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it's all about the cup security

So Volvo got a bunch of their female workers together and had them design a car with women in mind. This prototype will include such innovations as a valley down the center of the headrest for ponytail wearers, and an hood that can only be opened by a mechanic (who is contacted by some wireless thigamajig) because women just hate to be bothered with mechanical maintanence of a car.


I have two payments left on my Explorer and then I'll be looking for a new car. Not because I don't like my SUV, it's just old ('92). When I go out and look for a new car I don't think that room for a ponytail is going to be a number one priority. That is just demeaning to women everywhere. It's an outrage! It's scandalous! When I go out comparison shopping I will have my automobile priorities straight.

It's about the cupholder. I want an expandable/contractable, deep cupholder. I want one that can hold either an 8oz bottle of water or a 20 oz cup of 7-11 coffee, and hold them tight, hold them like a clingy lover. Oh, and I want them to have some kind of insulation so that the cool liquids stay cool and the hot liquids stay hot. I want cold water and steaming coffee. I want to run into the bookstore, get lost in the graphic novel section and come out hours later to find the ice in my lemonade still in it's original rectangular form.

In fact, make it two cup holders. No, four. Two up front and two in the back so my kids can have their shocking green or bright blue drinks stay in their bottles instead of decorating the backseat with sugary stains. And I want those drinks locked in there so tight (think suction) so that when I fly over a speedbump and round a corner at 90 in an effort to get that parking spot before that bitch in the Expedition gets there, they stay in their containers. Oh sure, my kids will fly out of their seatbelts, which aren't nearly as secure as those cupholders, and they'll bounce all over the car, bumping heads and probably knocking each other unconcious, but my grande vanilla frappucino with whipped cream and caramel will not budge one inch.

I can change my own oil. I can charge the battery and change a flat tire and figure out when I need a new fan belt. But I refuse to scrub the various dried up liquids off of the floor mats just because my cupholder is just about big enough to hold a thimblefull of hot chocolate.

Which probably explains the funky odor in my car.


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» Cars for Women! from angelweave
Michele at A Small Victory has a post about Volvo (you know - They're Boxy but They're Good) designing a car with women in mind. She says: So Volvo got a bunch of their female workers together and had them design a car with women in mind. This prototyp... [Read More]


I don't see why I can't have a ponytail and mechanical aptitude.
And a big-ass drink holder 'cause woman, I hear you.

i hear ya' about the cupholder... but i need TWO cupholders that are expandable... my cavalier doesn't have that - it's not like i have a passenger in my car that often, but, i go to dunkin donuts and get big arse cups of coffee/coolatas/etc that don't fit... i have the one cup holder that is in the center console/storage thing, then the other cup holder is a 1/4inch deep ledge that sits right in front of the stickshift... um, when i'm in 1st or 3rd, my hand knocks into it and it either a) spills or b)annoys the crap out of me... not to mention when it's sitting in the "ledge", it blocks my view/access of my radio... oh, i could go on and on about the cupholder... as i said, i hear ya' about the cups, sistah...

Jeez. The only thing the Autofemme 3000 is missing is a tampon dispenser in place of the glove box.

Oh HELL yeah about the cupholder...I want mine to be able to deal with my oversized water bottle (for when I go to the gym) as easily as it deals with my (one of many) coffee cups. And I want my drinks to either stay cold or stay warm.

Is that so much to ask?!

Hey, there is nothing wrong with a pony-tail thing, there are plenty of blokes who have them too.

Jeez. The only thing the Autofemme 3000 is missing is a tampon dispenser in place of the glove box.

Actually, it's in the seat and is fully automated. Ah, progress!

How about an extra bubbledome for the kids?

Oh my lord, I thought you were joking about the hood.

What dumbassery.

I have a female friend who drives a Lexus SUV, and she says the heated seats are the best part because she gets really bad cramps. I'm surprised that's not on their list, but I think they've been standard in Volvos since the 1980s.

cupholders are a definite must. i shopped for my first car looking only for a/c and a decent stereo. now, it's cupholders and how-far-back-can-my-kids-sit-w/out-kicking-my-seat that's important.

upgrade from explorer to expedition. two decent solid cupholders in middle console and one in the dash. two more between two kid seats in armrest. two more for middle seat, expandable, on back of console. two more in the wheelwells beside third seat. i don't have that many cups.

I thought the hood thing was a joke at first too. That's like not putting in a reverse gear because women hate to back up.

A few years ago my wife and I had three vehicles with zero cupholders between them! Source of much bitching and moaning. Now we probably have a dozen in our two vehicles - it's hot drink heaven.

A slot for the ponytail? Who actually drives with their head back against the headrest anyway?

