I QUITE like road trips. In the UK at least. But when you hit the continent they get a bit more complicated.
Not only do you have to put up with driving on the ‘wrong’ side of the road, but there’s the foreign drivers to contend with too.
Today I made the trip to the Frankfurt Motor Show courtesy of Kia and their slightly revamped Sedona. Driving with Paul Myles from The People we headed east across Europe through France, Belgium and Germany.
This meant we were thrown together with a bunch of other drivers with varying abilities and styles.
First up were the Belgians. Relaxed and sedate, they plod along in search of pommes frites mit mayo in a variety of sensible (boring) French and Japanese hatches. Usually quick to get out your way (surrender), they’re more chicanes than fellow road users.
The Germans were a different bunch though. Fast saloons, bolshie driving style and a complete disregard for their speedo –it’s pretty much redundant on das Autobahn anyway – we were more often getting out of their way.
Which left the French. Fast, arrogant and most likely drunk, they attached themselves to our rear bumper like unfunny stickers, indicators flashing away as they tried to barge us aside.
It didn’t help our Kia has English plates – they hate us Brits – making their desire to get past all the more intense.
Talking of the Sedona, it’s pretty good. Yes the interior lacks any real flair, but it’s very comfortable and functional and packed with clever touches like the table between the front seats and reversing camera on the rear-view mirror.
We’re driving the latest model with a 2.2-litre diesel engine which is punchy, and although not quite Autobahn super-quick, sprightly all the same. There’s a new six-speed self-shifter too, which has been useful in the jams we had to contend with leaving Blighty.
The Frankfurt show starts tomorrow, stay tuned to AutoBlog for updates throughout the day.