The Plan

I am not a car guy. But I might be. How can you know unless you try? 

Here's the plan: each year, buy a different car beloved by car enthusiasts, in an effort to understand  their enthusiasm and whether it's something I might share. Porsche 911, 1960s British roadster, American muscle car, a "hot hatch" (VW GTI, Ford Fiesta ST), the Subaru WRX, a classic 1970s BMW. Each one has a legion of enthusiasts who swear by them.  

If you choose carefully, you can buy one of these cars, drive it for a year to learn what it has to teach, then sell it for roughly what you paid for it. Such is the magic of the depreciation curve. 

This is not because I've long dreamed of cars. Far from it. I've owned precisely three cars in my life: a 1980 Honda Accord (4dr, thanks dad!), a 1997 Mazda Miata (bought used in 1999), and a 2010 Honda Fit (bought new). All were driven completely stock, no modifications. This is not a car guy resume. The last time I really dreamt about cars was in high school (Ferrari Testarossa, if you must know).

So how did I become car guy curious? Well, it all started with a drive from SF to Oregon in a 1972 BMW 2002tii that I bought for my dad for his 80th birthday. It was unreasonably fun, especially considering that car is nearly as old as I am. That gave me the idea that, since I'm already avid about wine, audio gear, music, and food, there might be something to this car thing. Then I discovered Jalopnik, a car blog featuring some great writers like this fellow who decided he would own a red Ferrari 360 for a year, just to see what the experience was like. Or this fellow, who gave me the idea that if you pick the right used cars, you can get a great driving experience, resell a year later, and end up about even. 

So I am not a car guy. But I might be one.

No way to know, except to drive.


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