Cars: Matters Of The Heart

Others | December 15th, 2014 by 13
Goodbye2001E46330i 750x500

As cars enter and leave our ownership we are often flooded with a volley of mixed emotions. This is one of those stories. He congratulated …

As cars enter and leave our ownership we are often flooded with a volley of mixed emotions. This is one of those stories.

He congratulated me as he shook my hand, then he handed me the keys to my new (to me) 2010 BMW E92 335i and said “I’ll go get you a box.” The look of confusion on my face prompted him to follow up with “…so you can empty out your old car.”

Then it hit me. Like a rogue basketball that came out of nowhere straight to the face. Shock, surprise, some pain and stinging, then disbelief. In that order, it snuck up on me. The sudden realization that my car, my 2001 E46 330i, the car that I’ve been driving for over 10 years, the car that I drove when I met my wife, the car that carried my friends and I on countless trips and journeys and put countless smiles on my face, that car will be leaving my ownership and will be sold to someone else.

2001 E46 330i 01 750x464

I’m not going to lie, I didn’t think that far ahead. I was too focused on finding the perfect replacement car that it hadn’t dawned on me that with the arrival of the new one, we’d have to get rid of the old one because space/parking wouldn’t allow me to keep both.

That’s what this article is all about. It’s about the cars in our lives, one ones we remember the license plate numbers from, the ones that have imprinted themselves into our hearts and minds and are as much a part of us as anything else that binds itself to our souls. For instance, I remember my grandfather’s old Ford F-250 truck in that hideous brown/gold color combo with its unforgettable Diesel growl that I got to drive out in the country as a kid, my mother’s old Toyota Celica that had the pop-up headlights, the Chrysler family van we’d take on trips, my first car, my first nice car, the list goes on.

Please don’t get me wrong, I’m not ungrateful nor am I complaining about the new car. The fact of the matter is all cars from our history were “new” to us at some point in time but we made memories and lived experiences with them and that’s what made them special. I’m sure I’ll make new memories with the E92 and I’ll likely write about them, but for now, I’m still going to do a double take and turn my head around every time I see a Steel Grey Metallic E46 330i. I don’t know where my old car will end up, it’s too old and has too many miles on it to be sold at the dealership where I traded it in. I can only hope it goes to a new owner who will appreciate it, care for it and will hopefully create their own memories that they will reminisce about when the times comes for them to pass the car along to someone else.

Anthony came back with the box, he looked at me and noticed I was a ball of emotions. He seemed to get it. “Don’t worry, you’ll love your new car, you’ll drive it and make awesome memories with it. This thing is fast.” He handed me the box and I went about my business removing all of my belongings out of what I still had a hard time calling my “old car.”

bmw 335i 01 750x562

When I got to the trunk an idea hit me. “Hey Anthony, could you please do me a favor and allow me to remove my rear license plate frame from my old car and put in on the new one?” He smiled and graciously agreed. Now with the frame installed I’d always have a piece of my old car, a sort of in memoriam if you will, a symbolic “thank you” nod of sorts.

I did one last walk around her as if to thank her for all the awesome roads she’s taken me on, for not breaking down too often, for pulling hard when I needed her to and for putting a smile on my face every time I walked up to her. Then I thanked everyone involved with the purchase, stepped into my new car, adjusted my rear-view mirror and from the mirror took one last look at my old car before I headed for home. It was a Sunday afternoon on November 2nd 2014.

Goodbye2001E46330i

So there you have it. That’s my most recent story, it came from the heart and I hope it will inspire you to share your stories with us! Tell us about your fond car memories, your excited hellos, your bittersweet farewells and your amazing trips!

13 responses to “Cars: Matters Of The Heart”

  1. Ashfaqur Razzaq says:

    The EXACT same emotions plagued me too. My first car, my college companion for 4 years, my beloved 2003 Honda Accord coupe 2.4L V4 Vtech, gave me some of the best experience of college freedom. I worked 2 jobs in college to afford the one I wanted, had 2 accidents in it, put it in a ditch, and 2 speeding tickets… proves loved riding in it, drove in anger, typical college kid experiences I guess. Drove Austin, San Antonio, Houston Dallas & all over Texas. Drove to my internship, late night road tips after exams with my friends.

