PALISADES AUTOMOTIVE: Who We Are is What We Drive

By James Brasher | Special to the Palisadian-Post

If Beverly Hills were a Rolls Royce, Venice a Subaru, Santa Monica a Prius and Malibu a Ferrari, what would Pacific Palisades be?

Buying an automobile is the crossroads of numerous factors, and at the convergence of those factors is a four-wheeled metaphor that profiles the character of its owner. Automobiles and their drivers are the same as pets and their owners.

Buying a car is the convergence of multiple crossroads, but ironically, the Palisades is also a mixture of many subcomponents and pockets as well. We have so many uses for a vehicle, but is there one that can satisfy our needs, and at the same time, identify the owner as a resident of the Palisades?

Marc, a movie executive, father of two and resident of 10 years said, “I need something comfortable for the LA traffic grind, [that] is reliable, nice enough for colleagues and yet versatile since I have kids that I take to the beach on weekends.”

At first, I am a little surprised to find that a studio executive of his level drives a 20-year-old Landcruiser. Albeit, the vehicle’s exterior and passenger compartment are in immaculate condition, I find the rear area filled with his son’s baseball gear and sand from the weekend excursion to the beach.

Elon Musk steps out
Photo courtesy of Tesla

Louise, a mother of three who grew up in the Palisades, informed me that she actually has two vehicles. She uses her smaller vehicle when running errands and for quick trips because it’s fuel efficient and she’s on a budget. But she uses her SUV for hauling her troops and their friends to school and for family outings.

While in the early morning queue for caffeine, I meet Kevin. His perfect hair, athletic build and immaculate suit reek of success. I find that he is an environmental lawyer and am not surprised to learn that he drives a high-end Mercedes. He tells me that he chose that model because, as a partner at a large firm, he represents large industrial clients so he must represent a certain professional image.

At lunch one day, I witnessed a well known, celebrity resident, who certainly appeals to a millennial audience, exit an all-electric vehicle. Instantly I could see that they recognized what impact their image had on society as well as their carbon footprint on the environment.

In the process of examining what kind of car would exemplify the Palisades and be recognized by others, it became clear to me that this wasn’t about buying an automobile, it was more of a discovery of who we are as a community. We are successful, leaders of industry, hardworking, educated, environmentally friendly and family oriented. We also understate our affluence by quietly going about our daily business.

So what, one type of vehicle says all of that? What says family first, is forward thinking, reliable, safe, environmentally friendly, not cheap but also not flashy? After examining all of these factors, there’s really only one vehicle in my mind that combines all of those elements and would say, “that’s a Palisadian.”

Tesla X on the beach
Photo courtesy of Tesla

With its gull wing doors, iPad-like control panel, ludicrous acceleration, all-glass cockpit and forward-thinking technology, that vehicle is the all-electric Tesla X.

Like us, it’s safe, reliable, environmentally friendly, progressive, family oriented, comfortable and all at the same time, sexy, adventurous and futuristic.

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