I have had my fair share of vehicles over the years.
My very first car was a 1986 Honda Civic hatchback. It was a car that didn’t cost my dad very much and was considered a “safe” first vehicle. I remember this vehicle had a couple of “firsts”: my first speeding ticket and my first accident. I was driving along a back road at night when a deer sprinted out in front of me from the left-hand side. I did everything right…I slammed on the brakes and veered to the right to avoid any oncoming vehicles. The deer hit the car, slid across the roof, and rolled into the ditch. My car ended up getting totaled, but the deer jumped up and ran away into the night.
My second car was “the taxi”, a 1989 Pontiac Sunbird. I was so proud of that vehicle that I wanted EVERYBODY to ride in it. And because I was a bit on the awkward side, it was my way of making friends. That thing had a kick-ass cassette stereo (for the time, anyway) and in about two years (my graduating year from high school and my first year of university) I ended up driving the clutch right out of it because (a) I put a TON of kilometres on it and (b) I really rode the clutch way too much.
If I remember correctly, my next car was a Pontiac LeMans. I don’t remember the year (1991?), but I do remember it looking like a little white egg on wheels. At the time, though, I didn’t even care because, for some reason, this round car had incredible acoustics inside…making a very average-sounding stereo sound a LOT better than it really was (or at least that’s how I remember it). I really loved that car, but jumped at the opportunity to drive “in luxury” a few years later.
It was used, it was old, but it rode like a dream. I drove an Oldsmobile Delta 88 that had a ton of “kick” to it, had power everything (a big deal for me back then), and made me feel like a big deal. It only took a year or two before realizing that I was a small-to-mid-sized car kind of guy. I didn’t like parking it and I didn’t like the gas it guzzled. Still…I drove that “boat” to the States with some friends to take in a NASCAR race in New Hampshire and it was one of the best driving experiences of my life.
The next two cars would be purchased more for their looks than for their practicality.
I had a Ford Escort Sport model, which meant it had a kick-ass stereo (of course) to go along with a sun-roof and a spoiler on the back.This thing was all kinds of awesome and resulted in at least one speeding ticket. I don’t have a lot of memories of this one, though…but I do remember how much I loved driving it.
I loved my next car, a forest-green Pontiac Sunfire (sport model or something or other). This car was the last one on the lot of that particular model because nobody wanted that colour. It was totally loaded (sun-roof, SUPER DUPER stereo, power everything) and on sale for a great price, so I snatched that bad boy up. This car was purchased near the end of my DJ-ing years, so I really thought I was “King Sh*t” of this small town. I didn’t realize how much of a douche I was acting like. I guess in a bit of poetic justice, where it was only my second manual vehicle I ended up driving the clutch out of it yet again. It was at this point that I realized that I simply wasn’t meant for manual…I’m just an automatic kind of guy.
At this stage in my life, I began to grow up a little bit and went for practicality over anything else.
The next two vehicles were great. They lasted a few years each and were great on gas. They were 4-door family vehicles, which was good because I was now a father and wanted to ensure I had room in the back for a child seat. I had a Chevrolet Cavalier and a Hyundai Elantra. Both had their pros and cons, but at the end of the day they were simply good, quality vehicles that did their job.
I write this post because I just picked up a new car this past September (and yes, that’s my car on the right). It’s the third Kia Forte in a row that I’ve owned. With the exception of having NO BACK SPEAKERS (this kills me because, even as a man in my 40′s, I love cranking up a good song every once in awhile), it’s consistently been one of the best cars I’ve ever had. It’s good on gas, has all of the features I need (A/C, Bluetooth, iPod jacks, and heated seats), and it’s economical. Knowing friends who consistently have bad experiences with vehicles, it makes me happy to know that I’ve got something that not only makes me happy but keeps me safe.
If I had the choice to start all over again from scratch, I may have gone in another route to purchase a new car instead of having my dad pick out the vehicles for me. My taste in vehicles ended up being HIS taste in vehicles. And really, there weren’t nearly as many resources available for picking and choosing what you REALLY want like there are today.
What about you? Do you remember YOU first car? What about your favourite?