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What Car Saved Your Bacon?

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Driving on public roads is normally quite routine, but every so often, life throws a curveball at you. Today we’re talking about cars that have saved our bacon. While we like to think that our driving skills keep us out of trouble, sometimes part of it is the machine. Let me give you an example.

In the odd daylight hours that the Greater Toronto Area’s highways move at all, they typically flow reasonably well, come to a dead stop, speed back up again, and repeat. Obviously, this creates huge speed differentials, which can be a problem when drivers aren’t paying proper attention. One day, on the Queen Elizabeth Way, the traffic ahead of me came to a stop and I did too. Awareness and following distance makes a difference, right? However, while I was stopped, I looked back in the rearview mirror and realized the third-generation Toyota RAV4 behind me probably wasn’t stopping. Uh-oh.

Vidframe Min Top
Vidframe Min Bottom

Swiftly, I slid the gear selector in my 325i into first, cranked the wheel to the right, and gave the loud pedal a controlled squirt to get onto the shoulder. Better safe than sorry, right? Well, that turned out to be the right move, because the RAV4 ended up coming to a full ABS panic stop exactly where my rear seat was just a moment earlier. Panel damage averted, everyone got to keep carrying on their way. This might sound like a simple tale of defensive driving, but here’s the thing — if I was in a wider car, I likely wouldn’t have been able to fit between the traffic ahead and the wall. In fact, even in the 325i, I wouldn’t have fit both mirrors between the stopped V6 Charger’s passenger side mirror and the wall. Defensive driving certainly helped, but if it weren’t for relative narrowness, an escape route might not have been possible.

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So, has driving a specific car ever saved your bacon? Maybe your introduction to stability control was on sheet ice, or you happened to benefit from outstanding brakes, or the size of your car let you fit through a tiny escape route. Whatever the case, I want to hear about both the car and your experience.

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(Photo credits: Thomas Hundal)

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Knowonelse
Knowonelse
1 month ago

We were going to sell our first-year VW Rabbit (A real POS only a few years old), so I didn’t care much if it got damagd a bit. I was driving over the I80 summit in winter with snow on the separated highway making traction challenging. A Mercedes was coming in from the right on an entrance lane. However, the MB was spinning in circles as it was coming onto the highway. Not far behind me was a crowd of cars using all three lanes. If I hit the brakes to avoid the MB, I would get hit from behind by the crowd of cars. If I didn’t, the MB would hit me. So, I hit the gas pedal and drove up through the left shoulder and onto the raised hillside and drove around the MB. That front wheel drive saved us as it pulled us out of that predicament. The hillside acted as a banked road.

Roland Steed
Roland Steed
1 month ago
Reply to  Knowonelse

A similar incident. Headed north in a 2007 Forester 5 speed in Maryland on a rainy (but not a downpour) day, I moved to the left to allow a car coming up the ramp to merge. All of a sudden, a green Grand Prix came flying up the ramp. He/she jammed the brakes on and started to spin. I shifted down a gear or two, hammered the gas and steered around the Pontiac and watched in the mirror as it spun into the median.

EXL500
EXL500
1 month ago

2015 Honda Fit. Lane Watch. Right side mirror has a camera, and it saved me from hitting someone in that blind spot multiple times.

Albert Ferrer
Albert Ferrer
1 month ago

BMW 118d (E81).

It was a very wet night and I was doing some speed down a stretch of motorway with a gentle downwards slope. At the bottom was a massive puddle of water that I didn’t see.

I aquaplanned heavily and the car was sent into a skid diagonally into the middle lane. Fortunately there was no one there and the electronic controls kept the car in check.

Needless to say it scared the living daylights out of me, but thankfully the car kept me in one piece. Since then I drive a lot more carefully in the rain.

Arrest-me Red
Arrest-me Red
1 month ago

Two events.

Lumina (boring but good). A car bounced off the snowbank and was aimed at my driver’s door. ABS panic stop had him miss by inches, then I was along for the ride. No damage as I slid to stop in another snowbank,

Caddy DTS. Rear ended buy a RAM 1500 who missed the 17.5 feet of car in front of him. 12k worth of damage and folded C pillars. All my wife and I felt was a slight jolt forward.

Glad these were no 1950s cars, they would of hosed out the interior and sold it.

Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
1 month ago

Well saved my bacon bits maybe. Back in the 80s driving my Ford Maverick I was at a red-light next to a Chevy Nova. Their lane was to merge into mine a little bit past the intersection. Like many morons that Nova driver turned on the blinker and merged over with no thought of cars being in the way. Well 5he two cars sides met they were both lifted up in the air the Nova driver then pulled back in her lane. We both pulled into the next parking lot. She at first yelled I was wrong because she had her blinkers on. I told her I had the right of way because I was already in the lane, and being right next to her couldn’t see her blinkers at the rear of her car. Well lights went off she apologized and we investigated the damage. NONE! These two old steel boats were propelled upwards from contact button even a scratch in the paint, or at least one new scratch or even the slightest dent. In a modern vehicle both would probably be totaled.
Granted New cars are safer, but buy sacrifices of the car to protect humans. But really give me a new car, 30 minutes, and a pair of chain mail gloves and icould total a new car with my fists.

Who Knows
Who Knows
1 month ago

Probably the closest thing for this was several years ago, driving the interstate through Denver to go out hiking. We decided to take the old XJ, and hike from up a 4wd road. Poking along in light traffic, suddenly a car switching lanes in front of me to exit looked like it had a major failure, followed by noise that the wife described as us “running over a superhero”. I slowed way down, and everything seemed fine, so we continued on our way.

Looking at the dashcam footage, it appears that a large, foot+ chunk of metal or similar came out of a pickup towing a trailer, flew over a car in the left lane, then landed under the driver’s door of the car switching lanes in front of me, exploding. If the car in front had been a foot over to the left, it would have gone through their windshield.

Damage to the Jeep was a dented front skid plate, high up just below the bumper, a bent sway bar bracket, as well as dents to the frame rail, rear crossmember an inch from the fuel line out of the tank, gas tank skid plate, and engine skid plate as whatever the debris was bounced around under the car. If we had taken one of the normal, lower cars that day, it would have impacted around hood height, and maybe come through our windshield. I never expected skid plates to come in so handy on a dry highway.

Cam.man67
Cam.man67
1 month ago

An ‘88 Chevy C1500 saved my life. I was as being an idiot and texting while driving on a decidedly not-smart phone, and veered off the road straight into a tree. I also wasn’t wearing a seatbelt.

Did I mention I was being an idiot?

At any rate, the truck, particularly the 305 TBI out front, absorbed a lot of the impact and pushed me out away from the tree. I survived with a broken hand and a nasty cut on my chin. The police officer that came to the scene said that if I would have even been over a few inches further (where the engine couldn’t deflect the impact), I’d most likely have been dead.

Lots of lessons learned, on my end. The truck was very obviously totaled, but in a way it lives on as I salvaged the seat and it’s currently in my ‘99 K2500. It certainly cemented my love for GMT400s.

Oh, and my hand still hurts every time it rains, a reminder to not be an idiot.

Danny Zabolotny
Danny Zabolotny
1 month ago

My 1992 BMW 525i/5 kept me safe when I rolled it at Angeles Crest Highway in LA a few years back. It still started and kinda drove and would’ve kept driving if the steering linkage hadn’t shattered into pieces. I walked out of that without a single scratch on me, so I’m grateful for that.

StillNotATony
StillNotATony
1 month ago

In high school, I drove a 1960 Chevy El Camino that my dad and I built. Red, 350, 4-speed. Loved that car.

I also had a girlfriend who hated my car. It was loud, had no AC, and I probably spent more time and money on it than on her.

I thought I was in love with both of them, but while she hated the car, the car hated her right back. It frequently wouldn’t start when she was in it. It once even drew blood from her when she tried to open one of the kick panel vents. The passenger door came open in a turn once when she was in the passenger seat. Only did it that once.

A reckoning was coming, and I would have to choose. I kept the car, and I later found out the girl was cheating on me with multiple guys, including my college roommate and gave him an STI. She even tried to get my best friend to sleep with her. He didn’t, but he didn’t feel comfortable telling me.

My ElCo knew…

Canopysaurus
Canopysaurus
1 month ago
Reply to  StillNotATony

Utes are faithful to the core.

