Dad mobiles - SLO76
Lockdown boredom challenge.

I often look back at the cars my dad bought and thought about what I would’ve had myself instead at the time for similar money.

Him - 1976 P Renault 16 TX

Me - 1976 P Vauxhall Cavalier 2.0 GL

Him - 1982 X Volvo 340 1.4 GL 5dr

Me - 1982 X Vauxhall Astra 1.3 GL

Him - 1987 D Volvo 340 1.7 GL 4dr

Me - 1987 D Rover 213S

Him - 1986 C Saab 900T16 4dr

Me - 1986 C Saab 900T16 4dr loves that car.

Him - 1989 G Volvo 240 GLT

Me - nAh, kept the Saab

Him - 1990 G Volvo 440 Turbo

Me - 1990 G Vauxhall Cavalier SRI 130 (£2k cheaper and quicker)

Him - 1991 H Audi 80 16v Sport

Me - 1991 H Audi 80 16v Sport (nice thing that he weirdly never liked)

Him - 1993 K Honda Civic VTi 4dr

Me - nah, kept the Audi

Him - 1994 M Mercedes C180 Classic

Me - Nah, kept the Audi

Him - 1995 N Mercedes C180 Elegance Auto

Me - 1995 N Audi A4 1.9 TDi

Him 2009 59 Honda Jazz 1.2S

Me 2009 59 Ford Fiesta 1.25 Zetec 5dr

We shared the same oil for blood but I would never have wasted the money he did on cars and I’m a bit more mainstream than he was when it comes to my choices. That said he did make some strange choices. I got the first 340 which was bearable in 1982 but the second one in 87 was horrid and hugely dated.

The 240 in 1989 was an antique and the wind noise was biblical above 60mph, the Saab before it was a vastly better car while the 440 Turbo that replaced it was nice enough it was hugely overpriced compared to better built rivals.

The Audi 80 Spott was nice but the Honda Civic VTi was like a plastic car, it didn’t even feel anything like as quick as it was supposed to be and was too low for comfort.

The two Mercs served him well but he made a mistake with the first one by forgetting to opt for the auto as the manual box was horrid and mismatched with the foot operated parking brake. The later auto lasted him 13yrs until it was time for a wrinkly mobile, a Honda Jazz.

Sheer boredom but can anyone else do better than their old man when it comes to picking cars?

Dad mobiles - maxime

My dad never had a driving licence but he had an Austin Cambridge for about 10 years.

Dad mobiles - nellyjak

My dad never had a driving licence but he had an Austin Cambridge for about 10 years.

Neither did mine...but he didn't need to given how the licencing laws were back then...he'd been a motorbiker previously (test passed) so he could just jump into a car and drive quite legally. His first car was a black (naturally) 1947 Austin 10.! first.?..a 1961 Mini in Tartan Red.!!!

..what else, in the1960's.!!

Dad's best car was a two tone black/blue Ford Zodiac..beatiful car in it's day

Edited by nellyjak on 17/04/2020 at 18:56

Dad mobiles - Ethan Edwards

My dad never had a driving licence but he had an Austin Cambridge for about 10 years.

Neither did mine...

Dad's best car was a two tone black/blue Ford Zodiac..beatiful car in it's day

Mine learnt to drive on a Carden Lloyd universal carrier Bren gun carrier. But he did get a licence. Maddest driver ever. He once drove for miles inches behind a van. My mother went mental at him.. I miss them both.

Dad mobiles - Big John

My late dad ran bangers for years which at least taught me how to fix cars from an early age. I was changing engines/ clutches etc from around 13 years old. I remember a 3 dr mkII Cortina he had became so "structurally challenged" that you had to shut the doors quickly to stop the pop riveted sills bending.

I think this experience made me do the opposite - When first working and driving I learnt how to weld and how to properly repair cars - this turned into me restoring many cars over the years - including sorting his cars out!

