Late last week, my wife and I were out running errands in Yoshi, our 2013 Ford Mustang GT, when I suddenly noticed a pretty violent shake, which seemed to emanate from the gear shift. It was most noticeable as we reached a speed conducive of shifting from second gear to third gear. However, I didn’t go any further than that, in terms of speed, since we were almost home. So I gently drove Yoshi back into his cozy garage without ever leaving second gear.
Of course, my first thought, out of sheer panic, lead me to believe that it was a transmission problem. That’s how it felt, and I was nervous about the cost of rebuilding the transmission and whatever else might be needed. I mean, let’s face it, the car has over 136,000 miles on it, so you start to have these thoughts.
On Friday of last week, I called AAA and had Yoshi towed by BC Towing (super nice guy) to my friends at Certified Automotive Repair here in Salem. They called to report within a couple of hours, but I was unavailable and couldn’t take the call until that evening, so I called them back on Monday. They were happy to report that they had inspected the car and found that it was mechanically sound and in fantastic condition, especially considering the mileage.
The problem had to do with the rims; two of them (the right front and the left rear) were severely bent and someone had added a bunch of counterweights to stabilize the ride. I’m not mechanically-inclined, so I wouldn’t have recognized any kind of shaking it might have been making all this time. I mean, Yoshi is rather loud and powerful, so one might think that any slight vibrations in the dash or wherever would just be attributed to the motor running and the loud exhaust. Anyway, you could see on one of the rims where there used to be some counterweights and it was pretty clear that they had recently fallen off. That’s probably when the violent shaking really kicked in. Plus they found that it was out of alignment, so that could have contributed to it as well.
The only other thing they found was that the air conditioner was starting to fail, so they are replacing that right now as I type this. Once that is done, the fun begins! Yoshi and I will be off to find the perfect set of rims and tires. Right now, I’m leaning toward deep dish Bullitt-style rims. But that may change as I view our options and discuss with experts.
At the end of the day, I’m glad that I have further confirmed that Yoshi is a solid car, despite the number of miles. Initial inspections at time of purchase indicated that it was just fine, but it’s nice when you have your local, trusted mechanic confirm that. We are looking forward to a road trip to Tillamook Air Museum on May 25th with the Northwest Mustang Club, and Yoshi will be ready!