The Goodwood Festival of Parking 2012 – Part Four

No question about it, the star of the third installment of the Festival of Parking was the little Abarth 695 esse-esse. Having said that, there’s a whole lot of love for the Citroën C6, although there’s talk on twitter that Sarkozy Black has fallen behind Carla Bruni White when it comes to the choice of colour. Either way, it won’t be long until prices of the C6 fall below £5k and petrolheads everywhere start reaching for their wallets.

But back to the matter in question and on to part four of the Goodwood Festival of Parking. Once again there’s a strong European flavour on offer, but the Japanese flag is certainly flying high.

So pick your favourite from this list of ten cars.

Peugeot 205 GTi

Peugeot 205 1.6 GTi at Goodwood Festival of Speed

Rear of Peugeot 205 1.6 GTi at Goodwood Festival of Speed 2012

Despite making a credible claim to be one of the greatest hot hatches ever built, there was a distinct shortage of Peugeot 205 GTis in the Goodwood car park. But when you stumble across one as beautiful as this 1.6, you don’t need to see another one. This is one I’m sure @FailCar will approve of.

Mazda RX-7 (FD) Series 3

Mazda RX-7 FD Series 3 at Goodwood 2012

For me, the series 3 Mazda RX-7 is one of the most beautiful sports cars ever to emerge from Japan. Sadly many of them have been modified to death, with others seemingly spending their entire time going sideways at a drifting competition.

Cosmetically at least, this one looked relatively untouched, but the rear stickers hint that it may have undergone some tweaks underneath.

A quick glance on eBay reveals that you can pick up a series 3 RX-7 for as little as £3,000, with even top notch cars going for less than £8,000. Going fast and furiously has never looked so attractive!

Volvo V70R

Volvo V70R at Goodwood Festival of Speed 2012

Surely one of the most desirable Volvos ever made? This early phase one V70R has aged magnificently and has to be one of the best ways to travel fast, safely. A 2.3 litre turbo-charged engine developing 250bhp may not seem like much by today’s standards, but by golly could these things shift. They’d accelerate to 60mph in around seven seconds and because it was ‘just’ a big and boxy Volvo, you’d be free of unwanted attention. No wonder they there the choice of motorway cops for many years.

Just get yourself an account with a local tyre fitter.

Lancia Delta HF Integrale 16v Evoluzione II

Lancia Delta HF Integrale 16v Evoluzione II

Like the Lotus Carlton previously listed, this Lancia needs no introduction. A legend.

Honda Prelude

Honda Prelude Series 5 BB5-BB9

It’s over a decade since the last Honda Prelude rolled off the production line and I for one think that’s a shame. In the two decades that the Prelude was made, there were five different generations and over 800,000 were sold. What’s more, in my book, there was never a dud one.

The fifth generation car seen here was the least successful Prelude, both from a sales and critical perspective, but I think it’s one of the prettiest of the bunch. And because its styling was the most conservative of all the Preludes, it was mostly bought by older, more careful owners who religiously stuck to the service schedule and treated their car to a wash and wax every Sunday morning.

But the best news of all? You needn’t pay more than a thousands pounds for a 2.2 VTi with four-wheel steering. Bangernomics has never looked so pretty.

Volkswagen Corrado VR6

VW Volkswagen Corrado VR6 at Goodwood Festival of Speed

Rear of VW Volkswagen Corrado VR6 at Goodwood Festival of Speed

Arguably one of the greatest front-wheel drive car of all time with one of the sweetest, most silky engines ever produced. I miss my Corrado VR6 more than just about any other car I’ve owned. Which says it all really. Brilliant little cars from a time when Volkswagen still produced genuinely thrilling cars.

Jaguar XJ-S

Jaguar XJ-S at Goodwood Festival of Speed 2012

White Jaguar XJ-S at Goodwood Festival of Speed 2012

After the Paul Smith X-Type debacle in part three, it’s time for Jaguar to redeem itself with this pair of XJ-Ss. I rather like the tasteful modifications on the white car, but it’s the top car, complete with its ‘very ‘80s’ colour scheme that gets my vote. Lovely.

Suzuki Cappuccino

Suzuki Cappuccino at Goodwood Festival of Speed 2012

At its peak, there were 1,000 Suzuki Cappuccinos in the UK. The fact that nearly 75% of them are still either on the road or SORN is a testament to the car’s quality and how much people love them.

