The "my first car" thread

Started since I got my first car last wednesday, I bought my Mum’s old Honda Civic (the model most outside the UK would probably know as a Honda Domani) at a most reasonable rate. No pics up yet till tomorrow, but I can’t think of too many low end Honda’s sold with fake wood on the dash :smiley:

My Dad beats this with a Triumph Spitfire as his first car though :rolleyes: Any other memorable (good or bad) first cars?

1980 VW Rabbit Diesel. It had been my mom’s car, but when I got my license she sold it to me (no freebies in my house).

It was a beautiful car, at least for a little while. But the four or five accidents I got into that first year pretty much guarenteed that it’d never go through an inspection station again, no matter how much Bondo and duct tape I used on it.

Heh…typing that just brought back a memory – when my parents first bought that car, my father bought one of those Revell model kits of it, but he never put it together. When I bought the car, I took an afternoon and built the model, painting it up to perfection.

As that year past, and the accidents piled up (no pun intended), I had to keep modifying that model to keep pace with reality. It’s amazing how well you can add dents and crumples with a soldering iron. :slight_smile:

Subaru WRX Sports Wagon

Personally I think it was the best choice for a young guy there is. Fun to drive, small, and yet has room to put stuff in the back for if you move to a new apartment or whatever. Comfortable seats too. I drove from Seattle to Vancouver and perfectly comfortable the whole way.

1972 Plymouth Duster. 318 cubic inch V8, 3-speed manual transmission with a sexy floor shift. Built like a tank. Ran forever. When the muffler rotted out, I had a shop put duals on it; my dad teased me that he didn’t know why I’d spent so much money, only to have it sound exactly the same. :smiley:

1985 Ford Tempo.

It belonged to my mother’s great-uncle, who rarely drove it after being retirement. In 1995 our family (having two teenagers) took it and put 50,000 miles on it over the next several years. In '03 I traded it in for $500 towards my current vehicle. It wasn’t fast or sporty, but it had five seat belts and having any kind of transportation at all is always a plus at that age.

Near the end, it was constantly having problems with overheating, and seemed to go through brake pads with distressing frequency. The tape deck ate anything you tried to play in it.

The villian in Stephen King’s Rose Madder stole and drove a Tempo in the same color as mine, which always made me laugh when I read it.

My first car was a 1980 Volvo 240DL station wagon. That might not sound too bad but I got the car in 1998. Not a bad car, but it needed a lot of mechanical work as things–the electrical system, mostly–were just getting old.

Um. A 1988 Mercury Tracer, which I got last year after my grandmother died.

It’s only got 67,000 miles on it and is pretty damned quick.

I call it “Red Rocket”.

The first car that I ever purchased with my own hard-earned cash was a 1968 Volkswagen beetle. I still have it.

38 years and 300,000 miles later, it doesn’t look shiny and new anymore. But, come to think of it, neither do I.

Beetle Then

Beetle Now

Very first car was a 1958 T-bird - White with red leather seats.

I hated that car so it was traded for a 1963 MkI MG Midget.

In this picture: If you take off the chrome side runner and the one on the “bonnet”, paint the car red, that was my MG.

I still kick myself for selling it.

The first car I ever drove regularly was a '95 Volvo 850 sedan, generally in pretty good shape. Thanks, Qadgop!

The first car whose care and maintenance I was ever financially responsible for [del]was[/del] is a '93 Mazda MPV minivan with flames painted on it. It actually belongs to a buddy of mine, but it’s not worth the expense of getting it to pass safety and e-testing to change the ownership. (Though he has offered to sell it to me for a dollar…) We maintain it cooperatively, and joke about how very communist it is. From each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs, and doesn’t work.

'87 Buick Riviera…the first car to legally be mine. I purchased it at age 18 (back in 2000) for $1500 when it had about 140k miles on it.

There were few controls on the dash because most functions such as radio and A/C were controlled using a touch-pad digital screen. Even the glove box opened electronically.

This one from eBay is similar (see the dash pics)

Somehow, the transmission suddenly leaked all its fluid out onto my driveway one night. I drove for three hours back to college that night and the tranny was torn up along the way. :frowning:

Mine was a 1936 Ford 2 door. I paid $110.00 and it was cherry, looked like new. That was in '55 and I went into the Navy in '56. My Dad sold it several months later.

Oh yeah. :rolleyes:

A mid-70s Plymouth Duster I bought in Indianapolis in 1981 for $350. An indescribably disgusting shade of brown everywhere, complete with heat-cracked dashboard and seats.

