In the 16 July issue of Autocar (all good newsagents, etc) some of our staff and contributors outlined how they’d spend £56,650 – the same money as buys a brand new BMW M4 – if they had to spend it on something other than a BMW M4.
Our writers’ choices included a Jaguar F-type coupé, a BMW M5 and Lotus 2-eleven, a Ferrari 550 and a motorcycle and so on. Good calls all.
I was not asked to suggest how I’d spend the equivalent. Partly that’s because, in my role as road test Stabskapitänleutnant, I had to write pithy verdicts on everyone else’s choices.
But mostly it was because I would have chosen a dozen or so old sheds and snotboxes and nobody in the office wanted to hear about them.
Nor do you, probably, but I’m going to tell you anyway. In no particular order, then:
1) A BMW R100 RS, lightly fettled, at around £3000.
2) A Datsun 240Z, in tidy condition at £12,000. I’d use this a lot.
3) A tidy two-stroke kart for messing around on, at £1200. I’ve already got a trailer.
4) A Volvo XC90 to tow said trailer. Around £4500 will do it and I suspect it would get used all the time.
5) A Honda CG125 plus some parts, and a lot of time to make it look like a classic pared-down scrambler. Call it a £1200 project.
6) A mid-80s Mercedes-Benz SL for when the sun is out or there’s a posh do; £10,000.
7) I’d quite like an ex-army Land Rover Defender, plus I’d spend a few quid on some interior mats and yellowy-sandy-coloured paint. Call it £2935.
8) I know I like the idea of a big American coupe with a vast V8 for the occasional cruise. I also know that I know nothing about the Dodge Polara. But given it has a 5.7-litre V8, two doors, extreme proportions and could arrive here – according to the adverts – for around £8000, I’m game for finding out.
9) I know rather more about Caterham Sevens, because I owned one. I’d like another, and an ex-Academy car for road use, hillclimbs or racing. Around £9500 would do it.
10) I regret selling the Caterham almost as much as I regret selling my Ducati 748. It was a lot better than I was at riding it, and better looking to my eyes than any other modern motorbike. Some £2900 would get me another to look at and be in awe of.
That’s me done, then, at £55,235 precisely. That leaves me a little left over for some further fettling and maybe even some insurance.