Everyone remembers their first car. No matter if it was a fresh off the lot new model or a puttering jalopy, those earliest moments spent in the driver’s seat are unforgettable. The feel of the wheel between nervous fingertips and the palmed grip of the gear shift scatter butterflies throughout your entire abdomen. A sense of the car’s power fills your adventurous spirit. You can go anywhere, do anything.
The first ride of my life was a teal colored ’98 Honda Accord. The paint was chipped and faded here, the alignment was off there and the driver’s side window would not roll up all the way, but I would not have changed it for anything — because it was mine. I’ll never forget that first drive home from the lot; wheel cocked a little to the left to keep it straight, the freeway air whistling through the divide of the glass pane as I cruised down I-40 in the right lane. The memories will never fade of driving my little sister to school in that vehicle, radio blaring.
Our cars are our second homes. They’re where we spend our alone time, gathering our thoughts for the day or decompressing afterward. It’s no secret as to why, when faced with moments of trouble, many people’s first reaction is to grab the keys, hop in the car and just drive until life makes sense again. Some of the greatest epiphanies happen wheel in hand, gazing at a landscape of open road.
Which is why when our cars are down, a piece of us is too. Whether it was a fender-bender that leaves it in a repair shop for the weekend or a totaling that makes us find a replacement, its an extension of ourselves that needs fixing or supplanting. So finding the right collision center or dealership is just as important to many of us as the right doctor.
This month, we are highlighting some of the best of Arkansas’ world of automotives with dealers that range from used to new, technicians that will treat you right and accessories dealers that can help make your ride the hottest on the block.