Hooniverse Asks: What One Car-Related Decision Do You Wish You Could Do Over?

In recreational golf you can take a Mulligan, which let’s you erase both bad luck and poor decisions. Ah, if only life—or professional golf—were so accommodating. When it comes to cars there are many opportunities for both luck and questionable choices to weigh in. Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to go back and maybe give that penetrant a little more time before you snapped that head bolt off, or perhaps act on those second thoughts when it came to a purchase or a sale?
Today we’re all about regrets and want to know yours. What, if any, car-related decisions do you wish you could do over?
Image: ყველაფერი ახლებურად 

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28 responses to “Hooniverse Asks: What One Car-Related Decision Do You Wish You Could Do Over?”

  1. GTXcellent Avatar

    I wish I would have bought that ’67 GTO. I wish I would have bought that ’70 Super Bee. I wish I would have bought that ’64 Malibu SS.
    I wish I hadn’t sold my ’70 C10 CST. I wish I hadn’t sold my ’65 C10.
    I think that about does it.

  2. Fred Talmadge Avatar
    Fred Talmadge

    I wish I had stopped buying cars at the MGB. It was the best overall British sport car I had. Would of saved my a lot of money over the years and by now I’d be the MGB expert of all time and probably have a garage full of spare parts.

    1. JayP Avatar

      Sounds like you’d be that guy helping my brother with his ’77 B with the BOP V8.
      This guy is a madman working on MGs.

  3. Hillman_Hunter Avatar

    I wish I’d kept my reasonably-priced hatchback a couple of years longer, skipped the RX-8 and Mk VI GTI phase, and gone straight into a new Golf R.

  4. CraigSu Avatar

    I wish I still had my ’67 Chevelle, ’70 Opel Kadett Rallye, ’78 Renault R17 Gordini, ’84 Honda CR-X, ’86 Acura Integra RS. In short, every car I’ve owned up to my present day ’91 Volvo 240 wagon and ’99 Saab 9-3 SE, although I will say the Saab is testing my patience. Unfortunately, I’m not in a position to do anything about it.

  5. P161911 Avatar

    Buying the BMW Z3/M Roadster replica from hell. Two engines, two years, and almost twice the purchase price in repairs, it was gone.

  6. Alff Avatar

    Having a passive (read, not at fault) but material role in a fatal collision. If I’d known what was going to happen I could have saved a life by putting my car in a different lane.

  7. JayP Avatar

    I traded my ’88 5000 quattro in as part of the down payment for the ’97 A4 for $1700.
    Wish I’d hung on to it.
    Hell, wish I still had my ’83 5k. The VAG Retro on facebook has pics of those old square Audis.

    1. Fred Talmadge Avatar
      Fred Talmadge

      I loved my little 2007 A3, but I wanted to get a new car before I retired to California and the TSX Sportwagon was getting rare so I pulled the trigger a couple of years before I needed to.

      1. JayP Avatar

        I’ve looked at the VR6 A3 quattros but had I bought one, this thread may have another post…

  8. Peter Tanshanomi Avatar

    In the fall of 1986, I was in L.A. for the ’87 Kawasaki dealer’s convention. I stopped by the Motorcyclist magazine offices on a whim and met Nick Ienatsch and Mitch Boehm. They were totally cool and chatted with me for about 40 minutes. Then they invited me to go out to Willow Springs with them the following day to track-test the new ’87 FZR600. I called my boss and he said no way—he was paying for my trip and he’d be checking to make sure I was in the dealer seminars he’d enrolled me in the next day.
    It was a crap job. I should have said screw it and gone anyway.

  9. dukeisduke Avatar

    I wish I would have bought the ’62 Electra 225 4-door hardtop $1200, IIRC). And the ’62 Cadillac Sedan de Ville ($1750). The Caddy had low miles (35k), but needed paint, because the thing had been washed and waxed so many times in 18 years that the paint was wearing thin in spots.
    And I wish I hadn’t bought that ’64 Grand Prix (178k, $395). I also wish (kinda) that I still had the ’76 Vega GT.

