June 12 Returning from Italy is always a drag. However, leaving behind a Lamborghini is even worse. Other supercars are available but I think I’ve found my automotive soulmate.
The Miura was the hook to being in Bologna but driving the Aventador and Huracan for the first time broke the spell of Mclaren which has been hanging over me for the last few weeks.
Now, you might think the 760bhp Aventador would seduce me but it was the considerably cheaper Huracan that proved the easier, more accessible supercar.
I’m hoping Car Couture can get one on test before the end of the year, so watch this space. For the next few days I’m in a Caterham 7 620S. More on that tomorrow…
Jeremy After 25 years of driving cars for a living, a milestone has been reached with the BMW 640d. A brief calculation suggests I’ve tested some 1200 new models and owned at least 30 – few of which have lasted longer than six months in the garage (2012 started with a 5 Series Touring, which morphed in to a Boxster, then a new style Beetle and finally became a 630d Coupe).
Apart from a Porsche 993 Targa in 1997 and a Caterham 7 in 2001, only the 630d has come close. So, as CarCouture waits on the seafront at Caen for the ferry home, the new 640d we have on test is going straight to the top of the pile – it’s one machine I don’t want to part with.
Why? Well, I thought my own 630d was one of the most competent, well-built and equipped cars I have ever driven. Sure, a 911 goes faster, a Caterham is more fun and a Ferrari turns heads but as a package, the 6 Series takes some beating.
Compared to the old 630d, the 640d feels very similar. The technology has advanced, with head up display, keyless entry and even more seat adjustment but otherwise, I wouldn’t say there is an awful lot of difference between them. And I loved the 630d – so the 640d is just that little bit better.
It’s a very grown up, sophisticated and stylish convertible that wants for little, apart from easier access to the rear seats and better rear view visibility. I still have the weekend to fall out of love with the BMW but it just isn’t going to happen….
Jeremy One fact about driving a Mini – you are always going to meet an enthusiast who just wants to talk. I’ve just filled up for a trip to Sussex tomorrow and a guy with a gleaming white, original Cooper cornered me at the fuel pumps. I thought ‘classic’ Mini fans loathed the current version but he proved me wrong.
Not only did he own the Cooper, he also had a John Cooper Works GP from 2006. And to prove it he fished out a photo from his wallet. My GP looked a whole heap better, with a much lower, squat stance and those red air intakes in the front sill. The latest GP is some 20mm lower at the front than a standard JCW version (and £6,000 dearer!).
The GP’s trademark, four-spoke alloys look sensational and wrapped in Kumho Ecsta tyres, I can’t imagine it ever losing grip. On the twisty lanes around Longleat, the handling is simply sensational – virtually on a par with a Caterham 7. The slightest adjustment on the steering wheel and the Mini responds without hesitation.
I’m even starting to believe I could cope with a GP as an everyday car! It’s a creeping, overwhelming fever that is only caught by those who drive it…