Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Our New Baby Beemer

Finally, after deliberating for soooooo long, we decided to sell my Baby Beemer for a new Baby Beemer. Truth to be told, after 6 years, the cost for maintaining the car was getting a bit too exorbitant; we were paying 4digits every few months. *sigh* First it was the jerking, which took 5 trips to the workshop (each costing about 4 digits!!) to fix. Well we were partly to blame as well cos we tried to use a second hand part (to reduce cost) and just my luck, the part became faulty just after the one month warranty. So then I had to fork out more money for original parts. Then the power window for the left back seat malfunctioned. Then one day, as Hubby was reversing out from a parking lot, the brake refused to work! He had to jam his foot down to force the brake to stop the car! Imagine, something as safety critical as brakes could malfunction without any indication of wear and tear! And the most recent was the radiator, so I had to keep topping up water to prevent overheating until we fixed it. Not to mention, the daily wear and tear - interior, exterior and ailing suspension. While we were fixing the radiator, I asked the mechanic to provide us a quotation for fixing everything, and I literally balked when I saw the price. It was about half the cost of a down payment for a new basic 3-series.

Despite everything, I definitely cherish my memories with Baby Beemer. Six years ago, I've always admired the 3-series but always assumed that it was too expensive for my reach. Then the Sakhalin opportunity came along and with my expat salary, I thought I could probably afford a Mercedes, even going as far as placing a deposit back then. Biasalah, shopaholics don't shop around, they simply buy! Then Hubby managed to convince me to check out Auto Bavaria. And we found out that since Hubby was working with Sime Engineering, we could get an 8% discount from the actual price, making it just a bit more expensive than the Mercedes! So I quickly cancelled my cheque deposit (but I felt so guilty to the guy who sold me the Mercedes, I met up with him separately to give him an angpow of RM200) and placed my order with Auto Bavaria. Of course, drama queens always attract drama - I was quite adamant that I wanted my car to be Graphite Grey in colour, but the sales associate kept telling me that if I wanted the SE (special edition) version, I would have to settle with any remaining colours they had because they were phasing out the SE for the basic (and cheaper) version. So I grudgingly agreed for black. By chance, (I don't remember exactly how), I found out that there were a few graphites but they were given to some other customers just because I had settled for black. I kicked up such a big fuss, even going to the extent of contacting the branch manager and insisted on changing to a different sales advisor (which was a blessing in disguise because the replacement, Ken, is such a god sent with fabulous PR skills and tip top service).

I also remember tendering for the plate number 1221 and failing the first time. Tendered a larger sum the second time and finally got the news while I was in Russia that I scored the plate and the car was ready for collection. Then conniving me decided to surprise Hubby with the car. I deliberately told him that my trip home was postponed and tricked him into believing that our area was going through a communications black out for a day due to some server upgrading works. How he believed that, is still a mystery to me now! So I boarded the plane home and during transit in Korea, texted Ken to inform him  that I was on route home to pick up the car. Landed in KLIA and took a taxi directly to Auto Bavaria, luggage and all. Ken gave me a short briefing of the car, and then... I drove the car on the road for the very first time! Terkumat kamit baca Bismillah and segala surah whilst driving to Hubby's office. Got to his office just after lunch time, and called him. Imagine his shock when I told him that I was downstairs, with the new car!!! (Then on the way back to his office that afternoon, I nearly got into an accident, stupid car in front of me made an emergency brake and I had to do the same, screeching tyres and all. Well, at least I got to test the brakes!)

Anyway, Baby Beemer has been through all of our ups and downs. It has Aiden's milk spots all over its back seat (which we would dutifully wipe clean), scratches in its interior due to Aiden's curious prying fingers, brought both Aiden and Ian home for the very first time, witnessed us signing the S&P to our new house, lovingly carted our possessions when we moved house, put up with the minor accidents and dents we caused (I was once in an accident where I was sandwiched between a Honda and a lorry - Honda's boot was dented in and the lorry's fender broke but our car suffered no dents at all, just minor scratches) and of course, drove us everywhere we needed to go.

10th February 2014, we finally surrendered Baby Beemer to be traded in.
Farewell Baby Beemer - you have served us well for 6 years.
So, why another Beemer? Honestly, Hubby was swayed by the Audi. We test drove the Audi twice, and both times I sulked. After driving a Beemer for 6 years, I do not want any other car! Despite the faults I listed earlier, really - what more can you expect from a six year old car? And, why another 3-series? Well, that was Hubby's decision in entirety. He claimed he is too young for a 5-series *ppffttt* and also he fell in love with the 328 M Sport, the highest spec in the 3-series line. Something about performance or torque or speed of the car - whatever! I, on the other hand couldn't care less; as long as he decided on another Beemer.

19th February 2014, say hello to our new Baby Beemer.
Waiting to be picked up at the showroom.
20th February 2014, we went to pick up the car. Check out that smile!
See the blue line across the dashboard of the car? That's a signature to show that the car is an M Sport. The 328 also comes with a bigger iDrive screen complete with map navigation. Please don't ask me about the features under the hood!
Using the back seat seatbelt for the first time.
Similar to when I picked up our first Baby Beemer, before you can drive the car out of the showroom, Auto Bavaria would conduct a one-to-one briefing about the car, its features and answer any questions you may have. This is Hubby listening intently to Ken's explanation.
Aiden all excited!
That weekend, we brought (the new) Baby Beemer for its first long distance maiden drive. Balik kampung for my brother's engagement. We were given strict instructions not to use the Sports mode or go above a certain RPM during the run-in period, but even with all those restrictions, the car's performance was an absolute dream. On the highway it took Hubby every ounce of his self restraint to not push the pedal all the way down!

Our car in the convoy of cars heading to my brother's fiance's house.
Can you spot Baby Beemer?
My favourite dish bila balik kampung!
Poor Aiden - he didn't get into this picture.
All of us.
Selfie with my sister.
Now that Hubby has proclaimed that Baby Beemer is his car (some excuse about how I can't handle the performance of the car *scoff* or was it because he paid the downpayment?), I guess I am now saddled with driving his car to work daily. Takpelah, smaller car, easier to park, and the best part is - Aiden has the same car too! *grin*

Hello Mini Cooper! We're going to have a lot of adventures together!
Aiden's car is so cute, I wish I have the courage to spray paint his car red to match mine!

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