Car Video:  Oversteer

Here's What It's Like to Drive an Aston Martin Through the Middle of Nowhere

RELATED INVENTORY
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
Used 2007 Honda Accord EX-L
Used 2007 Honda Accord
$5,890
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
Used 2007 Nissan Versa 1.8 S
Used 2007 Nissan Versa
$5,995
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
Used 2007 Chevrolet Corvette Z06
Used 2007 Chevrolet Corvette
$40,000
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
Used 2007 Toyota 4Runner 2WD
Used 2007 Toyota 4Runner
$11,000
RELATED READING
See all Aston Martin V8 Vantage articles
RESEARCH BY MAKE
Toyota cars, trucks and SUVs Ford cars, trucks and SUVs Honda cars, trucks and SUVs Chevrolet cars, trucks and SUVs Jeep cars, trucks and SUVs Nissan cars, trucks and SUVs Lexus cars, trucks and SUVs Volkswagen cars, trucks and SUVs Aston Martin cars, trucks and SUVs
Acura cars, trucks and SUVs Alfa Romeo cars, trucks and SUVs AMC cars, trucks and SUVs Aston Martin cars, trucks and SUVs Audi cars, trucks and SUVs Bentley cars, trucks and SUVs BMW cars, trucks and SUVs Bugatti cars, trucks and SUVs Buick cars, trucks and SUVs Cadillac cars, trucks and SUVs Chevrolet cars, trucks and SUVs Chrysler cars, trucks and SUVs Daewoo cars, trucks and SUVs Datsun cars, trucks and SUVs DeLorean cars, trucks and SUVs Dodge cars, trucks and SUVs Eagle cars, trucks and SUVs Ferrari cars, trucks and SUVs FIAT cars, trucks and SUVs Fisker cars, trucks and SUVs Ford cars, trucks and SUVs Freightliner cars, trucks and SUVs Genesis cars, trucks and SUVs Geo cars, trucks and SUVs GMC cars, trucks and SUVs Honda cars, trucks and SUVs HUMMER cars, trucks and SUVs Hyundai cars, trucks and SUVs INFINITI cars, trucks and SUVs Isuzu cars, trucks and SUVs Jaguar cars, trucks and SUVs Jeep cars, trucks and SUVs Kia cars, trucks and SUVs Lamborghini cars, trucks and SUVs Land Rover cars, trucks and SUVs Lexus cars, trucks and SUVs Lincoln cars, trucks and SUVs Lotus cars, trucks and SUVs Maserati cars, trucks and SUVs Maybach cars, trucks and SUVs Mazda cars, trucks and SUVs McLaren cars, trucks and SUVs Mercedes-Benz cars, trucks and SUVs Mercury cars, trucks and SUVs MINI cars, trucks and SUVs Mitsubishi cars, trucks and SUVs Nissan cars, trucks and SUVs Oldsmobile cars, trucks and SUVs Plymouth cars, trucks and SUVs Pontiac cars, trucks and SUVs Porsche cars, trucks and SUVs RAM cars, trucks and SUVs Rolls-Royce cars, trucks and SUVs Saab cars, trucks and SUVs Saturn cars, trucks and SUVs Scion cars, trucks and SUVs smart cars, trucks and SUVs SRT cars, trucks and SUVs Subaru cars, trucks and SUVs Suzuki cars, trucks and SUVs Tesla cars, trucks and SUVs Toyota cars, trucks and SUVs Volkswagen cars, trucks and SUVs Volvo cars, trucks and SUVs Yugo cars, trucks and SUVs
RESEARCH BY STYLE
AWD/4WD
Commercial
Convertible
Coupe
Hatchback
Hybrid/Electric
Luxury
Sedan
SUV/Crossover
Truck
Van/Minivan
Wagon
ADDITIONAL MODEL INFORMATION

author photo by Doug DeMuro September 2016

There are three primary things you encounter when you drive an exotic car through the middle of nowhere. One is open-mouthed stares from people who live in the middle of nowhere. Another is strange things being driven down the highway. Finally, there are bugs. Lots and lots of bugs.

My whole life, I've wondered what it would be like to drive an exotic car through the smallest towns in the middle of the Great Plains, and over the last few days -- driving from Toledo, Ohio, to Denver, Colorado, in my Aston Martin -- I've finally found out. Here's what I discovered.

The Attention

A lot of city people with lots of exotic-car-viewing experience would look at my V8 Vantage and assert that it's "only" an Aston Martin and not a Ferrari, that it's "only" a 2007 and not brand-new, that it's "only" a V8 and not a V12, and that it's "only" silver and not some flashy color such as orange. And I wouldn't argue with any of these assessments.

But when people live in the middle of nowhere, these aren't the kinds of things they think. They think, "Oh my God, that Bentley is worth a million dollars."

