We’ve owned some atrocious old shit. Really, we have. In fact, according to many, by having a Proton and a Rover 800 on the current fleet, many would argue we still do. But do you know what? It doesn’t matter. If someone scoffs as we roll by in our mighty Proton, we just scoff and carry on with our day. And if you own a car that’s not adored by the masses, you should too. Because other people’s opinions don’t matter. Your car. Your rules. Nobody else should come into it.
There used to be a time when we were younger in which we would care. And as we look back, with an older, greyer, apparently wiser head on our shoulders, we can’t help but think that such a mindset robbed us of potential experiences. And that’s a shame. Because of peer pressure from people we’ve now long since forgotten about, we stopped doing what we wanted to do. With the benefit of hindsight, we see now how daft that was.
Every day we do things because we want to, without considering the reactions or opinions of others. It might be evidenced in the clothes we buy or the food we eat, or the places we go or the people we hang out with. We just crack on, without a care in the world. But with cars, we have it built into us what is good and what is bad. And we stick to that. Look at the man who buys a battered old C Class just because it’s a Mercedes-Benz, when in reality he could have bought a newer, safer and more reliable Focus. But the Focus isn’t cool. So he didn’t.
And that’s just looking at it from practical standpoint. Throw some passion and genuine vehicular interest in there and it gets worse. You get the man who drives a Golf but who would really love an old Beetle. You get the woman in the financed 500 who would actually rather have a Morris Minor because she likes them. But these people don’t buy those cars because they don’t want to be judged on them. Silly.
Years ago our Dad said something to us. He said “driving is a privilege, not a right”. And do you know what, he wasn’t wrong. It’s something we have to work at, something we have to earn. So, then, would we rob ourselves of the fullest driving experience. You wouldn’t get a degree then go and work in a chip shop, would you?
The world of cars is vast, it’s diverse, it’s interesting and exciting. There is a vehicle for every occasion. Okay, some are worse than others, but even the bad ones can have a certain charm. If you treat your car as something to be enjoyed rather than just used, it will open up experiences and fun.
Fundamentally though, YOU are driving it. YOU are paying for it. Who gives a hoot if the guys at work look down at it, who cares if it’s a bit rough around the edges? A car is something to be experienced, to bond with, not just bought used and sold like a washing machine.
And then there’s the whole badge thing. Urgh, we hate this. Who cares who made it? Is it interesting, is it fun to drive, does it suit your needs? Yes? Then it doesn’t matter if it’s a Porsche or a Proton. Take the Perodua Kelisa, a car widely overlooked because it’s a Perodua. Little do the masses know, it’s an absolute riot to drive. Pure, simple, wheel at each corner, fun. It’s like a go-cart with a roof. But it’s not a BMW, so it gets ignored.
If you like it, if it interests you and if it does everything you need of it, that’s all that matters. As we said, the world of cars is vast and diverse, and as such, you’re doing it a disservice to just follow the heard. Crucially though, you’re doing yourself a disservice. You’re robbing yourself of fun experiences, and you don’t want to do that.