Car history

So it turns out people are interested in what cars I‘ve owned, so I’m making a thread about it. You can share your cars in here too! Let's enjoy cars!

**car 1: '84(?) Subaru station wagon (manual).** This was a hand-me-down from my mom at age 16. I used it some but it had a lot of major problems and died after a few months, and I didn't drive again for another year+. This is real far back so it's hard to remember the year, I think it was an '84 GL. Like this but without rust and, if I recall, blue trim, or maybe it was just sun damaged to blue lol.

Definitely not as cool as its sibling the leone:

**car 2: '79 toyota corolla (manual).** Hand-me-down from my stepmother. This thing ruled and I wish I hadn't burned it out trying to race a miata, honk. The speedometer only went up to 80 and I thought I could do a limit break. I blew the god darned head gasket and the valves went with it not long after, obviously. This car ruled and if I had a garage I'd get another one. It was very 1:1 in terms of what you did vs what the car did. hand rolled windows (that used to be something I insisted on in cars lol), manual transmission, real wheel drive 4-speed, tiny but zippy 4 cylinder engine with a robust 59 hp, but if nobody else was in the car it'd get you there quick.

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Mine was actually closer to this color:

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**car 3: '72 dodge dart (automatic).** This is the first car I bought for myself. Amusingly I briefly considered getting a first-gen prelude that was for sale for $800 around the corner but declined when I found out its speedometer only went to 80. HONK.

Anyway my dad was working in the electrician's union and his buddy bought a car for his daughter but she hated it. I think it was one of those "BE ME!!!" situations where he liked the old american classics and she was like who cares, it's old and sucks. So I got it for $400 and drove it for ages. I put speakers in cardboard boxes and sat them at the back windshield. I had the whole sound system wired up myself direct from the console since all the old wiring was bad. Listened to a lot of Mammoth Volume in there on my way to my construction and record store jobs.

Anyway, it had a slant-6 engine which every old guy at the construction site liked to talk about. I think it's like that joke:
oh, what is that, a MEYER lemon?
(says the guy who know about a second type of lemon)

the slant 6 was a variant of the straight 6, obviously 6 cylinder engines. the straight 6 cylinder engines had a high profile and meant the engine compartment had to be huge. The slant 6 was canted 30 degrees and meant you could have a thinner engine compartment, which made for a smaller more economy-looking car, which is laughable now considering how huge the thing is. It also meant when you revved the engine hard the whole car would shift to one side a bit, which I think people really liked. It also meant the engine mounts on one side wore faster than the other!

It looked exactly like this except without the stripe on the back. it was completely blue outside and in.
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I drove it until it completely collapsed. brakes were shot, it'd stall in intersections, the lights only turned on sometimes, but I did like that car. I drove it back to the bay area from Los Angeles that way (it was my first car during college too), and wound up selling it back to the government to turn into a cube (very sad), for $500, so I made $100 profit since I did any and all repairs myself up til that point (and I did a lot - I'd go to the junkyard and get replacement parts for whatever broke).

As you may know, when you sell your car back to the government like that they have to test to make sure the car is working, because they only get the money for taking a working old "polluter" car off the streets. They turn it on, drive it forward, stop, and drive it backward, and that's it. These were excellent examples of all the things my car was extremely failing at which is why I was getting rid of it. I got a bit choked up when the car performed all this perfectly in its final run, as though to say "I still work!" ;_;

**car 4: '69 pontiac tempest (automatic).** Got this right after the dart died. A guy round the way whose wife sold eggs from the house sold me this car. I got it for $1,800 which frankly was too much considering how much I had to spend after that. He was a hardcore gangster type dude who told me "I never thought I'd listen to anything but oldies for my entire life." He rode a motorcycle mostly and decided this car was more trouble than it was worth, which I should've probably listened to.

I did a lot of work on this car. I put the passenger-side seat in myself (changed from bench to buckets), drilling holes in the floor and bolting it there! I had to put the back windshield in with sealant because it was sitting in the back seat! good thing I never got in any serious accidents with it. It had a big block 455 engine from an oldsmobile in it, which is just a GIGANTIC engine, lord. Here's info about the relatively rare 455 (the 454 was more common):

It had HUGE torque and you could burn out your tires from a standstill no problem. Once I was fueling up by the in 'n out in el sobrante and some folks came up to me and asked if I'd join their drag racing crew, but I was too spooked by other teens to say yes. I said maybe and took their number and promptly lost it. But dudes would pull up next to me and go "light it up!!" and I'd always oblige. You could burn rubber *on the freeway* if you were going 30 mph or less just by stomping the accelerator.