It’s one of the rare Japanese Kei cars that officially made it across to the UK. You could only order them in black or silver, but a few different coloured imports would have made their way across from Japan by now.

I really like them, although I’m almost certain I’ll be too big to drive one. Plus I’d probably look a little silly with my head poking up above the windscreen. Here comes Noddy…

Renault 5 Campus Prima

Red Renault 5 at Goodwood Festival of Speed 2012

It’s probably down to its bright red paintwork, but this Renault 5 Prima really stood out amongst the grey, silver and black cars at Goodwood. I like it when seemingly ordinary cars survive against the odds, especially in this post-Scrappage era.

Despite effectively being replaced by the Clio in 1991, the Renault 5 soldiered on until the mid ‘90s, helped in part by the fact the original Twingo was never produced in right-hand drive form.

You may think that with just under 1,000 Campus Primas on the road, numbers are holding out relatively well. But when you consider that just ten years ago there were 16,000 on the road, you realise that the 5 is spiralling into the abyss.

Daihatsu Sirion meets Audi R8

Dutch Daihatsu Sirion meets Audi R8 at Goodwood

I took this shot for two reasons. Firstly, to show the fantastic diversity on display in the Goodwood car park. And secondly to demonstrate that Dutch yellow number plates look so much better than the hideous white plates we have to make do with in Great Britain. Dutch plates even help to make this Sirion look more appealing than the R8. No really, they do.

Which begs the question, which country has the best number plates? I’m quite partial to the plates in Switzerland, although the small Belgian plates look good too.

Having said that, if it’s a French car, it just has to be on French plates. Fact.

So that’s it for part four. Tempted to call it a day now and get back to writing more waffle and bunk.

Same time next year though?

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ABOUT AUTHOR
Gavin Big-Surname
The chief waffler and founder of PetrolBlog in 2010. Has a rather unhealthy obsession with cars from the 80s and 90s, and is on a one-man mission to collect the cars nobody else wants. Also likes tea and Hobnobs.

17 comments

  1. July 6, 2012
    Rafael

    I don´t know which country has the best plates, but I know which has the worst…our own countries. I believe everybody thinks other countries have better looking number plates that ours.
    For example, I rather like british plates (but the old ones made until ten years ago). Said that, I like old german plates, swedish plates (so clean, so rational, so swedish), and specially ´70-´80s italian plates: those plastic, white on black ones. Imagine a Lancia Gamma coupé with Roma plates driven by Barbara Carrera in some kind of ´70s spies film: soooo cool…

    Reply
    • July 6, 2012
      Gavin Braithwaite-Smith

      Yep, to be fair, the Spanish plates are rather nasty.

      I’d agree that the pre-2001 font on our plates was better, but you can’t beat the black plates!

      And very good point re the Italian plates. How good did they look?!

      Reply
  2. July 7, 2012
    aldoliddell

    I don’t mind our plates, the 3D 70’s white/yellow ones are my favourite. I think most post 1970 cars look daft with black and white/silver though. Liked when German style plates started appearing on Golfs etc, but thats been done to death now! Nearly forgot, the 205 is the winner on this page, a 205 GTI is on my “must own at some point” list!

    Reply
    • July 7, 2012
      Gavin Braithwaite-Smith

      I’m pretty sure I’ve seen some French cars with French style number plates, but I could be wrong.

      Reply
  3. July 7, 2012
    Antony Ingram (@antonyingram)

    Firstly, re: number plates, Guernsey has by far the coolest ones of any country. They still use the silver on black of old British plates, but in an even better font. Google it, you’ll be amazed.

    Next, the cars. Nice to see a Renault 5 in there, always had a soft spot for them. And the 205 GTI.

    Star for me is the Prelude though. Always liked them, and I remember being a fan of the styling as that last-generation model (5th-gen) was actually panned for its looks back in the day – everyone reckoned it was too bland after the previous, swoopy model (the 4th-gen). Looking at it today though, it’s far closer in spirit to every other generation of Prelude than the 4th-gen one was, and it’s made that model (which is still cool, and had an awesome interior) look a bit old-fashioned now.

    I’ve considered buying a 5th-gen Prelude on several occasions (had I viewed it in time, I’d likely have bought one instead of the MX-5 a few years back. And likely, still had it today as it’s a bit more thief-resistant) and I’d consider one again. Seems like a great road trip car – good room for a few bags, bit of style, and a nice, low-slung GT-like driving position.