Canopysaurus
Canopysaurus
1 month ago

Early seventies, late 60s Dodge, heading home on a freezing November morning. Taking the back roads a bit too fast. Entered a left hand dogleg with too much speed. Rearend drifted right onto the icy shoulder, then hit a dry spot, tires catching fast and shooting me straight across the road, up an embankment beside a highway overpass and into an airborne roll over the bridge abutment and down, crashing through a tree onto the highway below. Landed on the roof, turtled in the fast lane. Got five stitches behind an ear when I broke off the rear view mirror with my head in the tumble. That was it. Car stayed intact, excepting for the tree embedded in the front end, and so did I. Who needs crumple zones?

Rob Schneider
Rob Schneider
1 month ago

I’ve had two saved-my-bacon moments in cars, and while I can’t say the specific type of car is what saved me (in fact, in one case it was the car that got me into the mess in the first place), I can say that had I been in any other car I owned at the time I would not have had a good outcome.

The more recent was in a Honda Fit. I’d just dropped the kid off at school, because we’d had a massive snowstorm over night and walking to school was out of the question. Traffic was nuts because everybody was in the same boat. I finally got a break in traffic and darted out of the parking lot only to find everything stopped about a block later. Hit the brakes and knew I wasn’t going to stop in time. A flick is the wrist got me into the unplowed parking lane, and I stopped about even with the back door of the SUV I’d barely missed. I loved that car. It drove like a go cart. It took me five minutes to rock the car out of there after all the traffic cleared, but no damage to anybody.

The second involved a two door Geo Tracker hardtop. I’d just changed jobs and had about a 30 minute commute on the interstate. Got hit by a gust of wind on a frosty morning just as I got to a bridge, doing about 60 mph. The back end broke loose, and I started fishtailing. Saved it but over corrected two or three times, and found myself sliding more or less straight down the interstate at what felt like a 45° angle with the steering wheel at opposite lock, just as I was coming to the end of the bridge. I knew if I kept the steering wheel where it was, the car was going to roll as soon as the front wheels grabbed the dry pavement, so I unwound it to get them more or less in the direction of travel. Sure enough they hooked up, hard, followed immediately by the rears. The car rocked back and forth several times and seemed to lean way more than I thought it could, but it stayed upright and on the road. I’m pretty sure at one or more points there were only three wheels on the ground. Wild ride.

Fortunately there weren’t any cars beside me because I used up every bit of the width of that bridge and didn’t leave it in the same lane I’d entered it.

I honestly don’t think I could repeat that feat, and consider it a miracle I didn’t crash and die. I was very, very lucky that day.

EXL500
EXL500
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob Schneider

Props from a Fit owner/lover.

Dumb Shadetree
Dumb Shadetree
1 month ago

I have a Scion xD with a stick-shift. While it’s widely panned as boring, it’s fun in the exact same way as a Honda Fit. Honestly it makes more power than the Fit, handles better, and gets slightly better fuel economy … no idea why people love the Fit but hate the xD. Anyway, it’s a short car. Very very short. It’s slightly shorter than a Honda Fit.

Driving home one day, I go through a green light at a nearly-blind intersection and see motion in the corner of my eye. Floor the accelerator out of instinct, but there’s no time to do much. A car coming from my left completely blew the red light without slowing down. They passed just behind my back bumper, coming so close that the cameras at the intersection went off to record the collision. If I had been in a slightly longer car we definitely would have hit.

VanGuy
VanGuy
1 month ago

No “active” moments that I can particularly recall, but with driving a big red Econoline for 7 years, I figure visibility passively helped me a lot.

Sid Bridge
Sid Bridge
1 month ago

My story is less about driving and more about mental health. I bought my 1968 Olds in 1995 while I was in college (still have it as many of you know). I spent a year or so tinkering, breaking things, buying things, and it was slowly turning into a great car, but still very rough.

My other side gig was playing bass for a band. In my senior year, I reluctantly joined up with a really amazing group. I was burnt out from three previous bands that hadn’t succeeded and resigned to not going anywhere on the local music scene. This new group jammed with me once, begged me to join and I jelled with them nicely, so I did. The band started to take off organically. Great original music, lots of gigs coming our way and a steady stream of followers. It was 1997, I was a few months from graduating. I had recently broken the news to my parents that I was going to take at least a year after college to play with this band full time and see where it takes me. In about a week we were set to play the one venue I had dreamed of playing the whole time I was there.

