After years of commuting to work with an old minivan (it was really nice when I first bought it), I recently leased a midsize sedan. To say that it drives better than my old hunk of junk is an understatement. It handles well, doesn’t guzzle nearly as much gas, and is far more enjoyable to drive.
Despite all of these benefits, I am much more mindful about accidents than I used to be. The van, to be polite, is not in the best of shape anymore. It has its nicks and bruises, not to mention substantial underbelly rust from 15 combined Chicago/New Jersey winters. Any further damage at this point is not much of a big deal.
In contrast, when I drive the sedan I tend to tense up more quickly, grip the wheel with both hands more often and more firmly than before, while also pulling in my shoulders as if I can somehow make the car narrower that way. Though I took out a damage waiver on the car, I still want to preserve its pristine condition and have been driving much more defensively to avoid contact.