Me & My Car: Cadillac's for cruising
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Tell us about your Cadillac.
It’s a 92 Cadillac Fleetwood Brigham, it’s blue but kind of looks black. It’s a 350 Chevy V8, it has a column shift, fuel injected. It’s left-hand drive. I bought it two, three years ago from someone who imports all the low riders for the west Auckland.
Why a Cadillac?
I have no idea, I was initially looking at getting a Corvette but I am sick of driving fast now, I want to be more relaxed. And I thought a big Cadillac would be fun.
Is it your everyday drive?
Yes it is; I did have a Mercedes but I gave it to my son.
What mileage do you each day?
I drive from home in East Auckland to work on the North Shore.
How does it feel to drive?
It is like sitting in your lounge on a comfortable couch. I just like driving around in it. It sounds good, turning the power on.
How is driving a left-hand drive?
It was difficult for the first two weeks but after a while you get used to. I was used to driving a Japanese car so going into an American was a big difference.
What was the main difference?
When they are a bit older, they are a bit heavier. They don’t have power when you first put your foot down but then you can feel the power ... instead of an instant take off. It’s like driving a brick.
Who else drives it?
I won’t let anyone drive it apart from my oldest son, who is 20.
Has it needed much work?
Getting an old car, there are always parts that have to be replaced. It has just had the radiator done. It’s never-ending, like doing a house. I have a good friend who is a mechanic at Sears Motors, GI in East Auckland and he knows where to buy stuff for it, mechanically wise. He mostly specialises in old cars, but he also rebuilt the engine in my Evo 3.
How does your Cadillac fit your personality?
I think I am a laid-back type of guy who enjoys driving.
If you had to describe this car as a person?
Probably Ice Cube.
Your first car?
A Mitsubishi Mirage, a little hatchback and since then I have kept upgrading. I loved that Mirage. I thrashed the hell out of it and it was really reliable. I sold that because I had a kid so I had to upgrade to something a little bit bigger and I ended up buying a Subaru Legacy.
Any cars you have regretted selling?
I used to have a white Subaru STi version 2; that was always my pride and joy and my kids still talk about it. I sold that because I had another kid and you have to do what’s right. I ended up getting another wagon. I’ve got four kids now.
When did you get your licence?
I would have been about 24.
Any advice for young drivers?
Cars are expensive if you want to start doing boy racing stuff on it. Everything counts up, like tyres, handbrakes, brake pads.
Your dream vehicle?
Probably anything American and 67 like Dodge or Chevy. I’d love to have a Nova.
It’s a beautiful Sunday morning, where are you going for a drive?
Mission Bay, usually I just cruise along there, stop to have an icecream, relax, look at the water. Sometimes I go over to Devonport and then watch people take pictures of themselves next to my car.
Is your Cadillac easy to park?
No, very difficult. Most car parks are not made for it. The back is usually sticking out but at least you know where you’ve parked because you can see it sticking out.
Favourite driving song?
I have a JVC stereo and I like 80s rock and early 90s hip-hop. My favourite would be Def Leppard, Pour Some Sugar On Me.
Favourite movie car scene?
Gone in 60 Seconds. Eleanor but I like all the cars they have.
Your thoughts on electric cars?
I like electric cars as long as the cars make a sound. The kids can’t hear them coming and they might get run over.
I’m okay, I am looking forward to that. That means I can go out drinking with my friends from rugby, sit in the back and let the car drive itself home.