"What on earth is that?" asked the robotic voice shrilling through the tiny speaker at the barrier of the local Marina car park.
"It's a quadricycle – it's called a Twizy," I replied.
"Wow, it's really cool. What sort of engine has it got in it? And why are the windows plastic?"
At first I was impressed by the powers of detection of a speaker – but then I spotted the camera on the other side of the barrier pointing straight at my little EV.
"It hasn't got an engine," I explained. "It's electric. Takes about four hours to charge and does about 50 miles on that."
"That's impressive! What's it like to drive – scary on the road?" asked the speaker, clearly more interested in my Renault than the reason I'd pressed the help button next to the ticket slot in the first place.
"Well it's great – lots of fun, totally silent and gets more looks than a Ferrari," I said, wondering quite what the drivers behind me were thinking about my reviewing skills as they attempted to get home from work.
"I want one – where can I get one? And are they expensive?" the Gosport car park inquisition continued without the merest hint that I, or the four cars behind me, would be getting past any time soon.
Before the man behind the speaker got the chance to ask anything else, I quickly explained my parking predicament: 'I don't mean to be rude, but I really am in a bit of a hurry and I've forgotten to pay for my ticket. Could you let me through so I can come over to your office to pay?'
"Oh, sorry mate," said the potential Twizy buyer. "Don't worry about that. See you later – and nice car!"
And with that the barrier rose and my £10 day's parking fee was waived. The power of the Twizy continues to impress...
Model: Renault Twizy Colour
Price: £8,810 as tested
Engine: Asynchronous electric motor
Max speed: 50mph
0-28mph: 6.1 seconds
Costs this month: None