    Reply
    • July 7, 2012
      Gavin Braithwaite-Smith

      Yep, the fifth generation Prelude was widely panned. Shame as I always thought it was rather elegant.

      Actually got as far as a test drive at Balmer Lawn Honda in Brockenhurst. I say test drive, but it was actually a test passenger ride as I wasn’t allowed a drive myself. Strange.

      Anyway, the sales chap took great pleasure in showing what the Prelude could do. We reached stupid speeds and hurtled around blind corners as if we were being chased by the law. For sure, it demonstrated the pace and handling of the thing, but it was perhaps the most irresponsible driving I’ve ever experienced. These were the days before the blanket 40mph across the New Forest, but even then, motorway speeds and horses didn’t mix.

      I think he believed we were impressed with his driving skills, but in actual fact we thought he was a bit of a wally.Needless to say we returned to the dealer and never returned.

      Would still want though.

      Antony, you should think about one to replace the 75 with…

      Reply
      • July 7, 2012
        Antony Ingram (@antonyingram)

        If I was definitely replacing the 75 with something a Prelude would be very tempting indeed (not just the 5th-gen either – I currently have a thing for the mid-80s ones, which are also very cheap at the mo) but not sure I’ll be buying another car after the 75 yet.

        I probably will eventually, but I want to try going car-less for a while. I’m sad to say that driving press cars is spoiling me a bit – everything is so damn competent these days that my motivation for driving the 75 has completely left me. Then there’s the expense. Quite looking forward to not paying for fuel/insurance/tax for a bit.

        Still, the Beetle will get more TLC!

        Reply
    • July 7, 2012
      Gavin Braithwaite-Smith

      Oh and yes, totally agree about the Guernsey plates. They look brilliant.

      My old Golf Rallye was a Guernsey car and I would have done anything to keep it on the black plates.

      Reply
  4. July 7, 2012
    Simon Hingston

    Mmm big red Volvo. Another great side effect is that everyone gets out of your way but they do slow down too which is not so much fun.
    Always fancied an XJS but would have be either very early in some form of BL brown or very late which I think are very smart and dating rather well.
    On the number plates I’ve seen a few Golfs with German style plates which look rather smart.

    Reply
  5. July 9, 2012
    Darren Leslie

    Really enjoyed looking through the four parts, and an excellent idea that I’ve not seen done before (although you did it last year as well). I also have to say congratulations on wandering round the car park at such an event and not feeling a complete fool (as I would) in taking pictures of cars in the car park rather than the event itself.
    For the record, the Merc 280SE was my personnel favourite.

    Reply
    • July 9, 2012
      Gavin Braithwaite-Smith

      Ha! Who said I didn’t feel like a complete fool?!

      There was one point when I was at the bottom of one of the far car parks when a customer service chap rolled up in a pick-up. I was fearing a telling off for loitering in the car park but instead he offered me a lift to the gate. I politely declined and told him I was more than happy in the car park!

      Reply
  6. July 9, 2012
    FailCar

    That 205 is disgusting (not the red one it’s lovely) who put lexus lights and a silly bodykit on that white one parked in front? Do you have any more pics of it? I suspect it may be an abomination…

    Reply
    • July 9, 2012
      Gavin Braithwaite-Smith

      I do. I also have the front view.

      Should I unleash it on to the interweb?!

      Reply
  7. July 9, 2012
    FailCar

    Yes for a new weekly feature on Petrolblog called ‘What the f**k are you doing’ submissions could be via twitter on hashtag WTFAYD.

    Reply
  8. July 11, 2012
    Olly (@Captain_Peanut)

    Nice to see a 5th gen Prelude being praised! My father in law has a 2.2i VTEC, it’s a great car and still goes well despite a hefty 170k on the clock (although I do think he’s single handedly kept the local Honda garage in business!)

    Reply
  9. July 13, 2012
    jimlemon00

    Some great cars in here! First time I see a VW Corrado

    Reply
  10. July 16, 2012
    Tom (@why_theory)

    I think Belgian plates are cool, but I suspect I’m in a minority here.
    You’ve had me searching around for Preludes and V70R’s now… Oh and the Hyundai XG hiding behind the Cappuccino is pretty damn cool in all the wrong ways.

    Reply

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