How does one describe the exhilaration and pleasure derived by owning and driving a smart?
Remember when you first went to your smart dealer and you could look and test drive, but you couldn’t buy one because there weren’t any orphans on the dealer’s lot.
We went on line and put down our $99 dollar deposit. Then we waited several months. Our only link to the cars that we craved was sharing our questions and interests with other future owners and enthusiasts on line. Our families and friends probably thought we were nuts.
Then you got that email from the factory and you got to configure your ride. And again the wait, weeks turn into months. Then there was that “Estimated Delivery Date”, a 3 month window. Every time you went on line the date seemed to move further away. By this time my family and friends knew I was nuts.
Eventually the dealer gives you the VIN of your car and you could follow the final shipping from the factory in France to the docks in Germany. It is loaded on the ship with all makes of cars destined to for US shores. (By coincidence a few days after my smart arrived in the States, business brought me through Baltimore, MD and the Mercedes dock. I took photos and stared through the fence as the smarts were moved from the dock to the inspection sheds and on to trucks for delivery. My Piglett was somewhere in there.)
A week later, HAPPY DAYS, the dealer calls, she is here. I took delivery on December 5, 2008.
The next 10 months were sheer bliss. Driving was exciting again. The reaction by other people is always entertaining. Everyone who thought I was nuts have come to appreciate the car. And best of all the many new friends that I have met on line and at smart rallies and looking at their mods, some basic and others extreme. (Mine were cruise control, rubber floor mats, spot mirrors, and a more functional coat hook.)
Last month was a set back when my Piglett got sideswiped by a woman in a Mercedes ML 350, who came up fast behind me and passed me on the double yellow, just as I was taking the left fork in the road. She got my entire left side and both wheel rims. The accident left me with relatively minor damage that didn’t affect the ability the drive. She needs her right front fender repaired a new running board. Three weeks in my dealer’s body shop (due to insurance adjustments and the Thanksgiving holiday) and my Piglett is back, good as new and on December 5th with 9830 miles, she was treated to her 1st year, 10K service.
I am looking forward to many more happy (and safe) years of driving Piglett and the opportunity to meet more smart friends.