£100K Garage: Steve Bladon

Name: Steve Bladon
Previously owned: Not stated
Currently owned: Not stated
On the shortlist: "My problem choosing a £100K garage would definitely be, 'how do you limit it to £100K'? Anything with wheels and an engine is worth a go in my book, so I wouldn't know where to start whittling it down.

"If I really had to limit numbers, I'd want to make sure that each car has a different character. No room for doubling up here. And since - to me - so much of a car's character comes from its engine, I guess I would want to make sure each choice has a different engine configuration.

"Which begs the question: how many different configurations could my fictional £100K buy?

"Obviously, I'd want everything to be as PH-worthy as possible. I started with great ambitions about variety and imaginative choices. But in the end I just went for trying to get every configuration I could think of within budget. It's a lot of cars...

"There are so many options that everyone will have their own ideas about where I've gone wrong, but here goes...

Fiat 500 (two-cylinder)
Cost: £4,290
Balance: £95,710
Why I chose it: "Not many options here! Going for a Fiat 500 Twin Air, if only because of the lack of alternatives. Not a great start, but a decent enough car, I suppose."

Smart Roadster Brabus(three-cylinder)
Cost: £5,399
Balance: £90,311
Why I chose it: "Quite a common layout these days, but not always in a characterful package. Could have gone for any number of superminis, but instead I'm being rash with the budget and choosing a Smart Roadster Brabus."

Honda Civic Type R (inline four-cylinder)
Cost: £3,150
Balance: £87,161
Why I chose it: "Loads of scope here. Too much, to be honest. But really if this is all about engines it's hard to see past a Honda VTEC. So I give you this Civic Type R."

Subaru Forester Turbo (flat-four)
Cost: £2,500
Balance: £84,661
Why I chose it: "The days when you could get a cheap boxer-engined Alfa are long done, sadly, so I went down the predictable Scooby route. A Forester Turbo, anyone?"

Lancia Fulvia(V4)
Cost: £14,995
Balance: £69,666
Why I chose it: "Unsurprisingly, there weren't many options for V4s on the PH classifieds when I looked. But the lack of quantity was made up for in quality. I've always loved Lancia Fulvia Coupes, so whilst this doubles the spend so far, it's going on the list."

Fiat Coupe (inline five-cylinder)
Cost: £3,500
Balance: £66,166
Why I chose it: "Now things get interesting. Is there such a thing as a characterless straight-five? For affordability, performance and a character-laden package, the Fiat Coupe is an easy choice." (Sadly Steve's chosen Coupe has sold; see here for some at similar money.)

VW Beetle (V5)
Cost: £1,995
Balance: £64,171
Why I chose it: "This configuration gives a limited choice, and there's nothing that's dripping in PH-ness. So time for a left-field choice, a properly marmite car. Is anybody indifferent to a VW Beetle?"

Subaru Legacy (flat-six)
Cost: £3,995
Balance: £60,176
Why I chose it: "A year or two back I'd have been looking for a Boxster here, but boy are they going up in price! So it's back to Subaru, the kings of all things horizontally opposed (I feel there's a Mrs Shed joke in there somewhere). This Legacy looks tasty enough."

Alfa GTV (V6)
Cost: £3,395
Balance: £56,781
Why I chose it: "I've driven eight different engine configurations in my time, and I think a V6 is my favourite so far! V6s can also be found in some interesting cars, so I was looking forward to this group. It was so nearly a Renault Vel Satis (just because), but could I really leave an Alfa V6 off the list? Not when I saw this GTV I couldn't."

Lexus LS400 (V8)
Cost: £1,895
Balance: £54,886
Why I chose it: "It makes me happy to see how cheaply you can get into V8 motoring these days. You can go sporty, you can go retro, or you can waft. How about a Lexus LS400 for little more than Shed money?"

BMW M6 (V10)
Cost: £16,500
Balance: £38,386
Why I chose it: "OK, so there are 11 cars in the garage so far and more than half the budget is left. This is where we run out of bargains. Lots of lovely stuff here, but with an eye on the budget I've gone for a BMW M6."

Jaguar XJS (V12)
Cost: £15,995
Balance: £22,391
Why I chose it: "I really, really wanted an Italian V12, but that wasn't going to happen on budget. So next-best - for someone who grew up in the '70s, anyway - is a Jaguar XJS. I could have saved £10K by going for a 'rolling restoration' (aren't they all, ultimately?) but this one just seemed less scary."

Bentley Continental GT (W12)
Cost: £18,489
Balance: £3,902
Why I chose it: "I did not expect to squeeze a W12 into the garage for the budget, but I did! Not really my thing, but I wouldn't turn down a Bentley Continental if it was going spare."

Mazda RX-8 (rotary)
Cost: £1,995
Balance: £1,907
Why I chose it: "I appear to have some budget left over. Seems a shame to waste it. Oh hang on, look what I've found. Rotary ticked off as well!

"Not bad, I reckon. And enough left over for about 15 litres of petrol. How far would that get me, with this lot?"










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Comments (24) Join the discussion on the forum

  • sc0tt 26 Mar 2018

    Interesting choice. Good effort.

  • mko9 26 Mar 2018

    He missed straight 6 - e46 M3?

  • Turbobanana 26 Mar 2018

    mko9 said:
    He missed straight 6 - e46 M3?
    And single-cylinder: Isetta / Heinkel Bubblecar?

    And flat-twin: 2CV?

  • alorotom 26 Mar 2018

    i dont get the point of this ... most of these are just not desirable at all ??!!

  • pSyCoSiS 26 Mar 2018

    Nice choices - why have one car when you can have an iteration of all the engines made!

    Some of those in the selection are not my cup of tea, but fair play, you have most bases covered there!

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