Thinking back on all the cars I have owned, I’ve come to the realization that the better part of half of them have been so small that they have not offered a place to put my elbows, well, not officially that is. Some, like my Austin Healey go so far as to lack an inner door skin, offering up the inside of the door itself for elbow room, albeit without a place to rest those weary joints.
Armrests are a fairly modern convenience in the automotive world, and like cup holders, they seem to a place where car makers expend a good bit of capital in making them as innovative and convenient as possible. Some center armrests are adjustable for position and height, while others offer a place for your cell phone just an elbow’s length away. Considering that you should be driving with your hands on the wheel at ten and two, and that wheel positioned at almost an arm’s length away, I’m wondering whether we even need armrests at all? Don’t they just serve to perpetuate bad habits?
Here in America, for the longest time the standard driving position wasn’t 10 and 2, it was one elbow on the doorsill and the other in your lap while steering with your hand lightly gripping the bottom of the wheel. This animus for proper positioning is only exacerbated by offering comfy little pillows for your elbows. Plus, they take up valuable room and sometimes get in the way of shifting. What’s your take on armrests, are they a boon, or a bad habit-enabling bust?
Image: The Hogring