What was your first car?

General Posted by zamoose 6 years, 9 months ago

A tack I added today made me think back to my first auto-mobile -- a burgundy 1983 Dodge Aries K wagon. That puppy served me well into the late '90's and was [the opposite of] a chick magnet. It went by various nicknames -- the Bloody Donkey, the Shaggin' Wagon, and more.

What was your first set of wheels and how long did it last?

40 replies

  • glen

    A '93 Plymouth acclaim. She lasted about a year, sadly.

    Actually, not sadly. After that I inherited a mid-90's Lincoln Continental. That was an awesome car.

    How awesome, you ask? I was sitting at a stoplight on a highway just outside of town, and the driver behind me didn't see the stoplight and hit us going about 50 MPH. My seat broke, and I rolled into the backseat. Not a scratch on me, and the damage didn't go past the trunk on the car. The other driver walked away too, but with a few bruises and cuts.

    They don't make 'em like they used to.


  • elancaster65

    First car I got to drive was my Mom's old 1972 VW Bug.

    First car I ever bought was a 1966 Ford Mustang with a 289, stock 4bbl carb, 4 speed manual trans, bench seat, air shocks and rock-n-roll radials. I've owned two in my lifetime.

    Now driving one of my bucket list cars. MINI Cooper S. Loving every minute of the ticket I got this week for 32 in a 20 zone.


  • Razorback

    1977 Camaro (not one of the sexier models they put out).

    My father, brother and I were into drag racing so we built a custom engine, transmission and rear end for it. We would take our cars down to Greenville, MS to a strip where you could race legally for money.

    I drove that Camaro throughout my senior year of high school but my license was suspended (no surprise) shortly after I left for college so I had to leave the car at dad's house.

    One day, my brother took it our for a spin. A gas line came loose and sprayed fuel on the hot engine and immediately caught on fire. Burned the entire front half of the car beyond repair.


  • sam_acw

    I had a 1984 VW Golf 1.5l, it was an ugly ass green colour with a sun roof that leaked so much that the fuses regularly blew in the dark. It cost me £200 in 1999 and was a real skip.


  • ahnyerkeester

    1969 AMC Rambler. Three on the tree. Complementary hole through the floorboards right where you rested your heal with your foot on the clutch. Made for a great surprise when you ran though a puddle.

    It was nicknamed "The Transparent Tank" by my friends. I had it for about three years and then sold it to a friend. He replaced the fuel pump and had it for a few more years.


  • brian

    1985 Honda CRX. Just after I bought it, I took it to a mechanic who declared "this thing is a death trap. DO NOT drive over 45 mph in this car." I loved that little beast though. I could fill it up for $8 and it would go for days. It was also sweet for delivering pizzas with, which I did for about a year at Little Caesars during college. I think we ended up just giving it to the local junk yard when I was done with it. Shame, it really served me well.


  • Chet_Manly

    A car that was 20 years old when I got it. A 1975 Toyota Carolla. It was banana yellow when I got it, but you could see various places where it had been primer gray and before that, dark green. The dash board was split in many places from years of the hot southern sun, the 8-track player was jammed up under the passenger seat (because no one had the heart to throw it away I guess), and the road could be seen under the mat on the drivers side floor. It could be pushed around the high school parking lot while in gear and with the parking brake on, and I would often find it in places around the parking lot other than my assigned space where I left it.

    When I wired up a cassette player and some speakers from a boom box, I was rolling in luxury. No A/C in the Florida heat, but I had music and I stretched a few tapes driving around town.

    It was so bad, it was actually kind of cool....or it was just my residual coolness as I had plenty to spare at the time. Either way, I liked that car for its absolute awfulness.

    Sold it when I went to college for $300 to a pizza delivery kid I had gone to church with and I really didn't like much. It was a win-win for me; kind of like Tom Sawyer and the whitewashed fence.

    I've enjoyed being reminded of that car. Excellent topic.


  • zamoose

    A few details about the Shaggin' Wagon I had forgotten in the intervening years:

    • One summer, it got so hot that the rubberized steering wheel cover literally melted and slid off into the driver's seat. My dad bought a replacement wheel from a pick-n-pull junkyard that was a color-mismatch for the interior and, after consulting the mechanic and realizing that rewiring the horn to the actual wheel was going to cost $$, decided to have said mechanic instead install a giant glow-in-the-dark button at knee height on the right side of the steering column.
    • After replacing the horn button, the secondary discordant/anti-harmonic horn never quite worked right, particularly on first press. This meant that taps on the horn sounded a bit like an inhalation followed by flatulence and then a mournful bale ("uh-pfffrrt-heeeawwwww!"), thus earning the "Bloody Donkey" moniker for the car.
    • One evening, I was proceeding home from work at my job as a lifeguard at a hotel. Traffic was backed up on Rt. 1, so I decided to jump into the exit lane and take an alternate route home. No one else was in the lane, so I was cruising along at ~45mph. The headlights on the SW were pretty crappy, so I didn't see the 3 foot tall pile of gravel the construction workers had left in the exit lane to discourage line-hoppers until about 10 feet prior to hitting it. I took that thing fully General Lee mode and had gravel pinging around in the wheel wells for weeks afterwards. My dad took it in to the shop later for inspection and tune-up and came home saying that the mechanic noted that the oil pan had somehow mysteriously developed a giant crack. I lied my face off and said I had no idea how it happened.
    • The roof's upholstery started coming down, which we laughed about, until a large portion dropped into my brother's face while he was driving one day. We then proceeded to thumbtack the entire thing back into place for the remainder of the time we owned it.


