1 of 12

Skip the
compact on your next vacation: here’s how to get behind the wheel of America’s
coolest rental cars.

Let’s
face it: nobody who daydreams of a Los Angeles vacation envisions riding around in a poky four-door Dodge. Even if you have
one at home—and even if you love it—how much more fun would it be to zoom along
the Pacific Coast Highway in a Ford Mustang Selby? Or down Wiltshire Boulevard
in a ’63 Cadillac convertible, the ragtop down and those gorgeous tail fins
turning heads at every red light?

Time
was, the only rental cars available to travelers were generic sedans meant to
offer function and value—with a minimum of flash. But now, more agencies—from Hertz and Avis to more specialized companies—are filling their fleets with cool rental cars
that make their customers’ automotive dreams come true.

“The biggest
improvement to the domestic rental market has been the upgrade to better
models,” says Evelyn Kanter, travel writer, automotive industry expert, and the
editor of car-and-travel.com. As
well as benefiting the rental agencies that get a higher resale value when it’s
time to upgrade their fleets, says Kanter, fantasy cars please customers who
expect features like power windows and keyless entry in their own vehicles.

Of
course, it’s a big step up from power windows to the features that define
America’s coolest rental cars, like the fine leather interiors and purring
engine of a Rolls-Royce
Phantom Drophead
Coupé. Or the sleek lines and
formidable acceleration (490 horses’ worth) of a convertible Ferrari F430. But
if you’re looking to fulfill your childhood dream of driving a classically
gorgeous car—or just to make a serious impression next time you visit your
in-laws—rental agencies across the country are ready to cater to those whims.

Just
remember, everyone’s idea of an awe-inspiring ride is different. A gearhead
like Adam Ferrara, cohost of Top Gear USA, for example, gets revved up only
by truly exotic vehicles.

“It’s
really cool that you can rent supercars,” Ferrara admits. But “if you really
want to impress me, offer historic military vehicles…. I would like to rent a
1944 Sherman Tank to see if I could beat Patton’s time to Bastogne.”

Until
then, we’ll just have to make do with these cool rental cars.

America's Coolest Rental Cars

Skip the
compact on your next vacation: here’s how to get behind the wheel of America’s
coolest rental cars.

Let’s
face it: nobody who daydreams of a Los Angeles vacation envisions riding around in a poky four-door Dodge. Even if you have
one at home—and even if you love it—how much more fun would it be to zoom along
the Pacific Coast Highway in a Ford Mustang Selby? Or down Wiltshire Boulevard
in a ’63 Cadillac convertible, the ragtop down and those gorgeous tail fins
turning heads at every red light?

Time
was, the only rental cars available to travelers were generic sedans meant to
offer function and value—with a minimum of flash. But now, more agencies—from Hertz and Avis to more specialized companies—are filling their fleets with cool rental cars
that make their customers’ automotive dreams come true.

“The biggest
improvement to the domestic rental market has been the upgrade to better
models,” says Evelyn Kanter, travel writer, automotive industry expert, and the
editor of car-and-travel.com. As
well as benefiting the rental agencies that get a higher resale value when it’s
time to upgrade their fleets, says Kanter, fantasy cars please customers who
expect features like power windows and keyless entry in their own vehicles.

Of
course, it’s a big step up from power windows to the features that define
America’s coolest rental cars, like the fine leather interiors and purring
engine of a Rolls-Royce
Phantom Drophead
Coupé. Or the sleek lines and
formidable acceleration (490 horses’ worth) of a convertible Ferrari F430. But
if you’re looking to fulfill your childhood dream of driving a classically
gorgeous car—or just to make a serious impression next time you visit your
in-laws—rental agencies across the country are ready to cater to those whims.

Just
remember, everyone’s idea of an awe-inspiring ride is different. A gearhead
like Adam Ferrara, cohost of Top Gear USA, for example, gets revved up only
by truly exotic vehicles.

“It’s
really cool that you can rent supercars,” Ferrara admits. But “if you really
want to impress me, offer historic military vehicles…. I would like to rent a
1944 Sherman Tank to see if I could beat Patton’s time to Bastogne.”

Until
then, we’ll just have to make do with these cool rental cars.

Philippe Champoux [1] [1] http://www.pchampoux.com

America's Coolest Rental Cars

Did you enjoy this article?

Share it.

Explore More