You’ve just moved from Melbourne to head the Auckland office and have bought a new VW Golf GTi? Yes! It’s a charcoal Golf with a 2-litre turbo engine, red tartan seats and a sports steering wheel. I chose it after reviewing all the European small cars on the market. I knew I wanted European and my decision was to be made on two criteria: looks, engine.
Who else is allowed to drive your car? My husband. He is very jealous of my car.
What was your first car? A charcoal Ford Festiva with red racing stripes. It was cool in the ‘90s.
Your dream car? It’s been a red Ferrari for as long as I can remember. It’s just an amazing looking and sounding car.
Favourite car colour? I like black tones or red, the sportier colours.
Who taught you to drive? My parents taught me around the back streets in country South Australia and then I had some great lessons with a driving instructor who called me Speedy, which probably tells you a lot about my driving style.
Do you prefer manual or automatic? Automatic is my preference in a city due to the stop-start issues in traffic; it’s just easier.
Most memorable road trip? From Los Angeles to Las Vegas via San Francisco, the Grand Canyon and Route 66. Amazing road trip, a good mix of small town USA, open roads and big cities.
What do you always have in your car? Sunglasses and my phone that controls my music. On longer drives I would also have a bottle of water and some snacks to keep me going.
If you could travel in any car, in any country with any celebrity? Ryan Gosling, a sporty convertible in his home country of Canada.
How often do you clean your car? Not that often. My local VW dealership offers a regular free clean service. That’s a great perk.
And what do you listen to in your car? I listen to Google Music through my phone which is synched up to the car system automatically, or Radio Hauraki in the mornings.
What’s a great day trip out of Auckland? Matakana. My husband and I love Brick Bay for lunch, wine and the sculpture walk. The markets are great. I can’t go past Morris and James and never go home empty-handed.
How does Auckland traffic compare with Melbourne’s? Auckland traffic congestion certainly has not stopped being the main topic of conversation in the past few years. In Melbourne I didn’t notice it as much because you tend to use trams and trains a lot more, as they are readily available and convenient. A couple can survive with one car. Melbourne is a big city with traffic congestion like any other. But it has a lot more road infrastructure so motorways move more freely and public transport, particularly trams, makes a huge difference.
Do you judge people by what they drive? I am quite a visual person so, yes. A car says a lot about your personality — just like what you wear.
What irritates you most about other drivers? Aggressive drivers irritate me, one thing I don’t miss about being in Australia. My other pet hate is drivers who don’t indicate.