Tuesday, December 27, 2005

What do you drive and why?

OK, here's a question that I'm actually surprised that nobody has asked so far. What do you drive and why? What kind of vehicle is your primary transportation, and what factors shaped the decision?

I drive a Ford Ranger 4x4 standard cab pickup with a 4.0 V6 and 5 speed manual transmission.
Biggest factors were the need for 4 wheel drive, and ground clearance for the ocassional trip off pavement. I needed a pickup as opposed to an SUV or other vehicle, because of work, needing to carry tools and equipment. I'm "On-Call" 24/7/365 for my job, and can't wait for the roads to be plowwed. I also wanted something that could fit into an average parking space, and couldn't be too tall, I had an underground parking space in my appartment building's garage at the time. Price and value were also major factors. While it's assumed by many that I bought Ford because of my love of the brand, this truck replaced a Chevy S-10 and was the first Ford truck I ever owned. The Ranger was available with the options I needed at the best price. I even checked Toyota and Nissan at the time, as well as Dodge and Chevy. So believe it or not, brand loyalty was not a major factor in this purchase.

What made you choose your current ride?

The reason I'm curious, is that people read your work and probably respect your opinions. Many of you are probably the go to person among your family and freinds when they need car buying advice.


Blogger carscomblogger said...

BFF- you drive a ford?! no way.

Kidding aside my wife drives a 2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee because it was the only SUV lease we could afford for her company car allotment. I wanted the Murano or Subaru Forester but neither one had a better lease deal at the time. The jeep has had faulty brakes for the past two years and has been serviced 5 times with Chrysler offering no solution. We have to drive it and bring it in each time the brakes go out. It does not fall under IL's lemon law either.

Oh and I still have my 99 escort i got after graduating college since I don't really need my own car. It has never had a mechanical problem. Although that will probably go bye bye in 2006.

8:43 AM  
Blogger Racedriven said...

Well right now, I drive a 95 Nissan Altima, 4cyl, 4 door and because, simply put, it was the family car and when I needed a reliable car, there it was, good miles, run great and paided off.

This might sound off, thats life..

Oh yeah, you drive a ford, cool, sounds perfect for you, me I like SUV's with 4x4 and good mpg.

See Yeah! Check out my new site on Wordpress at racedriven.com, I moved from blogger.

9:16 AM  
Anonymous Croak said...

Living in San Diego, there's not much need for ground clearance or snow traction, no kids (just a really big dog) so no need for road behemoths,

What I wanted was a car that could get me to work comfortably and reliably in congested traffic, but still allow me to burn up some of the best mountain roads in the country, or slap on a helmet and hit the track and be "competitive" with the big boys, and still retain a functional back seat.

And I didn't want to be totin' the note for 5 years to pay for it, nor be out a fortune if I wiped out at the track, or get totally enraged if some vapid soccer mom parking-lot pranged me with the door of her ridiculous Excursion while chatting with her tennis pro on the cell phone.

The BMW E36 3-Series was perfect for that. Even if I hadn't went bonkers with modding it, it's a great platform, and you don't have to spend a fortune on an E36 (92-99) version.

But of course, I went bonkers modding it, because that's the sort of thing I enjoy. I'm bored shitless with out-of-the-box turnkey cars that I can't tinker with.

Currently my car puts down 395 supercharged horsepower to the rear wheels, and easily hangs with Ferrari 360's, 996 Turbos, Z06s, Vipers, etc. on the straights or in the twisties (my co-workers spend too much on cars).

And it's my daily driver and grocery getter, racking up 20k+ trouble-free miles a year.

Not bad for something I only have about $25k wrapped up in.

There just ain't a lot of other platforms that would allow that level of modification, performance, and reliability at that price while still being a comfy daily drive. With the added bonus of being inoffensive looking to the average law-enforcement type.

Of course, I only see about 15mpg in the city, but I have never stressed about fuel economy, and never will.