It was real hard to stop this car and it was an absolute tank, and I used to joke that you didn't steer it so much as aim it. But it had a lot of issues - that big torque engine (from an oldsmobile mind you) meant that the transmission burned out fast, and the transmissions you could get that would fit an oldsmobile engine and a pontiac frame in (at this point) 1999 weren't exactly plentiful.

If you remember the time when Hercules tires were exploding and there was a recall, turns out I actually had hercules tires, and one DID blow out on me while I was going 90 mph in the fast lane on highway 5 from the bay area to LA, and by some miracle I was able to check all my mirrors and get over two lanes to the side without hitting anyone or causing problems or flipping over or spinning out. that sucked!!!

But I couldn't let go of this car. I painted it with some racing stripes and kept it for years as a secondary car... mostly just collecting parking tickets but it did come in handy sometimes. Also I just liked it!! After a I got to my 2nd prelude I had to retire it, especially since a panel truck or something had hit my driver's side door making it tough to open, and my insurance wouldn't cover it. I sold it to a dude in richmond who promised he'd get me another $200 later and would also show me the progress as he restored it. he never did either of those things ;_;

They only made this model for 2 years. I was once driving along the freeway and for the first time IN MY LIFE I saw a second person with the same model, same year, and he pulled up to me on the freeway as we slowed down to 40, annoying everyone. He asked me to roll down my window and was like "do you want to buy this car!?" and I was like "I'm trying to sell mine!" and he's like fair enough and drives off.

Here's what it looked like, though this again is not the actual car. I do have photos of these cars btw it's just a pain to find them. Imagine it way more busted.
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**car 5: '89 honda prelude 2.0 si 4WS (manual).** My newest car yet, ha ha. Once again I got a car that was 100% blue, outside and in. not a bit of it that wasn't blue, wheels aside. It has those delightful flip-up lights, which I love. My mom's friend was a doctor and he was getting a new car, so didn't need this one - I got it for $1,200 in I believe 2004 and I loved the heck out of it. I instantly understood modding and import culture after being in this car for like 5 minutes. It did exactly what I wanted, when I wanted. It also had 4-wheel steering, so if you turned the wheel all the way to one side, the back wheels would slightly turn the opposite way of the front wheels, letting you spider around corners better.

it had a 4 cylinder 5-speed engine, but it actually felt faster than my tempest in a lot of ways because, well, the engine wasn't meant to rocket into space. the tempest would just spin the wheels for ages before it could even catch. maybe if I had fancy road tires it would've been different! But I didn't have the money for that. but yeah, anyway, the prelude felt like it was just an extension of my body when I drove it. This also got me into trance music, no lie. I had seen initial D, and I was like oh - I get it.

I used to take it on my own personal touge run in the el sobrante hills and dam region, there were these amazingly curvy tree-filled roads that you could drift round. The car would just do exactly what I was thinking as I thought it, and I got really accustomed to drifting in this car for very short distances. I never learned to do it properly, as I'd later find out!

This car wound up having a problem where it just wouldn't start if you turned it off hot. Sometimes for 8+ hours. I had a lot of weird dates this way where they'd invite me up for a drink or whatever and I'd be like... sorry... if I turn my car off I can't turn it on again for a really long time so I'd better not. Imagine somebody saying that to you!! Lord. I didn't think about how that sounded. It was true!!

We (my dad and I, and my step brother at this point who used to steal parts out of hondas ha ha) thought we had the problem narrowed down to this one vacuum advance unit. I bought a new one and it didn't fix the problem at all. I thought I was gonna have to turn it into a cube like my tempest so I started the process. I finally got a date for cube times, and I realized it just wouldn't start to get it there. So as a last ditch I went to the pick'n'pull (junkyard) to pull an old one out of another car. And the car worked perfectly. Turned out the new unit I bought was busted, and this old one worked great. This really sucked because it was two days before I had to take it in and I had, critically, already bought a replacement car. I didn't want to sell it but I couldn't keep THREE cars, especially since this one was sitting in front of my stepmother's place, which she absolutely hated because my dad always had 2-3 broken cars there, and my stepbrother was doing it too, so I felt like I had to cube it. It sucked!! That car ruled. I also found out like 2 weeks later that tim needed a car (when he was living in the bay area). The worst.

