There really is something quite bizarre about me writing a post about cars and driving. I am not a petrol head and in fact I suffer badly with travel sickness so spending time in a car is something I try to avoid. My travel sickness is better when I drive but as a passenger I can be poorly on the shortest of journeys. My work, the shops and children’s school and clubs are all within a mile radius from home so my weekly mileage is very low, only bumped up by the occasional visit to big town (50 miles round journey) or a trip to my parents. When I part exchanged my last car, I had done less than 15000 miles in 7 years. Whilst I am a competent driver now, it did take me 4 attempts to pass my test at 18; I passed it the day before I went to uni and then didn’t drive for another 4 years and had to do refresher lessons! As you can see I’m not that well qualified to write a post on cars, however I felt that my cars actually tell a little of my life story so thought I’d write a post about my life in cars.
My first car was a second hand orange Metro. It was BT orange as it was an old fleet car and as I started my first job it was what I could afford, I think it cost me about £1500 which was expensive at the time. The prices of cars have definitely reduced over the years. The Metro was the car of choice with me and my friends yet it seems so basic now, freezing in winter, boiling in summer, dodgy car radio and it even had a choke button. We all knew how to do the simple tasks in our cars and could check tyres, water levels, change oil etc.. Sadly the Metro wasn’t the most reliable of cars, it blew a tyre on the M4 once and on a winter’s night broke down on the Second Severn Crossing, needless to say I’ve always been a member of roadside assistance. Eventually it was stolen, dumped and written off and having been working for a couple of years I upgraded to a Citroen Saxo.
I loved my Citroen Saxo, it was my fun car, I had it between the ages of 25 and 31 and would drive in it to meet friends, have girlie weekends away and simply bop around town. It was so reliable, I had it for 6 years and my Dad then had it for another 6 until he exchanged it in the government scrappage scheme. In the pictures above its on the driveway of our first house, it was a great little car.
I only changed my Saxo car because Mr S bought me a KA for our first wedding anniversary. This felt like such luxury, central locking, electric windows and it was so fun to drive. In the years I had my KA I started doing some serious mileage as we had sold up in Bristol and moved to the seaside whilst I was still working in Bristol 4 days a week. My friends were even more spread about the country now, so it was visits to Berkshire, Devon, Cardiff in school holidays. It was about this time that Mr S persuaded me to drive a larger, safer car for all my miles and my KA was part exchanged for a new car for him whilst I kept his old car ( he always has v nice cars for work) I can’t even remember what it was but I hated it and soon had gone back to a smaller car.
My next car was a 3 door C1 and perfect for my life, small enough to zip around town and to park easily, comfortable with some great features and just lovely. The thing we hadn’t considered was family life and when the children arrived it was impractical, it didn’t fit a pushchair in the boot which was squeezed onto the back floor and then one day leaning in to do the car seats I hurt my back and by the weekend it had been part exchanged for a C3.
My C3 was the practical, 2nd family car and to be honest I never had the buzz or excitement from driving it, I think that may have been the grey colour, it was functional and reliable but a bit boring. Its also very difficult to keep a family car clean and tidy and its normally my car which is used for beach trips, muddy walks etc.. After 7 years, we felt it was coming near to its end and rather than investing money into it, Mr S offered to but me a new car for my birthday.
Upon this offer, I asked for a C1 which surprised Mr S. However I loved my original C1 and now the children are older without the need for pushchairs etc..it was the practical option again, although we did ensure its the 5 door model. As well as its features, I’m also impressed with its economy, it has no car tax and my insurance has reduced considerably. My C1 is not our family car, Mr S has a large family car for family outings, its a small second car for local trips and it fits the bill perfectly. Whilst its unlikely to be this car, I also think that in 8 years when Little Miss learns to drive it would be the perfect model for her to learn in.
In the years to come, I can’t imagine driving a car much different to what I have now. I’m sure the features will develop but for speed and practicality, I’m really happy with what I have. I’m not one for sporty and flashy cars and I suppose the one feature which will attract me is environmental considerations.