Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Zen and the art of car buying

As some of you may know, I have a horrbile affliction know as "mad car disease". The primary symptom is frequent car buying and selling. Other secondary symptoms include constantly shopping for cars, gathering information on cars, and anxiety related to finding the proper car for any given situation.

I've owned a Volkswagen GTI for the last two and a half years, and I've enjoyed it. It's a very serious car. It's grumbly, stiff, German, relatively fast, and it takes itself very seriously. I've participated in numerous HPDEs or "track days" with the car at area road courses, and, while the car typically is not close to the fastest car there, it does very well for a daily driver.

My problem is that my interests include running and cycling in addition to driving fast at track days, and I'm finding myself without enough time for all of those activities while also occasionally trying to be a parent. So, I'm seriously considering trading the GTI for a Honda Fit. Yes, I've owned one of those before. And yes, this one is identical. I like the Fit because it's the total opposite of the GTI. It's light, efficient, friendly, slow, and it's obvious that it doesn't take itself too seriously. Anything with an engine that small simply can't.

Why would I do this instead of simply continuing to drive the GTI without doing more track days for a while? Good question. Mostly because I tend to identify with the car I drive, and I'm finding myself liking basic, simple, and efficient. The Fit also has more room for bikes and Will-related gear, and it completely avoids any temptation to do more track days. I haven't really, truly done the deal yet, but I feel good about it. The Fit is a very low-stress, "go with the flow" car, and I like that. It feels a bit like a modern VW bus. I suppose being slow contributes to that feeling.

So... it looks like Fit, take two.

1 comment:

  1. Sounds like you've already made up your mind, but check out the Subaru Outback. 05-09 body style. 2010 is too big. I love mine: 2005, 2.5i engine, AWD, can still scoot when I want it to (auto-stick), but gets 29mpg on highway trips. Roof rack is already there for the bikes--and did I mention AWD? And it's made in Indiana. (I try to convert everyone I know btw, so take this with a grain of salt). Enjoy! -Steve