(20)10 Cars I want to own…

January 3, 2010

One lazy afternoon a few days back (perhaps is was New Year’s Day), Dad and I were watching the television. Staring may be more appropriate: our eyes resembled big blue and green tiles smothered in a coat of polyurethane. We had just finished a family gathering which solely revolved around consuming massive amounts of prime rib and mashed potatoes. The food-coma had begun.

In any case, we were watch-staring a program on the Speed network. Who could have guessed that such a network existed? Based in North Carolina (what a shock) and devoted entirely to motorsports like Formula One and Nascar, Speed has the unfortunate honor of being yet another puppet of Rupert Murdoch’s world takeover scheme. And he is starting with hicks, the bastard, America’s soul.

Let me get back on track. We were watching some program taking place in a massive stadium, where hicks car-lovers bid on gorgeous vehicles that are paraded through what seems to be an auction house. Like the ideal runway show for the flanneled and plaid-ed among us. The tableau is complete with indiscernible auctioneers, whose sole job is to make people laugh and feel entertained with their nonsensical jabber. I kid you not, that is their job: they even have multiple “translators” in the audience interpreting for every bidder entering into the price war. Needless to say, I was enjoying myself watching this, hunched and comatose though I may have been.

That got me thinking about the cars of 2010 that I would like to own the very most. It helps that every car in our family seems to have broken down in the past two weeks, forcing us to live with one working vehicle. [The Taurus wagon is absolutely dead and sits just off the drive, as is the case in so many back water towns. The Grand Caravan’s transmission failed as I drove home on I-90, leaving me temporarily stranded in 13 degree weather. The Subaru visits the mechanic once a week, leaving only the Camry to save the day.] What is this- a third world country? Add in the arrival of the January edition of Consumer Reports, teasing me with its car reviews, and you can understand why my thoughts naturally drive toward new transportation.

Practical or just fun, there are plenty to entice me this year. But to name my top 10 (in no particular order)…

1. The Classic Car: Jaguar Xj. MSRP: $71,650. Have you seen a more successful editing and modification of one of history’s classic cars? Think how little variation exists in others of this category: Ford’s Mustang comes to mind straight away. Maintaining the Jaguar branding (the rectangular beast of a grille, the best interiors in the business, semi-torpedo shape of the hood), but scrapping the Ford-brand addiction to preserving the icon will save this brand. The Jag has finally entered the new millennium. And with two sunroofs, the future is bright for this brand.

2. The Practical Car: Toyota Prius V. MSRP: $27,670. I am forever a fan of the Toyota product, and the Prius is not an exception to this rule. Consistently rated as one of the best, most fuel efficient vehicles on the road, the Prius continues to age gracefully in this its third generation. Consumer Reports has named the Prius, since the introduction of the model, as a CR Pick every year. All of this year’s models achieve 51 (city)/48 (highway) miles per gallon, but only the Prius V offers such outstanding acronym options as are normally found in higher classed cars (for example, DRCC, PCS, LPA, IKA, etc). If I were likely to purchase any car on this list, the Prius would be it. Some reviewers claim the Ford Fusion Hybrid is now becoming the better car, but they all agree that the Prius is still the first choice of hybrid for all.

3. The Multi-Tasking Car: Ford Flex (4dr SEL FWD). MSRP: $31,350. This car has not managed to attract the kind of press I imagine it deserves. I suspect the recession had a part to play in this (and perhaps its similarity to Scion’s xB). Likely, Ford emphasized their big sellers and pushed these new lines aside. In any case, this is an impressive ride. A stylish SUV alternative to the mini-van, the Flex has been honored with several major awards. And it’s reported to have decent oomph: Edmunds says, “The 340-hp so-called EcoBoost mill should make the Flex the undisputed badass of the day care circle drive.”

4 (& 5). The Sexy Little Sports Car: [TIE] Lotus Elise SC & Porsche Boxster Roadster S. MSRP: $50,000+/- (figures unavailable) & $58,000, respectively. There is no decision more difficult than which penis sports car to choose. Narrowing down the field is a terrible task and one where a great deal of research is required. There are dozens of (small, independent) luxury class car makers, and, with the economy brands slowly introducing themselves into the market, the options are many and gorgeous. The Lotus and the Porsche represent the best of this year, possibly for different reasons. First, the Lotus aka the ride that releases your sexual tension. Not known for its comfort or storage space, the teeny-tiny Lotus is a powerhouse with 218 horsepower at 8,000 rpm! Zero-to-sixty in 4.4 seconds! This is not your commute car…this is track/street race ready. Unfortunately, it is only available as a six-speed manual transmission, which I am sadly not equipped to drive. But, dear god, look at her. Now to the Porsche Roadster S. Where the Lotus fails in practicality, the Boxster makes up. And how! This is the car you take to pick up a loaf of bread before challenging some 17 year old in a fastback to a quarter mile. Available with a removable hard-top if you so require, this car is perfect for a summer jaunt in Napa. It is everything you think about in a sports car: The Graduate, the T-Bird, etc. And a major benefit for me is the seven-speed Porsche Doppelkupplung (PDK) transmission, optional with purchase, that features both manual and automatic modes. Thank god!

6. The Sport Utility Car: Lexus RX 450h

7. The (Best) Upstate-Style Car: Cadillac Escalade EXT Premium Edition

8 (& 9). The Decidedly Single Car: Volkswagen GTI & BMW 1-Series Coupe SULEV

10. The Ultimate Ride: Aston Martin One-77


One Response to “(20)10 Cars I want to own…”

  1. Great blog….Really enjoyed the content. Awesome stuff.

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