R9UKE's French Car Blog...

Tell us your ongoing tales and experiences with your French car here. Post pictures of your car here as well.

Moderators: RichardW, myglaren

Citroenmad
Posts: 8110
Joined: 04 Dec 2008, 23:08
x 28

Re: R9UKE's French Car Blog...

Post by Citroenmad »

R9UKE wrote: How's life with a petrol V6, Chris? There's nothing better than starting it up on a freezing cold morning.... it's winter soon, you bought one at the right time!
Yes, very good! :-D I do really like the engine, very refined and relaxed most of the time but when you want to get going, it really does! 8-) :twisted:

I look forward to your update :-D

R9UKE
Posts: 1070
Joined: 21 Mar 2010, 22:18

Re: R9UKE's French Car Blog...

Post by R9UKE »

OK it's been quite a while... It's raining outside and I've just made the most awesome cappuccino - time for an update!

The big pillar in my lack of updates was my month long trip to the USA. Now, I realise that this is a French car forum, but I'm about to go on a bit of an American themed rant, and I should warn you that this post will be very image heavy!

So I left for America mid July, my aunt and uncle live there and we had a mega month of trips planned. However the most exciting thing for me was the cars... obviously :) I was warned that due to increased gas prices, the Americans were beginning to downsize and not to expect Ford Excursions everywhere. Yes, I was expecting the hum of Prius and Civic Hybrids but thankfully, the Americans aren't so willing to change! I was picked up from the airport by my aunt's new Mom Car. A 2012 Honda Odyssey, which I had the pleasure of driving for the duration. That sounds sarcastic but seriously, this car made me rethink my Jap Scrap theory! It was fitted with the smallest engine available. A 3.5 V6 Petrol :lol: :lol:

Image

The thing that mad me laugh most about this car was the fact that it was fitted with an ECO indicator. A little green light that would come on when you're driving efficiently. It only ever came on when going downhill or slowing for traffic lights. 21 MPG average, but that's not a problem where $60 fills the thing. My uncle also picked up a new Honda on the same day. A Civic Sedan which was so unremarkable that I didn't even manage a picture. This car was even more into it's eco claims... stickers everywhere and a dash that goes from green to blue when the foot is put down. It was averaging 33 MPG which quite frankly is pathetic for a car that boasts about it's emissions, but it's excellent by American standards!

This was my aunt's friend's car. A Ford Expedition. 5.4 V8

Image

You soon realise that the Americans are still as in to their SUVs as ever, however the modern ones aren't as completely ridiculously huge as the like of the Chevy Suburbans and GMC Yukons.

Image

Image

There's been an influx of what they call "Small SUVs", which are about the same size as our full blown Chelsea Tractors. My favourite were these Lincolns which were pretty popular. They have a 3.5 V6 and look suitably American. They're only a dressed up Ford Escape underneath though.

Image

Image

I was pretty surprised to see this. Something that never made it to the UK, I wasn't aware that it made it to production at all. The 94x

Image

Moving onto the more everyday stuff, I give you the Ford Mondeo of America.... the Buick LeSabre. Despite being rubbish in almost every way, they're everywhere. 3.8 V6 in these.

Image

These Saturns are also a common sight. GM made rubbish, they've also got a reputation for being really underpowered too... they're ONLY a 1.9!!

Image

Ford's design language in the US is very different from here. The overstyled Kinetic language they have going here gives way to straight lines, chrome and a much cleaner look overall I think. This is the Taurus.

Image

Late 80s/90s chod was also nice and common. Stuff like this Buick Century (A V6 of course) and nice big Lincoln Town Cars

Image

Image

Speaking of Town Cars, we happen to come across a mini car show happening where this absolutely stunning early 80s example was on display. check out the seats!

Image

Image

Image

Back in the real world and my favourite of them all is, for me, the epitome of American-ness. The Buick Roadmaster!! Powered by nothing less than a ridiculously slow 5.7 V8!

Image

Image

These Dodge Intrepids are intriguingly crap. I reckon I'd have one of these as a first American everyday car. 3.3 V6

Image

Now for you Vel Satis haters - Don't ever tell me that the car is ugly. Set your eyes on this monstrosity. The Pontiac Aztek. Pontiac ceased production shortly after. I wonder why.

Image

Image

Back to the Japanese. It seems they reserve their injections of style and character for the States. As a rule I HATE all Japanese cars here. Over there it's very different.... maybe it's the V6s :-D

Image

My cousin and I visited a scrap yard. A mass of dead American stuff. I took far too many pictures to clog this forum up with but for me, this was star of the show. A 6.2 V8 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham.

Image

Image

Image

Check out the reg on this Mustang

Image

Image

The holiday drew to a close with a visit to the drive in movies and I bought my last 12 box of donuts from the Dunkin Donuts drive through :(

Image

Image

I would move there in a heartbeat. In a nation where motorists are seen as the worst enemies and gradually being priced off the road, it's nice to know that there's a petrol powered haven on the other side of the Atlantic :-D

But life must go on, and the dull thoughts of returning to the UK were pretty much quashed by the excitement of seeing, feeling and being with French cars again!! I couldn't wait to get going again, so bought a Peugeot 607.

