As car lovers we have one thing in common but, like with people everyone has a “type”. So, how do you choose? What is your type?
The sports car:
Everyone loves a sports car don’t they? Apparently not. We have this discussion almost on a daily basis but what is one person’s dream is another’s nightmare.
The sports car, or the definition of a sports car splits opinion like nothing else. On one hand you have the hardcore, track ready monster like the Caterham R500’s or Ariel Atoms of the world. These cars are amazing to drive and get the adrenaline going like nothing else but, and there is always a but they aren’t easy to live with or comfortable.
Surely this is the definition of a sports car? No compromises? Well you would have thought so but this is not always the case. Is a sports car about speed, handling, lap times, or all three? A car that sets blistering lap times will generally not be good at much else, like going to Tesco. Is there such a thing as an everyday sports car? Of course there is. Look at BMW M cars, Mercedes AMG, Audi RS and there are lots of cars to choose from that you could go to work in everyday, thrash down a country lane on the way home and take to a track now and again.
Lots of people will look at something like a Lotus Exige as the ultimate sports car whilst others prefer a 911 (and not a GT3) or AMG GT. Each to their own but there is plenty to think about.
What is your ideal?
The luxury car:
The other end of the spectrum completely and something that, as a class is a lot more defined but no less of a mine field.
As drivers we love to drive but is that relevant with a luxury car? Do you want to enjoy the drive or simply arrive feeling good? It’s like the age old Bentley vs. Rolls Royce argument. You drive a Bentley and you are driven in a Rolls. But does the Bentley provide a driving experience? Yes of course, as all cars do but you may remember your Bentley experience for a different reason than your Lotus Exige experience.
The purpose of a luxury car is to provide you with levels of comfort and separation from the outside world that you wouldn’t find elsewhere. Therefore is the thrill in the drive or how little of the drive you are involved in?
Let us know your choices
The Q car:
Lots of people don’t know about Q cars. These are named after the Q ships of the 1st World war which were armed merchant ships that sailed undercover to get one up on the German U Boats. A Q car is basically something that looks like an everyday car but performs like a sports car. In my opinion these are great fun as they take many people by surprise.
Good examples of these are the V10 Audi S6, Volvo 850 T5, Mercedes E55, and Jaguar XJ R. All sensible looking salmon cars until you need to get past something in a hurry. They never fail to put a smile on your face as they take most other people by surprise.
The big plus of these cars is that they are very quick and handle well despite being executive cars.
The rally special:
Now these are a completely different type of car altogether. They came about as a result of homologation during the 80’s. This meant that in order for a manufacturer to be able to enter a car into a race or rally series they had to make a minimum number of road cars. This is where cars we all worship today came from such as the Lancia Integrale, Celica GT-4, Audi Quattro, and more recently Subaru Impreza and Mitsubishi EVO’s.
The 80’s and 90’s created a whole new genre of car and, generally speaking if you want to get from A to B quickly these are the cars to do it in. Cars such as the EVO are very flattering and make even average drivers feel like a Rally Legend.
What’s your rally favourite?
It’s not all about speed is it? A lot of people like something that is quick but effortless too. Not necessarily the silent luxury car but a proper GT sports car. The Bentley Continental, DB9, S Class coupe. Something that lets you know it has a lot of power but just gets on with things. It’s your 200mph Autobahn cruiser that can handle a stint on the Alpine passes too and fit some bags and other people in comfortably.
They look and sound quick but also have a “driver’s” level of luxury about them too.
The Hot Hatch:
The Hot Hatch was born in the late 70’s with the Golf GTi and has been dominating the driver’s car market ever since. They really are, according to the majority of people the great all rounder. Go to work, do the shopping, transport the family safely and then corner on your door handles when you have a spare moment of “alone time”
Today’s hot hatches are ridiculously capable cars and are also extremely powerful but remember hot hatches were always about delivering thrills from normal looking daily runabouts. There is still as much fun to be had in a Clio Williams as there is in a new Audi RS3.
So remember, it’s not all about the power, maximum speed or 0-60 times. The ultimate drive means something different to everyone and as long as the experience you have leaves a smile on your face then the car has delivered what you wanted it to. Maybe not in the way you expected but then, that’s what memories are made of.
What’s on your list? Get in touch and let’s see if we can make it happen.