  • Nickolas

    My first ride was a 1984 Jeep CJ-7 Renegade. It had 107K miles on it and cost $1200. It was a mechanical nightmare but I loved all of the 50K+ miles I would put on it until I gave it away to my High School to the Shop class (the students would later turn it into a propane running machine) Almost got a arrested in it many times for trespassing to get to rivers to put it hood deep in water. Girls always loved it during the Summer and hated it during the Winter. I leaked, it was hot and cold. Would love to have one again soon.


  • badmambajamba5323

    1983 Chevy Citation... thing was killer. I wired in my tower speakers, added BFG's to the rear, and sheepskin seat covers. Had it a couple of years but after dropping a transmission and a couple of oil pans by treating it like a jeep, I got a jeep.


  • tonyohh

    65 Chevy Malibu paid 500 bucks, offered my uncle 475 he turned me down, gave it to my sister after a few years, she sold it to someone and wrecked it, the car today is still called the La Bamba


  • 1983 Ford T-bird that I bought in '96 for $250 after wrecking the '84 Mustang that my dad let me drive. The T-bird had no exhaust and was supposed to be two-tone tan & brown, but for some reason there were two different tans and two different browns. Not the sharpest looking thing. We did some work on it and painted it blue. I drove it a few years before I got a truck. Then my sister and my dad drove it a few years. Can't remember what happened to it after that.


  • BenW

    1971 Mustang Mach 1 with the 351 Cleveland and posi. Got it in 1977 while in High School. AKA the ticketmobile. :)

    I switched to trucks and 4x4s at 21. Ticket acquisition went way down, places I could go went way up.

    I actually learned to drive on my dad's 1970 F100 with three on the tree and power nothing. Back then you didn't need to go to the gym to build up your arms, just get in the truck and grab the steering wheel. :D


  • barefootgreg

    A silver and black 1979 Mustang Ghia Turbo 2 door (trunk not hatch) with a 4 speed manual transmission .
    The horn was on the turn signal stalk, I have no idea what they were thinking there. It got to when every time I went to signal left the horn would blow. It was seven years old when I bought it. It was a good car, and it took all the abuse I threw at it but I traded it a year later for an '86 Toyota MR2.


  • joshhatcher

    1988 Plymouth Reliant K Bought it right before we got married. Had twins. Then the car got an oil leak and had an electrical problem. Got home from work - and an hour later smelled smoke - the engine caught on fire and burned up!


  • ZombieCatBacon

    1975 Mercury Bobcat station wagon - bought it off my mom in '81 and totaled it '85. Fell asleep at the wheel and drove into a parked car, one block from my house. Great car though - made it from Toronto to Ft. Lauderdale a couple times with five guys jammed into it.


  • asray

    1980 Cadillac Eldorado (this was in 1993). Rich kids at my prep school made fun of it until they rode in it. It was silver with red leather interior. There was dual climate control, power everything and a sunroof. All that with a V8 350.

    Had it for a couple of years until I got a 1989 Pontiac Grand Prix.


  • GuysGab

    1982 Toyota Celica GT hatchback.. The car had less than 100 horsepower, but considering I was just 17 years old, that was probably a good thing!

    Sadly, most of these cars have long since rusted away, or else I'd love to find one so I could relive my youth.


  • breauxmann

    My first was a 1953 Pontiac. She was Jet Black with huge bench seats that seemingly went for miles. It had a straight 8 flathead and was all 6 volt. I had a big yellow orange Indian head (Mr. Pontiac I presume) as the hood ornament that lit up when the lights were on. It was a cool car.

    The car was gifted to me by a buddy who I was helping rebuild a 1937 Buick. He was the car nut, I was the hang around guy that loved the excitement of going out to farmers fields looking for old car parts.

    Speaking of Farmers fields, that's where this Pontiac lived. We would go out to his grandparents farm and drive this Pontiac around the farm. It had a hydramatic transmission that shifted manually or automatic, and was loads of fun to drive. Heck for a 16 year old, it was the coolest car ever.


  • Scrapiron

    My first car was a 1963 Rambler American 440, two door. The drivetrain consisted of a 196 cubic inch inline 6 with a 3 speed manual "twin stick" floor shifter. But the best part was front split seats that would recline like a bed. Best make-out car ever!


  • JakeLonergan

    1963 Triumph TR3, light blue. This was 1968 and I drove it through 1970. Rag top, bolt on side windows. Even included an engine start crank and insertion hole in the grill; seeing that should have worried me more.


  • bryans

    96 Saturn SL2, Totaled it on my first date with my now wife. Want to get married, total your Saturn, that's what forges the best marriages.


  • electrovista

    LoL at 83 Dodge Aries K Blood Donkey. My first real car was an 81 Mazda GLC. I bought it in Arlington, Virginia in 1990 for 500 USD, then drove it to El Paso, TX where it lasted seven years. The AC never worked.


  • joshhatcher

    It was a 1988 Plymouth Reliant K.

    Transmission went out - we put a new one in. Cooling System was all fouled up - we replaced water pump, radiator, and all kinds of parts.

    Then - there was an oil leak, and an electrical problem.

    That was what led to it's demise.

    I went into the house, and after a half hour, we smelled smoke.

    When we went back out - the engine block was dripping molten plastic. Opened up the hood with the fire extinguisher, the oxygen rushed in and it went up in flames.

    Everything that wasn't metal was gone.