The Death Of The Mighty Uno
When I bought the 1994 Fiat Uno as a first ever car around a year and a half ago, I didn’t really expect it to last for a year.
As it turned out, the car never let me down! It still started first time every time, and ran well. Handling was surprisingly good – it went exactly where you pointed it, and having hardly any mechanical grip taught me how to drive smoothly and keep the momentum going to make progress with a car that made maybe 45hp back when it was new. Pushing past those limits it was very predictable (and drifted quite nicely!), and much as I tried to hate it at first, it was quite a pleasure to drive!
So despite me thraping it around, it took it all and actually seemed to get faster to suit the way I thrashed it with a metaphorical stick.
Sadly, just as we went into Winter, it started blowing out it’s coolant. Smelling the coolant made it almost certain that the head gasket was blowing, and combine with rusty sills and unrepairable rear suspension, there was no point spending cash on what was about to become a money pit.
Although it still ran perfectly, it wasn’t going to get any better – so I started looking around for new cars – aiming to pay £300-£500 for some shitter with long tax and MOT. Basically, the bike is my performance/fun vehicle – the car needs to get me to Aldi and fit the shopping in the boot, and be capable of long motorway journeys off to weird and wonderful places to shack up and shag.
How crap is buying a new car? I mean, it’s probably ok if you have a big budget, but to try and find something that’s cheap and runs is a nightmare.
Everyone lies. Someone once made the very good point that “Nobody ever sells a car because it’s perfect”. Most people sell them because they want it off their hands before they have to pay huge bills for it.
So my main concern was that it DID work, and that the even bigger expense of insurance was affordable!
And insurance makes no sense! A Fiat Bravo crapper can cost twice the insurance of a much newer, bigger engined Ford Focus?!
As it happened, my sister was selling her Honda Civic Sport – so a few checks online showed that this VTEC ‘sports’ was still cheaper than either of the two mentioned before! WTF?
And so that’s what I’ve done!
Expecting another old shitter of a car, I’ve actually now ended up with a car I actually quite like the look of, has ‘Sports’ written on the back (and it wasn’t done in permanent marker by me), and might even handle quite well!
And of course it’s a known quantity and not being sold because it’s about to blow up!
So R.I.P. Fiat Uno – I did a quick search for local scrapyards and was going to get some quotes, and came across: http://www.cartakeback.com
They gave a list of what local scrapyards will offer for your scrap car, or a price that they’ll come and collect it off you for £140 in my case, and there was no hassle or anything. I put my request in online, they called me back confirming details and arranging the pick-up, and then I came back to find the cash pushed through my door and the car gone! Excellent service and highly recommended!
Now, should I factor in a drive to the Nurburgring this Summer…??