||[Feb. 8th, 2009|12:55 am]
Mini Lovers Unite!
It's so nice to stumble across this community. My name is Laura and I'm from Western Massachusetts, and I'm a potential Mini owner.
I was not in the market for a new car (damn you, economy + pending 2010 wedding) until my eyes stumbled across this (adorably perfect) 2005 Mini Cooper. I fell in love with this car on Friday, and today I took him for a test drive. I put $100 down to hold him until I can secure a loan and get a Used Car Maintenance check with a respectable mechanic.
I could never understand "car people" before. My fiancé is one of them. He's been through 8 different makes/models and he's only 26 (2 Maxima's, a Dodge something that I can't remember because it was numbers and letters, an Acura, Celica, Honda S2000 [my personal fav], '07 Civic SI, and now a '04 Audi convertible). His attention to the cars he's owned has caused some minor arguments to say the least (he cleans the car better than our own apartment for example). It was hard to relate (I currently own a '98 Toyota Corolla that I do love, but mostly because she's my first car...) and I didn't think I could ever worship a car to that extent.
I'm going through a million emotions....between worry (I've never had a car payment before, plus what if something happens and I need to spend tons on repairs) and excitement, Cooper-style.
I read back +200 entries, and I've learned SO much from all of your posts...thank you guys so much for keeping this community open and available for newbs like me. :) I had a million worries and questions until I read all of your posts.
I still have a few questions that I couldn't quite find from browsing through prior posts...
1. Being a used car, I will need to get extra keys for my family (I always feel safer knowing I have an extra set at my parents house and at the apartment). Anyone have any experience in purchasing extra keys for your Mini? How expensive/much of a hassle was it?
2. I read a comment where the door handle needs to be lifted twice in order to unlock the door and get out. When I got out of the car, I *thought* I noticed that, is it something that you just have to get used to? Is it the same for the passenger? Is there a trick to this or is it a Mini habit I need to learn?
3. What is the history behind the "Motoring Badges" on the front grill? Worth it or tacky?
4. I've never seen The Italian Job, and yet I want a Mini. Many referenced this movie in regards to their need to test drive/own their Mini's. Is it worth renting? The older or newer version (or both?)
5. Is this car worth the expensive mechanic bills (especially after warranty)? And why are so many concerned with having their Mini's get something as basic as an oil change at a non-Mini dealership?
6. Do Mini drivers really wave to each other? That's awesome. I've always thought it neat how motorcyclists, boats, and Jeeps wave at each other...even S2k's...I'm kind of excited about being included in this club. How often do you wave at another driver and they ignore you? Also, anyone else a New Englander?
7. A few of you have told stories of random acts of vandalism. Other than disheartening, is this a "check your car weekly for new dents/keyed marks" issue?
If you made it this far...thank you SO much for reading, and thank you ahead of time if you are in the mood to help me with my questions. I hope I didn't sound too ridiculous...I'm just so excited (and anxious).