Apologies for the late QotW, thanks to a big storm that knocked out power a JNC HQ. It was an annoyance, but not as big an annoyance as the many atrocities committed by car people. We, for one, cannot wait for the matte paint trend to go away. Back in 2009 we were saddened to see that Lexus USA painted their LFA press car matte black while introducing their brand new V10-powered engineering marvel in front of the world. Fourteen years later we’re still waiting for the fad to disappear. There are many crimes, both fashion and actual, committed in the name of cars.
What’s the worst trend in car culture these days?
The most entertaining comment by next Monday will receive a prize. Scroll down to see the winner of last week’s QotW, “What’s your saddest story of saying goodbye to a car?”.
It’s always hard to read stories of automotive heartbreak. As car people we cherish these machines in ways normal people don’t, and they look at us like we’re crazy when we shed tears over a hunk of metal.
Rest assured that we feel your pain. An innocuous night drive for no reason than to enjoy a new car, as Azfer did just before losing an Integra. A split-second miscalculation that causes the loss of a cherished ride, like ra21benj‘s Celica. Being forced to sell a good car because there’s no funds for repair, like streetspirit had to with his Trans-Am. Well, we can’t say we’ve experienced the pain of Volkswagen being Volkswagen, but we understand the sadness of losing a car as rare as Taylor C.‘s brown manual diesel wagon.
The, uh, winner this week is returning champion JJ who had years of hopes and dreams for his Honda Odyssey. Sadly, they were cut short due to an accident:
The day I had to give up my 2013 Honda Odyssey EX-L, dubbed “Batvan” by my kids. It was named because of a Lego Batman key chain that had been used almost as long as we had the van.
The Odyssey was purchased brand new by my wife and I three days after the birth of our second child, when we realized that the new rear-facing car seats were much too large for the interior of the CR-V we had at the time. Almost from the beginning it was a valued member of the family. For 10 years it happily carried and transported everything we asked of it. It easily held all of the assorted newborn and toddler paraphernalia for long trips to grandparents and other family members, something the CR-V was never able to do. Later, it was the perfect vehicle for youth sports trips and during Covid provided a great space for changing into hockey and football equipment. It transported everything during its life; furniture from multiple Ikea runs, a snowblower, recycling and dump runs, moving boxes, camping equipment, there wasn’t anything that wouldn’t fit in the back of Batvan.
Later on, when my wife got a new vehicle (a Ford Escape, ugh), I used Batvan to do the 2 hour daily commute for my job. While never the most exciting drive, she always delivered me where I needed to go in comfort. Driving rain? Whatever. Blizzard? No big deal, got snow tires. Scorching heat? Never once came close to overheating, and lordy is that A/C nice. Fuel economy? 8.9L/100km, thanks. The day before I lost her, Batvan had made her way to 380,000 km and showed no signs of mechanical failure. In my mind she was going to be my million-kilometre car, one that would horrify my adult children, grandchildren and wife. Unfortunately, it was not to be.
This spring I was taking my youngest (the pathologically late one) to school, and pulled out of our driveway without shoulder checking. BANG! Got hit in the rear passenger side by a high schooler in his mom’s Buick SUV. $16,000 damage to Batvan, a slightly dented hood to the Buick. Driveable, but by the time insurance was done she was detemined to be a total write-off. The day I had to leave her at the auto wreckers, still driveable, still mechanically strong, was tough. I said my good-bye after I parked her in the designated area, and had to fight back tears as I handed her keys (Batman keychain removed) to the owner of the wreckers. The only feeling I can compare it to was how I felt the day my wife and I lost our first dog.
Thanks to the insurance money we’re now making payments on a Honda Pilot Black Edition. While it’s nice enough, I find that it just doesn’t compare to Batvan, may she rest in peace.
Omedetou, your comment has earned you a set of decals from the JNC Shop!