Sunday, January 8, 2012

Cool Cars I Have Owned and Driven

Cool Wheels Anyone?
Over the last fifty years of driving, I have had many sets of wheels. Some not so wonderful, and others that could make my heart go pitter patter. Personally, I like muscle cars, four-wheel drives with mighty V-8 engines that can leave everyone else in the dust. I love driving winding mountain roads, driving in sand and even mud, challenging my abilities, as well as my wheels. It's somewhat as if my vehicle has become my horse. Heaving ribs while they draw in deep breaths, and have their head out in a straight line with their body, and tail. 

Oh yes, which vehicle did I like best? This is really difficult to answer, as I very seldom have had a vehicle I did not particularly care for. My first one was a 1950 Dodge, Coronet, 2 door. It was a dark metalic green, with a semi-automatic transmission, a wood grained dash board, and a glass packed muffler. The gear shift was chrome, with the overdrive button on the end.  It had quite a bit to power for a straight line 6 cylinder car. 

My second car was one I really did not want, as it had to replace my cherished 1950 Dodge when it finally was in desperate need of a complete overhaul. I remember begging my dad not to sell my wheels, and I didn't want a different car. But, one day, he showed up with my first 1955 Ponitac 4 door sedan, two-toned green, and I hated it, but it did get me to where I needed or wanted to go. I think it could have also been in better mechanical condition. This one had a large V-8 engine, and was fully automatic. 

I only had that car for a few months, when some not too bright teenaged boys totaled it, while it was parked on the street in front of the home of a lady and her husband we were visiting. Their tie-rod snapped as they drove too fast over some dips in the intersections in a residential neighborhood. They hit my car so hard, that it split the gas tank, spilling almost an entire 20 gallons of fuel all over the place. It was a miracle that the whole place didn't go up in smoke. They pushed my car two houses down the street, and up over the curb, barely missing a large tree in the parkway. 
Big V-8 Dodge Pickup

My third car was another 1955 Pontiac 4-door. But, this one was "real cherry," as they say. It was in perfect condition, painted a spectacular "ice blue metalic, with seven coats of lacquer." 

Since then, of course many cars and trucks have come and gone in my life. There was this really cool white 1982 Chevy Berlinetta, with really deep royal blue interior. That car was also a real pleasure to drive, and I loved driving it through the mountains between the Inland Empire and the coastal cities. Funny, but when I showed up at my office in my Berlinetta, everyone was speechless. They had not known me long enough to know the real me. I had been driving an older sedan while looking for my replacement wheels. Finally, about all they could say was, "I guess still waters really do run deep." 

My Ford Explorer  With a Big V-8 & AWD
Fully loaded, leather interior
©2009 PK Hawk
I think the next cool vehicle I had was my 1999 Ford Explorer Limited, with a V-8, AWD, and all leather interior. I had it for about ten years or so, and traded it in on a Ford Ranger, which was somewhat of a step or two down, but I really needed a truck by then, and hauling so much animal feed, and hauling dog crates, etc. was really ruining my Explorer. Eventually, my son-in-law begged me to sell him my truck, as by then, I really no longer needed it, and I was considering getting another Explorer. So, he bought a second hand Explorer, which he did not really want, and we traded, straight across. 

K9s are Form 
Those Explorers are something else in the mountains, and curvy mountain roads. They aren't too shabby in sand and mud, either. To my way of thinking, many people who have rolled their Explorer, had to be driving faster than they should have in corners, or on curves.  These vehicles are somewhat top heavy, as they do sit higher on the frame than a regular does.  Common sense tells you when you need to slow down somewhat.  

When I finally sold my home, I also sold my last Explorer to some friends, who wanted it for their grandson. I had not yet decided what I was going to replace it with, so I was shopping around. That is, until I rode with a friend who has a Scion xB. At first, when I saw her driving that thing, I thought she must have lost her mind. This woman, I have known for nearly thirty years, and she has never even owned a "car" on all those years. She is a truck person, having Dodge Rams, and Ford F-250's for hauling her horse trailer, etc. Now, she was driving this ugly square box of a car. Once I rode in it on the freeway, in heavy traffic, and seeing the take-off it was demonstrating, I was now interested in checking one out for myself. So, she and I went car shopping. We visited all the car dealers within about 15 or 20 miles from home, and not one had a Scion xB on their lot. I did try a Scion sedan, which was really what I wanted, but since it was a Toyota dealer, and he was trying so hard to find what I wanted, I agreed to try the Scion sedan... I think many people would have liked it, but to me, I was disappointed. He did have some xB's on the lot, but they were brand new ones, and were the most awful, disgusting blue, that I would not even be seen in one. I think they were trying to capture the younger buyers with something a little more stand outish, and something they could add to and personalize, maybe adding flames, or stripes, or something. But that certainly was NOT ME, by any stretch of the imagination.