Fast forward to 2001 when I'd negotiated a storming deal on a new Skoda Octavia (comparing internet sites, backwards and forward to the dealers etc) and he was looking for a used Volvo at the same time - in the end he realised how good a deal I had got. Walked back into the same Skoda dealer with my dad and went to the same sales person (who wilted!) and mentioned the model he wanted - he just said go on then tell me how much you are paying! This meant that mr bigjohn junior and senior picked up new Octavias on the 1st March 2001 complete with consecutive registration numbers - Talk about father/son car convergence!

Infact it would have been his birthday today - Happy Birthday Dad!

Edited by Big John on 17/04/2020 at 19:29

Dad mobiles - Dag Hammar

Big John, what a great story and thank you for sharing it with us.

Dad mobiles - Engineer Andy

My Dad had Ford Escorts (and mainly low to medium spec ones) as company cars through from the 1970s to when he took early retirement in the mid 90s.

Not exactly great cars, especially the early 80s one that had adodgy automatic choke and the crud early 90s one with the horrid 1.4 lean burn engine. I certainly never like the vinyl seats in the 1970s ones - we always had to put towels down in the summer to stop getting burned legs, as well as slipping around!

His two Fiesta 1.25s since then were FAR better, great handling, nippy and, for their size, reasonably spacious. A shame his current one from 2009 doesn't have A/C (or much else - it was the bargain basement model flogged cheap before the new model arrived - he got it for about £6.5k).

I owned my only two cars, a 96 Micra 1.0 S and my current car, a 2005-build Mazda3 1.6 petrol TS2 saloon during his 'Fiesta' period. He always goes Ford - me, Japanese. I might change for Korean next time though - not sure if he'll get another car, even if his one is getting on a bit now. If he does, it'll be his last before giving up driving.

Dad mobiles - Big John

the crud early 90s one with the horrid 1.4 lean burn engine. I certainly never like the vinyl seats in the 1970s ones - we always had to put towels down in the summer to stop getting burned legs, as well as slipping around!

Oh - I had a couple of the cvh Escorts as a compnay cars - horrible things. I thought the Astra of the day was way better.

and indeed 1960/70's Vinyl seats were something special - roasted your behind/legs in the summer and froze them in the winter.

Dad mobiles - groaver

Morris 1100

Ford Escort 1100 L Mk1 in beige

Simca 1300 S

Chrysler Sunbeam 1300 LS

My dad was never into cars.

Dad mobiles - 72 dudes

My dad was a Commercial Traveller in soft furnishings, would probably be called a Regional Sales Manager these days.

At my birth in 1962 and going forward

Ford Consul Deluxe 1.7. I used to travel on the front central armrest, different times!

Ford Corsair 1.5

Ford Corsair V4 1.7

Renault 16 TL (his favourite, would clock 100 on the M62 heading towards Manchester)

Ford Cortina 1600 XL MK111

Morris Marina Super 1.8 (we all hated that one).

Then he retired in 1980.

VW Derby GLS; Ford Orion GL; Nissan Sunny GS; Citroen ZX 1.4 and finally a Peugeot 206 1.1 Entice until he gave up driving in 2009, aged 98.

Edited by 72 dudes on 17/04/2020 at 23:50

Dad mobiles - dan86

Dont remember many of my days cars up until the 90s as I didn't start school until 1991. But my favourite car he had when I was young was a F reg Austin montego it was a 2 litre manual estate. I loved that's car it took us on family holidays ect that's probably why such fond memories he replaced it in 1996 with over 200k on the clock with a MK1 fiat punto and I remember thinking what a down grade.

Dad mobiles - Avant

We haven't had mum-mobiles yet....

My father was a naval officer; so was my mother (he a regular for 36 years, she a wartime Wren officer): they met during WW2 in Orkney. He was born in 1906, she in 1917, so I can go back further than some of you.

He told me his first car was a GN cyclecar; then several Fords in the 1930s. After the war he got a pre-war Wolseley while putting his name down on the long waiting list for an Austin. The A40 Devon came through in 1951: happy childhood memories, before safety was invented, of standing on the front seat with my head through the suroof, even with the car in motion. It was a good car, and distinguished from the Ford that he might have had by its 4-speed gearbox, independent front suspension, electric windscreen wipers and an ability to start in the morning.