It looked like this:

lights up!

**Car 6: '98 Honda Prelude SH aka Super Handling (manual).** This is my current car. I bought it when my existing prelude had been "dead" for too long and I was tired of my tempest being finicky and huge and ridiculous. the doctor who sold me his last prelude coincidentally had a '99 for sale, but it was an automatic. I took it for a test drive and was like: 1) this car rules 2) I am absolutely buying a manual. The difference in responsiveness was massive.

So I went looking and found this already modded-to-heck prelude from a dude whose uncle ran a body shop. I have continued to take it there for service which is kind of fun, because he really cares about this car.

This car is fast and low and I like it a lot, but I DO NOT know how to drift properly in this car. I have taken it on my personal touge run but I go all grip because: one time I tried to drift round a corner in downtown oakland and wound up doing a 180 instead, miraculously not hitting any parked cars or oncoming traffic. That one experience was enough to be like - okay, you're not a race car driver, let's calm down.

I do still rev my engine and friendly-race with other hondas when I see them though. We're a fading breed so anybody with a nice prelude or civic or whatever else, we rev our engines and wave to each other, it's great. Honda bros!! I was telling my girlfriend about the honda bro thing while we were in the car, and just then passed a prelude that was getting on the freeway. I tried to slow down to say hi with a couple revs in neutral but they didn't notice me. But then all of a sudden they came zooming up from behind waving and saying "wohoo!!" and dude's girlfriend was waving, and we waved, and I was like yeah... honda bros.

I'm not sure what car I will get if this car dies, but my feeling is a scion fr-s at this point. That's the only new car I feel like fits my car ethos.

Here's it:
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So that's all my cars! I've driven loads of others, including a 2017 GT-R, a stock car, a variety of trucks, and my girlfriend's various Mazda 3s. I drive any car I'm offered, and swapped cars with my buddy who likes audis for a day (real nice feel on that one). I've determined I don't like the close-together gearbox of the Subaru WRX.

I guess I just sort of fall into a rhythm and like what I like, and right now, that's preludes. I have a neighbor who has tons of hot cars, and I am hoping some day he'll let me mess with them. he's got an NSX, a wrx, a lancer, an s-2000, and some bmws which I am biased against (lol).

UHHHHHHHHHHHHhhhhhhhhhhhhh I spent too long on this. Cars!

end of 2001 is the cutoff! but you also need to have maybe done something to it to make it fancy :3

I‘ve mentioned this to brandon a few times, but I think driving around in a car from the 80’s/90‘s in 2020 is something I’ve only really seen in north america. (I‘m sure there are plenty of other countries that do it, just none I’ve been to)

I‘ve only ever owned one car! It was one of the original Nissan Micras. It was like 15 years ago! The suspension was totally shot, the speakers were missing, and the window roller would fall off. My buddies used to call it the way mobile, because they’d get thrown around the place sitting in the back sit when we were driving on the back roads.

After like 10 months I sold it to my neighbor, he left the keys in it all the time. Eventually someone stole it, and burnt it out!


Here are all the cars I have ever owned

This is cool. My personal car history isn‘t nearly this deep, so I’ll start with cars that my parents had while I was growing up.

I'm taking some guesses on exact years here so I'll provide a range. Pictures aren't mine.

**Parents Cars**
Dodge Demon (1971~ 1972)
As mentioned in [the other thread](

Dodge Lancer (1985~ 1989) - five-door - Brown

Dodge Colt (1987~ 1989) three-door - Red
I really liked this one.

Toyota Sienna (2000)
Learned how to drive in this.

**My cars**
Mitsubishi Galant 2.0 GLXi Sedan M (1996) - first car that I co-owned. Also learned to drive manual on it.

Toyota Avensis station wagon (2012)
my 'Go Home And Be A Family Man' car

Dodge Colt!!