My Scion xB
The following day, we headed out a little farther north, to another Toyota Dealer in Corona, CA. The salesman said they didn't have what I was looking for, and offered to show me what was on the lot, which I politely declined. Then, as we were about to leave for greener pastures, he remembered one that had come in a day or two before. It was still being prepared for resale, and was still in the shop. I agreed to take a look, and as things turned out, it was a carbon copy of the one my friend owned, all expect for the spoiler it had on the rear, that is. I drove it maybe a block or two, and knew that was exactly what I was looking for. Plenty of take-off, twice the gas mileage as my Explorer, and being a Toyota build car, the engine would last until I was probably long dead and gone.
Black Scion xB
If you have never driven one of these little gems, you don't know what you're missing. If you need to pass anything, even if you are entering a freeway on an incline, this little joy will take off in a snap, and leave your intruding interloper in the dust. Did I tell you that my friend's son, who is at least 6'2" easily fits into the front as well as the back seat, along with a friend or two the same size as he? Well he does, and so do they. 

This is one car though, that you really can't bargain over with dealers, as they can hardly keep them on the lot. Mine was a Toyota Certified Used Car, so it actually has a better warranty than if I were to buy a new one. The warranty is good until the odometer hits 100,000 miles or until 2014, whichever comes first. 

Me, cars and trucks, and horses, all go together like a hand in a glove. 
This is almost identical to my last horse
Her name was "DUSTY"
Fast, powerful horses, and strong, powerful vehicles, get my blood pumping.  Just thinking about all the great ride Dusty and I went on over seventeen years, warms my heart, and makes me dream of days gone by.  I really look forward to the day when God's promise of an earth cleansed of crime, sickness, and disabilities is only a long forgotten memory.  If I am one of the approved ones who get to live there, I will be riding again.  Only then, I will be riding not only horses, but elephants, lions, and maybe even on the back of a whale.  Isaiah 11:6-9...  Jehovah God has promised, and it is impossible for God to lie. (Hebrews 6:18)


  1. The Dodge pickup is simply one of the best pickups that I've driven. It has power, and it's easy to handle. It's the muscle car that I'm in love with. LOL!

    Rita McCall

  2. Thanks for your comment Rita. I loved Dodge trucks too. I have a friend though who had a terrible problem with the paint job on her new Dodge truck. For some reason the paint began peeling off her white Dodge Ram. It was taken care of only to recur with in a few months. I have loved every Dodge I have ever driven. Somehow, my late hubby and I usually ended up with Ford products. I now drive a Toyota product, the Scion xB, and I really love it.

  3. You have quite a collection there! It certainly shows your fascination with cars. Of all the cars that owned, I love your Toyota Scion xB. This car received a favorable review from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), especially the frontal offset test. The newly released version of this car has a new radio with standard Bluetooth, which is pretty cool.

    (Ivo Beutler)

  4. Well, Ivo, than you for you comment. Just on July 5th, I actually traded in my Scion XB for a new Honda Accord. I must admit, that was not an easy thing to do, either. I really like both of these cars. I understand the Scion is on the sales lot on DCH Honda of Temecula's used car lot. At least it was on Sunday, July 15th. It's low mileage, and in perfect condition, with just over 50K miles. With most cars having that amount of miles in a year or two, it really is good for a car that's 4 years old. Take a look, as I really would like a car lover to get my baby, "Pugsly."

  5. Whoa! You have quite a lot of experience with cars already. I’m sure it would really be interesting to ask advice from you about cars. I see that you’ve had a Dodge Ram already. Dodge Ram trucks were named by Motor Trend magazines as Truck Of The Year three times, in 1994, 2003, and 2010.

    Dante Mallet

  6. Wow! That’s a lot of cars! Do you have a hard time taking care of each one of them? We only own 2 cars and yet I still find it hard to keep those two clean every week. Anyway, do you name your cars? I named my MINI Hatchback “Holmes” because, well, I’m a big fan of the famous detective. My husband’s Camaro he named, you guessed it, Watson. One of the reasons why I married him is because he’s a fan of Sherlock Holmes too, hehe. I like your collection by the way and by the looks of your cars, you do treat them with utmost care. =)

    Tyra Shortino