Paper or Plastic

Now this question is as age-old as the chicken and the egg but as my mind scours the internets for more details of the Veloster Turbo I ask myself paper or plastic? Manual or Automatic ?

Like many, I am from the old school of thought that if you aren’t shifting you aren’t driving. And certainly in mixed traffic there is often satisfaction from a quick gear change and a whirl of the engine to get you into the clear. But on the flip side I spend a lot, no almost all, of my weekly driving in stop start traffic and the shifting is no longer any fun. I dream of having an automatic that I can just nudge along with my right foot.

So as I think towards the next car I wonder if I should go with the manual, or spend the extra for the automatic ? Don’t really know.

Warning Lights Gone At Last

You might remember (and if not its right there below this post…) that I had three warning lights on my dash recently: brake pads, traction control, and flat tyre. Well I am happy to say that I am now warning-light free:

It took three trips to Pep Boys to get it fixed though.

  1. Got the brakes done, front and back, all lights remained on
  2. After a couple of weeks there was this bad sounding crunching noise from the rear right when I braked so I took it back. They discovered that a bolt in the brake caliper was broken. They replaced it. Noise gone. I mentioned that the brake pad light was still on and asked if they had perhaps not replaced the sensor wires. They ordered wires.
  3. About 150 miles after the bolt was fixed, the DSC and tyre warning lights went out
  4. Back to Pep Boys for the sensor wires. Final light out.

Sure seemed like a lot of effort to get brakes done, but the cost for both sets of brakes was about the same price I paid for one set at the MINI garage I usually go to. Car is driving just great.


A few weeks ago I think I made the decision to sell the MINI. I say I think because it is such a great car to drive but after 7 years (plus 3 in the previous one) it is time for a change. It used to be that driving a MINI was a community thing but I don’t remember the last time I got a wave back from a fellow owner, the price of gas prevents me from driving the 150+ miles to join in any club events, so the MINI is just a means to get to my job each week, 130 miles away. I don’t have cruise control, the seats irritate on long journeys, there aren’t even any gadgets to keep me occupied.

So I am anticipating moving to a different vehicle in the summer. Now I must be doing something wrong because all the ex-MINI owners I know went on to Audis, BMWs etc but I can’t afford to move up, only down so we will see what I end up with. I’m currently looking at the Hyundai Veloster as a good mix of looks, technology and cost but I need to see just how poor the acceleration is. Of course nothing I buy will match the performance of the MINI but that’s ok, I seldom drive it like a race car.

Might yet change my mind, a few bills each month is better than a car loan, but for now I’m enjoying the idea of something new.