After that, I had summer to contend with, which included a business trip and a vacation far from home. When I got back, I picked up the 1979 Mercedes parts car, which I spent six weeks or so working on and taking apart. When I was done with that, I had to deal with the unexpected steering rack failure on my wife's daily driver, which led me to decide, ultimately, to replace the car, which is what brings me to where I am now.
The obvious choice would have been another Subaru, but that's not really an option anymore, as far as I'm concerned. My relationship with the Subarus started with my 1994 Legacy L. I bought that car with 204,000 miles on it and drove it (with basic maintenance and a few repairs) for four years and nearly 90,000 miles until I sold it in favor of my (far less reliable) 1990 Volkswagen Jetta diesel (big mistake). Since then, my wife and I have had many Subarus, several of which have been amazingly reliable. However, and this is only anecdotal gut instinct, I think that Subaru may have made some sort of production change in the EJ22 engine. My 1994 Subaru was insanely reliable, and never burned or leaked a drop of oil. Similar story with my wife's 1993 Legacy L and her 1993 EJ18 Impreza.
However, as the first generation cars became scarce, we moved on to the second generation Legacies. My 1995 EJ22 Legacy L burned oil and eventually all but lost compression in cylinder 2. Although I compression tested my replacment 1995 Legacy L Outback (EJ22 again) at time of purchase, cylinder 2 started showing some symptoms this summer. Lately, it's been behaving itself. So, even though the engine and transmission in my wife's 1995 Legacy are healthy, I don't want to take a chance on another unknown Subaru that will be almost guaranteed to have serious rust issues.
So, I did some research and narrowed the list of potential replacement cars to older Toyota Camries (just seeing them on the road around here suggests to me that they don't have as serious rust issues as the Subarus), which are known to be reliable, and on the recommendation of a friend and former Volvo mechanic, old Volvo 850's or S70/V70's. As we like station wagons for their utility, combined with the fact that at this age, there's little if any price penalty for a station wagon, I opted to limit my search to 850 and V70 wagons.
I even considered the Volvos way back in January when I was shopping for a replacement car for my old 1995 Legacy. But, I couldn't find a good one back then. I've been looking for a few weeks, and finally bought THIS:
(it even came with snow tires)
It needs a boatload of maintenance and a few repairs, but looks like a solid base for a daily driver that I should have on the road in a few weeks. THEN, I'll be back to working on the 240D, unless there's another unexpected interruption.