So, there's my short little answer to "What do I drive and why?" ;)

11:35 AM  
Blogger Cars! Cars! Cars! said...

I have a '98 Saab 900s. The car has about 10,000 bad quirks (a headlight wiper literally fell apart as I washed the car once) but I have to say it has the best driving seats of any car I've driven in. And the faster you go, the better it handles. I often find myself going 85 when I shouldn't be over 65.

The CD player skips if you go over a pebble, the LCD display is missing so many pixels that I have no idea what messages the car is trying to tell me, the car squeaks like crazy if it's too cold (I know! A car _from Sweden_ doesn't like the cold!) and when you lift the hatch in the rain, the water pours right in the rear speakers... but I like driving the thing. Sometimes way too fast.

Anyway, it's a hatch and it makes a heck of a lot of sense for us (two kids now).

8:14 PM  
Blogger gabe said...

2005 MINI Cooper S (6 speed Getrag, modded and tracked) I've driven everything from a 1973 Lotus Europa to a 500hp 2006 BMW M5 and none of them matches the daily enjoyment I get out of this car.

2000 BMW 323i Sport Wagon (sport package w/5 speed Getrag, Supersprint exhaust and someday maybe even tracked). The utility of a SUV with the performance, economy, and resale value of a sports sedan.

... and both are sitting in my garage completely filthy.

9:08 PM  
Anonymous Glenn Arlt said...

After having terrible luck over 30 years of car purchases with "American" iron, I finally took a "gamble" and bought a 2002 Hyundai Sonata V6 new 3 years ago. We wanted a mid-sized car which could tow a (very) small canoe trailer. The warrantee, "Jaguar" looks (ours is Burgundy metallic with tan interior - "veddy British yew know") and has had far fewer "issues" than my prior 1999 Neon (made in Mexico - head gaskets - 3 times in 60,000 miles) and prior 1997 Cavalier (absolute POS - brake rotors warping, etc). Next, we passed the Neon on to our college-age son and I passed the Sonata to my wife, and got a 2005 Toyota Prius hybrid. Again, it's mid-sized (inside) but the gas mileage is double what the Sonata can obtain, winter or summer, plus I love the safety equipment such as side airbags (Sonata also has them), ABS, vehicle stability control, traction control, etc. It's the most futuristic car I've ever had, and a real attention getter - I've had hundreds of people ask me about it. I waited 9 1/2 months for mine. We have plenty of room for the two of us and our Newfoundland who is happy in the back - she just wants to go for a ride then a walk! I wanted to cut down on oil use since we appear to be paying for both sides of the war on terror because we're importing so much oil. I have to admit wanting total reliability, especially in a car as complex as the Prius - and the Prius is now listed as the most reliable car sold in the United States. The super-low pollution (1/17th of what a VW Jetta diesel puts out, for example) is also phenomenal. It pollutes less in 25,000 miles than spilling a kitchen-cup of gasoline, say, while refuelling a lawn mower-awesome!

6:34 AM  
Blogger Antonette said...

Ok, you are all going to think I'm weird or just bi-polar (you may be right on both cases LOL). I will only buy chevy cars and Ford Trucks. Why? I'm not too sure myself. I had 3 camaros (74,79 and a 86 Z28), 1 Ford Ranger, 1 Explorer Sport and now I have a Explorer Sports Trac. I don't like Chevy Trucks and I don't like Ford cars. Confused yet?

6:00 PM  
Blogger Big Ford Fan said...

Antonette, that is an unusual situation. I'm a Ford guy that has had, by circumstance more Chevy trucks than Ford over the years, but to divide preferences so clearly?

Now here's a question, which do you prefer in NASCAR? Ford or Chevy? Or is strictly by driver, your loyalty lies? If your favorite driver switched brands, would it matter to you?

4:37 PM  
Blogger Stephen V. said...

I just bought one of those cars you all will probably hate, a Scion XB. For the $ it's got a great set of features, gets great mileage, and have you climbed int he back seat of one? It's huge in there!

7:35 PM  

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