  10. Riku Avatar

    Sold my Cayman R just before value jumped 10k€. I however invested the money and made like 20k€ in year so it was not that bad.

  11. XRSevin Avatar

    I was going away to college, right after the first gas crunch, and we went car shopping. Came down to a choice between a ’72 Bug and a ’69 GTO. I made the rational choice, the smart choice, the adult choice; I bought the Bug.

  12. Professor Bananahot Avatar
    Professor Bananahot

    I tossed a perfectly good Pathfinder with 150,000 miles left in it because I thought gas prices would surely skyrocket back into the stratosphere by the time 2010 arrived. I was wrong! Sensibly cautious but wrong!
    It’s super unsafe and very thirsty and not actually very big and tough to get above 80 miles an hour and only 2WD, but it had sooo many adventures left! I didn’t even get a photo! (similar to pictured): http://imgur.com/ZZag5wh.jpg
    I maintain that they’re quietly and secretly exactly as good as overpriced 4Runners.

  13. I_Borgward Avatar

    The pain… the pain…
    a) I wish I would have bought the orange 1972 Barracuda with a factory 340 4-barrel, 4-speed stick and no visible rust, for all of $1200.
    b) I wish I hadn’t have been forced to sell my 1968 Barracuda with only 48K miles on the clock (chokes back tears).
    c) I wish I would have kept my 1960 Rambler American 2-door wagon. Because 2-door wagon.
    I wish I’d have run, not walked away from:
    1) The 1960 Chevy station wagon (truly FUBAR… what the hell was I thinking?).
    2) The 1972 Datsun 520 pickup (go-kart death trap, suspension seemingly made from unobtainium).
    3) The 1968 Riviera (bought with my eyes instead of my brain; looked great but drove like an overstuffed sofa soaked in chloroform).
    To add insult to injury, I managed to take a loss on all three when selling, just to get out from under them.

  14. wunno sev Avatar
    wunno sev

    always wondered how life would be if I’d kept my old Maxima and perfected it instead of hopping from car to car every six months. it’s what I’m trying to do now with my Volvo, but it’s a much fussier, more complex car.
    not sure if I regret selling the Maxima, but I do miss it, and I can’t picture myself buying another.

  15. Ed Avatar

    I would have sold an organ to buy that ’68 GT500KR back in 1985 that the owner of the car lot would let me buy for $10,000.
    And I would not have traded my ’01 Mustang GT for the ’04 Acura TL 6 speed I got in late 2003. The TL was comfortable, fun and well built. It also made me visit the dealer far more frequently than the Mustang ever did.

  16. 0A5599 Avatar

    Now that you mention it, when I designed the Aztek, I probably should have skipped the cladding.
    “The one that got away”. Numbers matching 70 Challanger Sam Posey #77 car for $7 grand.
    Second place: good condition 1970 Hemi Challenger for $8800.
    Hoonorable mention: Fully restored 1969 Camero RS SS pace car convertible. Ten Grand. I had the money in my pocket from an insurance settlement, but passed on the car because it had the “middle” engine instead of the highest output.

  17. Manxman Avatar

    I wish I hadn’t married my first wife… then I could have bought the 71 Camaro RS and the 64 GTO and the MB 300SL ($3,900 in 1972 in Dallas, TX) and the Porsche 356 and the HD Sportster XLCR and still had money and sanity left over.

  18. salguod Avatar

    Buying the 1988 Pulsar NX SE. I did my homework and CR gave it at least a half red circle, but it was a lemon and a money pit. Fun to drive, but cost me a fortune.
    Not responding to the C/L ad a couple years ago for what looked like a beautiful 80s Mercedes 500 SEC offered for $3,500. It was high mileage and might have been a terrible idea, but that’s a lot of car for the money.