He used to buy new and keep for some time. The A40 was followed by an A55 Farina, then an MG 1100 (which he generously gave to me for my 21st birthday in 1969 when it was 3 years old). Then an Austin 1300GT and finally, loyally supporting his local garage which had given up BL, a Chrysler Avenger. Once a Hillman always a Hillman - this was typically underpowered and stodgy. But he was in his seventies by then and at least its boot swallowed both his bag of golf clubs and the trolley.

My mum's first car, just after the war, was a pre-war Fiat 500, which she loved, then a 1947 Hillman Minx, which she didn't. To save money she then had a 3-wheel AC Petite (as awful as it sounds), then a Vespa scooter (which worked well and never went wrong).

After that, my grandmother subbed her and she got a Morris 1100, on which she taught me to drive (my father, having been rescued from HMS Courageous in 1939, was less worried than she thought he ought to be if I did somethng wrong).

Then she had a Triumph 1300 (supremely comfortable), an Allegro (less so) and several Fiestas in succession, which she was very happy with until giving up driving. She never quite got over her surprise at how much the Fiestas cost after 1970s inflation, remembering that in her 1930s youth the equivalent small Ford (the 8) cost £100.

Edited by Avant on 18/04/2020 at 15:42

Dad mobiles - Engineer Andy

My mum-mobiles are whatever the dad-mobiles are, apart from her first car (she learned to drive before my dad), which was a late 60s/early 70s Vauxhall Viva. When they got married and my dad managed to get promotion and a company car, it was sold, along with mats covering a gaping hole in the floor!

Dad mobiles - Theophilus

A Raleigh "sit up & beg" bicycle with a small swivelling seat on the crossbar for me to perch on ... no cars in our family until my second-hand Fiat 127 in 1974. As a family we cycled everywhere.

Dad mobiles - Bromptonaut

My Father (b1924) learned to drive just after the end of the war and cut his teeth on his Father's Citroen TA. I think his Mother could drive but never did. After his Father died, and for the early years of his married life from 51 on, he used the bus. Family legend has it he saw an Austin A30 from the bus and gave up cigs to buy one. That was followed by an A35 and (IIRC) a Somerset.

Shortly after I came on the scene in late 1959 he and three colleagues set up in partnership to import and distribute dyes and chemicals for the textile industry produced by the French company Francolor. The main office was in Lancashire but he headed up the operation in Leeds.

'Firms cars' were part of the deal and renewed annually in the spring. Vauxhall Victor Estates were appropriate to his role (his boss had Crestas). Two FA series were followed by FB and then FC101 variants before a Simca 1500 GLS estate followed in 1966. Foreign cars were quite unusual in UK at time - apart from VW and perhaps Renault. The Simca was an odd beast with a gearbox with a floor change that had first/second to the right, a cheapskate conversion from column change on lower trimmed versions.

That saw the end of annual replacements and the Simca stayed until 1969 when it was beginning to fall apart. Another Victor Estate, this time a 2000cc FD series followed and lasted until 1971 when it was changed for a Hillman Hunter 1725GLS written off in a wrong side of road crash in France in spring 1973. The final three or four company cars until he retired were all Ford Granadas in GXL or Ghia trim.

His own purchases in the subsequent 16years were Honda - one Civic followed by three or four Accords. The last was bought only a few months before he died and was returned to the dealer for cash by his estate. If it had been the Civic we all told him to get, as by this stage he was worrying about his health, Mum could have driven it but the Accord was just too bigger barge for her sub 5 foot frame.

Mum spent periods on my pre-school life learning to drive with fallow after failed tests but finally passed in 1966 just short of 40. She ran a pair of Minis followed by a Renault 5 or three and finally Clios * 2 before giving up driving around the time of her 80th. While living in Leeds she was OK on her routines, including Scarborough and the Lakes, but never took happily to the 3 hours or so on the M1 it took getting to us. She drove very little after moving nearer to my sister and I in the midlands; basic issue was lack of confidence.


Value my car