derBayerische January/February 2022 - 14

T H E D R E A M E 2 1 I N E V E R H A D , A W A K E N E D I N T H E E 4 6 I O W N
■ (Above from Left) A view of the E46's elegant styling from the rear. Another interior shot with the (watertight) canvas top down
rented out to friends, I loaded up a
U-Haul truck, trailered the Sebring,
and pulled for the South. It was a
cool, rainy September evening when
I put DC behind me.
It was a bright, warm, sunny
September Sunday morning (the
next day), when I pulled up at
Performance BMW, in Chapel Hill.
Normally closed at that hour, they
were open for me! Road weary, I was
given a cup of coffee and taken to
The Car I Always Wanted. It was,
and still is, perfect.
I drove it, I looked at it, I looked
at it like a collector looks at a
Matisse. I smelled it. I ran my fingertips
over it. I drank it in. Have I
ever appreciated a woman so? There
was one paint blemish. Fix that, I
said, and $30,000 is yours. And this
particular 3 Series is mine.
We shook on it, I signed, and it
was on to south Georgia in the
U-Haul, with the venerable Sebring
no longer summas automotivus.
The BMW - my three-series - would
arrive in three days, and the Sebring
would, well, move into the next
phase of its life, valued at $1,500.
Which I thought was a fair valuation.
The photo shows me with both
cars on the day that one stayed and
the other drove north to its fate.
I loved the Sebring, as I have loved
all my cars (and that Bronco), starting
with that anemic 1967 Camaro.
Each car has given of itself without
14
reserve; none has ever let me down.
I have loved and do with reverence
remember them all.
It worked out splendidly. South
Georgia is top-down convertible
country. If you have been fortunate
enough to visit this ungodly beautiful
part of the southeast coast, you
know what I mean.
And for a self-treat, I treated
myself to the two-day driver's school
at BMW's Spartanburg, S.C., factory.
This was not cheap. But I wanted to
better understand the amazing automobile
that was now in my care.
At the end of two days' driving
superb new BMWs around the track,
under the tutelage of equally superb
instructors, I was beginning to
understand.
As my classmates dispersed
and our experience ended, I lingered
(lesson: never leave the movie
before the credits have rolled).
Alone with the teacher, I asked,
would it be possible for him to take
my car out on the track and see if it
was . . . set up properly?
" Well, it's against policy to
drive customer cars on the track.
But . . . "
Hearing his verdict that that car
was operating properly and set up
nicely, was itself worth the tuition.
Experiencing one's BMW being
aggressively driven at high speed by
an expert driver is an eye-opener.
It's like having a German Shepherd
derBayerische
pet and seeing it tear apart an
intruder. You " never knew " . . .
And so, when I regard my 2006
330Ci, I understand that it is far
more racing car than I will ever be
racing driver.
How cool is that?
The BMW, with 80,000 miles,
is driven now only when I take it out
on clear and temperate weekends
onto western Loudoun County,
Virginia, country roads, or to a Cars
and Coffee (it's in storage during
less hospitable seasons.) In the
windshield, I place a paper that
specifies its age and (modest)
horsepower and so forth. And the
words, " Not for sale. "
The E46 deserves the best in
care; it is detailed and maintained by
■ Standing between the incoming E46 and the outgoing Sebring, Fort
Stewart, Ga., Sept. 29, 2009
Darryl Nichols and his team at Odds
and Ends Detailing and Dulles Car
Concierge, in Sterling, VA. This
winter, it will get a complete preventative
cooling system replacement;
I've heard the horror stories.
I don't regret not buying a 320i
when I was 23 years old; I tell myself
that. Holding off allowed me to get
other cool things, including a red
Mercedes with a big engine, a cool
growl and a sunroof fit for a British
Army bagpiper. No, I don't regret not
buying an E21.
You see, I did buy one, or its
descendent, when I was 52. And that
is an age well-tuned for savoring the
finer things.

derBayerische January/February 2022

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of derBayerische January/February 2022

derBayerische January/February 2022 - Intro
derBayerische January/February 2022 - Cover1
derBayerische January/February 2022 - Cover2
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 1
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 2
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 3
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 4
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 5
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 6
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 7
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 8
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 9
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 10
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 11
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 12
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 13
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 14
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 15
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 16
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 17
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 18
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 19
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 20
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 21
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 22
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 23
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 24
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 25
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 26
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 27
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 28
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 29
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 30
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 31
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 32
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 33
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 34
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 35
derBayerische January/February 2022 - 36
derBayerische January/February 2022 - Cover3
derBayerische January/February 2022 - Cover4
https://www.nxtbook.com/mercury/derBayerische/derbayerische-may-june-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/mercury/derBayerische/derbayerische-march-april-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/mercury/derBayerische/derbayerische-january-february-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/mercury/derBayerische/derbayerische-november-december-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/mercury/derBayerische/derbayerische-september-october-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/mercury/derBayerische/der-bayerische-july-august-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/mercury/derBayerische/der-bayerische-may-june-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/mercury/derBayerische/derBayerische_MarApr2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/mercury/derBayerische/derBayerische_JanFeb2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/mercury/derBayerische/derBayerische_NovDec2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/mercury/derBayerische/derBayerische_SeptOct2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/mercury/derBayerische/derBayerische_JulyAugust2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/mercury/derBayerische/derBayerische_MayJune2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/mercury/derBayerische/derBayerische_MarApr2020
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com