If you liked that what I think you should do is buy a Dodge Shadow and live your dreams.
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@exodus#7656 It was cool. Dodge and Mitsubishi always had that relationship with rebranding. There was a Plymouth Colt as well! Pick a new name, guys!

They still make the Mitsubishi Colt today and of course the Lancer name is better known for the Mitsubishi ones.

The Shadow is coool. It's really close in style to the Lancer. Looks like it just used a slightly[ shorter body](

Got me looking at these sweet advertisements now. Hm..might replace some of the pictures in my original post.

Nice! My father was really into working on muscle cars and hot rod projects, some of it rubbed off on me. I'm a bit too lazy to find actual pictures, so these are all off Google … but not too lazy to build a massive wall of text!

**73 Chevy Silverado Stepside**

My Dad was into muscle cars, but I grew up around lowrider culture. I really had a thing for stepsides and wanted to slam one to the ground. My first car was an absolute bucket of a truck for $300 that was beyond saving from a functional standpoint, let alone turning it into a lowrider. Some panels were so rusted that you could stick your finger through if you pressed hard enough. The floor mat on the driver's side was mostly to protect my feet from going through the gigantic hole in the floor whenever they weren't working the pedals. I eventually donated it and let my parents have the tax write off.

**1980 Ford Thunderbird**

About 3 months after the rust truck went away, my friend offered me their 80 Thunderbird for free. It had a leaky transmission that happened to drip onto a poorly designed exhaust system, which caught on fire multiple times. One really bad incident spooked him and he just wanted rid of it. I thought I could fix it ... long story short: I couldn't. I replaced the transmission myself, but ... look ... I mean this with 0 hyperbole: the 80 Thunderbird is almost purposely designed to be a gigantic heap of shit. No matter what I did, the car kept finding ways to catch on fire. And if it didn't catch on fire, a key component would break. I tried to convince another friend that was into destruction derby to take it and put it out of its misery. Even HE didn't want to touch it. Another car donated for taxes.

PS: I will give it this, it had a cool retro-futuristic panel with those electronic gauges. Enjoy the 80s future-funk display while you burned to death.

**197X Ford Maverick**

I don't remember the exact year. My father actually bought this one sometime during the Thunderbird death trap ordeal. He claimed it was for me, but it wasn't. My father loved to drink and start shit, and there was some sort of rivalry I wasn't privy 100% to involving a waitress at his main bar having the Maverick for sale, someone he didn't like trying to buy it, and him buying it out from under them out of spite (I don't know). Then the car was given to me as a sort of excuse for letting the drama happen (and to keep my Mom from bitching about him buying yet another car project). I was 17 at the time, and had to deal with sketchy ass 40 year olds harassing me about the car that THEY were supposed to buy.

But the Maverick is underrated. I think it was designed to be like a Mustang equivalent if you can't afford the Mustang. It had a V6, though, so it had no where near the power of any V8 Mustang. It was a cool car, but it wasn't really *my* car.

**1976 Chevy Silverado Stepside** I got this at 21. My father had sobered up and helped me find a much more solid truck. I thought I was finally going to slam a Chevy stepside! Nope. By this time in my life that wasn't a priority any more. Working on cars was replaced by picking up other people's free/cheap arcade junk and restoring/fixing them. This became my main "hauler" for arcade equipment.

SEVERAL years later I took this truck on one of my last "arcade pick up" trips to grab a Mortal Kombat II for $40 in Fresno (converted to Ehrgeiz). I was driving down from the SF East Bay, so it's not a quick trip. My wife was pregnant at the time and her due date was a week away, but she really wanted to go along (she use to accompany me to my little arcade pick up adventures all the time). She insisted on going. It would be the last one of these we'd be able to do for a while.

Long story short, I have the cabinet loaded and we're maybe ten minutes into the drive back home when I blow a tire on the freeway somewhere just outside Fresno. I'm on the side of the road, in a heat wave, with no shade, in an old black truck, and my wife suddenly tells me, "Uh. I think I'm having contractions."

Oh ... my ... gawd ...

Luckily a tow truck pulled up a couple minutes later. I told him that he's likely going to be driving us to the hospital ... wherever that is out here. The driver had me calm down and give my wife water (I guess he's seen this before?), which made the contractions stop. It wound up they were false contractions brought on by dehydration. My wife says she's fine. No hospital. Just get the truck fixed and get her home.

