“Total strangers often boldly approach us in the veggies’ section to ask what car they should buy next.”

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Judging by the number of people who stop to chat to members of the Driveway team in the supermarket, most of you still rely on newspapers like this one to help narrow down your next-car shortlist.

Total strangers often boldly approach us in the veggies’ section to ask what car they should buy next. After a few questions about what their budget is and how they will use the vehicle, we can usually give them five products to consider. I should add, that lead reviewer Zack Spencer fields most questions in airport lounges across the country!

Next to house buying, it’s generally a family’s second largest purchase made, so it should be no surprise that people want to seek advice.

We learned earlier this year, that polling revealed that our readers will spend a staggering $3.6 billion on new cars in the next year and another $1.69 million on used cars or preowned, if we are to be sensitive to the feelings of those vehicles with a few kilometres on their clock!

It’s true there are so many electronic ways now available to do that basic research but while the internet and social media play an important role in your car selection, auto writers romance you in print over the months leading up to you signing on the dotted line.

We bring you news of the latest products and test drive as many of them as we can for you. What has changed dramatically in recent years is the way we present that information. For many years, automotive sections were a strictly male domain and we thought that all we needed to do was make a few remarks about a subject car’s handling, print some pictures then list its specifications. Pretty boring, really, unless you are a car nut.

Now there is solid research that reveals that women play a major role in the purchase decisions made in around 80 percent of car sales. And it’s obvious that most males really do not spend their days trolling automotive websites, as some would have us believe. Some men will even admit they really don’t know that much about cars. I know, say it ain’t so.

For the aforementioned reasons, we at Driveway try to bring you stories about, or involving cars, that are of a broader interest. Whenever possible, we bring your lifestyle-oriented stories that may involve, travel, fashion and even music that speak to regular folks.

Just one example: Who could resist reading recently about Alexandra Straub’s about her drive in an Audi from Munich to Budapest, just to have a home cooked meal with her grandparents. (Judging by the response, not many! We even included the menu and recipe.)

In the coming year, we will continue to share such stories with you, to entertain you and inform you. And we want to hear your stories about your road trips, your favourite cars and what you would like to read more about in Driveway.

Please don’t hesitate to drop me a line or stop me in the meat section of the supermarket, which is more likely where you will find me.

Contact: keith [dot] morgan [at] drivewaybc [dot] ca

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