We just got a very nice `99 Honda CR-V a couple of months ago. The first thing our kids noticed about the interior: "Hey, it's got lots of cupholders!"

ok mama
for moi
i want a car like they used to make them
when i learned how to drive
i hate all this computerized crap
every time i rent a car i feel like i have to learn how to drive all over again
i just want it easy
with a killer stereo
and yeah
a few cup holders would be nice
as for feminizing a car
honey my girlfriend drives a 65 mustang
thats all the woman i want in my car
roaring engine
and attitude
maybe they should design a car for men with small penises
lke the ones who came up with the ponytail idea

"Hood that can be opened only by a mechanic" would in practice probably mean "Hood that can be opened only by a mechanic from a Volvo dealership," which would be very nice for Volvo dealers and very bad for anyone stuck 100 miles from the nearest one...

Remind me to never buy a car from volvo...designs like this sink companies. Hood that can't be opened except by a mechanic? Hello! Not all women have six inch fake nails and have more oxygen in their face cream than in their brain cells. Every girl I've ever gone out with has done maintinance on their car at one point or another and if/when I get married I'd never buy a car like that for my wife, or let her buy one.

When your stuck out in the middle of no where, in a snow storm because your battery won't start and you have to WAIT for a mechanic to come just so you can jump it? Haha, yea ok.

I assume they have jumper posts accessible somewhere, like they do with the washer fluid filler. This is just to prevent women from having to look at all the messy bits they wouldn't understand anyway.

How ironic is it that this is being presented as an example of women's empowerment when it seems identical to the sort of condescension that male designers and salesmen get criticized for?

If you're serious about car looking, I strongly suggest getting a Toyota. The high resale and reliability will spare you a lot of headaches believe me, even if you have to pay a little more upfront than for say, a Hyundai. I think their cupholders have gotten bigger too (and expandable) with the latest models. That's always been my pet peeve as well. Try slamming a 7-11 Super Gulp into a cupholder meant for nothing bigger than an 12oz soda can and your risk in getting into an accident just leapfrogged the risk from yakking on a cell phone.

Come to think of it, didn't Homer design a car with cupholders that could hold Double Gulp sized drinks? It was the episode where he met his long lost half brother. Heh.

I imagine when they say the front panel is not meant to be opened except by a mechanic, that they mean "there's no hood release lever", and "you have to undo a couple of bolts to take it off", not "you need special Volvo Hood Removing Machines to do it".

Let's not get silly.

(Best thing I ever did to my Mercedes, though, was put in a cup holder. Damned Krauts and their no-cup-holders.)

What a bunch of condescending dinks.

The only person in my family who wears a ponytail is my soon to be son in law.

I live in the sticks, have a husand half a world away and they want to give me a hood that won't open? riiiight.

I'll stick with my truck thankyouverymuch.

4 cupholders that adjust for size, an engine compartment big enough to SIT in if I need to change an alternator, comfortable, power enough to tow a loaded 3 horse slant, and a kick ass stereo to boot.

volvo can kiss my dust

Some of this sounds pretty condescending all right. Maybe Euro-women don't wanna have to break a nail by putting gas in the car either - so make it Nuclear powered! sheesh. I felt dissed at the "need" for the on-board computer to "take over" and parallel park for you. Who says women can't parallel park? THis sounds like the concept car from the 50's that was pink and had extra big mirrors so you could put your lipstick on. Oh, and it came with a matching pink parasol.

My first car had a carb that flooded real easy. I learned how to jam a pencil in the choke to get it started. I am not exactly MS Goodwrench, but I want to be able to lift my own hood thank you very much.

Johno and Andy wrote:

"Jeez. The only thing the Autofemme 3000 is missing is a tampon dispenser in place of the glove box.

Actually, it's in the seat and is fully automated. Ah, progress!"

I can see it now...

"Dear, I am going to borrow your car...what is this button for?"


You have to remove one to get one...ouch!

True story: Several years ago someone (possibly the San Jose Mercury News) got a bunch of women together to design a computer (actually kind of a PDA thingy) that would be for women.

One of the Merc's staff wrote a piece on it. She was really excited. Yeah! None of this stereotyped, male condescension bullshit! What women really want! And what was her dream application for this revolutionary, visionary, womyn-empowering device?

It would keep track of calories.

Oh, for fun! Jane Jetson, eat my dust!

(I believe Joanne Jacobs was on the panel, but she wasn't the calorie-conscious writer.)

The Toyota Echo does have good cupholders, though the ones in front are a little too close to the bottom of the ashtray/stereo compartment to fit a really tall cup in.

Anyway, my only priority in a car right now is that it run and not cost too much. I'll buy one of those plastic door thingies to hold my cups.

except for the warm/cold factor, the Chrysler Pacifica has some pretty cool cupholders, and actually drives better than the XC90, for like 10K less. I love that thing, and I'm a sportscar person.

Insulated supersized cup holders....YES!!!! That's on the top of my list, too.

You want to add heated seats to your list. Nothing beats heated seats when you have cramps.