You can see where this is going…

With success comes stress, challenges and intense personalities. A couple of the people in the band felt I wasn’t up to it from a skill level. Without much warning, they kicked me out. I was devastated. Here was a band I was begged to be a part of, and suddenly I wasn’t good enough to stay with them.

After a few sleepless nights, I decided to recover by pouring my energy into what I had left – my studies and my 1968 Oldsmobile. I had already gotten 425 V8 rebuilt and matched to a TH350 with a shift kit. By the time I graduated (just a few months later), I had the entire interior redone and all the body and paint. I left college with a degree and a brand new looking 1968 Olds.

That band never made it. I don’t hate those guys and I feel bad for the world that the music will never be shared again. It also took me a full ten years before I played with a band again. I am in a great band now and enjoy every second of it. I decided I would never play in a pressure-cooker environment with other musicians – I’m only in a band if it’s fun.

I don’t think I would have gotten through it all without my Oldsmobile. Pulling up anywhere in that car and getting uplifted by other people enjoying it gave me the boost I needed to keep going.

Jonee Eisen
Jonee Eisen
1 month ago

A K-Car of all things. I was t-boned hard in my beloved Plymouth Reliant and came out without a scratch. So did the person in the more modern Corolla who did the t-boning with their air bags and crumple zone. But that wasn’t a surprise.

SageWestyTulsa
SageWestyTulsa
1 month ago

I’ll continue the BMW theme here. Years ago I had a semi-daily commute between Oklahoma City and Tulsa on the Turner Turnpike, and my commuter at that time was a ’97 328 sedan with a manual trans. I recall that it was sometime in late winter/early Spring, and the temperature was hovering in the mid to upper 30s as I entered the eastbound lanes in light rainfall around 6:30a. As usual, I’d stopped to grab coffee and a snack for the drive over, so I accelerated to what I felt at the time was a speed “reasonable and proper,” but in retrospect was an ill-advised 82-83mph before setting the cruise and getting fully settled in to enjoy my breakfast. I should also add that I was running a set of bald-ass summer tires, and actually had a brand-new set of all-seasons awaiting me in Tulsa for install later that same day. See where this is going yet?

I do remember thinking that there was no real standing water on the roadway, and being self-assured that the cruise control would kick off if the rear lost traction. Until approximately five minutes into my trip, that is. I recall that I was heading uphill in the right lane, and that I felt the rear end get loose just as I observed the tach redline. Well, f*ck. The car pitched immediately to the left, pointing me at the center dividing wall. I countersteered instinctively, which naturally spun the car in the opposite direction — I managed to make a full 360º rotation before leaving the right side of the highway in a broadside, still at 80+ mph. I very distinctly recall thinking that I was about to have firsthand knowledge of what it was like to be in a rollover.

As luck would have it, the light rain added enough lubricity to the grass that, in combination with a low center of gravity (thanks BMW!), the car continued to slide instead of rolling over. I remember ducking low in my seat as I felt my side of the car come off the ground a couple of times, but I came to rest still on all four wheels with the nose of the car pointing uphill toward the roadway. I’d instinctively depressed the clutch at the beginning of the incident, and the car was still idling as if nothing had happened. I hadn’t even spilled my coffee.

I shut the car off and exited to inspect any damage, and found that the ground was also quite muddy. There was mud and grass packed into the wheels and the wheelwells, and sprayed across the hood, roof, and trunk, and even in the cowling at the base of the windshield. There was an audible leak from one of the passenger-side tires, where grass had been forced between the tire and the rim and breached the bead. Otherwise, both the car and I had managed to come through unscathed.

Between the rain, the incline, and the bald tires, there was no way I was going to get myself back on the road, so there was nothing to do but call AAA and wait in the warmth of the idling car until they arrived. An OHP trooper stopped at one point to check on me and ascertain that I hadn’t struck any signage or otherwise damaged state property, and thankfully departed again without issuing me the citation(s) that I undoubtedly deserved. The wrecker showed up about 45 minutes later, refilled the leaky tire, and sent me on my way. The car shook like hell the rest of way to Tulsa thanks to the mud-imbalanced wheels, but suffered no other ill effects. I ran it through a car wash before taking it to the tire shop later that day, where the tech wanted to know why the hell he found grass and mud inside one of the tires. Good times.