We get to the tire shop and there's another issue: I wasn't getting paid until next week, and all four tires had to be replaced. I couldn't possibly afford that. So I'm standing there like a complete fucking tool that's dragged his pregnant wife hours away from home, with an arcade cabinet in the back of the truck and just looking at the tire shop guy like, "I can't afford four tires."

I went to offer him the arcade machine in exchange for the tires, but he looked at my wife, then the idiot this poor lady is stuck with, and decided to show pity for her by offering a deal I could afford for the tires.

We get home and have a baby roughly a week or so later.

**1972 El Camino Super Sport** This was my Dad's. He passed away when I was 22/23, and this was the only thing of his I kept. It's mostly custom top-down, and is more of a hot rod with an El Camino body than a muscle car in that sense. Like your Pontiac, if you went too heavy on the gas, you'd burn out. The gas price spike during the Bush Jr years forced me to leave it sitting in the yard growing weeds. I hope to get around to getting it to run again.

**2006 Toyota Scion XB** My wife owned a 1996 Toyota Corolla and it made me absolutely fall in love with Toyotas. Just the most bullet proof fucking cars ever made (the polar opposite of the 80 Thunderbird). As long as you keep the basic fluids right and change the air filter every once in a while, you can not kill these things. The design of everything about these cars is super practical and well thought out.

I picked up a lowered Scion XB a year or so after my kid was born and it's probably my favorite all-around car. So much more gas friendly than anything I drove before. Super small, so it just zips through tight spaces easily and can be parked damned near anywhere. Roomy as hell on the inside. I'm a pretty big guy as well, so that's saying something, but I've transported pinball machines and a candy cab in it. It's the easiest car to get in and out of, which is why a lot of seniors tend to drive them. It also made putting a kid in a car seat super easy. The only hassles come from having a lowered car, not the Scion itself.

@exodus#7646 oh no…it‘s the ’what is retro?' thread all over again!

Only owned 2 cars in my life and used GIS to find images that reflect the mental/emotional image I have of them.

Bought a 1998 Toyota Camry (dark green metallic) with $ from part time jobs in college. Made it over 200k miles w minimal maintenance.


sold it to by bro for $500

Next was a 2005 Chevy Equinox which was a awful car and apparently had some kind of low-level curse. On 2 occasions I found notes on the windshield from neighbors who had witnessed hit and runs smashing into it while parked. The second instance was a direct hit on the R front passenger side wheel well which cracked the axle. The axle later snapped while I was making an left turn.

I was living a few blocks away from Obama's house on 51st street (while he was pres) and had the misfortune of heading out of town for a few days while he made a surprise fundraising visit to Chicago. The secret service doctrine was to have all parked cars off the streets in the neighborhood, so they towed mine several miles away. To retrieve it I had to take the bus to the vehicle impound which is located beside a potential superfund site. No sidewalk leading to the impound office, so I had to walk along a frontage road while a pack of feral dogs stalked me through the weeds.

Felt bad to drive, swayed disconcertingly when making turns at almost any speed. Terrible gas mileage, cd player swallowed cds and wouldnt eject them - no fun


Surrendered it to the City after concluding it was not work the maintenance $ and just started taking transit which I prefer anyway.

However w covid I decided to buy a bicycle to avoid bus/train whenever I could so recently picked up a ca '85 Peugot frame from a bike coop. Got some surface rust off, switched out some misc parts and it rides pretty nice for a cheep old carbon steel bike. (my bike not pictured but that's more or less it I can't afford one of those brooks saddles)


Have intended to buy another car for a while, but not able to justify paying for ins, parking, etc. for something that will just sit on the street outside my building most of the time. Don't mean to be car negative, would be happy to pick up nissan leaf or whatever at some point


Here is my first car, not 100 or so feet from where I found it on my Stepdad's ranch in the middle of Kansas. it's a 1983 BMW 320i. At the time my mom and stepdad were dating and so he'd take us out to his ranch in the middle of nowhere. You know how sometimes you'll pass places that are just a bunch of barns filled with cars? my stepdad's ranch is pretty much like this. He would go to auctions, buy cars, drive them back to the ranch, and park them for...decades. This BMW was one of them and because I was so fascinated by it he just gave it to me.

