This week’s Shed of the Week choice has been made by Mrs Shed because the adjudicating committee simply couldn't decide between an elegant E46 BMW 320Ci in silver and the car you are now gazing at in admiration/disgust (delete option).
We might have known that Mrs S would put her warty old finger on this. Nothing to do with it being a V6 Mondeo. She’s not bothered about that. What she likes is that it’s white and chromey, reminding her not only of the enormous Sierra 1.6-based Beauford Tourer vintage limo that Shed organised for their wedding day but also, more pleasantly, of Miami Vice. This was one of her favourite programmes back in the 1980s. She very much liked the shiny suits Crockett and Tubbs wore, although she always tutted whenever they rolled their sleeves up (which they did every week) because she knew that would be an ironing nightmare. Not that she or Shed ever did any ironing, but if either had it would have been a nightmare.
So, that explains why she chose a white Mondeo V6. Sort of. Why would you choose this one though?
The engine is indeed a V6 which is good if, like many PHers, you like V6s. The 2.5 wasn’t as nice or as strong at the bottom end as the ST220’s 3.0. Despite being smaller in displacement it didn’t rev as willingly as the bigger motor, either. In fact, as an all-round car, with one eye on fuel consumption you might prefer the Mondeo 2.0 over a 2.5, but of course the 2.0 would be two cylinders short of a six and wouldn’t sound quite so good with a cone filter fitted. The ownership downsides of the six were a ‘moosing’ noise made by its idle control valve, rattly tensioners and dissolving rear subframe bushes. On the good side it ran a chain not a cambelt and Shed is fairly sure that this generation of Mondeo V6 didn’t have the plastic water pump impellers that were known to fail.
Our shed is a Zetec, the best spec if you or your fleet manager wouldn’t run to a Ghia or Titanium. It included Ford’s Quickclear heated screen which is worth good money on its own in Shed’s view as it stops him having to wipe the steam off the glass with the back of his coat sleeve which, like Don Johnson’s, is also shiny, not so much because of style as of extreme age and countless nose wipings.
Finally, of course, our shed is white. Now, that’s not everybody’s favourite colour, but there are many good things to be said about white cars. They’re very good at showing the dirt, reminding you it’s time to wash it and also making a refreshing change for those wags who normally practice their renditions of a gentleman’s reproductive apparatus on the backs of minging Sprinters. White is also an ideal base for advertising your local dog shampooing or wig maintenance business, or for repainting it a better colour. It is also perfect for any powdery substances that might be laid out on the boot lid for closer examination round the back of the bingo hall, if you were trying to choose a nice baking soda for the village cake-making competition, say, or comparing detergents for the cricket club’s washing machine. Because those substances would simply blend into the background if the polis came round at the wrong moment.
This car has done 135,000 miles, which isn’t excessive, and its MOT status is sound enough with nine months left on the ticket and no big issues to fret about, but there’s something about it that makes you want to book it in for a cabin degrease at the very least. The wheels are interestingly patinated too. Shed did an internet search on ‘nasty Mondeo alloys’ but nothing like these came up. No doubt a PH expert or boot sale regular will be able to identify them.
Going back to Miami Vice for a moment, in a doomed attempt to look trendy – nobody told him that the programme hadn't been on for 20 years – Shed tried the rolled-up sleeve thing at last year’s funeral for the postmistress’s husband, who had suddenly died shortly after drinking some of Shed’s plum wine. No connection between the two events was ever proved, but out of a sense of concern and compassion Shed has been consoling the postmistress on a fortnightly basis ever since.
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