  19. Fuhrman16 Avatar

    I regret not keeping my ’76 Dodge Tradesman, ’92 Saab 900s, and ’77 MGB.
    I regret buying my ’93 Chevy Caprice, ’93 Dodge Intrepid, ’86 Toyota 4runner, and ’05 Dodge Neon (especially the last one).
    I regret not buying that 2 grand ’74 Trans Am, a $500 ’57 Ford Fairlane, a five speed equipped Merkur Scorpio (less than a 100 sold in the U.S.), or that ’67 Buick Sportwagon.

  20. crank_case Avatar

    Most of them really..
    1. Buying a brand new Fiat Punto Sporting instead of a resto-mod Fiat 500 when they were affordable. The Punto sporting was a decent starter car though.
    2. Putting down a deposit on a JDM MK1 MR2 Supercharger, only for the importer to go out of business
    3. Selling my Nissan 180sx (JDM equivalent of an S13 240sx but with an SR20DET) instead of just putting decent coilovers in.
    3. Selling my Alfa Romeo 75 because of a leaking fuel tank/overheating issues and because I felt I needed something more modern.
    4. Buying a Toyota MR-S (MR2 Spyder) to replace the 75 and then having to suffer the financial pain of an engine rebuild and gearbox rebuild on a car I’d already stretched myself financially to buy.
    5. Selling the MR-S not long after sorting it and buying a total dog of a MK1 MR2 Supercharger

  21. cap'n fast Avatar
    cap’n fast

    buying the 1979 pontiac firebird instead of the the cessna stationair at the customs auction in homestead in 1979. foolish and stupid, yes.
    on the plus side, i had found that while i would have gotten the airplane at a ridiculously low price, i would have had to pay the loan off from the original owner who had it stolen. drug runner plane. confiscation laws and government workers trying to prove their worth. hell with it. move on…

  22. StumptavianRoboclick Avatar

    I was 17. My first car was totaled out on an accident that wasn’t my fault and insurance gave me more than I’d actually paid for it. I could upgrade. I go to a dealership. Salesman tells me that he has a new, low-mileage Golf GTI that I should check out. He takes me over to it. Parked next to the GTI is a Chevy Citation X11. It was silver and had cool pinstripes. I tell the salesman “forget the VW, I want that.”
    I spend the next year dealing with horrific breakdowns and eventually junk the car when I go off to college. I bet that damn GTI is still running.

  23. Lokki Avatar

    I lived in Tokyo in the go-go Big Yellow Apple 80’s. Ostentatious wealth was the rule of the day. Someone had made the mistake of buying a Dino (it’s not a Ferrari and it’s only a six cylinder!) and it was left-hand drive. Worst of all it wasn’t red. He was looking for (the equivalent of) $20,000 to move it fast, but it wasn’t selling.
    Well…..I HAD $20,000 if you counted every penny I’d ever saved and threw in my next couple of pay checks. The catch was there was no way I could afford to drive it in Tokyo. It needed their infamous inspection, and I didn’t have a parking place for it. You literally cannot buy a car in Tokyo until the police come and measure your parking space. All this would be expensive ; too expensive.
    Still, that was all really okay as my plan was actually to send it home to my dad in Pennsylvania to keep till I got tired of Tokyo life. However – here was the real rub – I would have to call dad and borrow about $5,000 to pay for the shipping, etc, etc. I knew that my dad would not be real thrilled as he already had my 74 Alfa Spider taking up a stall in his garage. I did not think he would respond well to lending me money for another Italian car to sit in his garage for years while his cars sat outside.
    Wisely, I never made that call…..

  24. CanAm-Chad Avatar

    1) I wish I would have done a 4l60e and a late model transfercase in LS swap 79 Cherokee instead of sticking with the TH400 quadratrac because I wanted to keep the Jeep parts in there. Overdrive electronic trans would be so much better.
    2) With I would have kept my 05 GTO instead of buying the 10 Camaro 2SS/RS that looked so damn good,
    3) Not swerved for that skunk in my 89 Camaro RS in high school. The resulting slide through a bean field didn’t do too much damage but resulted in a story that no one to this day believes.
    4) Never bought that stupid 95 Jetta GLX. High mileage, previously crashed, money pit but for some reason the girl at work had a GRI VR6 and I wanted something similar.

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