Sunday, May 15

What’s The Dumbest Part You’ve Ever Installed On A Car?

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If wisdom comes with age, it stands to reason that we all get a bit wiser each day. Each passing hour gives us a bit more insight into the world, lets our brains develop a bit further, and grants us the hindsight to reflect on our past decisions with fresh eyes — fresh enough to say “Man, that was a dumb thing I did.”

Sometimes those early decisions jut don’t hold up in the cruel light of the present. Maybe you modified a car in a style that we’d now very gently call “period-correct,” with scissor doors and Pimp My Ride-style screens. Perhaps you wanted a full turbo kit on your first-generation Hyundai Accent, but the shoestring budgets of youth forced you to settle for a turbo whistle in the exhaust. We’ve all been there — this is a place of commiseration, not judgement.

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Photo: Steve DaSilva

Back in my misspent youth (as opposed to my current misspent adulthood), I owned a Jeep Wrangler named after an Arctic Monkeys song. This alone probably qualifies as dumb, but I assure you it gets worse. As a child who’d grown up watching Smokey and the Bandit far too often, and spent too much time on Jeep forums, I decided that the Wrangler needed a CB radio. You know, what all the cool kids were doing to their cars in 2014.

Unfortunately, I went with a free CB from a family friend — and, crucially, did not test it in any way before installing it. Dated electronics, of course, are never known for weird issues, and would never turn out to be constantly broadcasting and subjecting every trucker on I-84 to your driving playlist of Evanescense, Halestorm, and Pandora Radio ads. That would be unthinkable.

A CB radio may be my dumbest car mod, but what was yours? Did you jerry-rig an iPad into your dash as a radio upgrade, only to realize your air conditioning no longer worked? Were you the person who put Impreza springs on the Legacy GT wagon I once bought? Give your best-worst answers in the comments, so we can all bask in the excellent decision-making of our collective youth.

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