It’s April 26th, and I write this with a heavy heart. The Vectra is dead.
Not through neglect or damage, mind. More just a case of automotive old age. The old girl had clocked 179,500k so all in all, I can’t really complain. Still, it’s always sad to lose a loved one, so, goodbye old friend. Thanks for being reliable right up until the very end.
Exciting it isn’t, but dependable it is. As I type, the trusty Vectra has covered 174404 miles and it’s showing no signs of slowing down soon.
It’s been in the family since 2001, joining us after it had completed a couple of months as a manager’s car for Vauxhall’s Luton office. It was my parent’s daily steed for many years before being laid up on the drive for two years after having been superseded by an Insignia.
I’ve been driving it for the last five years, give or take a year here and there where it’s been back on the drive due to me having a company car or something. And throughout those five years it’s never once let me down. I’ve let the car down though, mostly by occasionally driving into things and once forgetting to put the oil cap back on, forcing the turbo to slurp up vaporised oil before trying to explode. Fun.
It’s a bit battered, it’s not fast, it’s not sexy and it still smells like dog. Despite the fact my dog went to pooch heaven some 7 years ago.
So, if it is all those things, why is it here? Well, this is the sensible end of the sub £2000 spectrum. It’s proof that old cars can be trusted, can be reliable and can also be run on next to nothing (it’s currently averaging 55.2mpg – not bad for an old Vauxhall). And it’s real proof, too. I’m currently racking up the best part of 500 miles a week in the old girl. It’s the embodiment of proving every cheap car stereotype wrong. Plus, it’s an estate so it comes in right handy for the tip run.