I didn't know until later but it ran on 3 cylinders the entire time I drove it, there was a hole in the exhaust, and the belt squeaked a lot when I drove it, but it still ran and I had this the first two years of high school. It was a good first car, it had some rust spots and what not, but it took me to my jobs at Subway and back and fourth to school. Thankfully years later my sister and her boyfriend started working on it, and eventually got it back running and driving again. My sister's boyfriend now has an eternal hatred for Bosch's early fuel injection systems.

My SECOND car is parked a few feet away
I had a fuel issue with my 320i and it was just becoming too much of a hassle to keep, so I wanted something newer, and SOMEHOW my stepdad though to get another BMW. This time E30s. This particular E30 is a 325i that had gotten in a front end accident and the previous owner grafted a whole front end from another E30 onto, performing a Manual Swap in the process.

I liked this car a lot better but I wish I had appreciated the E30 a bit more. The engine sounded like a sewing machine and it would always feel like it didn't have much torque. I think the wheels would wobble a bit at speed too. At one point the battery died and when the battery dies in these things all the doors lock. I remember doing power slides in the snow with this in college. But it didn't have power steering, because the pump leaked and the previous owner just removed it, so navigating parking lots was a huge pain. Eventually I needed a new car because I was leaving my hometown and needed something that could be actually reliable.

My plan is to go back to Kansas, fix this car up, and drive it back to the west coast. But that's been my plan for a while, and when I actually visited last year I took a trip out to the ranch specifically to check the car out and see if it was salvageable. It seems so!

My next car was when I went to college the second time. it was my sisters and my parents made the executive decision that it was mine now, as my sister was going to college in NY. It was...the Ford Focus


Look I hated this car. Just an absolute fuckin shit show of a car. The gearbox felt like cardboard. I hit some black ice once and hit a curb sideways, and had to get the whole rear suspension replaced. The alternator went out on a highway drive, necessitating a family friend buying a whole new battery to swap in so I could make it the rest of the way home (on battery power??). I drove this thing around Kansas City, then to Philadelphia where it got spraypainted the day before I was going to move out of Philadelphia, then back to Kansas City where I worked at the most stressful job I've ever had. That's when the AC went out, and I was finally starting to think of buying my first car.

Such a hard decision. I wanted an FRS because those were new at the time and I could afford one if I spent my entire savings at the time. Instead I found probably the best Honda Fit ever.


I, alongside the previous owner, didn't like the new Honda Fit design, so he elected to buy the last one Honda made of the first generation (08) and swap the headlights out for darker ones, install tint. aftermarket wheels. colored the roof and some accents. and install a J's racing front grill. It's modified, but not overhelming. He also installed a short shift kit. Honda makes the best gearboxes, bar none. My big decision when getting My First Car With My Money was how the gearbox and clutch felt, and this had the best feeling ones, so I went with it.

I moved to Seattle in this car and I've had it ever since. I've driven down Highway 101 from Seattle to LA (when this photo was taken). It's hauled so much stuff. Bikes. Furniture. I don't want to get rid of it. It's dead reliable too. My only problems have been car batteries going out and people breaking into it. Also the Rota wheels have been dented (twice) by Seattle's potholes.

This car is so nimble than anything I'd had before. There is nothing wrong with this car. Honda hit it out of the park.

Years go by and the entire time, I've wanted a sports car. When I was employed I'd make lists of cars that I'd want to get, like a Miata, 350z, or those kinds of cars. The MR2 was always on those lists, and I'd looked at various cars that were on craigslist and they were always heaps of junk that didn't run or were about to die, because I didn't want to spend money on a *good* car, i had to spend as little money as possible on a personal indulgence due to a severe lack of self esteem.

One day after getting about 2 hours of sleep I open up craigslist and find _it_


It didn't run, but it was Red and it was $2000. The owner looked like a teen and showed me a cellphone video of the tachometer twitching to prove that it did run, but didn't know the problem with it. They had spent most of the money on a set of wheels and tires, but nothing for maintainence, which this car needed a ton of.

After parting with the money I tried using a friend jumper box to get the car running, it would twitch on and then die, so I had it towed to my street. The previous owner said that it was either the ECU (which he replaced) or the distributor, which he didn't want to spend any more time on. I ordered one on amazon for $50 after signing up for prime. the next day it showed up and I popped it in the car in about an hour. It fired right up. Pop Up headlights baby.