2.2 HDi (diesel, yuck) S Auto with 171k miles on it.

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

The amount of wear on the car surprised me - because there wasn't any!! The interior of the car looked like new, and despite the usual French electrical carry on, it drove like new too. One owner from new who had obviously cared for the car. I should have been really impressed by the car, but I was left somewhat underwhelmed. The car just doesn't feel as special as it should. There's not enough to differentiate it from the 406. The ride is average, the seats are comfortable and everything was just OK. Needless to say it's found a new owner already. I'll get a V6 one day and maybe it can repair the damage.

Moving on to another bout of averageness. A 1998 Renault Laguna 2.0 RT Sport. Why? 4 months tax and MOT, 106k miles and it cost me £230. It can be a backup until then, followed by a breaker, which should see profit.

Image

The third Frenchy was also bought as a breaker, but as you've probably seen in another thread, I'm having trouble bringing myself to it, as it just seems too good and could easily provide a few more years service with a little TLC

Image

Image

Image

Only a few days ago I mustered up the courage to knock on a door to ask about a car in the driveway. It paid off, as I'm now awaiting the go ahead to collect this beauty :)

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

The car was taken off the road in 2006 after the heater matrix failed. It has sat since, however he tells me that he starts it up regularly and moves it around. It's a 1989 2.0 GTS model. No electric seats or voice synthesizer but it'll be nice to experience a Renault 25 finally! I'm taking it straight to my mechanic who will sort the matrix and have it MOT ready!

So what about the current fleet? Well after a month of sitting I was expecting a few issues. The 5 door Meg presented the biggest one, refusing to start

Image

The battery had just become completely knackered. I got it MOTd a week later and it's now enjoying life as my mum's daily... we sold her beige one in favour of this much more special Meg :)

Image

The Avantime is due a service. My 3 door Meg really needs to have the quarter panel repaired, I feel guilty every time I look at it and would love to be driving it every day again. The Laguna V6 is enjoying retired life sitting alongside the faithful old Volvo. The auto box stricken Clio was treated to a set of Baccara alloy wheels off my friend's car which is being scrapped. Looks much more presentable... shame it can't leave the yard to show off it's new look on the roads!

Image

That's all folks. I'll try to keep on top of this. I have a feeling a lot will be changing over the next few weeks :)

User avatar
Xantianut
Posts: 729
Joined: 07 Aug 2012, 19:50
x 52

Re: R9UKE's French Car Blog...

Post by Xantianut »

Ay up!

Love the Caddy. Now to me they are a Yank with real style. I see a Caddy similar to that one regularly in Wolves, a sort or ice blue colour.

KP
Posts: 3981
Joined: 10 Jul 2006, 12:11
x 7

Re: R9UKE's French Car Blog...

Post by KP »

That's a good write up Luke :)

No Chevy Astros zipping about over there hey ;)

User avatar
myglaren
Forum Admin Team
Posts: 19817
Joined: 02 Mar 2008, 14:30
x 1521

Re: R9UKE's French Car Blog...

Post by myglaren »

Excellent report from across the water Luke.

Those American things are spectacularly ugly - there's one over the road from me but she has improved the looks a bit, reversed it into a tree by the looks of things.

The older Yank Tanks I could live with (but not afford) the Cadillac Fleetwood is superb.

bxzx16v
Posts: 1701
Joined: 29 May 2011, 22:11
x 18

Re: R9UKE's French Car Blog...

Post by bxzx16v »

A great selection of pics Luke , I do like that R25 .

Mark

addo
Sara Watson's Stalker
Posts: 7098
Joined: 19 Aug 2008, 12:38
x 4

Post by addo »

Luke, did you spend the whole time in/around MA?

R9UKE
Posts: 1070
Joined: 21 Mar 2010, 22:18

Re: R9UKE's French Car Blog...

Post by R9UKE »

Thanks for the comments guys :)

No we were all over the show. Up in New York for a weekend, stayed in Connecticut and then Maine for a few days. Camping in New Hampshire as well which was pretty fun. Mini tour of the upper East Coast!

User avatar
CitroJim
A very naughty boy
Posts: 44009
Joined: 30 Apr 2005, 23:33
x 1779

Re: R9UKE's French Car Blog...

Post by CitroJim »

Luke, excellent and a very interesting blog entry indeed...

I see the Yanks still hold the world number one spot for producing some of the most hideous cars on this planet :twisted: :lol:

As ever was. I'm reading Andre Citroen's biography at the moment and he met Henry Ford early in his career and the two did not see eye to eye at all. Now if old Henry had only listened to, and took a bit of direction from Andre we might have been spared a lot of what followed.

Citroenmad
Posts: 8110
Joined: 04 Dec 2008, 23:08
x 28

Re: R9UKE's French Car Blog...

Post by Citroenmad »

An excellent update Luke :-D

That is quite some holiday, I would love to spend a month in the US. I quite like that Lincoln 4x4 too and the big brown Cadi in the scrapyard is excellent, a real American tank. Is that the same as JM had on the Topgear visit? Hmm and those donuts look tasty :P

I like the 607 as a car but that one of yours might have been a bit too basic to do the car justice. Still, you have owned one which is more than I have. I think its about time I got through a few more cars, things which I would like to own before they just about vanish from the roads.

