Monday, June 01, 2009

Highway Miles

Driving the Miata home from Houston made me rethink highway travel. I put a lot of highway miles on the old Miata driving back and forth to Annapolis before I realized that all the wind blowing into the cockpit was something I could and should avoid with a windstopper. This is the best of the lot, in my opinion - factory looking and very effective. Made in Germany by Oris with typical German quality.

Here's an improvised windstopper using my luggage and a bungee cord. It worked pretty well for the ride home from Houston but nowhere near as well as the Oris.

The Miata is a great sports car. It has nearly perfect weight distribution, adequate power, outrageous handling with the right suspension, and great handling with the stock suspension. You can do a 200-300 mile day in one and not feel like you've been abused. More than that and it gets a little wearing.

To really pound out the miles (500+ miles a day) in a reasonably priced car, not much beats a Crown Vic P71 Police Interceptor. Mine is an ex-Delaware unmarked car, probably a take home car for some officer. I got it with remarkably low mileage, 58K.

It's nearly impossible to get a ticket in this car. I have blown through radar traps at 80 mph with nothing more than a friendly wave from the police. People around you drive with much civility when you are near them in this car. Cop suspension is nearly perfect, external coolers for all the hot fluids, better differential, lightened drive shaft, huge cop alternator to drive all the electrical stuff it carried as a cop car. I think this is the best Crown Vic you can get.

If I wanted to spend real money on a highway car it would be a 7 series BMW. But this P71 is pretty good for the money.

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