I’m cheap, and I hate bills – paying them every month is my least favorite adulting activity (aside from laundry). And car payments especially, since that note has to be paid every month, or you lose the car. So, the other day, a friend of mine asked me why I’m still driving around in a “gas guzzler” 1998 Ford Crown Vic, as well as spending the money on new tires and upkeep. The answer? I love the feel of older cars. I hate that new cars have high beltlines, less glass area to see out of, and a center console that prevents me from relaxing in Lay-Z-Boy like comfort. No center console to keep me from spreading out. The gearshift is on the steering column, they way it should be. The car is paid for, and has modern safety features like dual airbags, antilock brakes, as well as traction control and electronic climate control. One of my pet peeves with newer cars is the wimpy air conditioning – not in this car. My passengers need a hoodie when they ride with me, even in 90 degree heat.
As far as the gas guzzler status – yeah, it’s a V8. However, a modern engine – multi port fuel injected with dual overhead cams. I live about 45 minutes from the station, so while mileage is important, any gas savings I might see would be eaten up in higher car payments and insurance premiums. Plus, I like the security of knowing that when I put my foot down the car will MOVE. Being a Yankee, I’m impatient and don’t like being stuck behind someone out of a Sunday drive on a Tuesday morning.
Is the car stock? Not quite – the previous owner added backup sensors, and I have upgraded the stereo for modern conveniences like Bluetooth and iPhone connectivity. And it’s not in perfect condition – the front windows are stuck, and I haven’t gotten around to replacing the regulators.
But the car doesn’t owe me a thing – every time I twist the key, it starts and always gets me to my destination in comfort (and style – if you ask the dinner at 4PM crowd…and me).
If I won the lotto, would I buy a new car? Yes…hello Cadillac Escalade! Until then…the Crown Victoria will have to do.