Me & My Car: Ranger ideal for outdoors
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Tell us about your ute?
It’s a 2014 white Ford Ranger, manual. I bought it new.
Why the Ranger?
I just like the look of it, it has the tough shape. It’s a good drive, economical. It’s diesel, it’s cheap to get around — but 3.21 diesel turbo, it gets up and boogies when it needs to.
How does it suit your personality?
It does, massively. It just looks very outdoory. Not like a girl’s car, and I'm very outdoory.
Who else gets to drive it?
My dad and my brother-in-law. A few of the boys have had a little drive, Manu Vatuvei, Jazz Tevaga.
How did you get interested in cars?
I think it was Reinus, my brother-in-law. He was always into cars when he was younger. He had a Ford Laser turbo, and used to take me to the drags in his car. I saw how much pride and joy he took in his car. He used to wash it and take care of it, hard out. I think that is what got me into cars.
What was your first car?
A Mazda 323. I was 15 and it was pretty beaten up. I didn’t sell it, my dad just kept it when I moved to Aussie — that was when I was about 16.
Any cars you have regretted selling?
No, never. I have lost money on cars because I have given them to my family. But I don’t see that as a loss or regret it.
Who taught you to drive?
My sister Patricia and my brother-in-law. That was pretty funny, bunny hopping down the road in my step-dad’s brown Holden. It was a piece of work, that car. It was hard to drive, a manual. And I also did some driving in my dad’s Toyota two-door ute, on the beach to go fishing.
Do you prefer driving or being a passenger?
Driving 100 per cent. I just love driving and I can’t relax when I am in the passenger seat. I feel comfortable behind the wheel.
How do rate your driving skills?
They’re up there, I’m competitive when it comes to that sort of stuff. I haven’t lost a go-kart race in five or six years. And we’ve had Suzuki Swift challenges here the last two years. We take the real Suzuki Sports around the tracks, brand new cars. They’ve got 10 different people from 10 different codes and I won it both years. I love going fast.
I like the old-school Kingswood with a massive V8 in it — supercharged and the old school car that just rattles.
What’s always in your ute?
I keep it clean. I do always have my sunglasses. And I throw my golf clubs in the back of the ute.
What do you listen to?
I listen to the radio and music through Bluetooth.
Most memorable road trip?
I did an overnight trip to Sydney with my family when I moved from the Gold Coast. We had a truck, and a car following. That was a crack-up. Not much sleep and heaps of people laughing.
First movie car scene?
I like Gone in 60 Seconds when he steals the last car, the GT 350. He talks to it before he jumps in it.
If you could go anywhere with any celebrity?
Mad Mike, he’s the drifting king of New Zealand, he drives the Red Bull car on the Vodafone ad. Probably drifting around mountains somewhere. He is a pretty crazy driver, it would be mean to go somewhere with him.
Pet hate about other drivers?
Ones who stop in the merging lane to indicate to wait until it’s clear instead of driving and merging.
Great day trip out of Auckland?
Auckland to Whangamata, Hot Water Beach, all around the Coromandel. Doing a bit of fishing, I have an uncle there, we go out diving.