I’ve been helping to write this book entitled ‘365 cars you must drive before you die’ – and as I’ve been going along it’s struck me, on numerous occasions, how difficult it’s been deciding which cars to leave in, and which cars to leave out.
Just because the Ferrari 348 was a notoriously tricky so-and-so to drive on or anywhere near its limit, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t aspire to have a go in one before you meet your end. In fact, there’s an argument to be made for the 348 be right at the top of the list – because it’s a car that absolutely MUST be experienced, if only because it illustrates how bad things once were at Ferrari, and not so many years ago at that.
Which makes you realise: more often than not it’s the lemons you remember most clearly in this business. I can recall not only how dreadful the Mahindra Indian chief was to drive in minute detail, but also what the weather was like on the day in question – yet it was 20 years ago.
Same goes for the FSO Polonez I once wrestled to and from the East end of London – and the Alfa 155 V6 – both of which are cars I believe should be right up there in the list because they are so astonishingly different from, and so ludicrously inferior to, most other stuff we get to drive.
The publishers don’t entirely agree with me, of course, and as a result the book is full of E-Types, Testarossas and DB4 Zagatos. Which is fair enough, all things considered. But there is one car in the book that I really do still ache to drive, and that’s the Dauer 962. And I guess in the end that’s what the book is all about; making you dream, allowing you to wonder what driving the world’s most memorable cars might actually be like.
So go on then, don’t give me 365 cars, we’ll be here all year otherwise. But how about, say, the 10 cars you’d most like to drive before you-know-what?