Friday, 12 June 2009

UK’s motor vanity fair (11) [Bâlciul deşertăciunilor cu motor din UK]

If there were a British car that I like, that wouldn’t be a luxurious Jaguar, Aston Martin, Bentley or Rolls-Royce. What I would like to drive – and probably not just as an ‘experience’ but as an owner, using the vehicle every day – is a Mini.

Not that I’d be any auto expert, but I really find this car to be – either the original Mini or the newer BMW Mini – a masterpiece of British (and German, since 2001) craftmanship. I guess any of the fans in this British Mini car club would agree with me.

Anyone knowing me could easily imagine I’m not crazy about fancy vehicles, and even if I had the amount of necessary money, I wouldn’t throw it on a car as a ’motor idol’. But I’d like to have a Mini as a useful (and also pleasing) object.

In my view, given the prices of today in Europe, I guess one could buy a good car with a maximum of 15,000 euros. Spending more would be such a waste, in my opinion.

Sadly, according to the price lists (that can be seen here, here, here for the UK or here for Romania), this little car is not quite cheap. Buying a fully optioned version would take the cost well beyond my artificially set limit of 15,000 euros.

Considering the beauty of the car and it’s technical specifications, I’d say it’s a fair price. The only problem is posed by it’s size. It seems to be too small for a family car... However, weren’t the VW Beetle or the Fiat 500 also small? Still, whole families (4-5 people) got into them...

If the future of Vauxhall and Saab (maybe Jaguar as well, as I was writing in a previous episode) doesn’t seem to be bright these days, I hope the that the takeover of Mini by BMW (a decade old this year) was a good deal, and will continue to be so.
In 1945, the Brits were too narrow-minded to foresee the future of the Beetle, which they could freely steal from the part of Germany they were occupying, and set productions lines in the UK. It’s good to see that BMW was not equally stupid to let the Mini perish.

Of course, the current Mini only bears some exteriour similarities to the Mini that Mr Bean drove, and it’s a completely different motorized beast on the inside. God willing, maybe one day I’ll drive such a car, although there’s no way this could ever be a ‘priority’ of mine…

[For all the episodes of this series, and all the posts on this blog go to/Pentru toate episoadele din această serie şi toate postările de pe acest blog mergi la: Contents/Cuprins]

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