Ever since high school, I wanted a car of my own. I took automotive class for two years in high school and was surrounded by a lot of guys in the Honda/JDM scene in my class. Eventually, it rubbed off on me. The Acura Integra was probably one of my favorite looking cars and one I grew very fond of attaining. But I ended up never owning one and drove my parent’s 1996 Honda Accord instead for a very long time. At least I can pretend it was a DC2 Integra!
I knew cars were a very expensive thing to get into so I ended up living vicariously through others. Fast forward some years later and my first car, at the age of 22 was a 1982 VW Rabbit. This was a “Black Tie” edition, it boasted some luxurious options and a very pleasing interior. I picked the car up from a BMW e46 M3 owner who used the car as a winter beater. In his time of owning it, he replaced fuel lines, the fuel tank, and a lot of other under-carriage bits which was a good selling point for me.
Like any 30+ year old car, it would eventually be subject to questionable “modifications”. Like a really bad stereo with all the speakers blown. Although German cars aren’t known for their electrical component reliability, the hack job done on the stereo certainly didn’t help. Thankfully, I had no intent of driving the car just yet since insurance cost would be something I couldn’t afford without a job. So every little bit of money I could gather would go towards this wherever needed.
It had connections all electrical taped and nothing was properly crimped or even soldered/heatshrunk. Thankfully nothing got damaged. The interior was pretty decent for a car of this age. The roof liner was horrible though, it was sagging, not done right, and worst of all, was glued in everywhere near the trims. Interior is something I’ll have to take my time and energy some day, but today was not that day.
Under the hood featured a 1.7L SOHC engine mated to a 3 speed automatic transmission. It had fender flares and horribly placed hood pins due to a factory hood latch malfunction. The car indicated signs of neglect in that sense. The car ran great, didn’t make any weird sounds and the owner would throw in an extra set of wheels with winter tires for free! There was a lot of poorly patched fiberglass around the rear valence, the arches, and the rockers. It scared me to know what was behind it but I got this far so I might as well open the door and see what awaits. Fast forward few days later and a couple hundred in hand, the owner arrives to my house with the car driven on its own from Brampton. I gave him the cash and the rest was history.