Classics corner: An introduction

Major Gav is a man of particular tastes. He's got a question for you: "Modern cars are rubbish, right?"

Gavin Braithwaite-Smith Freelance motoring writer and blogger
Gavin is a freelance motoring writer who lives in the automotive metropolis that is Dartmoor, Devon. When not creating waffle and bunk for PetrolBlog, Gavin can be found hurtling up and down the A303 to attend new car launches. He has an unhealthy obsession with obscure and mundane cars from the 1980s and 1990s. Will work for Hobnobs. Not keen on Shatchbacks.
Gavin Braithwaite-Smith
2 min read

Well no, that's not strictly true, but let's be honest: it's far more interesting to reminisce about past motors than to sift through the humdrum of modern motor cars in search of the occasional gem. They're out there, of course, but the fear of depreciation coupled with the fact that we're all skint means that looking back is far more appealing.

So this little corner of XCAR will focus on the obscure, the mundane, and the interesting from days gone by. But not your usual misty-eyed perspective on the '50s and '60s, but a concentration on cars that aren't old enough to be considered classics, but aren't new enough to be considered...er...new.

It's the automotive twilight zone. Cars in this territory are well beyond the safety net of a manufacturer warranty, and repair bills can be astronomical. So, faced with a choice of repairing a car that's worth next to nothing, folk rush into buying something new, without taking into consideration factors such as depreciation and interest payments.

Their loss is our gain, as cars that were once out of reach are now tantalisingly available to all. Come on, surely a stable of 10 old cars is better than a single "meh" hatchback from the modern day? If you don't think this way then this dusty corner of XCAR isn't for you.

You expect stuff from the late '70s, '80s, '90s, and just a tiny bit from the noughties. After all, the best cars were built between the years of 1974 and 2001. More on this soon.

Our cars have a story to tell. A few thousand miles under their belt and one or two loving, or not so loving, owners. Cars have character and cars have soul. But it takes time for cars to show their true colours. Let's not be afraid of a few stone chips and a few car park dings delivered by some careless oaf in Tesco car park. Cars are to be driven and enjoyed.

So if you prefer the Citroen ZX to the DS3 or the VW Corrado to the new Scirocco, you've come to the right place. The unashamedly old school and unfashionable department of XCAR.