First Class Car

From Junker to First-Class Car

ferrariDo you drive a Ferrari or Lamborghini? If so, then you can skip this article. For the rest of us …

You can take specific steps to impress people with your car, even if you drive a real junker. Call it your car’s makeover.

Let’s consider some possibilities in stages:

1. Eliminate Messy-Office or Garbage-Can Syndrome

Don’t use your vehicle as a repository for old papers, receipts, drink cups, or any items that you were just too lazy to remove that last time you went in the house. Figure out a way to incorporate interior car cleaning into your schedule. Make it a real habit. This should become a resolution … one not to be broken.

2. As long as you’ve decided to minimize the items inside your car, go one step further … Clean It!

This includes vacuuming, shaking out floor mats, etc.

While you’re at it, minimize and arrange the items in your glove box and trunk.

And don’t forget any side pockets or center, island container. Clean it all out.

Dust, too.

3. Read an online article or buy a book on Detailing. Detail your car.

car-detailingIn order to create a First-Class Masterpiece, you need to start with a clean slate … a blank canvas, so to speak. Learn about detailing both the inside and outside of your car. Toothbrush between the cracks, restore the rubber of the tires with the “right” chemical or soap. Make your car smell good.

Put a shine on the paint job, even if your car is banged up.

4. Take care of dents and dings, if you can … emphasize them, if you can’t.

If you can get rid of blemishes professionally, great. If you want to learn to touch up or remove dents on your own, fine. But if you can’t hide the imperfections, then figure out a way to incorporate them into the design. (Professionally painted bandaid or spider’s web for the outside, nice seat covers for a ripped cushion on the interior.

5.  It’s time to make your car ride a cut above….

Now, it’s time to brainstorm. What would turn this car into a first-class-experience-giver? Could you modify it to reduce the road noise? Imagine a quiet, in fact almost silent ride.

How about smooth? What could you do to the shocks or tires to make the cruising-around experience like riding in a Cadillac?

What about glare from the sun? Legally-tinted windshields and windows?

And while we’re at it, how’s the inside temperature?


6. Amenities

Does the back seat have to include a television monitor to be considered first class? Or does it make the car resemble a “family van?” You have to decide.

Will you provide snacks and drinks in your car to emulate a limousine, or would food liken your car ride to a fast-food experience, complete with leftover bad smells? Again, it’s your call.

Still, to give your passenger a red-carpet experience, your car should have some sort of extra, to impress. Maybe having an organized glove compartment with everything imaginable — first-aid kit, snack, sewing kit, gloves, ice scraper, flashlights — would impress your guest. And from a practical point of view, you have the items that “you” might need in an emergency.


7. Brainstorm Something Creatively Original

To create a really first-class car, you need something, anything, special. If the sky were the limit, what would you include?

A secret compartment, with silent-servo, electric delivery for a cell phone, so you can talk … after you park the car.

Automatic window tinting on command

Voice activated … anything

The ultimate car stereo system … but have it hidden, so nobody knows … until you push the button to reveal all your lights

A cool blanket hidden for … a picnic, an emergency, or just cuddling in the car

An in-dash video game that can only be activated when the engine is off

A completely hidden mini-closet with a change of clothes


8. Final Analysis

Once everything’s in place, take a look at both the interior and the exterior. While you want to include classy elements in your car, both inside and out, you don’t want your car to project the wrong image.

old-limoHow will society view your creation? Is it more like a pimp-mobile, a Batmobile, or the mystery machine (Scooby Doo)?

Does it remind you of an exclusive limousine ride or an SUV driven by a soccer mom?

Ultimately, you want to feel comfortable in your own car, you want your passengers to feel comfortable, and you want your vehicle to project an image that represents you.

For those who have read The Dream Wizard, think in terms of Ronald: he’s able to provide a great experience for his passengers, with old, classic cars. The paint jobs and his use of custom upholstery help to create the atmosphere and his intended effect. And just as he started small in his car business, you can take your car makeover, one, small step at a time.

Good luck … and good detailing.