You have still not decided what to do with that C5 then? Your right, there is loads of life left in that and the problem it has is probably a common one which will be fairly easily fixed.

Your latest 25 looks good, that is very basic though! A good clean, blacking of the trims and a set of period Renault alloys will set that off a treat. I always prefer the earlier 25 to that later one.

Your 5 door Megane suits those wheels much better than its originals. It is also the correct colour for a MeganeII 8-) A very fetching car, especially with its cream leather interior. Whehn do you plan on getting your 3 door repaired?

What is your current daily driver at the moment then? Is your Avantime getting much use?

I went to see someone who has, among other things, an Avantime. It is the same colour as yours, is a V6 but with cream leather. What a stunning car they are, even more appealing after having a good close up look at one. That is a car Im going to have to try and own sometime, a very special thing.

R9UKE
Posts: 1070
Joined: 21 Mar 2010, 22:18

Re: R9UKE's French Car Blog...

Post by R9UKE »

Thanks chaps.

Yes Chris, the C5 will more than likely be broken. I won't sell it to someone with the anti-pollution carry on, can't be bothered MOTing it and to be honest, given what I paid for the car there is probably more profit in parts. It is a shame though.... if there was someone that could be bothered with it, it has many years service left I'm sure.

The 25 is very basic indeed. I've already been offered upgraded wheels etc. I'm not going down that road though, base model charm will be retained as I know I'll have a V6 Injection some day when one comes along.

My daily for the past week has been a Chrysler Neon (another update required). It's fantastically American and pretty much just a shrunken Voyager. It's as thirsty as the Avantime though. It will be in service for another week or so and then it'll change again! I really want to get a Vel Satis as a daily for the winter, as I doubt I'll be bothered to repair the Meg before then :(

The Avantime comes out on sunny days, or at least once a week for a quick trip. I've got to the point where I've had to designate Sunday afternoon to starting everything up and taking them for a spin around the country roads - does cars no good to be sitting up and unmoved! I learned the other day that my Avi is one of only seven in the UK with the Blue Exception Pack interior, and the ONLY one with the "pre-telephone equipment" (mobile phone aerial and wiring built in) in the UK. So a very special car which truly deserves to be cherished. Now is the time to buy one Chris, values are already on the rise.

Citroenmad
Posts: 8110
Joined: 04 Dec 2008, 23:08
x 28

Re: R9UKE's French Car Blog...

Post by Citroenmad »

A Chrysler Neon, you need to get rid of that sharpish! :vomit1: :lol: Someone was telling me the other day how bad Voyagers are, so much flex, not in the slightest bit rigid. A PT Cruiser would maybe be a bit more passable if you need a Yank tank :lol:

A Vel Satis sounds like a cracking idea for a winter daily, do it! What engine would you opt for? 3.5 V6 probably?

Oh, is the 3.0V6 in the Laguna and Avantime connected to the PSA unit at all?

Ah, yes, I know what you mean about leaving cars to stand. However given them too short a run or tick over period and you can risk doing more harm than good. I try to get our standing cars out every few weeks, it does take an afternoon and them some, by the time ive checked all the tyre pressures, oil levels, coolant etc, then to drive them for about half an hour. Its a full time job :lol:

User avatar
DickieG
Monaco's youngest playboy
Posts: 4896
Joined: 25 Nov 2006, 10:15
x 15

Re: R9UKE's French Car Blog...

Post by DickieG »

This Vel Satis looks like one to tempt you Luke, loaded with toys and 3.0 V6 without the usual thirst.

Citroenmad
Posts: 8110
Joined: 04 Dec 2008, 23:08
x 28

Re: R9UKE's French Car Blog...

Post by Citroenmad »

DickieG wrote:This Vel Satis looks like one to tempt you Luke, loaded with toys and 3.0 V6 without the usual thirst.
Now that is nice! Im suprised at how cheap that is :shock: So much car for little money, even if it only worked a few times, you could still sit in it :lol:

R9UKE
Posts: 1070
Joined: 21 Mar 2010, 22:18

Re: R9UKE's French Car Blog...

Post by R9UKE »

That did catch my eye Dickie! Though a check shows it's had 7 keepers with the last only acquiring it in April. A 3.0 dV6 being passed around like that probably hints at one of the two intermittent unsolvable faults they suffer from. That reg is a great bonus though... if it were closer or open to offers I'd probably be a lot more tempted!

Chris, the Neon is a brilliant car - much better than a C1 anyway :P ! I love driving it, it's just my cup of tea. Big squishy leather seats, a brilliant auto box and those pointless bonging noises an American car always makes on start up. I'm actually very, very tempted to keep it! Another massively underrated car that has properly surprised me.

Yep, the V6 in my Renaults is exactly the same as the Citroen C5 / Peugeot 407 V6. One of my favourite engines of all time :)

I'd like a 2.0T Auto Vel Satis. But to be honest, I'd consider anything with an auto box, even a 2.2 dCi :? - It'd have to be cheap though!