Unfortunatly this is when I found the car's other problems. It had a really bad clutch smell when I'd get out, then one day I'd just floor it and the tach would climb but it wouldn't accellerate. That was...a burnt clutch. Once I was driving it around town and the temp gauge spiked to hot, so hot that I had to stop it and let it cool down before I kept going. Eventually a friend of mine helped me flush the coolant system, which took 6 hours to do. It was fine for a while but I never drove it due to the clutch, so when I got my stimulus money I selfishly spent it on... a new clutch.

Recently it developed more cooling problems, so I had to park it. but just today I went to go see if it would still fire up and it does! It didn't overheat right away, so i drove it around the block. I missed it so much. Now that I'm finally employed my plan is to throw it at a mechanic friend's shop and ask them to fix all the problems.

Among it's other problems are the Ebrake cable slipped so it's only half effective, and it has speed wobbles at over 60mph. also the paint is terrible. Bits of trim are coming off everywhere. I feel like if I don't put effort into this car it's a goner. I've had project bikes before, but a car is so much bigger, you can't pick up a car, a car engine isn't held in with 3 bolts. You can't buy a $250 bolt on cylinder kit which doubles it's power. It's stupid and I love it.

How is it to drive? It's a huge go-kart. The feeling you get when you accelerate because the engine is behind you is really good. So much grip. The popup headlights are fantastic and I get a kick out of seeing them go up and down. I wish I could drive it at the limit at a track or autocross, but it keeps having problems.

Gonna end this post before I start talking about my bikes, which are about 10000 words worth!

Man, I really enjoyed reading through this thread. Personally, I have a weird history with cars, and I'm just finding out now, at age 35, that I may be a “car guy.”

I never got a driver's license until I came to Japan in 2010, and bought a Suzuki Kei (this exact model pictured, same colour and everything).


The area where I lived was up in the mountains, so whenever I went driving, I was always on winding roads with trees and rivers and very little traffic around. If that's not an ideal environment to fall in love with driving, I don't know what is!
I lived there for three years, and drove all around that area of Japan, and had a great time. Also, I met the lady who I would later marry at that driving school, so I guess it was Meant To Be.

Now I live in Yokohama, and work from home, so there's really no reason to own a car. But! My wife's dad is a real cool guy, and he owns a Toyota Sienta that he _never_ drives, but he lets me drive it whenever I want to! (It's red, instead of this extremely awesome teal colour.)


I've driven a couple of other cars too, but I've never been behind the wheel of a manual transmission car, sadly (as I've mentioned in another thread recently). But in the past couple of weeks, I've been deep diving into YouTube videos about the minutiae of how car engines work, and find myself thinking about cars way more now than I ever did before. I learned a lot from this here thread, in fact!

So, I don't know if I'll ever drive any cool cars (I've got two little kids to think about, and no garage), and I don't know if there are many people like me, who just admire cars from afar. But it sure is fun to think about and hear about how different models compare and contrast, and what people's driving experience has been like.

This is a really good thread, and I intend to contribute more to it later!

Cliff's notes @DaleNixon car history:

1986 Ford F-150 (automatic) (driven '95-'98)
-Unkillable tank that got about 3MPG.

1996 Ford Contour (automatic) (driven '98-'03)
-Amazingly lovable yet insanely unreliable.

2003 Mazda Protégé5 (automatic ☹️) (driven '03-'08)
-Absolutely gorgeous car that was loads of fun to drive.

2008 Mazda Mazdaspeed 3 (6 speed manual) (driven '08-'10)
-Super fun, but Mazda's first try at direct injection made for some interesting engine issues that weren't helped by me modding the hell out of it.

2001 Mazda Miata (5 speed (now 6 speed) manual) (driven '08-present)
-Cheap RWD thrills.

2011 Mazda 2 (5 speed manual) (driven '10-present)
-FWD Miata.

@whatsarobot#7698 Some Kei cars are just the coolest little vehicles. I like fast/low/custom cars, but then there is this other spectrum where I really appreciate the design around making a vehicle as small, practical, and efficient as possible.

@sosadillatron#7705 Yeah! It always felt zippy, like a go-kart, but responsive, almost like a bike. Kind of a toy of a car, great for learning on.

