My car history is a short tale, but one that keeps getting a lot better. It all started as low as it gets: A 1994 Chevy Cavalier. In white, just like this one:
Isn’t she gorgeous? No? You’re probably right. I got it for $200 from my uncle’s father. It had a leaky headgasket that they had fixed with stopleak. Then I fixed it a second time with stopleak. Finally, it pretty much drowned itself to death when my dad tried to use it to pull down a tree. Still not sure why he did that, but that’s kind of redneck.
Second car? My grandmother’s Ford Escort. Some day it was a 1987.5 and others say it was a 1988.
It had automatic seatbelts and a speedometer that only went to 85. It did more than 85. How much more? No one will ever know. One time, I was driving down the road when suddenly the rear shock tower collapsed from rust. That didn’t stop it. Though the death of its transmission did it in.
Okay, I promise you, this list will start to get better soon. But first. We need the first real car. I bought this 1997 Pontiac Grand Prix for $3600 in 2007. This was the day I brought it home. See that puddle? It decided to puke coolant everywhere 2 hours after I bought it. Thankfully the car dealer took pity and fixed it for free (needed a manifold gasket). What did this car in? Nothing.
For the most part, these were okay cars. Unfortunately, they were made out of crap bargain bin parts. The brake lines rotted out and exploded while I was going downhill in the snow. The windshield wipers unscrewed themselves. The interior was fully of crappy plastic that didn’t really line up.
Driving 30 miles in the snow with your head out of the window because the windshield wiper flopped onto your side mirror? Time to trade it in.
I traded that thing for a 2007 Scion tC. Here’s the thing I learned: never buy a car on a spreadsheet and on the reviews of regular people. Regular people reviewed this car well. In fact, they raved about it. It checked all the boxes for my commute. But you know what it didn’t really do? Fun.
I was sitting at home on a Sunday one night and got a horrendous email from my boss. I didn’t sleep all night. I got up the next morning, called in sick, called my friend Hunter, and went out and bought this - my first brand new car:
2011 Mitsubishi Lancer Ralliart. I still have it. Though if you want it, let me know. It’s for sale. 69k miles, first $15k takes it. Great car but I don’t really get to drive it because....
Late 2017, I bought this: 1991 Mazda Miata with 199k miles. I’ve since put 8k miles on it. It’s my favorite thing in the world. Sort of. With my roomate/coworker, we get straight in the carpool lane every day. Best $900 car (+6000 for parts and tools) I’ve ever spent.
But if you thought we’re done, you would be incorrect. Because this May, I bought this (picture is from the CL ad):
Is it a car? I’d say yes. I’ll have it street legal soon! For anyone who doesn’t know. It’s an Exocet.
Okay, now for some callouts of cars I’ve driven over the past few years that I’ve enjoyed:
F-Type Coupe R (and basically every other version)
Abarth 595 Competizione (it’s fun, but it’s not for me)
2019 Miata (you will be mine)
991 911 GTS (yeah, this is the right spec)
VW Scirocco GTS (okay, it helped to drive it on the ring)
Nissan Armada (the SUV that helped me understand trucks thanks to a 3500 mile roadtrip)
I’ve driven plenty of others, but those are the ones that stand out.