Anyhow, to say the whole incident made me a lot more cautious about speed, wet weather, and the state of my tires would be an understatement.

Last edited 1 month ago by SageWestyTulsa
A. Barth
A. Barth
1 month ago

In the late 1990s I had a 1991 Grand Am (2dr, Iron Duke, 5MT) and – because it was super sporty *snicker* – installed Pirelli P400s on it.

The following winter I mistimed a road trip in relation to a sizable blizzard. The interstates were in decent shape but snow was coming down heavily and side roads generally hadn’t been touched. That car continued to pull and to handle acceptably even when the tires were nowhere close to touching the road. As the roads got worse it was floating across the drifts and felt like I was driving a boat.

Eventually I did get stuck in a large drift on an unplowed road, but the Pontiac had gotten me to within a few hundred yards of my destination. I trudged to the house and warmed up for a little while, then got the snow shovel and prepared to hike back out to the car.

What I didn’t know was that the road had been plowed while I was inside, and the excellent snow plow driver had actually cleared in such a way that I could get the car out without too much effort. I owe Mr. Plow a beer or three for that.

(Yes, most of the credit should probably go to the tires but the car was so damned plucky.)

Bucko
Bucko
1 month ago

My 2003 E-350 of all things, saved my ass. This thing has some pretty poor driving dynamics. Beyond weighing 7450#, it has power steering that will give up after about three tail-swings in an oversteer situation, and it has ABS that cuts braking to both rear wheels if one of them starts to skid – essentially, you can forget about trail braking a hot corner, because the only remaining brake will be the outside front.

They do have some advantages; however, which include a surprisingly low cg (for the dimensions they have) and the set-back engine gave my 14-passenger van scale-verified 52%/48% weight distribution, despite the super-heavy diesel up front.

In my particular case, I was driving in the snow on a winding road in northern Minnesota at an enthusiast pace. Winter tires only partially helping, the vehicle started a tail-happy slew to the outside of a curve which had a not-yet-frozen pond waiting to quench my enthusiasm. The van has a Quadvan 4×4 conversion and I had this engaged. I powered out of the curve with throttle application. I racked up 250,000 miles in a RWD version of this van prior to this and I am certain that I would have been on my side in a pond in that vehicle.

Clark B
Clark B
1 month ago

My 2009 GTI. I was driving to work and an old guy with bad eyesight (he admitted it, and fault, to the cops later) pulled out of a side street and hit me between the front passenger fender and door, hard enough to spin me into another lane where there was thankfully no oncoming traffic at the time. The airbags didn’t go off, but the car ended up totaled. I had minor back pain for a few weeks, but was otherwise unharmed. Thing is, I have a 1972 Super Beetle as well, and sometimes drove it to work. So thankful I wasn’t in the Beetle at the time.

Rob Schneider
Rob Schneider
1 month ago
Reply to  Clark B

I had a similar experience as a passenger in a similar vintage Beetle. My college roommate was driving through a controlled intersection and we had the green light. Somebody in I think an early 70’s Buick Skylark decided to turn left at the same time. His bumper slid along the driver’s side door quite nicely, and then it pushed in the back seating area about 14″ as it collided with the rear wheel. Spun both cars. The Bug was totalled; never heard what happened with the Buick.

I think you’re right, it’s a good thing you weren’t in your Beetle.

Sklooner
Sklooner
1 month ago

1990ish Lexus LS400, I was in the backseat the driver lost control at about 120 smacked guardrail came back smacked rock wall, spun and repeated until it stopped. I was a bit bruised from smacking my head on the window the driver and passenger were fine but that car gave itself to save us

Cody
Cody
1 month ago

I had an 87 nissan 4×4 truck with a stick shift. There was an ice storm and about 2″ of ice on the roads. The truck ran fine, then I turned down a hill and realized I wouldn’t be able to stop. I put it in reverse and blipped the throttle a couple of times and stopped. Pulled into my friend’s driveway. Got out and slipped onto my back

