The Bonneville Salt Flats are the perfect location to spot a fast car with a big wing—though it’s perhaps a bit diminished when the car is on the Interstate, rather than the crumbly old lakebed surface proper.
Our 11-year-old car just passed the 200,000-mile mark on the odometer. It’s been with us for multiple transcontinental drives and a lot of smaller road-trips in between. This is our unicorn: a combination of manual transmission, smooth straight-six engine, all-wheel drive, and cavernous station wagon that’s simply no longer available from any manufacturer. What will we do when this car is ready for retirement? That’s a tough question.
“Teenage” is a category that remains linked to California, and there are few places where the California/teenager overlap occurs more than in an older-model car jammed full of your best friends on a sunny Saturday afternoon in downtown Berkeley. There are plans to be made! We have to pick up that guy from the BART! What about hitting Grizzly Peak? Time to drive!
I’m on a roll with Datsuns lately. The crash protection and the reliability of a modern car may not be there, but what a face! Particularly when sitting on wider-than-stock tires and hiding out on some side street in Berkeley, this car has the potential for fun.
The Bay Area seems to experience seasons at a different pace from much of the rest of the country. Summer is a month-long period from mid-August through mid-September, fall lasts from October through March, and the summer goes from April until August. Winter (as the East Coast understands it) isn’t a part of the equation. Being back in fall, then, has me reminiscing about fall in the North Country, with leaves starting to dot the ground and the Blue Hour arriving sooner.
Berkeley’s undergraduate student population is still mostly gone for winter break, leaving UCB’s campus to resemble St. Lawrence’s during Fall Break in October. The empty-ish parking lots might be bleak, but at least it’s easy to get a table at lunch time.
And one final bonus from that fall weekend: a most dramatic and exciting picture of a most unexciting car. I present to you: the World’s Most Interesting Toyota RAV-4.