den: (revs)


Bugger the Veyron, I want a new E-Type.
den: (revs)
The last time I drove a Lexus hybrid I had to make a choice: own an astonishingly good car, or own a house. Sensible Den had the largest vote, and so I did not buy the Lexus. This made Geek Den, Greenie Den and Rev-Head Den unhappy. On the other hand, Afraid Of Living On The Streets Den was relieved.

I saw on Robert Llewellyn's twitter feed a mention of a new Lexus hybrid. I checked it out but the .au page was a bit light on info. The .co.uk site was much better. I wondered how much the CT200h would cost and rang the local Toyota dealer. We spoke for a while, and then he mentioned they had one in the yard. "Would you like a test drive?"

Silly question.

What an excellent car! Fast, comfy, quiet, and varying amounts of Extras depending on which model you buy. I drove the Sports F model today. I love how the instrument panel changed depending on whether you select Eco (dial shows Charge/Power/Eco) or Sports (dial showed revs). It was like driving a big, comfy high-tech armchair. Sound system was triffic. Just below the "gear stick" was a small joystick with buttons -- essentially a mouse to select and activate various icons on the pop-up LCD screen.

If I had the money, and they were actually on sale, I'd have one! I was offered AU$20k trade-in on the Prius, too. The CT200h goes on sale sometime this month. I need more info on the range -- there will be 4 models and I'd like to compare features.

And I was the first non-Toyota person in town to drive one.

Lexus CT200h

More Photos )
den: (revs)
Last night I'd just settled down to a Johnny Walker & Dry to watch a DVD, when there was a knock on the door. It was my mate David. "You want to go for a drive?" he asked. He only asks this when he has another car.

He won't tell me how, but he has Connections. Every time we Go For A Drive I ask the same question: "How is it you get these cars given to you, and how do I?" Last month he arrived in a brand new Mercedes C class diesel. AU$250,000, 2 tons in weight, growly. Went like the clappers and handled like a dream. It had everything you could possibly want in a car, and then it had extras. And extra extras.

Last night I opened the door and was surprised to see David there, grinning like a maniac. "Did you walk here?" I asked because I hadn't heard a car pull in.

"No. Want to go for a drive?"

Sitting in my driveway was a brand new Lexus GS450h hybrid. 0-100kph in under 6 seconds (I know, I tried it.) 47mpg (38mpUSg) Instead of a tacho it had a dial measuring output in kilowatts. I stamped my foot and the dial went to 250KW. That's about 300hp. The car had extras and extras on the extras. The satnav even had a button to turn off the voice. Separate A/C zones for driver and passengers. It ran on batteries up to 50kph before the motor kicked in, with a theoretical battery distance of 270km. Boy did it go! And the comfort, and handling... oh boy. And heaps of GEEK things! If I can't buy a Veyron I'll buy one of these instead, because it makes Rev-head Den, Geek Den and Conservationist Den happy. Broke Den wasn't too happy with the AU$130,000 price tag but the other three are telling him to Sit Down And Shut Up, but he is insistant.

Wow, what a car. My second choice after the Veyron, certainly.
den: (bloke genes)
Today was the Wellington Vintage Fair And Swapmeet. I had to attend, of course. Steam Engines! There was onlt one Stanley Steamer this year, but there were a lot more traction engines and a steam roller. The local vintage motor clubs had all their old stationary engines, pumps, and threshing machines out. One bloke had a 1930s kerosene motor running a 110VDC generator, which powered an antique blender he used to crush ice and sell to visitors.

Cars cars cars! MGs, Jaguars, Pontiacs, Chevorlets, Chryslers, Morrises, Fords, Holdens, Dodges, Mustangs, Mini Copers (new ones) Mini Coopers (real ones), Austins, even a Leyland P76. There were hundreds of old, oldish, and a bit old cars. Photos to come.

I am sunburned and happy.
den: (revs)
Looks like I'm about to buy a second-hand 2003 model Toyota Camry "Sportivo."

It's a white one!


oh, and it has a 3 litre V6, atuo transmission, and some other thingies. The dealer wanted to give me $2,000 for the old camry. I think I'll give that to Mum.



looks like it's time for a ROAD TRIP!

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