I think it’s good-looking, and I know it’s roomy, reliable, and quick. It’s for sure the best car I’ve ever had.
But here are five others, in descending order of appreciation:
1. 1986 Toyota Celica GT — Bought it New Jersey, drove it to Kentucky, and then used it the first five years of ministry in Monroe, North Carolina. In fact, the prime reason I traded it in was because the manual gear shift made my then three year old son Riley throw up.
2. 1978 Mazda RX-7. Funny story. I was only 16 when these game changers came out. My dad had always liked Mazdas and so bought one. Then he realized driving a two seater was less comfortable than it looked, so guess who inherited it? I drove it for two years and then we sold it to pay for my first year of college.
3. 1996 Nissan Altima. After as much Celica-induced vomiting as I could take, it was time to change to a four door car with automatic transmission. I kept this one eight years. The TV ads said people would mistake it for a small Mercedes. They were wrong.
4. 2004 Nissan Altima. But that ’96 Altima was more durable and more enjoyable than the ’04 I bought to replace it. I thought the new model would be an upgrade, but it didn’t turn out that way. I guess I had to wait for the Maxima for the real upgrade.
5. 1977 Plymouth Arrow. My first car ever! It was kind of cute — sort of — but it had a few challenges as well. Like it wasn’t fast. It wasn’t spacious. And it didn’t get good gas mileage. Other than that, perfect!
What will be next?
I don’t think I will have to decide for quite some time.
Next generation Maxima, perhaps?