    The day came when I got a job in the Midwest, totally unfamiliar with potholes I flew over them pretty hard till it became an embarrassment at the office lot where only car that had a stream of oil leak trailing form it like a injured pup.
    I tried to help it, I changed the cat converter, I did love it to bits but the bills came think and heavy. So with the hopes for more practicality and fun I got excited, and being a sporty driver BMWs were obvious choice. With the LCI E90s coming off lease terms I saw a car I fell in love with and bought it head over heels. I had to dive to next state to pick it up and trade in mine but whole way there was a jittery feeling that a part of me will be lost. People used to know me for my car, in the college engineering parking lot I had a proud “Chemical Engineer” bumper sticker, Vtech logos on the side sills… I had so many plans to put navigation, bigger aftermarket rims… None ever happned coz as an engineer I do like stock cars.
    The day I left my 2003 accord with aftermarket exhaust for my brand new 2011 BMW 328i Xdrive was a sad, exiting, jittery and weird day. Every time I see pearl grey metallic Accord coupe, I have to give it a second glance.

    • Awesome story! Thanks for sharing it and congrats on the E90, she’s a beauty! I’m glad I’m not the only one who has a hard time saying goodbye and not the only one who does a double take when they see their old car on the road :)

  2. tabitha Bela says:

    Awwww. You got a new car on my birthday! Congratulations! I remember my first car. So many good memories with my friends and family. Our van aka “the family car” is acting up and it may be to much investment to repair it as opposed to buying a new one. We will keep it until it dies then it’s off to the dealer for a brand spanking new car smelling car! Congrats again!

  3. Rufus330ci says:

    I still can’t part with my ’02 330Ci w/ 80,000 miles. Treats me too well lol It’s going to be a rough day when I trade her in I know it. Thanks for sharing!

  4. Such a good story and I know exactly how you feel. I’m looking to replace my aging E36 328i sedan but it pains me to think about leaving he old girl behind. So many great memories, good times and bad. Really good write up, man. And good luck with the 335i!

    • Thanks Nico, I know how you feel! Another alternative to selling your E36 328i is obviously keeping it (if you can store it and afford to have 2 cars at once) or gifting/selling it to a relative, family member or friend. That way you can still keep a watchful eye over :)

  5. Chris P. says:

    Good post – although you should have private partied the sale. Then you’d know exactly where the old car was going. And make more $$ as well.

    Just sold my pristine 99 E36 M3 after almost 11 years of ownership for an 06 E46 M3. Happy but still a little wistful.

  6. bufguy says:

    I owned a 2001 E46 steel blue 325ci that I purchased new. I took delivery at the performance center in South Carolina and drove it back to Buffalo in March 2001. It was very basic…5speed, sunroof, cold weather and sport package…Come winter I decided I would not subject it to a Buffalo winter so I bought a winter car. 6-1/2 years later the car only had 25,000 miles on it. But alas one Fall day I was at the local dealership and spotted a 2007 Z43.0si coupe…black with red leather, premium package, sport package…just a sexy car. I reluctantly traded my car in for a fair price and have loved the Z4….A year later I spotted my 325ci car parked downtown. I saw the meter was almost expired so I waited until a gentleman approached it. I stopped him and told him that used to be my car. He smiled and said that his 18 year old son had bought it and loved the car…he was only borrowing it for the day. I gave him my card and told him to have his son call me if he ever wanted to chat about the car. I never heard from him but was happy to hear the car was in good hands.

  7. bufguy says:

    I owned a 2001 E46 steel blue 325ci that I purchased new. I took delivery at the performance center in South Carolina and drove it back to Buffalo in March 2001. It was very basic…5speed, sunroof, cold weather and sport package…Come winter I decided I would not subject it to a Buffalo winter so I bought a winter car. 6-1/2 years later the car only had 25,000 miles on it. But alas one Fall day I was at the local dealership and spotted a 2007 Z43.0si coupe…black with red leather, premium package, sport package…just a sexy car. I reluctantly traded my car in for a fair price and have loved the Z4….A year later I spotted my 325ci car parked downtown. I saw the meter was almost expired so I waited until a gentleman approached it. I stopped him and told him that used to be my car. He smiled and said that his 18 year old son had bought it and loved the car…he was only borrowing it for the day. I gave him my card and told him to have his son call me if he ever wanted to chat about the car. I never heard from him but was happy to hear the car was in good hands.

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