Me & My Car: Brian Kelly's BMW delivers the goods
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Brian Kelly Coast breakfast announcer and motorsport commentator.
What are you driving?
I drive a 1986 BMW 318i. It’s a manual with sunroof. Prior to me owning it, it had one lady owner who purchased it in Rotorua from new. It’s white. I bought it six years ago from a friend who had it sitting on his car yard in Tauranga. It was kind of love at first sight as it was in mint condition with a reconditioned motor. I have used the car to drive between Auckland and Tauranga on weekends. I don’t use it during the week as I live close to work.
Why this BMW?
I love driving the car. It handles the open roads so well, particularly driving over the Kaimai Ranges from the Waikato side. It’s a fun car with a strong engine.
Who else drives it?
The only other person allowed to drive it is my wife. Like me, she loves the manual five-speed gear box.
How often do you clean it?
Cleaning the car, ah, now there’s a story. I am fanatical about cleaning cars. It’s a Saturday morning ritual that my car and my wife’s car are groomed. And it’s my job, that I love. I do get a fair bit of stick from the family over it; but I believe you should look after valuable items and the car is one of those.
What do you listen to when you’re driving?
Apart from listening to Coast on my travels, I keep a selection of CDs in the car … everything from The Beatles and Hollies to my favourite singer Jackson Browne, along with the latest CD from Don Henley called Cass County.
Technology and cars?
Technology in the BMW is nil and I’m not really a fan of masses of tech stuff in cars. It can be distracting. Nothing wrong though with cruise control, which I don’t have, or sat nav and hands-free and of course the Beemer has none of that!!
What else is in your garage?
I have a mountain bike, a road bike and my wife’s car, which is also a BMW but slightly more modern. Driverless cars? Not for me, I love driving.
When did you get your licence?
I got my licence when I was 15, in Wanganui, driving my father’s 1953 Vauxhall Velox. What a handful; but the boys had some fun in that car as teenagers.
What’s your dream car?
It is definitely an Aston Martin DB9 GT. It’s just a Lotto win away.
Favourite movie car scene?
Both the original and the remake of Goodbye Pork Pie. The journey through New Zealand and the police car chase in Wellington have some great stunt driving.
What’s a great day trip out of Auckland?
Once clear of the Bombays, drive down Highway 1 to Ohinewai and through to Tahuna, on to Morrinsville and Matamata, over the Kaimais to Tauranga. The Ohinewai/Tahuna road is a fun road to drive in the BMW.
Memorable road trip?
My most memorable road trip, without a doubt, was co-driving for Steve Millen in the Dunlop Targa Rally. I read the notes for him for three Targa Rallies that went from Auckland to Wellington over a week. Some amazing back country roads with one or two unplanned off-road excursions. We finished all three in the trusty XR6 Falcon.
If you could change a road rule?
One road rule I would love to see changed is the outside lane on the motorway. It’s for passing only. Motorists that sit in that lane ignoring traffic behind them is one of the most frustrating things.
Your take on Auckland traffic?
I am lucky that I walk to work. I feel sorry for those who have the daily commutes. I think the only way to make improvements is to stop building roads and focus on light rail. The trip to the airport can be time-consuming.