One of the most asked questions of “car” people, second to “What kind of car should I buy?” and “How much do you think x will cost to fix?” is, “What would be the best car to buy for my [new driver] kid?” And I have a standard list of cars I cut and paste and send to people, and they just go buy Camrys anyway. The tables, however, have turned, and I’m faced with a child (yes, CHILD) who is at 18 months until she can legally qualify to get a driver’s license. And who, like her dad, can’t wait.
I’ve been considering returning to a two-door as my daily hack. Almost five years ago, my grumpy lower back immediately complained about installing our newborn son and his car seat into the rear compartment of my 1991 BMW 318is. A four-door was in order, and we soon found our rusty-but-trusty 1995 Mercedes-Benz E320. Now, said munchkin is able and (usually) willing to climb into his car seat by himself. The Benz is just fine for now, but it can’t hurt to consider a replacement that might need some work before being pressed into daily service. Continue reading
My Dad emailed me yesterday. It seems his 1995 Infiniti Q45a is back at the dealer getting steering rack boots and a water pump. Recently, it got a battery, and had some wiring under the back seat repaired. The wiring had gotten wet because, likely, the sunroof drain tubes are plugged up. The sunroof doesn’t open, so we can’t clean out the drains.
This is how cars rapidly unravel. Continue reading
Suppose for a minute that you have managed to finagle your personal finances through a series of questionable actions to the point that you have somewhere in the neighborhood of $20K available in liquid funds. Now suppose further that you are cunning enough to convince whomever else in your household that has a say in how your money gets spent that you are car savvy enough to take that $20K and turn it into at least 25% more over the next 1-3 years. We’re not talking penny stocks going up 100X in value, but is there not some appeal to our automotive selves in the ability to buy and enjoy a car that we find interesting and end-up selling it on at a net gain? Continue reading
So spring (or summer, apparently) has sprung – at least in the Mid-Atlantic region, but also throughout much of the rest of the country, from what I hear. What that means to me is that it’s time to dust-off your convertible, change the oil, pump-up the tires, put the top down, and head-out for a relaxing drive in the country, or the city, whichever is your pleasure. What’s that? You don’t have a convertible? We would argue that there is a convertible out there for nearly any budget or anyone with a credit card that they’ve given-up trying to pay off and therefore don’t mind piling onto. Who among Car Geeks doesn’t relish the wind in their hair, the sun on their face, and the sound of the exhaust bouncing off the trees? Now is the time before prices jump-up for the season. What we offer here are some thought starters…
Since I was about 12 years old I’ve had this fantasy of taking some dilapidated old car and making it showroom new once again. I had this vision of rolling the project into my garage semi-wrapped in a tarp, spending my nights and weekends out there rebuilding, refurbishing, and replacing, maybe even some paint and bodywork, and eventually pulling it back out of the garage to the accolades of my friends and family who knew the blood, sweat, and tears I’d invested. Sort of like John Cusack’s Lane Meyer character in Better Off Dead did with the 1st generation Camaro that his dad (M*A*S*H’s Charles Emerson Winchester, III) had threatened to have junked. My problem is that I am lazy. And poor. Still, this rare, Porsche-built Mercedes-Benz 500E needs just enough that its price is the lowest we have ever seen for one, and its needs are largely cosmetic in nature. Surely I could make it perfect. Or you could. Find it here on eBay in Huntington Beach, California with a Buy It Now price of just $6,550 or best offer.