Car Choice: A very lucky boy with £25,000 to spend on a toy


Charlie Cooke is thinking of investing in a weekend toy, and has a budget of around £25,000. He really fancies something with two seats and a lot of grip – maybe a Porsche Cayman – though he is open to any ideas. He would prefer a coupé rather than a convertible as he feels that he would like something which he can enjoy all year round. This would make a great Christmas present, although Charlie knows that he will have to wait until the New Year to realise his dream.

A car for the head

Actually, what we have here is two cars for the heart, really. There is certainly no shortage of options, especially with such a generous budget. However, a high performance coupé which is both rare and great value, is the Vauxhall Monaro. Built in Australia and sold in selected Vauxhall dealerships, it may seem ridiculous with its huge V8 engine. Some would regard it as a mad, modern day Ford Capri, which handles in a reassuringly old-fashioned manner. At the heart of the Monaro's appeal has to be the fact that it costs sensible money to run. The servicing intervals are every 10,000 miles and will cost £136, rising to a maximum of £189 – and even the major 50,000 mile service is no more than £300. Last Christmas was the price low-point for Monaros, but the situation has certainly changed since then, as values have firmed up massively and it is now unrealistic to shop for early cars below £10,000. Realistically they are £11-£12,000, and a 2005 VXR is around £14,000 in modified form. Mileages are usually very low because few get used as everyday transport. I found a one-owner, full service history 2006 6.0 V8 VXR, with just 19,118 miles on the clock, at £16,450

A car for the heart

A Nissan 350Z, is a good, old-fashioned, aggressive, and slightly brutish car that in recent years you had to buy from TVR but it was not only cheaper but a million times more reliable than the TVR. With a 300bhp 3.5-litre V6 engine driving the rear wheels, and a six-speed manual gearbox, it's a very purposeful coupé that can his 60mph in seven seconds. That engine makes a great sound and is very flexible even at low speeds. It's not that practical of course, although the driver and front-seat passenger have plenty of head and leg space. The 350Z is well kitted out as standard, and features 18-inch alloy wheels, climate control, xenon headlamps, electric front windows, remote central locking, and a CD multichanger. Sat-nav was available from 2006. The optional GT pack adds electrically adjustable and heated leather seats, cruise control and an upgraded stereo. There is also a lot to like about the roadster. Without the lid, you get an aural assault from the V6 engine, which sings heartily as you wring out its 300bhp. For £16,000 you can get a 2006 example, with around 20,000 miles, with a full service history.

Looking to buy?

Please write to Car Choice, Features, Independent on Sunday, 2 Derry Street, London W8 5HF or email James Ruppert at carchoice@independent.co.uk, giving your age, address and phone number, details of the type of vehicle in which you are interested, and your budget.

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

SPONSORED FEATURES

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Recruitment Genius: Senior Environmental Adviser - Maternity Cover

    £37040 - £43600 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The UK's export credit agency a...

    Recruitment Genius: CBM & Lubrication Technician

    £25000 - £27500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company provides a compreh...

    Recruitment Genius: Care Worker - Residential Emergency Service

    £16800 - £19500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Would you like to join an organ...

    Recruitment Genius: Senior Landscaper

    £25000 - £28000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: In the last five years this com...

    Day In a Page

    The long walk west: they fled war in Syria, only to get held up in Hungary – now hundreds of refugees have set off on foot for Austria

    They fled war in Syria...

    ...only to get stuck and sidetracked in Hungary
    From The Prisoner to Mad Men, elaborate title sequences are one of the keys to a great TV series

    Title sequences: From The Prisoner to Mad Men

    Elaborate title sequences are one of the keys to a great TV series. But why does the art form have such a chequered history?
    Giorgio Armani Beauty's fabric-inspired foundations: Get back to basics this autumn

    Giorgio Armani Beauty's foundations

    Sumptuous fabrics meet luscious cosmetics for this elegant look
    From stowaways to Operation Stack: Life in a transcontinental lorry cab

    Life from the inside of a trucker's cab

    From stowaways to Operation Stack, it's a challenging time to be a trucker heading to and from the Continent
    Kelis interview: The songwriter and sauce-maker on cooking for Pharrell and crying over potatoes

    Kelis interview

    The singer and sauce-maker on cooking for Pharrell
    Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

    Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

    But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
    Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

    Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

    Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
    Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

    Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

    Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
    Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

    Britain's 24-hour culture

    With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
    Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

    The addictive nature of Diplomacy

    Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
    Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

    Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

    Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
    8 best children's clocks

    Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

    Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
    Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

    Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

    After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
    Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

    How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

    Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
    Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

    'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

    In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea