This morning, I drove my rusty old J reg one last time.
It’s been on its way out for a while; it broke down spectacularly in March leaving me without a car for a week; it got through that (just) and is still going now.
But all good things must come to an end, and a change was needed.
Just in time by the looks of things; it looks like the head gasket may be the next thing to go on that car.
When I got the car it had 161766 miles on the clock. When I left it at the garage in Cheltenham this morning it has 173998 on the clock. I really wish I’d driven it round the block to take it up to 174000!
So since May last year I’ve driven 12232 miles. For a J reg which is approaching its 25th birthday, that’s not bad.
The truth is that if it hadn’t broken down in March I would have driven it to London and back a couple more times; but since March the furthest I’ve gone is Birmingham Airport with an overnight stop in Worcester on the way – driving for no more than 1 hour at a time.
I was only getting rid of it as a necessity than out of actually wanting a new car.
Over the last year and a bit, I’ve had so much joy out of driving that thing! Most things wrong with it were nothing more than a few little ‘quirks’ which gave the car ‘character’.
It is the car in which… (click the links for other blogs and dashcam videos)
- I drove to London for the very first time last Summer – I took Grandad out for a drive in it too
- in the Autumn I drove all the way to Hereford and back (in rush hour Friday evening traffic) when I went to see country singer Sasha McVeigh live
- I’ve driven to and from work in it every day since I got it
- I’ve driven it to Worcester and back so many times I’ve lost count.
- Several times I’ve driven it up to Gatwick when doing my weekends away in Germany.
- And here’s a dashcam video of my journey from Cirencester to London via the M4, M3 and M25.
This Youtube review of the Mk2 Golf just about sums up what I loved about my little white car:
So what’s replacing my J reg then?
Another VW Golf!
A more modern one though.
I part exchanged it for a 54 reg (second half of 2004) – jumping from the Mk2 to the Mk5. So the car I drove home in today is 3 generations ahead of what I’m used to.
With only 818026 miles on the clock when I picked it up, the new car is going to last me at least a couple of years, if not more.
My new car has power steering (luxury); 6 gears plus reverse; a heater that works; and I think it has air con too but I prefer to wind the windows down (except they’re electric windows so I just press a button now which is annoying).
Plus, the most important thing for me: the car beeps at me when I leave my lights on (I tested it earlier, it works). The Mk2 on more than one occasion was parked in the office car park with its lights left on simply because the car wasn’t able to remind me to switch them off.
Having a more modern car means that a trip to Europe in at some point in the future – maybe in the Autumn – is on the cards. I don’t know why I want to drive it over to France, or Belgium, or Germany…but I just love driving, so why not!?! Driving on the wrong side of the road isn’t that hard, as I discovered when I drove a Trabant in Berlin last year.
Hopefully it will be more economical with the fuel as well.
Here’s to many more years of driving.