Arch Duke Maxyenko
Arch Duke Maxyenko
1 month ago

Well, in late October of 2020 me and my buddy were each driving from his house (where we watched his team Borussia Dortmund play) to my house, where I was going to leave my 2018 Camaro SS 1LE and then proceed on up to Jungle Jim’s. Well he forgot something at his house and had to turn back and get it, but I carried onward up Dixie Hwy. I was just following along in traffic when a car (2 cars in front) came to a full stop to turn into a trick-or-treat in a cross-fit parking lot. The car in front of me stopped, and I stopped, and then I heard the distinctive noise of a crash behind me. I turned to look in the mirror to see who the poor bastards were, only to see a Chrysler fucking Sebring was under and in my trunk.

I was the poor bastard, but I didn’t feel a thing when it happened, the Sebring was totaled. It had submarined under the main crash bumper of my Camaro, which destroyed the bumper covers and folded up the exhaust ahead of my back axel. The fucker driving the Sebring kept trying to restart it, but I was yelling at him to stop and get out of the car as there were all sorts of fluids coming out of the the car (oil, gas, coolant, brake fluid). He did get out and I called the cops to report it. Fortunately nobody was hurt, nothing combusted, and he somehow had insurance.

I got my car back just before Christmas with a new Stainless Works 3″ cat-back system (because 2020 and the factory exhaust was on indefinite backorder and I had to fight the assclowns at Tom Gill Chevrolet’s body shop tooth and nail to get them to install the aftermarket exhaust even though the insurance Ok’d it) that was not tightened down at all and improperly sealed, and there was a service suspension light on the dash because a tow truck driver snapped off a ride height sensor strapping the car down.

I got it all fixed though, it sounds fantastic and definitely saved me from injury that day.

Daniel MacDonald
Daniel MacDonald
1 month ago

A few years ago was driving up i5 to go skiing at Mt. Baker after a snow storm the night before. I was driving my ’00 BMW 323i with Dunlop snow tires. I had seen more than few pickups and big SUVs in the ditch and knew it was really slick but mostly wrote it off to typical pickup driver invincibility complex stupidity. Still, I kept it slow and chill, gently cruising at about 45 mph with the car in 5th gear. I was going up a gentle uphill and pushed in the pedal for a feather’s breath more gas to maintain speed and the rear end stepped out hard but the normally annoyingly hyperactive traction/stability control caught it before it got more than a degree or two of yaw. I couldn’t believe how poor traction was and when it was flat tried giving it a tiny bit of extra gas and while less dramatic the traction control light came on with barely even an attempt to hit the gas. I was driving on a sheet of ice! Fortunately I was close to my exit and after a stressful couple miles found out to my relief that the side roads were “normal” levels of snowy-a few more semi-white knuckle moments getting up some snowy switchbacks but the e46 really pulled through. I am convinced to this day that even with all my experience driving and hooning RWD cars in the snow I probably would have slid off the road that day if the traction control hadn’t caught me.

V10omous
V10omous
1 month ago

I’ve told the story here before, but the reason my wife is alive and able to walk today is because she was driving a brand new SS with multi-stage and knee airbags and not a beater when another driver ran a red light on a 60 mph highway.

The other driver ended up upside down in the ditch and was airlifted.

Daniel MacDonald
Daniel MacDonald
1 month ago
Reply to  V10omous

Man that’s terrible, glad she escaped major injury. Those high speed county road intersections are terrible. My dad had a similar incident and managed to avoid the other driver, but rolled his car into the ditch doing so. This was a 2008+ Volvo which fortunately in true Volvo fashion let him walk away with hardly a scratch. In an older or lower end car without side airbags etc he would’ve been all kinds of banged up.

V10omous
V10omous
1 month ago

It’s the reason I react so strongly against the valorization of older cars or the beater lifestyle.

Fine if someone wants to take their own life into their hands I suppose, but my perspective changed forever that night.

I still have the car. Amazingly it was not totaled.

Daniel MacDonald
Daniel MacDonald
1 month ago
Reply to  V10omous

That’s incredible re: the car.

And for real as I’ve gotten older I’ve struggled with reconciling this with my love of all old classics-every time I go for a drive in my ’83 BMW I’m cognizant of the fact that it will not protect me much if some texting dumbass rams me. And of course yet another reminder to get my wife to get off her butt and figure out replacing her ’05 daily driver with something newer and safer.

