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Thursday 17th January 2013


PH BLOG: NEW YEAR, NEW CARS...

Two weeks into 2013 Harris is getting an itchy trigger finger when it comes to temptations in the classifieds


I assume many of you share my addiction for car classifieds – to the extent that family members have to hunt you down and drag you away from the laptop during the Christmas period. How cruel they can be! Don’t they realise that a working knowledge of W124 E60 AMG prices doesn’t come without serious graft?

But a new year is mostly about car decisions. What to keep, what to sell, what to ignore, what to pretend is quietly appreciating but is actually lurking and hiding some shattering bill. I’d like to think that 2013 will mostly be a year of acquisitions, because there are numerous things I’d like to own, and one rather expensive thing which I will sell – the 599.

Harris wants this one...
Harris wants this one...
If it was possible to keep a 599 forever, I think I would. Sadly I can’t afford to, but the car is a massive step forward over the 575 and the motor is unlike anything I’ve had the pleasure of using on a daily basis before. You read stuff like “a de-tuned Enzo engine” and receive it with a fist of salt, but that’s exactly how it feels and sounds. Every time it goes beyond 6,000rpm you swear it shouldn’t be allowed in a road car. And now I’ve just written that, I wonder if I can ever part with the bloody thing.

But it has to go. What to have instead?

I need some more French tat. A proper 205 Rallye would be perfect, a ripple-bonnet 2CV is high on the list and I still need a Mehari in my life even though prices are spiraling out of control.

...and this one...
...and this one...
The 1980s remain a source of obsession, so a 928 S2 (1986 model year car) is on my hit list, bork and all. An early E30 M3 would be nice to have alongside the M5, but then again I’m ashamed to admit that I’ve never owned a Lancia, so that space should really go to an Integrale, shouldn’t it?

There are further complications: Mike Musto’s show on Drive has reignited the need to own a Dodge Charger. Preferably a 1969 440 RT, but I might need to manage my expectations on that front.

There is something fascinating about those early AMG machines. We now get factory warranted thugs from most manufacturers with absurd engine sizes, but what AMG was doing in the 80s and 90s still resonates today. A widebody W124 Hammer Coupe might be too much to resist. Then again so might a 964 Turbo II 3.6. Or an R32 Skyline, or perhaps an R33. But then you’d wonder if you should have hunted down a minty Evo VI GSR.

...and this one (no, really)...
...and this one (no, really)...
The E61 M5 Touring has no place in my life. I don’t need another estate car and fuel economy is king for traipsing around Europe shooting videos. Of course this has left me wanting an M5 Touring even more. They just look so perfect - and that engine, oof! But there is an outside chance that I’ll end up with an Audi S4 Avant, the V6 turbo version – more on that another time.

What would one do with a Merc 600 Grosser? I don’t know, but would rather enjoy trying. Would a 300 SEL 6.3 be a little more amusing? They’re both an itch I feel the need to dig my nails into. I could plonk the family in them too, but isn’t that what the E28 M5 is for? In which case none of this makes any sense and I should just buy a 512 TR, but even such extreme behaviour leaves the quintessential car question unanswered: namely, would Porsche Finance lend against a 959?

...and this one...
...and this one...
As you can see, my thought process is well organised and I have a solid strategy for 2013 that involves wanting, either selectively or simultaneously, pretty much every interesting car on sale, and not having the resources to do much about it.

So 2013 is just like 2012 – which was the same as the previous 10 new years. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Chris

Author: Chris Harris
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