Back in 2019 I told myself if I ran into the right example of my childhood dream car, I’d sell a smart to make room for it. That day has come.
When I was a kid I super wanted a first generation Audi TT. Had a poster of a yellow one on my wall, had several diecasts of them, and always had one in my garage in videogames.
As an adult, these cars seem to be holding their value pretty well. Okay examples without rust in my area ask $3k-$4k, even more for convertibles with the famous baseball glove interior.
Couple days ago Sheryl and I spotted a TT for a deceptively low price. Only stated problem was failing emissions. That later evolved to the car not running at all. Excellent.
We showed up at the guy’s place and after playing around I figured the problem to be a bad starter. He figured I was going to pay for a tow. Nope, I offered about 50%-ish of the ask, got the title, then bump started my way out of his driveway. He didn't seem too pleased that I got his "non-running" car going. Oops. lol
Aside from Plasti-Dip removal the car just needs a good wash. Everything works (ice cold AC!) and the car happily races to redline in each gear. It has higher mileage than I wanted but it’s been pretty well cared for so it’s really tight. This is solidly a case of meeting a hero and it being a good thing.
This one is the 1.8 Quattro with manual and despite the smaller engine this car’s an absolute hoot to drive. The last car I’ve driven that made me smile this much was the current generation Miata.
The car I axed for this? The 2005 convertible smart. It’s been such a headache keeping it roadworthy that I just don’t drive it far from home for fear I’ll need a tow. I generally view smarts as pretty reliable, but this one? Ugh what a pain. It won’t be missed.