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Valentine's Day is a special holiday where we collectively pretend that gifts of flowers and chocolates are thoughtful expressions of the deep bonds of a loving relationship. Or it's the day where we swear off all forms of romance for the next 12 months.

If you're committed, looking to get out, or single, chances are a car figures into your love life. Whether that means driving to a romantic getaway, or picking up a heart-shaped pizza and several pints of ice cream, wheels are one of the many paths to the heart. With that in mind, here's our list of romantic transportation options.

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Mazda MX-5 Miata

I can’t think of a better Valentine’s Day ride than the Mazda MX-5 Miata, unless perhaps your date is claustrophobic. I like to think of the cozy interior as an intimate place, comfortable for its size – no need to stretch out six feet to give your date a kiss. There’s also no room for anyone else, so no double-date couple can pile in to spoil any moments that may crop up along the way. If it’s warm where you are, there’s the option for top-down touring. Rays, wind, and some fresh air while blasting along a windy favorite road are way more stimulating than some coddling  luxury car that lulls you into sleepy complacency and missed romantic opportunities. The Miata even looks romantic, bordering on sensual.

The traditional image of Valentine’s Day is a candle-lit dinner at some stodgy Italian place, probably the same one you go to every year. Don’t make this some dreary routine; Hop in a Miata and inject some spontaneity into your romantic night out. -Alex Kierstein

Caucasian couple relaxing in truck
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Ford F-150

What's dreamier than the automotive equivalent of the lumbersexual, a vehicle with a tough exterior and a softer side? I'm talking about the Ford F-150, or any pickup truck with that matter. Sure, it's a go-to vehicle for contractors and landscapers, but the right truck also features a nice wide bench seat for getting close to that certain someone at the drive-in. With a few modifications the big open bed is perfect for sleeping under the stars with your sweetheart.

Plus, what's more romantic than two people and a truck? It's the stuff from the non-depressing parts of a Bruce Springsteen song. -Erin Marquis

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Volvo V90

Romance, at least in its best forms, comes down to comfort. And I mean that in both the mental and physical sense. You need to be in comfortable surroundings with your mind at ease to be properly romanced. And there is no better car for that than the Volvo V90 wagon. Stepping into this car is the essence of automotive relaxation, and that's before you turn on the massaging seats. And, of course, I have to mention the tryst-friendly rear cargo area (along with a mandatory mention of Volvo's safety merits that might take on higher importance nine months later). 

Wagons are the ideal combination of style and sophistication: lower and sportier than and SUV, and proportionally more sexy than the sedan. But more than anything, the Volvo V90 is ready for whatever you're up for, be it a trip to the theater, a camping weekend, or a desperate last-ditch effort for attention at the valet stand. Romance thrives on comfort, and in that sense the V90 is open and willing to accept you for who you are. -Mike Austin

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Matra Bagheera

Sometimes two isn’t enough company, and three isn’t a crowd, it’s a welcome distraction. For those times when you’d relish an extra pair of hands, and whatever fun bits are attached to the person attached to the hands, there’s the Matra Bagheera, a plastic bodied, mid-engined, rear-wheel-drive French sports car designed by Greek master Antonis Volanis (he also designed the Renault Espace minivan.)

The Bagheera’s big trick—aside from being named for a cunning and honey-voiced panther from Rudyard Kipling’s Jungle Book stories (and being a French sports car)–was its three-astride seating pattern. This triple-bucket setup placed the driver on the left, and a pair of passengers on the right, an arrangement rarely repeated in autodom, except prominently on the succeeding Matra Murena. (Let us know if you know of others. And do not say McLaren F1, because that is incorrect.)

Blame it on the accepted Gallic tradition of a spouse and a side-piece, or blame it on the Seventies, the decade during which this handsome flirt was conceived and built. Or get off your puritanical panther and don’t blame anyone. Simply invite a second friend and reserve a table for three. Just make sure that the rules are clear—or as clear as they can be after all those oysters and champagne—and that everyone knows the safe word. (Hint: it’s not Bagheera.) -Brett Berk

2017 Mercedes-Maybach S600 champgan flutes
  • Image Credit: Mercedes-Maybach

Champagne Flutes – 2017 Mercedes-Maybach S600

What better way to set the mood than with a sip of champagne from a handcrafted silver-plated flute? In the back of the 2017 Mercedes-Maybach, that's encouraged. Sure, it's a $3,200-option, but these flutes are specially made by Robbe and Berking, fifth-generation silversmiths from Germany. If love is in the air, champagne flutes cast an aura of class over the proceedings. Drink it in.  – Greg Migliore

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The Bus

Nothing quite as romantic as a cross-town ride aboard one of these steel-and-fiberglass beasts. Imagine knees touching, or eyes meeting impossibly through the armpit hair of a sweaty construction worker, and a romance blooms. Maybe your knees touch the construction worker's, I don’t know. Maybe the old woman with halitosis coughs on your neck and you turn to yell at her but instead it’s love at first sight. It doesn’t matter and it’s all good because you’re headed down Broadway. And the people on the bus fall in love, fall in love, fall in love (as the wheels on the bus go 'round and 'round, of course).  It’s a magical place and unlike the subway the bus runs above ground so no mole people –unless mole people are your thing. -Eddie Sabatini 

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