Car obsession: What thoughts do you get while driving

When I'm driving, I think about my car's several aspects. On the other hand, when my friends are driving, they just think about other things in life.

BHPian 2000rpm recently shared this with other enthusiasts.


I am starting this thread as I have started noticing how much I think about the car while driving on so many aspects while my friends are just casually thinking about other things in life while driving.

Some of my thoughts are below, tell me if I am weird.

  • Clutch vs Suspension - If I don't slow down for each speed breaker, this will lead to lower usage of my clutch but will take a toll on my suspension. However, this will also result in lower wear and tear of the brakes and better fuel consumption. Which approach will be more cost-effective.
  • Guessing the RPM - I am always guessing what RPM the car is at without looking at the tacho and I am almost always accurate with my guess in a wide variety of cars.
  • Judging people on the road with bad driving manners - Assuming people who drive poorly are low IQ. People who drive at 50 on the first lane on the expressway/highway. People who change lanes at high speed without indicators.
  • Birds of the same flock - I always try to notice the driving patterns of other vehicles and I am always trying to spot cars that are tagged along (friends/family/security).
  • Anticipatory driving - It's a game I play with myself to see how well I am able to anticipate the traffic behaviour ahead of me so that I can drive with lower usage of brakes with only engine braking (I would be a great EV driver I guess!)

As a result of all this, there is so much going on in my head that I am a very boring guy to travel with, however, the trips are always fun for me!

Here's what GTO had to say about the matter:

Likewise, man. A good car with good roads and good music = total bliss. Such drives are therapeutic to me. Almost like meditation, I "get in the zone" and have some of my best thoughts & ideas... be it on the personal, business or spiritual fronts.

Enthusiast-wise, and I'm sure it's the same for all of us, I sort of create a bond with the car. You listen to it, pay attention to all the communication the car is giving you. The really good machines become like an extension of you. From recent drives, I experienced this with the XUV700, although not the Bolero Neo (as an example). I drive fast, but smooth and don't really worry about the hardware or health of the car.

Here's what BHPian Dr.AD had to say about the matter:

Agree with you, and I am somewhat similar. When I drive a car, I am totally engrossed in the driving. I say that I keep talking to my car and the car keeps talking to me. We have our own secret language that nobody else understands.

Driving is like a game for me and I play that game very seriously. I only keep thinking about the car and how the car is performing, the road, the traffic and other cars, also my navigational/trip data (I love looking at maps and continuously calculating and keeping a mental track of things such as distance traveled, average speed, distance to go, ETA at next stop, etc). There is so much interesting and fascinating stuff like this that I think about. I hardly ever think about life outside the car when I drive.

That is why solo drives work the best for me. Luckily for me, my wife knows me well and she is totally fine with this. She loves to sleep in the car when we travel. Thus, we have a very happy partnership where she peacefully sleeps in the car when we go on a long drive, and I get engrossed in the game of driving the car without talking to anyone.

On the other hand, some of my colleagues and non-car enthusiast friends are totally opposite. They keep talking about so many things while driving the car (work, news, personal life, other topics) and they hardly ever pay attention to actual driving. I find it a bit weird. And I am sure they find my driving behavior weird too. I guess it is only fair to say "to each their own".

Here's what BHPian ashis89 had to say about the matter:

Steering wheel and gear shift in hand, favourite music playing and eyes on the road - nothing else gets on my mind. Makes me a poor communicator especially if the roads are busy but my co-passengers have accepted it.

The erring co-occupants of the road do get a mouthful from me once in a while. But they can't hear me at all as my windows are rolled up, always. I just exercise my freedom of expression and right to privacy in one go.

Observe and anticipate - these are very useful skills that help mitigate risks. Have been using them forever now, whether I am driving or just walking.

Here's what BHPian dhanushs had to say about the matter:

I don't think you are weird at all buddy! That's the passion in your mind thinking.

I was very similar or even more over the board, imagining the cornering forces, traction of the tyres and what not! However, nowadays, there's too much going on in life that an A-B transit isn't as involving as before. Even then, I feel the need to be truly connected to the car while driving!

All the sounds don't go unnoticed or appreciated. Similarly the handling, power, comfort and more!

Check out BHPian comments for more insights and information.

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