As we all get ready to get in to “Holiday Mode”, we know by experience, that it also becomes gridlock time; in Colombo at least. Yes we Sri Lankans love our cars; and wait for that faintest of opportunities to get our pieces of metal on to the roads. But then, most of the time we have no alternative. During the recent petrol fiasco, I got caught with an almost empty tank of petrol. The previous day I had been on the roads of Colombo for most of the day, and just wanted to get back home and not stop again at a petrol station. Plan was to pump the tank up next morning on the way to work. In the morning though the queues had already started. Got to work, thinking it should be resolved by evening…but not to be. So for the next three days I opted to use whatever transport available other than the car. All taxi companies had long waiting times. Even three wheelers were mostly occupied. Buses were packed to capacity. But for the three days managed to find an Uber on a couple of occasions after trying so many times. PickMe came to the rescue a couple of times, and managed to hail three wheelers a couple of times.
At one stage I was seriously considering cycling to work; the only problem being that I don’t have a “shower” at work. And when you cycle to work in Colombo weather, you need to shower before starting work. So this is my planned project for the New Year – to build a shower work!
By the way, the new generation of drivers who drive Electric cars had the last laugh through all this! So not to be out-done, this month Ashraaq has written a special feature on Electric Cars!
So amongst all the petrol queues and taxi rides, we did manage to do some great test drives this month. Ranjan drove the Porsche 911 Carrera 4 GTS and what a car it is! Says Ranjan, “the cornering potential is certainly beyond the driving capability of an average driver and cannot certainly be tested on our crowded roadways but needless to say it feels as though Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity is really brought to question…!” A real driver’s car - need we say more?
Ryan was the lucky guy who got to drive the Ferocious Little Wildcat – the Jaguar F-Type! “Addictive is the acceleration and noise that the F-type makes that will have you circling the block just to hear it. In an age where the sweet-sounding sputter of un-burnt fuel igniting in the exhausts of carburetor cars are long gone, the F Type is a refreshing throwback, sounding like a lion gargling with Listerine on every upshift…” says Ryan.
On the other hand the BMW 218i Gran Tourer is a more docile MPV like family vehicle. It takes on a more family oriented role in the 2-series portfolio. It boasts 7 seats and a longer, taller body, and as a result here is a car for the medium to large family that is compact enough for our roads – and no doubt takes you on your journeys in great comfort, safety and if necessary with some spirited performance to boot.
At the other end of the scale we tested the Renault Kwid – but this time in the AMT (automatic) guise, with the larger 1000cc engine.
In this issue we also feature a unique bike which is over one hundred years old! And it is a thoroughbred racing bike which – kudos to the absolutely enthusiastic owner – has been restored to mint condition. Yes, even as our video (in the digital version of the magazine and on Youtube) shows, the 1915 J A P Board Track Racer is in “ready to race condition” which can be ridden if necessary on a race track!
After this magazine; as is customary we take a short “break” in that the next magazine will be the January/February Issue which will be published in mid January.
On behalf of us all here at Motor, I wish you and your families all the very best this Christmas season, and hope you have a great year ahead. One thing to remember this season though; if you drink… catch a cab home!