The PetrolBlog April Scramble awards 2023

10 of the best General Bunk

PetrolBlog takes an alternative look at the April Scramble by awarding some, er, awards. There are no prizes – it's just for fun.

If you've been paying attention, you'll know that PetrolBlog has been to the Bicester Heritage April Scramble. A 5am alarm call, a 200-mile drive and a chance for the BMW Compact to stretch its legs. Yes, the little BMW is still part of the fleet – for now. 

Here, PetrolBlog is taking an alternative look at the April Scramble, with a selection of cars you might have missed. It's loosely titled ‘awards’, but as there are no prizes, that might be a stretch. Still, at least the winners can say they've been featured on the world's least influential car blog. 

Prepare your acceptance speeches, because we're going in.

Best car spotted on the journey up: Citroën Dyane

Citroen Dyane 6 on A34

Check out this delightful Citroën Dyane 6 testing the claimed 72mph top speed on the outside lane of the A34. One of the joys of driving to an event like the Scramble is the increasing number of classics you spot as you edge closer to the show. On the roads near Bicester Heritage, it was as though every other car was a Porsche.

Best net curtains: Toyota Century G50

Toyota Century net curtains

Don't listen to Damon Albarn, because this end of the Century is something special. Please admire the net curtains, which provide some privacy for the Japanese cushions travelling in the back. You can forget soft-touch plastics and leather upholstery, because the wood, wool and lace combo is where it's at. Don't admire the photography skills – the plan was to focus on the curtains, not the bearded gentleman.

Best mud flaps: Ford Puma Thunder

Ford Puma Thunder with red mud flaps

Some would argue that messing with the Ford Puma's fine handling is like asking Darcy Bussell to perform in snorkelling fins. But this jacked-up Thunder with red mud flaps looks great. It's rare to talk about the Puma's rear arches without mentioning rust...

Surprisingly ropey rarity: Mercedes-Benz SL60 AMG

Mercedes SL60

This SL60 AMG was a shoo-in for the next category, but it deserves its own berth. Back in the day, this SL60, which was developed by AMG with Stuttgart's blessing, would have cost £110,000, the equivalent of £200,000 in 2023. Officially, its 6.0-litre V8 engine develops 375bhp, because Mercedes-Benz didn't want the SL60 to outmuscle its 389bhp SL600 V12 flagship. AMG later admitted that the engine produced around 410bhp. Just 49 right-hand drive cars were built.

Best headlight wipers: Vauxhall Senator

Vauxhall Senator headlight wipers

This Senator belongs to @Phil_P on Twitter. He describes it as ‘still very crusty and rather noisy’, but it takes home an award for having a magnificent pair of headlight wipers. The question is, do they work?

Best use of duct tape: Ford Focus ST170 estate

Ford Focus ST170 estate

There are two things to point out here. Firstly, it's easy to forget that Ford built an estate version of the ST170 hot hatch. Secondly, this sort of duct tape shenanigans is normally the preserve of the Ford Mondeo. As an aside, ‘Duct Tape Shenanigans’ would be a great name for a punk band.

Best car and picnic chair combo: Vauxhall Sports Hatch

Vauxhall Sports Hatch at April Scramble

Have you even been to a classic car event if you haven't spotted a car and picnic chair combo. The Vauxhall Sports Hatch is essentially a Magnum estate with a Firenza ‘Droopsnoot’ nosecone, and it looks magnificent. It performed well, too, thanks to a 110bhp 2.3-litre engine and the Firenza's uprated suspension. Vauxhall never produced a brochure for the 1976-only Sports Hatch, so it was unable to boast about its picnic chair-carrying capabilities.

Best parking: BMW E28

BMW E28 parked at Bicester Heritage

An immaculate E28 meets a brick wall. At least, nearly meets a brick wall. We're sure the owner had things covered; it also gives us the opportunity to admire the timeless styling of the second-generation 5 Series.

Most aftermarket-looking badge: Discovery V8i

Discovery V8i badge

The Discovery logo on the original ‘Disco’ is a magnificent thing. The mountains to the left or right of the name just work. So it's odd that the engine badges looked so aftermarket. It's as though somebody from Land Rover popped down to the local motor factors and bought them in bulk. Still, at least it matches The Car Centre of Hereford. Is that near the boathouse?

Best car spotted on the journey back: Mazda 323 saloon

Mazda 323 saloon

You know how it is. After spending seven hours in the car, and checking out some of the best classics at a premium venue, you spot the best car on the journey home. This 1989 Mazda 323 1.5 GLX automatic was spotted alongside the A338 in Berkshire. The sign in the window says ‘recovery’, so we hope it's okay. That's probably it for PetrolBlog's Scramble rambles. The next one is in October, so book early to avoid disappointment, and stuff. PetrolBlog will be there, if it's allowed back, almost certainly in something French. 

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