Wednesday, May 19, 2004

Fast Cars ...and Good Cars!

I've been thinking ... ya i know not many times that happens but then ... what the heck ;)
in the last 3 years I have had the chance to drive more than 20 different cars - Mustang, Eclipse, Corolla, Camry, cavalier, Explorer, Optima, Sentra, Altima and many others - no I have not become a chauffeur - just that I have had the chance to stay in the US and rent out many different cars.
And then last week I got a chance to sit in a 2004 M3 - yep BMW and all!
It was not a first time BMW experience - I have been a co-passenger in a BMW 328 iS for long enough to safely say that I have driven it for all practical purposes!
Am I trying to make a point? yep ...
I love the BMW - i still do - great car - especially the sport versions like the 328iS and the M3 - I can't imagine how it would feel to ride these machines, let alone take a sharp turn at 70mph! I used to think (not that I don't now) that one day I too shall own a BMW - no matter the price! and then of course drive down route 1 as fast as I can ... and of course I shall sport a couple of tickets too - but then ... what the heck ;)
But then ... the whole BMW experience is not doing too good with me.
Lets start -
Check out the car - probaby the best looking sedan-class car - goto the BMW site and they even have movies featuring the car - A m a z i n g stuff!
click on the buy links (for an M3 cope) - woah - a host of features
V6 3.2 litre, 333 HP, alloy wheels, Power Glass Moon Roof, Leather Seat Trim, Driver's Seat & O/S Mirrors Memory System, Dual 8-Way Power Seat Adjusters & BMW Assist Communication System, Harman Kardon Radio System, Seat Adjuster, 4-Way Lumbar Support and what not
I'm floored - worth the USD49000 (California, before tax) that you would be shelling out. Of course you're buying the best there is (sedan class of course) and why not. Now the Harman Kardon may not be the best for cars but then definitely good stuff - can't deny that. wow.
But wait - here's where the rug got yanked (rather hard) from under my feet - All the wonderful things that you see above (except the first 3) are OPTIONAL features! In other words, you gotto pay extra!!
Now wait a minute - are you saying that a BMW does not even come with a Harman Kardon - please ... - Heck whats this guy cribbing about the radio - jesus its just a radio - yep I can hear you out there and maybe you are right - its a car-deck after all - but for someone like me - who drove more than 18000 miles in his first 10 months in the US - I think that is one of the most important things that you need when you drive - and it better be good.
Besides on long drives, I want a smooth ride - I could live with a non-sporty (read softer) suspension - I bet less than 1000 miles out of my 18000 were spent in fast turns - so I'm reeeeeally fine with the "softer" suspensions! A sports car is for sports - not for looooooooooong drives - imagine riding an F1 car for 10 hours flat :P
Of course the ride on a BMW - or any other sports car is not that hard - its pretty comfortable - but word to the wise - you most definitely can "feel" a rough road unlike some other cars I know - unless of course you're used to sleeping in BEST and local trains :)
USD65000 with all accessories - now thats what the car costs with all the accessories - not bad - still cheaper than a Porshe one wud say ... but then - the car does a mere 16 miles per gallon!!! Hellllooooooooo...
333 HorsePower is a real cool thing to think about - but not really when you're going to be driving quite often to the gas station! Heck thats nearly as bad as the US Cars!
I look around and I remember the Acura 3.2TL - with all the features that we spoke of above PLUS a Bose 10CD changer system PLUS an in-dash GPS - yep all for USD34000 - and its got power yes 270 HP - looks ... well it does not look as good as the Beamer but then hell - I can put in another 5K - get new struts and lower the car and lo it looks better ;)
The only problem I ahve with all the other cars is that they seem to be "growing" year after year ... which is somehing I really dont like - "biiiiig cars" - and something I love about the 3 Series - but lo one look at the new Beamers and they're ugly (matter of opinion of course) - they too have taken the American route - cars getting bigger by the year!!!
Hard-core Beamer fans (including myself) keep trying to console ourselves that the new Beamers would slowly "grow on" everyone ... but I dropped out of that gropup long ago ... if something hits you the first time - it must be really good - and it will keep hitting you - I realy dont see much of that around anymore :(
This "growing on you" thing is only for things that are just half-way there or even less - its just like the stoopid song on the radio that you find yourself humming one-day ... after you've been pomelled with it!!

But then we live in a branded world ... so who's to say.
Someone asked me - if you had a million bucks and ahd to buy a car ... wouldnt you buy an M3?!!?
Dude's got a point!

Sunday, May 02, 2004

Hap Hap Happy Anniversary to Us

Here's wishing ourselves on our third anniversary - its been such a wonderful three years. The only spoiler is that I couldn't be with my D on the day - so without my D it just was like another day - yep - we sure are going to celebrate our anniversary when I return :)
I just hope this doesnt become a habit ;) - in the sense we've been together on this day twice in the last four years - of course the first being the day we got married :D
hmmmmm - its been a wonnnnnderful journey albeit the geographical distance separating us as I write this today :)
its been about 8 years right D? that we have been together and wow what a good time it has been.
Sometimes I just wish that time would not fly so fast! but then with you ...

I love you D ... like new.