Our three year affair with Rs began in Pensacola. My wife drove a ‘09 beige Toyota Corolla. We loathed the car. Mechanically sound? Yes, but the seats were uncomfortable the MPG was not outstanding and overall the price wasn’t worth it. She wanted out, and I love car shopping.
Her first car was an ‘03 manual Golf. She wanted another badly, and I convinced her try the GTI. Off to the VW dealer we went, where lo and behold a ‘12 Golf R sat on the lot priced better than a new GTI due to lack of interest in the area. After a few test drives of different models I asked her to takeout the R. She had a smile on after pulling out of the parking lot and off she went as happy as anyone could ever be.
Over two years I had moved from the S2000 to a Wrangler to an Elise to a Viper. I always wanted a Viper.
We had the perfect garage in my mind. She had her dream car and I had mine. A few months passed and it was time to move though. A 3,400 mile road trip from Florida to the San Juan Islands in the PNW. She didn’t have a second thought about loading up her car, putting on the cruise control and driving across the US. I, however, had some serious reservations on taking the Viper.
What happens when it rains/snows in the rockies? What happens when the approach angle to any road is steeper than 3 inches? The trip is in July and the airconditiong is terrible, the pedals get hot enough to burn your feet and there is no cruise control...
Better judgement prevailed. I traded it in for a car that fit all my needs. I wanted something decently fast, comfortable, big enough to haul snowboarding gear to the mountain with AWD, and fun. What our garage ended up being was this.
I was a copy-cat. My wife said it, our friends said it, heck even the VW techs said it. However, I don’t have any regrets about it. We loaded up the cars and started our convoy across the US from starting in the plains, to the great lakes, through Mt. Rushmore over the Rockies, across desert of Eastern Washington and finally the PNW.
The cars performed as expected, and besides one flat tire we had no unexpected delays. In our new local we set up our lives with our VWs and took them everywhere. Two to three trips to Mt. Baker a week, Seattle for the weekend, Glacier National Park for hiking, the dog park for the pup. Whatever we asked of them they did, and we didn’t have any complaints.
Well, I had a complaint. You see, I had come from RWD manual 2 door cars. The R is a lot of things, but it isn’t that. I never looked behind me after I parked to admire it. I never enjoyed the fake exhaust note, and I was never impressed with the speed. The S2000, Viper and Elise had spoiled me rotten.I longed for something more fun, more exotic, more engaging, and louder much much louder.
My wife was satisfied until strange electrical gremlins started to rear the ugly static charged little heads. Her warranty was coming to an end, and after a skiing trip to Whistler she wanted a bigger car. We had four adults jam packed into a VW with gear on everyone’s lap, a full roof box, and 0 extra space. Off to the dealers we went and we drove the entire CUV market from the Nissan Rouge to the Porsche Macan. She picked a ‘17 Mazda CX-5 GT in soul red, which disappointed every salesman in the Seattle, Bellevue, Bellingham market who who test drove cars with us.
After she brought her CX-5 home she knew she answered my unasked question, and I was giddy with excitement over the possibilities. She had an AWD, people/gear hauler hitting every wicket for our lifestyle. I no longer needed a copy cat car. I can drop the family hauler for something more, how do you say, fun. We both wanted another manual in the garage.
The search began, an R8, a Turbo, a GT350R, maybe keep the Golf and compliment with an Ariel Atom, or even a Rossion Q1 because it’s as exotic as it gets. I drove a ton of cars and was slimming down the list when life threw a bend in the road.
We decided to buy a house. I couldn’t buy a car while dealing with closing on a house. Normally just a 30 day wait right? Wrong again muchacho. The house we bought was not complete yet. Upside is we customized every detailincluding the garage. I’ll write about that when I get back home and actually get to live in it. Downside is I had months to wait, but this also meant I could search for the best deal. I was in no rush or position to pull the trigger. My market expanded from the PNW too the entire country.
I found what I wanted, and it just so happened the market kept pushing the price down for a full month and a half. I watched it drop in value from a premium CPO price to a fantastic bargain. I had a family member in the local area test drive the car for me, and with the assurance of the factory warranty I was ready to pull the trigger.
Closing day came, the house was ours and within two hours the car was mine as well. The VW was sold off, and the cross-country overnight mailing parade began. I was notified on Friday the car was picked up and is on its way. As fate would have it, work has me away from my wife, our house and the new car for delivery. It turns out a fully loaded manual firesand Jaguar was ordered for a man’s wife, who no longer wanted to drive a manual. He traded it in for an automatic, but the rest of Jaguar’s doesn’t enjoy the bright color & manual combination. For us, it is a perfect fit and we will enjoy cruising the street in it. She’ll have 7 days to enjoy it, and then I’ll be waking up the neighborhood.