Photo courtesy of Jace Riley ’16 – Jace Riley poses with his Ford Bronco. Students’ cars can reflect their personal style.
By Jack McAuslan ’16
Every car, whether its owner is a gear-head or not, has a unique backstory.
Car culture is evident everywhere, and what car a person drives can sometimes give a small glimpse into the person’s personality and style.
Michael Rowland ’16 drives a Volkswagen Passat hatchback from the early 2000s.
“I needed a car to get to school, as my parents had sold off our third car a few years earlier,” Rowland said. “After a lot of searching, we found a VW Passat wagon that looked really promising. We ended up buying it, even though the interior was falling apart. I liked it since it was my first car and I could finally drive on my own, but honestly it wasn’t great and it had problems every month.”
Rowland said that his favorite thing about it was that it was extremely practical and it was a car he could finally drive on his own.
Mr. Chris Stevens ’85 owns and sometimes drives a classic Chevrolet Camaro from the 1960s.
“My favorite thing about it is I enjoy putting the top down, taking the kids for a ride, and going with them to get something to eat in it,” Mr. Stevens said. “My least favorite thing about it are some of the little repairs that are constantly needed for a 45-year-old car. Right now it’s in the garage because it has a front end rebuild and disc brake kit that needs to be put on it.”
People like Mr. Stevens romanticize classic American cars from General Motors, Ford and Chrysler because of their blocky but smoothe design and their big, rumbling engines.
Another person who admires classic American cars is Jace Riley ’16, who drives a Ford Bronco from the 1970s.
“Ever since I was a boy my parents told me my first car would be a Bronco,” Riley said. “My dad was always on car websites and found a good deal on one about a year before I got my permit. I just love the style of it. It looks really cool and people are always looking at you. It stands out and I like having a car that’s unique.”
The Bronco is a very well known classic among car fanatics, and they are not very common anymore.
“It can be annoying to drive at times,” Riley said. “It veers to the right constantly. It also isn’t great at long distance but it gets the job done.”
Jack Rauch ’16, who drives a Porsche 911 from the early 2000s, said he believes that driving a car is more than just about getting to the destination.
“I think the car fits me pretty well,” Rauch said. “It’s obviously a very nice car but more so than the looks it is very fun to drive which is the most important thing to me.”
He said his favorite thing about the car is that it has a manual transmission, despite how hard it was to learn.
“The car is like an old house so it has a lot of creaks and rattles and different noises,” he said. “I find it endearing and the car has its own personality.”
Zach Crown ’17 drives another German performance car, a nearly new BMW M5.
Its twin turbocharged V8 has enough power to make it one of the few sedans in the world that can hit 60 miles per hour in less than four seconds.
“We got the car after my brother crashed his car on the way to school his senior year of Brophy, so my dad bought that car as a replacement,” Crown said.
“My favorite thing about it would have to be the speed of the car, mostly its acceleration,” he said. “What I don’t like about it would be the temptation of going fast all the time.”