Everyone knows the sinking feeling of arriving at a Hertz (HTZ) or an Avis (CAR) or an Enterprise, only to learn that all the premium cars are taken. Inevitably you’re stuck with a plum-colored PT Cruiser, those odd little Chryslers that for the past decade have populated rental car outlets across the country. “They’re just so awful,” says Stephanie Springer, a former research associate at a large biotech company in Boston.
Springer and her colleagues once visited Los Angeles and were issued a whole fleet of PT Cruisers. “We ended up carpooling because the people who had PT Cruisers refused to use them,” she says. They briefly considered the possibility that the office administrator who’d booked their itineraries despised them. “I mean, think of The Office. Michael Scott [the hapless boss played by Steve Carell] was driving a PT Cruiser forever,” she says.