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Dec 14, 2008

Comments

lauren

what does owning your own car give you, that streetcar doesn't/won't?

Loïc

Did you know that 60% of all Porsches ever made are still on the road today?
You should get one and have it customized with an H-Van by David's son
http://www.maxhydemotors.com/photogallery.html
and you get some kind of bloggocar.

Paul H. Colman

What do you have now?

And how come I didn't know you had a car?

caroline

I remember having to do a design project at school. We had to redesign the aesthetics of any car we chose. I sent off to all the car companies I could think of (this was before email, so it took a while). I told them about the project and what I was being asked to do, and asked them to send me brochure/s of the cars they produced.
I wrote to around 20 companies, about half got back to me with brochures, they ALL adressed the envolopes and corresponadance to MR PANICO, when I had quite clearly said my name was Miss Caroline Panico.I have never forgotten this and will not buy a car from these companies. Luckily I doubt I will ever have cause to buy the kind of cars a teenager thinks are cool!!

If were to buy a car Id maybe run this test again...

Have you thought of buying through an ex company car seller?

Chris

If anyone saw Top Gear last night, they covered the Honda Clarity... runs on Hydrogen so zero emissions! And looks ten times better than the Prius. Not available in the UK just yet but probably will be in your 1-4 year objective.

Steve Price

I second the Honda Clarity. I completely agree with James May (from Top Gear) in his 'Tomorrows World' style report on this car. It really is going to be the savour and the future of cars. It has increased my respect for Honda and their vision to invest in the impossible - even though they just resigned from F1.
The problem with Hybrid, or electric cars is that unless you can guarentee that your electricity is being sustainably sourced, all you are doing is draining (for hours) energy that has derived from a (more than likely) coal powered power station - which defeats the whole job.
I think that the Clarity and cars like them will take around ten years to be widely available at prices that do not mean you have to be on a Hollywood A list salary to afford them.
Better late than never.

Richard

For god sakes don't get a mini-van!

Nikki - Logo Design Guru

This is so cool. I saw one of these wire cars on another blog and thought it was so fascinating. Looks like something from the movie "Tron." That sure brings you back to the 80's. Some trends never go out of style, or just come back.

Dave

@ Steve Price:

Where do you think the hydrogen comes from? It takes energy to produce it - which, at the moment, would most likely come from gas or coal fired power stations. Same problem as electric cars, no? Plus hydrogen is not a very energy dense material - ie. you need a lot of it, and it takes up a large amount of space.

I'm not sure personal cars will ever be sustainable - plus they tend to clutter up the streets.

(Hope the first paragraph doesn't sound harsh/rude - it's not meant to be!)

pablo

cars are rubbish

Ben

Good comments, thanks everyone. I'll reply in a separate post. This is a long project.

Kieran

Cars aren't so rubbish.

A car enables me to live somewhere I can afford but work where housing is exspensive.

Bear in mind this is outside of metropolitan cities such as London or Manchester so there are exceedingly limited bus/tram/train routes. That'd be 2 bus routes I'd have to catch, each only runs twice hourly and don't connect well.

But this isn't a car blog! I'd say a 3-4 year timeframe will start allowing you to purchase a far more efficient car!

Matt Cooper

i'm not sure if this is common knowledge:

http://www.moonbattery.com/archives/2007/03/hummers_more_ec.html

Greenness isn't a quick fix, and the prius is far more damaging to the planet in the long run.

but in the long run, we should all go for a long run. Or a bike ride...

Julian

We have tried to get the best of both worlds by using a smaller car (a Nissan Almera) for day to day use for 2 adults and 2 children and hiring a larger car for longer journeys. The comfort in a larger car is pointless if you cannot find anywhere to park it and is costs a fortune to run, but it is good for those occasional long trips (such as Manchester to Penzance in a couple of weeks) for which we are hiring a VW Passat for 7 days for £130. The key is determining the size of car you need for your most frequent use of the car.

Rob Mortimer

Prius is apparently worse than a Land Rover for environmental impact because of how difficult and worldwide production of it is.

If it were me i'd buy an Alfa Romeo Brera, but thats because it looks amazing.

boots

yes you are mad, if you live in london what about the tube, bus or even a scooter - they are cheap to run etc

adrian

I have the very car for you. Like you, I have never been a 'car person'. Until now that is. Last year I was forced into thinking about a larger car as we were about to have a second baby. I can't remember how exactly, but I suddenly started researching old Mercedes estates - specifically the ones manufactured between '76 & '85 called the w123 series. Having lived with one for over 12 months, here are a few of the many reasons why this is the car for you:

1. They looks fantastic. Let's face it, as a visually intelligent person you can pretend all you like that you don't care about car aesthetics, but really, you know you do. While most estates look like normal cars with mullets, this is one of the very few estates that actually looks like it was designed to BE an estate. Then there's all the lovely chrome, the painted hubcaps, the deeply comfortable seats... I could go on.

2. 'The 1,000,000 mile Merc'. These ones were designed to last. The saloon versions are still used as taxis in many African and Middle-Eastern countries and many have done over a million miles on the original engine. They rarely go wrong but, if they do, Mercedes still make parts as they've endured the test of time.

3. Classic car status. And I'm not talking about your status as the owner - in Ireland, cars over 25 years old get classic insurance (much cheaper). Over 30 years old and they're tax exempt. Not sure about the UK situation, but it's something similar.

4. Green. While they are heavier on the juice than newer cars, you have to balance this against the fact you're buying a car that's effectively been recycled many times over.

5. 7 seat option. Many have a fold down seat in the boot.

6. Cheap. They are getting more popular as they get older but you can get a good one for a couple of grand if you look around. A really top quality / low milage one will probably go for 6 grand or more.

7. Appreciation (by other owners), but what I really mean is they retain their value so, if you look after yours, you'll probably sell it years later for the same price or maybe even more.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/8165854@N08/2873432414/

good luck,

Adrian


By the way, as well as not being into cars, i'm also not into reading blogs. But somehow, when I stumbled upon yours, I became hooked. I did, unfortunately, miss out on your lovely newspaper as I was away for a while - you won't be doing a reprint by any chance?


Joe @ CSC

I'm a hydrogen feul fanboy, those cars are the way of the future. Steve - sure it takes energy to convert the hydrogen but it's well worth it when it comes to green power.

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