Well here it is, the very last time I’ll ever be writing about my Subaru Impreza at length. One final update to prove just how much of a cursed car it really was..
A cursed car? Is there such a thing?
Naturally when a car develops fault after fault, issue after issue and a series of endless mechanic visits as well as grand damage to your wallet just to keep it running, soon you hit it with the lemon tag. A cursed car on the other hand is a car that not only starts having bad luck, but also starts influencing events around it because it’s obviously possessed by a malevolent spirit ready to ruin everyone’s day.
Okay yes, that’s a touch dramatic I’ll admit. But have a read about the events that has occurred in the rough 18 months I called it mine and decide for yourself if it really was a cursed car in the end.
The trouble started with a quick blurt on the highway..
It’s been two months now since the car and I parted ways but I still remember things so clearly..
-Barely one week in and one the tires got a puncture. Maybe this was a cursed car sign of things to come?
-Two weeks in I got off the highway, was cruising the streets of the town I live in and suddenly noticed the temperature gauge was having a sit down right in the red zone. After a mini heart attack I pulled over and found coolant furiously bubbling away in the overflow as well as all over the engine bay. One green steaming mess. Oh god, what have I bought here?
-That led to learning how to burp the system which I ended up doing multiple times to try and work out what was going on. There’s nothing like learning the ins and outs of your latest car by spending hours filling it and draining it of fluids over and over again. During one occasion I found an aftermarket thermostat in it which apparently is a big no no. There was no record of this thermostat in any of the service reports that came with the car, so that was a big mystery that didn’t help things at all.
-Meanwhile the battery gave up the ghost leaving us stranded at the supermarket when I left the lights on for less than five minutes. The roadside assist guy was about to give it it’s last rites but it fired up again soon although he was worried it looked ‘like it was bulging.’ Two weeks later it promptly died in the work car park and once again I found myself walking across town with a new battery just to get home.
-After months of reading up and working on things, I thought I fixed the overheating issue with a successful burp and the car did a 600km journey without an issue. But then after that false sense of security, it reverted to cursed car status with the next trip. And the next trip, doing the dance of the heat gauge which really increased my heart rate and not in a good way. One weekend I took it camping where both my mates car and mine started performing some weird overheating behaviour. Only his Pajero Sport was pulling a loaded caravan, mine was barely pulling anything along aside from the kids.
-The cursed car developed an unhealthy relationship with a Mike Oldfield (of Tubular Bells fame) CD. So much so that it refused to a) Let it go b) Let anyone hear it ever again. It’s still stuck in the factory CD player, blocking things up forever. I’m going to say there’s every chance the new owner will get sick of just the radio and opt for a few more options instead.
-A check engine light revealed it ate the knock sensor. So I bought a generic replacement, which it also ate a few months later and the check engine light was back with a vengence. I learnt pretty quickly that Subaru’s are very finicky about the sensors you use and parts from a dealership to satisfy the hunger of a cursed car are far more expensive than you think they are.
-Just on the check engine light thing, there’s a special mode you need to put the car in the check things. Because the code reader I bought yonks ago to check such things works on just about everything…except Subaru’s. You need one with special software or something or possibly bathed in holy water first.
-Tired of the overheating needle of doom, I took it to the radiator shop where the guy there marvelled at the age of the radiator (17 years) the age of the hoses (just the same) and suggested he replaced everything which may just fix things. Oh and the air conditioning needed a service because apparently it too was working too hard and may have had a hand in achieving the current cursed car status.
-A week after the new radiator and air con service (at a cost of nearly $1000) it developed it’s coolant filling and spill stuff everywhere bad habit from early on. So I took it back to the shop where the senior mechanic acted on a hunch and made it do a ‘fantastic impersonation of the girl from the exorcist’ spewing green everywhere upon start up. ‘That’s your head gasket mate. Hope you’re friends with a mechanic.’ The words I never wanted to hear with a green fountain to back it up. I made my mind up then and there time to go cursed car.
-Of course that threat of expulsion from my driveway seemed to put the fear of something back into it and it started behaving. More or less. Right up to the point when I finally put it on the market and it responded in typical cursed car fashion by overheating again, this time at more regular intervals and two months into selling forcing me to drop the price significantly (again.)
-If you’re a regular here, you’ll know that putting it up online worked incredibly well and I hit a new record in interest in any car I’ve ever sold. It was also a new record in dropkicks, ghosts, no shows, people who can’t read a map and general time wasters. Whoo boy was this fun. Especially people who would organise a time and then not show up. Who does this? People looking at a cursed car obviously, that’s who. And a special shout out to this troll who got ignored in record time.
Then Facebook came to the rescue. Well sort of..
Completely fed up with things, I switched from Carsales to Facebook and put up the shortest, bluntest the the point ad I could. And I had an offer in my inbox the very next morning. The buyer would bring a trailer, he’d be there at 12, the cursed car would be gone, prosperity in my life would return. Or something.
I sent another message the day before confirming he was still on his way ‘Yep, should be there at 2pm.’ Okay, time has changed, but not at issue.
At 2pm he called me to explain that he’d hired a truck to pick it up and in the spirit of my cursed car liking to throw spanners into every plan…the truck broke down. Yes an hour away, it fried a clutch in a nearby town which made getting here anytime soon highly unlikely. (Sure breakdowns happen but I wouldn’t put it past my cursed car spraying bad mojo into the atmosphere in one last ‘Yeah you’re going to miss me you bastard, watch this! Ha ha, here to stay a few more days going nowhere!’) So the buyer picked up a car trailer himself to come and grab it.
He made it here at 6:30pm right at the same time I was supposed to be dinner with the visiting in laws. The good news is after working out Pay ID details (I was very wary about Pay ID scams which are rife on Facebook Marketplace and told him he wouldn’t get the keys until the money was evident in my account, thankfully it all turned up in less than a minute.) After he had a calming smoke, he drove it onto the trailer while I finished up the receipt and away we went. He drove one way, I drove the other (off to the pub) and I started to wonder, is that it? Has the curse been lifted?
It’s been one month now..
And I’ve half expected a message that it’s caught on fire or worse, burnt down his workshop but no. All quiet on the southern front. Maybe it just didn’t like me and the fact that I gave up on it after all the trouble and possibly fixed by now, it’s going to be the most reliable Subaru on the planet.
Or maybe he burnt some sage, consulted a elder, called in a priest or burped it with holy water and things are good now. All I know is that the cursed car is gone and it’s not about to return anytime soon.
Or is it?…