I've had some fun cars over the years, here are a few:

77 Datsun 210 4speed manual 320k miles on the odo, bought in 1997 for $100 cash, lasted a month

91 Honda Civic EX - no a/c in Florida, made the best of it..

2000 Toyota Celica GTS - things got a lot more fun in this very rev happy car with almost no torque - but it looked pretty fast - caught the modding bug here

87 Supra - [URL=][IMG][/IMG][/URL]
Spent over 10k modding engine, rebuilding interior, etc -loved the heck out of this car

2001 IS300 - under powered but buttery smooth, a fantastic car with no problems (other than needing another 100hp

Mazdaspeed3 - first preordered car, minor mods made this an insane car to drive with wheelhop at launch and terrifying torque steer at 45mph in 4th gear, wheelspin in 3rd

After I wrapped the Mazda around a tree, went back to Lexus/Toyota with a IS350

once you unlock the "nanny free mode" (using a cheat code involve the ebreak and brake pedals) this car is a subtle monster in dress clothes - still own it with 138k and going strong...

then there's the '15 Lexus RCF
IMO, the spiritual successor to the Supra - 470hp V8 4 seats and very expensive breaks and tires - very easy to go waaaay too fast. Only other drawback is the weight - 4000lbs is no joke

@DaleNixon#7703 I had a 07 Mazdaspeed3 as well! I/E/Dp/cpu and motormounts made that a wild little car!

@marlfuchs2#7687 that generation MR2 is the best! Such a remarkable car - enjoy the build and journey, I had much the same experience with my '87 Supra - so many things to fix, but such a joy every step of the way!

so many great cars in here. It's so sad you cubed the 4ws. i had a friend that had one with a hotter jdm motor swapped in and coil overs it was a fun little beastie.

my car, the only car Ive owned until recently is my 2006 scion xb. bought new in 2006 and driven all over the country. Ive moved with just it twice, Ive hauled fence panels to fix my fence after a hurricane, built a deck with lumber I strapped to its roof, Ive slept in it had dates in it, cannon-balled 18 hours straight in it. I think I have 186,000 miles on it and I still take it up to red line with no complaints. The gen 1 XB's is such a perfect cross section of specs. only 2400lbs has a huge interior and it loves to rev. It has a really close ratio gear box meaning that you shift alot but its easy to use ever ounce of power it has. Its also an easy car to slide and recover once you start to rotate (assuming you disable stability control).


It lived outside around pine trees for a few years so the paint is wrecked. Ive bounced it off a few barriers and the passenger door got crunched by a poor neighbor of mine. I couldn't fix it and didn't want to screw up his insurance so I still have a wavy door.

Right now I have light weight 8" wide rims on the front with grippy sport tires. Too much grip in the rear and the car doesn't want to move round but this setup lets me basically pull the car out of a slide using the front grip. It has so much steering response now.

For the future I plan to just keep this car forever as my frontwheel drive car. I found out the 2008 corolla 1.8l engine has the same exact mounts and uses a transmission with the same case, and shafts as mine but longer gears. I found a company that rebuilds and race preps said engines for 5k. So once my 240z is done and Ive got the money lined up I plan to swap that engine in for a 30% power increase that will prolly help gas mileage too and basically an engine with 0 miles. Ill refresh the suspension at that time as well and swap the brakes for 4 wheel disks.

My second car ever is my 1973 Datsun (nissan) 240z which i am in the process of rebuilding and modifying. I spent a few years getting rust out of it, learning to weld, replacing sheet metal, putting in a new floor and upgraded frame rails and painting the interior. I also got a larger 2.8l engine from an 83 280zx. Same motor just larger pistons and other small changes, more power potential. Ive also installed larger brakes, a light weight flywheel to make the zingy engine zingier and a race exhaust header for a 2nd layer of zing. All the rubbery bits in the suspension are now stiffer. Right now I'm in the process of rewiring it completely. After which its testing the fuel system, replacing the radiator and hopefully driving it.


How it would look presently if shiny and all together


Its been a 5 year journey through some radical life changes that had me not engaging with it for months sometimes. But I can see the finish line now, and that kinda rules.

Part of me wants to never rebuild a car again and part of me cant wait to start the next sheetmetal journey.