I'm dead serious. I got off the interstate on Sunday to drive for 5 hours directly through tiny towns in rural Nebraska and eastern Colorado, and I received an enormous amount of attention in every single one of them. Kids point. Adults crank their heads in awe. A sheriff's deputy in a marked Dodge Charger literally gave me an open-mouthed stare in Wray, Colorado -- population 2,000. And so far I haven't been able to get through one single fuel stop without a well-intentioned, polite Midwesterner walking up and asking, "What kind of car is that?!"

Not one person who lives in the middle of nowhere has yet guessed it's an Aston Martin. You want to know why? Because not one person who lives in the middle of nowhere has ever seen an Aston Martin.

This is a huge contrast to Philadelphia, where I live. Although I complained 3 years ago that my Ferrari drew far too much attention whenever I would drive it, the Aston Martin generally flies under the radar on the East Coast. But this isn't the case on the Great Plains, where my Aston Martin is often the only foreign car in the entire town, maybe the entire county.

In some small towns, I'll see a guy driving a C5 Corvette. He must be the mayor.

The Infrastructure

Not surprisingly, the infrastructure in rural America isn't exactly Aston Martin-friendly. There are potholes in rural areas of Nebraska that could double as orchestra pits.

As I write this, I'm only 1,800 miles into the trip, and I've already taken a rock chip to the windshield. I've also scraped the plastic panel below my Aston Martin's front bumper by simply driving down city streets in small towns, where the drainage gutters are sometimes located in depressions -- this is completely true -- an entire foot below the road surface. Of course, most middle-of-nowhere residents don't worry about this, because most middle-of-nowhere residents are driving pickup trucks the size of a thunderstorm.

And then there's the fuel. A few days ago, I visited a gas station in Cambridge, Nebraska -- population 1,000 -- that had two types of fuel: regular and super. Both were 87-octane.

What I've learned about the fuel situation is that you cannot count on finding premium gas anywhere once you leave the interstate. Since my route took me on some serious back-road U.S. highways, I drove through entire towns that had no gas station and other towns where the sole gas station only offered regular fuel. Only in the big cities -- such as McCook, Nebraska (population 7,698) -- did the fuel stations claim to have premium.

The Bugs

There are currently bugs the size of wombats attached to the front of my car.

I did not know there were bugs this big.

If you live in the Great Plains, I have only this advice: Run for cover. And get bug spray.

Car Trouble?

Despite the rough roads, the long distances, the dubious fuel and the giant distances between Aston Martin dealers, my V8 Vantage hasn't had a single problem so far. Admittedly, as I write this I'm only 1,800 miles into the trip -- with 4,400 miles and 13 states left to go -- but the car has been completely rock-solid. No check-engine lights, no strange noises, no unusually high engine temperatures.

I've been tracking my fuel economy, and I'll give you an overall number (and an accompanying spreadsheet for you Doug-style data geeks) when my trip is complete.

Meet-Ups

As many of you know, I plan to meet up with readers on the second half of my trip when I drive home from California to Philadelphia. Unfortunately, I didn't get any responses from readers in Bismarck, North Dakota, asking to meet up, so -- by the popular demand of all three of my readers who live in North Dakota -- I added a quick stop in Fargo. Unfortunately, it's in the middle of a weekday, but I'd still love to see you if you can make it. For the rest of the cities, here are all the meet-up locations. I hope to see you there!

Boise (Saturday, September 17, 7:30 p.m.): Julia Davis Park (next to the Rose Garden)
Billings (Monday, September 19, 7:30 p.m.): City Brew/Walmart (2425 King Avenue West)
Fargo (Wednesday, September 21, ~2:30 p.m.): FargoDome
Minneapolis (Wednesday, September 21, 7 p.m.): Mount Normandale Lake Park in Bloomington; parking lot off Chalet Road
Chicago (Thursday, September 22, 7 p.m.): Community Park West in Glenview; parking lot off Zenith Drive (large office parking lot if needed)
Cleveland (Friday, September 23, 7 p.m.): Severance Town Center in Cleveland Heights (by the old movie theater)

MORE FROM OVERSTEER:
Here Are All the Cars With the Vanity License Plate VIPER Across the Country
The Audi RS2 Is the Coolest Wagon of Them All

RELATED INVENTORY
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
Used 2007 Honda Accord EX-L
Used 2007 Honda Accord
$5,890
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
Used 2007 Nissan Versa 1.8 S
Used 2007 Nissan Versa
$5,995
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
Used 2007 Chevrolet Corvette Z06
Used 2007 Chevrolet Corvette
$40,000
Saving this vehicle to yourMy Autotrader account
Are you sure you want to delete?
Used 2007 Toyota 4Runner 2WD
Used 2007 Toyota 4Runner
$11,000
This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
Here's What It's Like to Drive an Aston Martin Through the Middle of Nowhere - Autotrader