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2008 - Car Nirvana


If it wasn't for the fact that our environment and financial institutions are falling apart, and the current big 3 CEO’s can’t manage their way out of a paper bag, we car enthusiasts would currently be in 7th heaven.

Every car manufacturer and model type that matters is currently available, or about to be. For the first time since the 70's the Chev Camaro, Ford Mustang and Dodge Challenger are in the showrooms at the same time. For those of us that grew up watching Moffat and Geoghan race against Bob Jane, the potential of another race series such as the re-introduction of Trans Am is just too good to be true.

Staying with the American theme, we also have the Viper, Corvette and Ford GT. Actually the GT has just ceased production and who knows what's in store for the Viper, but they were recently all available. What a missed opportunity for the big two and a half to do a three way GT race series. Forget the GT3 and GT2 series, what we needed was an original 1950's style "Drive the car to the track series". It only requires three rules, the race driver has to drive the car to the track from the registered base, the engine should be sealed from the time it leaves the workshop until the end of the race and the car must be able to be registered in California. Imagine the dealer show rooms with the Shelby, Saleen, Yenko and Callaway derivatives for sale the day after the race. But as usual the big two and half’s CEO’s did not have the foresight to push for anything as exciting as this. Forget that NASCAR rubbish the manufacturers support, it’s just so not relevant.

Moving to Europe we have Ferrari, Bugatti, Maserati and Lamborghini all building their best cars ever. Spyker is staying afloat, Bizzarini is on the way back and Alfa has just built the 8c, a worthy successor to the original, which itself was one of the most beautiful cars ever produced. McLaren has a new car coming. Morgan is strangely getting better and better and Rolls and Bentley are more appealing than ever. Aston is back starring alongside Bond, and Jaguar stands a chance of succeeding. Lotus has just delivered their cleverest car yet, which is saying something….Just don't mention MG.

There have never been so many specialty manufacturers, and the cars they built have never been so good. We have Zonda, Koenigsegg, Ascari and a dozen others and most are viable competitors to the establishment.

The Tuner sector remains strong with many companies such as 9ff becoming manufacturers in their own right. High-end Tuners such as Brabus and AMG are diversifying into hybrids and electrics.

Japan has built a car to compete with Porsche. Here in Australia we have the best affordable performance sedans in the world, and Elfin and Bolwell are back....

To cap all this off Mercedes is about to launch a new Gullwing.

It just doesn’t get much better.

It's such a shame we all know we are watching the start of the end. We are going to see regular knee jerk management decisions and we will all end up driving electric Smarts. Or Dumbs as my kids like to call them.

What we need is responsible management of the evolutionary period we are in. Us car enthusiast care about the environment and realise things have to change, however I don't believe we trust any of the current senior management teams to be capable of managing the transition.

Lets sack the current CEO's and CFO’s (who flew into Washington yesterday in their private jets begging for hand-outs from the US government to fix the mess they created) and put some realistic staged global emission targets in place. Hand management on to the current crop of Project Engineers, who are obviously delivering.

Let's enjoy things while we can. Buy, buy, buy – now – you have plenty to choose from. If you don’t there might not be anything worth buying in 5 years.