In Indiana, they use salt on the roads in winter to cut the ice and snow. This salt is really effective in corroding metal. The fenders of most older cars in Indiana are eaten up like termite-infested wood, at least if they still have fenders. My Duster looked like someone had attacked the fenders with a sawed off 12-gauge.

My favorite story about this “car”:
I was driving down the road one afternoon when the accelerator pedal suddenly hit the floor. The engine revved up like a 747 taking off, and a huge cloud of black smoke shot out the tailpipe, turning the view through the rear completely black. Panicked, I turned the ignition off and coasted to a stop.

A cursory investigation of the engine revealed that the throttle return spring had snapped. Basically, the throttle now had two positions: completely open, and off. My stomach sank. I was miles from my apartment, and it was hot and muggy out.

Then I looked across the street, and saw immediately a small brick store with a sign across the front that said

Auto Parts


One 89-cent part later, I was on my way.

I drove that car from Indianapolis to Philadelphia later that fall, in a 16-hour marathon.

Ooops! Forgot to mention my pride and joy: a 1985 BMW K100RS motorcycle with

110,000 miles on it. Still going strong. :smiley:

My first was a '93 BMW 325is when I was 17, though I think I didn’t legally own it until I was 18. It was a bit nicer than the '83 Saab I was going to get from my mom.

It had been my dad’s and I inherited it when he died.

1976 Fiat 128 wagon. Bought secondhand by my parents, as I began my senior year in college - from friends of theirs. Hunk o’ junk. The Fiat dealers in 2 cities knew me by name (nobody but the dealers could fix those). Replaced the clutch cable 2x in the 2+ years I owned it. Averaged 100/month in repair bills (which was a lot for a college student / first year out of college).

Its swan song was when I was on the way to trade it in on a new Dodge Omni (shows you how bad the Fiat was, that the Omni was a step up) - the car got rear-ended and the back bumper crumpled.

I finally forgave my parents for their generosity, years later :wink:

I bought a 1970 Plymouth Valiant (slant 6) when I was 15 that I never got to drive. My parents had been divorced and I bought the car on a trip to my dad’s place in New Mexico (at his suggestion). I bought the car and paid for some transmission work. I never saw it again, my douchebag father left it at the neighbor’s house when he moved back to California, and we never heard from the neighbor again.

And it had all my tools and my nice mummysack in the trunk, too. :mad: Too bad, the body was nice and straight, a new paintjob and it would’ve been a pretty cool ride.


Mmm… my very first car was 1969 Oldsmobile Cutlass. It would’ve been a 4-4-2, except for the fact that it had an automatic transmission, a two-barrel carb, and a single exhaust. Not to mention four doors. But still, that old beast was a joy to drive. The engine was a Rocket 350, the power steering was effortless, and the sound… well, my friends knew when I pulled up outside their apartment. As one person noted, it sounded ‘like it had balls.’ :smiley:

Only problem was that it spent more time in the shop than on the road, it seemed. And of course, its final demise. For some months before the end, I had this mysterious mist that would come out of the vents–mostly the defroster vents, but on occasion other vents too. It was white and stuck to the windows, and made driving a bit of an experience–you had to keep a paper towel handy at all times if you wanted to be able to see.

So one night I’d been over visiting a friend, and at about 4am decided to head home. (I was working 2nd shift at the time, as was he; I often went over after work.) I hopped in the car, fired it up, and started the trip back to the interstate. I immediately noticed that the production of the mist was unusually heavy, but I figured I’d get it home and worry about it in the morning. Well, as I drove on, things just got worse and worse. It was coming out not only from the defroster vents, but the dash vents, the floor vents… and then, when I got on the highway, it started coming from the steering column, under the hood, the front wheelwells–and not just a little mist. It was absolutely -pouring- out of everywhere on the front of the car. This while I was doing 60mph on the highway, hanging out of the window to try and see where I was going. I realized pretty quickly that I had to stop, but the notion of just stopping on the shoulder didn’t enter my mind; I had to get to the next exit. I managed that, then pulled into the only driveway I could see–a gas station. Not bright, considering that I seriously figured my car to be on fire. I made it to the hotel next door and called the FD; by the time they got there, it turned out not to be on fire, at any rate.

As it happened, it was a cracked heater core. But I was spooked off that car, and sold it not too long thereafter. I still sorta miss it, though I shudder to think how expensive it would be to feed these days… O.O

My first car was a 1966 MGB roadster my mom bought new. I got it – non-running, and having sat for several years – after high school.