Cars

Renault 4 Savane

When I told a French friend that I was going back to England in the Renault, he assumed I meant that I would drive it to the local station, then catch a train. He was shocked when I told him that I was going to drive 600 miles up through France.

Mazda MX-5 – hearing noises from the deep

When the Mazda MX-5 returned to the road late last summer, a knocking sound was traced to the alternator’s rear bearing. Briefly running the engine without the belt attached seemed to confirm that because the noise disappeared. Genuine Mazda alternators are expensive and I was considering settling for a second-hand unit, but fortunately I noticed on one of my frequent visits to its website that MX-5 Parts was stocking a new aftermarket version at a far more palatable price. One of the many advantages of owning the popular Mazda is the parts back-up on offer, and the alternator arrived the day after I’d placed the order.

Ford Galaxie 500 Still cool after all these years

It’s hard to believe that this month (May) marks the 26th anniversary of my acquiring the Galaxie. It being a 1964 car means that I have been its custodian for more than half of its life. Bought from the original ‘little old lady’ in Redondo Beach, California for the princely sum of $850 - less than £500 - it arrived at Felixstowe on a sunny spring day in 1988. The first thing I did is what I always do - wound down all the windows to emphasise the coupe’s pillarless roofline.

Classic shapes reborn – Aston Martin DB6 and E-type

Following in the best coach-building tradition, Jaguar’s current XK is providing rich pickings for low- volume manufacturers. And the latest to jump on the bandwagon revives a famous name, as David Brown launches an eponymous firm with plans to build a luxury GT. The David Brown Speedback will be unveiled to the public in Monaco on 17 April. It is described by its maker as ‘completely original’ - despite the clear influence of the Aston Martin DB6 in its lines.

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