Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Sexiest Car In The World

That's what James May, Jeremy Clarkson and Richard Hammond (along with the rest of the Top Gear Magazine team) had to say about the Fiat 500 the other week! I quote:

"[The Fiat 500] has the allure of the wholesome and uncomplicated.

"Everyone, from strapping blokes to fainting flowers of womanhood, looks sexually charged behind its wheel.

"It works irrespective of age, beauty, wealth and position; even a nun in a 500 seems to telegraph a faint tingle of the procreative urge."

Interesting! It's a good thing I trust my girlfriend, as she drives the Fiat far more than I do. I'm not convinced the car itself is actually 'sexy', but who am I to argue with the experts? It is very, very cute, there's no denying it.

Anyway, needless to say there's been a sudden upturn in interest in the little Fiat. All of a sudden everyone knows what it is. We got a lot of attention before, but now we get even more! The club's been busy too, handling all the queries, and the message board has had a sudden influx of people asking how easy they are to import, etc.

I'm sure all the fuss will die down soon enough. And then comes the 50th Anniversary. We really must make sure we're in or around Turin (Torino) for that!

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

With Flying Colours

I took the Fiat down to Wallinhurst Garage in Billericay last weekend for its MOT and I'm pleased to say it sailed through, no problems. There's a bit of corrosion underneath which needs sorting out (no surprise there!) but nothing unsafe, so we're good for another year. Hurrah!

The garage was actually recommended to us by a local classic car mechanic called Graham King, who always takes vehicles in his charge to Wallinhurst Garage for their MOTs. And we weren't disappointed. It's a great little place.

The manager, a chap called Chris, did the MOT himself as the usual tester wasn't in on Saturday. He was very thorough but also very fair and friendly too. And the lads working at the garage seemed to enjoy seeing the little Fiat. By the time we came to collect it they were referring to it as "the little one".

Chris even threw in a new bulb for the number plate lamp! Can't be bad. We will be going back there again. Good call, Graham.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Happy Holidays

The MG-F and my good self enjoying Le Loir valleyApologies for the extended silence. I think I needed a brief blogging break after all the excitement of seeing a ludicrously quiet diesel-powered Audi win Le Mans. If they all go diesel we won't need our ear plugs next year!

Unfortunately, the Lotus remains sad and lonely, parked up on a quiet side street under a grey tarpaulin. A local mechanic is due to come and (hopefully) fix it next week at some point. The sooner the better. It needs a run and it needs putting out of harms way in a garage.

As for Le Mans, we had a great time. Happily mum lent us her little MG-F (pictured) for the week, which was very very kind of her and greatly appreciated. It made things a lot more fun, especially since the weather was glorious, so baking in the new runabout wouldn't have been very enjoyable.

The people were friendly, the accommodation was cute and authentic, the food was good, the racing was great and the weather was just stunning. And the cars... wow! It seems nearly everyone coming to Le Mans brings a Porsche, a Ferrari or a classic of some description. It was incredible to see so many gorgeous cars in one place! It was like a mobile car show.

Dad's XJ-S purred to France and back with no trouble at all. Not that I thought it would be any trouble, but dad was very nervous about it for some reason. One of our fellow guests at the gite can appreciate that. He too came all the way from the UK in a classic car, but he was so nervous about it lasting long enough to take him home again, he practically refused to drive it all week. And would you believe it was a Lotus Elan +2S? What a shame mine couldn't make it.

By the way, I've rather foolishly gone and let the MOT expire on the Fiat. *sigh* I now have to find a sympathetic local MOT station where they won't quibble too much about the headlamp lenses. That's my job for the weekend.