Several people posted these last week, and I thought I’d join in. Especially since 2018 has been quite the year for me in vehicle purchases.

2002 Pontiac Trans Am: 2009-Present

My first car. I turned 16 in the summer of 2009, and my parents bought this 2002 TA with 68k miles on the clock. I drove it to high school, to K-State for college and grad school, and to Wichita when I got my first real job. In that time it’s been incredibly reliable, and has been an absolute “jack of all trades” hauling everything from my football and band equipment in high school to steel parts during my design+build project in grad school.

The TA was also my first introduction to AutoX and it proved to be a reasonably decent performer. Lots of tire smoke and and a set of Bilstein shocks later it even managed a CAM-C championship (I don’t care how I won it Jayhawk Jake, my jacket still says “1st Place CAM-C, lol)

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1991 Mazda Miata SE: April 2018-Present

Bought from a fellow autocrosser in the spring of this year. At the time that I bought it I had about 45 minutes of experience driving a manual transmission (and that was literally the day before in Jayhawk Jake’s Mustang GT). As much fun as I’d had driving the TA at AutoX, it was time for a dedicated car. The Miata came completely STS class prepped for AutoX but is shockingly clean and only had 79k miles.

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The car has proven to be an absolute weapon at AutoX, and that I have a long way to go to becoming a better driver. This car is unbelievably fun to hoon around the AutoX course, and does things that don’t seem physically possible sometimes, but by the magical power of Miata and enough guts to just stay flat to the floor it does them.

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2002 Pontiac Trans Am: August 2018-Present

Isn’t that just the same car again? Yes. Despite having driven the car for 9 years, I had never actually owned it. So, in August of this year I bought it from my parents and finally put Kansas tags on it. Still love it to death.

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2016 Yamaha XSR900: Last Thursday-Present

Yep, I bought my first bike (as those who follow me on instagram already know). After watching two fellow Wichitoppos ride motorcycles all summer I finally took the Motorcycle Safety Foundation class in August. After that it was only a matter of time. Found this 2016 XSR900 for sale locally with only 3500 miles on the clock and the price was right.

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What is it? Basically, it’s an FZ-09 with slightly retro styling. Same chassis, 847cc triple (115hp), brakes, etc. One advantage of the XSR is that ABS is standard and that it’s so damn good looking. Special shout out to fellow opponaut Peter Negru for dealing with months of me sending him random bike listings.

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First impressions. Despite making a ton of power, this thing is extremely docile. All that low end torque makes it more than happy to lope around at 2-6k rpm. Today I rode it about 20 minutes over to Jayhawk Jake’s new house and loved every second of it (except the part where it’s only 40° here right now). Will it do dank whoolies and 11 second quarter miles? Supposedly, but I’m a long way off from having any interest in doing either. I am, however, absolutely loving riding it around despite the cold weather and can’t wait for the spring so I can ride more often.

So yeah, in 2018 I technically went from owning zero vehicles to owning three. It’s been a fun year.