Clark B
Clark B
1 month ago
Reply to  V10omous

Yep, my tattoo artist lost his dad in a car accident last year. From what I know about him, he was almost certainly driving an old beater car at the time. Don’t know enough specifics to know if driving a safer car could have helped, but it really made me think.

Also thinking about my mother, who was driving a brand new Nova(?) sometime in the 80s when a pickup truck hit her, not going very fast, in a parking lot. She has had back and neck problems ever since, and they’ve gotten to the point where she can’t even drive herself more than an hour at a time. I told a story in another comment where I was hit much harder in a 2009 GTI, and was fine except for a couple weeks of very minor back pain.

Cheap Bastard
Cheap Bastard
1 month ago
Reply to  V10omous

Depends on the beater – I’m pretty sure a $6500, 9 yo Altima can qualify as an ” “older” “beater” now, yet:

“2015 Nissan Altima Driver Miraculously Survives Insanely Grisly Car Crash
Semi-truck crushed woman’s 2015 Nissan Altima and somehow she walked away.”

https://www.motorbiscuit.com/nissan-altima-driver-miraculously-survives-worst-crash-weve-ever-seen/

https://sfbay.craigslist.org/eby/cto/d/richmond-2015-nissan-altima/7740161207.html

Alexk98
Alexk98
1 month ago

In high school I was heading home in my dads accord, a ‘2010ish range coupe, and due to a mix of my own absent minded behavior as a 17ish year old, and the atrocious split screen system Honda used at the time, was distracted doing something in the screen, and ran hard into the back of a stopped 00’s GMC something or other.

Air bags deployed seat belt tensioners did their thing, and short of being in borderline shock from making such a stupid mistake, walked away with zero physical impacts, not even a scratch or bruise from the airbag. Nothing. The car needed everything from the cooling fans forward, both fenders, headlights, hood, trim, air bag, and more, and should have been totaled if it weren’t for a low damage estimate. That car saved me from what should have been some real physical pain, and continues to drive near flawlessly to this day, with over 120k miles, and around a dozen more accidents on its history.

Alexk98
Alexk98
1 month ago
Reply to  Alexk98

I’ve also been rear ended in it twice without pain or issue, my dad has been rear ended several times, been hit while parked, ran over a crowbar on the highway, and I’m probably forgetting other incidents. I really need to run a Carfax on this thing and share it in the Discord because this car has somehow not been totaled despite around 3x its MSRP being spent on accident repairs over the years.

Rad Barchetta
Rad Barchetta
1 month ago
Reply to  Alexk98

That… is a lot of accidents for one car. Like, a lot a lot. Not a normal amount of a lot, but a very large amount of a lot.

Alexk98
Alexk98
1 month ago
Reply to  Rad Barchetta

Maryland drivers, they’re a different breed of inattentive. For the first few years after buying it new, it was almost exactly every 6 months and BOOM rear ended, now it’s just on occasion, but still around 1/year.

Now that I think about it this is the ONLY vehicle in my entire family to have had even a single accident since it was bought, even over 10 years on. The car must be cursed, but at the same time Honda engineered a damn safe vehicle to not have a single injury in it yet.

Rad Barchetta
Rad Barchetta
1 month ago
Reply to  Alexk98

Used to live there. I get it.
My first car was an 89 Sentra. Dad bought it brand new for me and my siblings because he was sick of repairing used cars all the time. That car was involved in 5 accidents in about two years between my brother and me (only the first was my fault). Dad got rid of it because he got sick of repairing it all the time. Pretty sure that car was cursed, too.

Rob Schneider
Rob Schneider
1 month ago
Reply to  Rad Barchetta

We had a cursed Honda Civic. It got rear ended three times, with exactly 12 months and 25 days between the incidents. In all cases it was while waiting at stop lights on roads with 30 or 35 mph speed limits, and the collisions were at probably half that, so no major damage or injuries. We sold it about 14 months after the last one, but we made sure the car didn’t leave the driveway on the 12 month 25 day mark.

VanGuy
VanGuy
1 month ago
Reply to  Rad Barchetta

It is wild, but to think, if no individual accident is too big of market value…repairing makes sense.

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