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Decisions, Decisions!

January 26, 2011 3 comments

I have mentioned before my little Scoobi car, a Subaru Justy. It is a nice little car, economical to run and quite nice to drive. It is a bit tatty, but looks do not detract from the ability of a car to get me from where I am to where I want to be. And this car has four-wheel drive, which was very useful during the snows last year.

Peugeot 306 MeridianBut I have been offered a Peugeot 306, 1998 model. It is a year newer than the Scoobie, a bit bigger, more comfortable and a lot tidier. It has been standing for over a year, so there is no MoT, VEL and the battery was rather non-responsive.

I now have the car at home. The battery is charged but the car misfires occasionally. The electronic odometer doesn’t work and I need the code to get the in-built radio working.

Being a 1600cc petrol engine, the car attracts a higher rate of VEL than the Scoobie and I guess the fuel consumption will not be as good. Insurance may be higher as well.

But, it is a lot tidier, much more comfortable, and that little bit bigger, meaning that I do not have to struggle to get Mum’s wheelchair in the boot.

So, this is my dilemma. Do I keep the very cheap-to-run Scoobie, or go for the newer, more comfortable and more expensive-to-run Pug?

Oh yes, and the Scoobie has a non-standard exhaust system which I have to weld up from time to time, whereas the Pug is standard in every way.

I always dread the sound that precedes the Scoobie’s exhaust falling apart, but it is not worth getting a new standard system. It would cost more than I paid for the car!

So, I could sell the Pug for the owner and receive a 10% commission on the sale, or sell the Scoobie and pay for the Pug for myself.

Of course, the Pug might fail the MoT big time, in which case there will be no decision to make, but I cannot find much wrong with it, so I think it will get through.

Before And After

April 14, 2010 Leave a comment
BEFORE (as I bought it)
AFTER (as it is today)

Looks a bit better now, doesn’t it? (And it’s legal)
Categories: Justy, Subaru

My (Old) New Car

April 8, 2010 Leave a comment

OK, so I’ve had it a couple of days now, driving around the village to see what it goes like, and I have to say that it is a nippy little machine. It is also reasonably comfortable and so far, has not let me down.

But … but (there is always a ‘but’), today, I found a major fault with it.

I went to do the weekly food shopping at our local superstore (which for my Kenyan readers, makes Nakumatt look like a corner kiosk). To give you an idea, the car park takes 1,200+ cars, and it is often at least half-full.

And that is where the problem is. My previous car was an MPV, (again, for my Kenyan readers, rather like a matatu), and was easy to spot in a sea of 800 cars. Now, I have a small hatchback that looks the same as every other hatchback (which are very popular here), so finding the car was, er, difficult. So I had to walk around the car park, pushing my trolley to find my new car. I couldn’t remember the index number and I was only vaguely aware of what it looks like. It is just a dark blue hatchback, like about 50% of the other cars there.

Obviously, I found it eventually, and have made a mental note to make sure I park next to or near a landmark on my next shopping trip. Today, it was not too bad. The sun is out and it is warm (17°C – OK, I know that is not warm by Kenyan standards, but here, it is bliss).

All the shopping fitted into the car without problem, so it has passed that test. Maybe I ought to tie a couple of helium balloons onto it next time.

Categories: car park, shopping, Subaru, Tesco

My New Old, or maybe, Old New Car

April 6, 2010 Leave a comment

It’s a bit strange. I am used to driving automatic transmission Isuzu Troopers, Nissan Terranos, Pajeros, Transits and Mazda Bongos, so getting into a manual transmission Subaru Justy is odd. I can’t see over the car in front and the door mirrors are so small that I can’t even see them!

I’ll get used to it, I’m sure. I will have to. This is my new mode of transport.

It needs a bit of fixing. It had been owned by a 19 year old, so it has been modified a bit, notably both rear wings are slightly concave, but a dent puller will sort that out.

It needs a front number plate, a passenger seatbelt and a few nuts and bolts to be replaced to stop various bits rattling. I should replace the exhaust. The car sounds like an Impreza at the moment, but that can wait for a while.

But it goes. The brakes work, the tyres are good (ish), the engine and steering work and it has 6 months on the MoT.

The best of all is that the VEL is almost half the cost of my last car, as is the fuel consumption. So I should recuperate the £100 I paid for it in next to no time, as long as I don’t incur any expensive repair bills.

All in all, and despite my bum dragging along the road (or so it seems), I think I will quite like this little car.

Categories: Justy, Subaru