eight-way power front passenger seat is now offered as an optional goodie.

Other safety upgrades include a rear vision camera (standard equipment) and an optional blind spot monitoring system with rear cross-traffic alert.

The 2013 Enclave gets an improved six-speed automatic transmission with overdrive, and new suspension for a smoother, more sophisticated ride. Designers put special focus on making Enclave’s already quiet interior even more peaceful.

The new model year also ushers in four new exterior colors: Mocha Bronze Metallic, Champagne Silver Metallic, Atlantis Blue Metallic, and Iridium Metallic.

Not only is the Enclave Buick’s best seller, but it’s also the top selling three-row luxury crossover on the market. Unlike many three-row vehicles that aren’t enormous, Enclave has a third row that can actually accommodate adults.

Pricing for the 2013 Enclave starts at $38,270.

This information about the 2013 Buick Enclave is based on a brief media preview by the manufacturer. Mary Lowry’s review of the vehicle will appear at a later date.

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