Readers Write

The evolution of a car enthusiast

Modified street cars to offroad 4WDs – how did I end up here or, the evolution of a car enthusiast.

IT HAS BEEN SUGGESTED to me that I change cars as often as I change underpants. In case you’re wondering, that means daily… the underpants, not the cars.

There’s a whole spectrum of car enthusiasts – some people hold onto their cars for life, others change cars quite regularly for any number of reasons. And I fit somewhere between those two. At least one of my cars I owned for a while, which I put down to first-car-love. The others have tended to stay in my life for around one to three years. Was it itchy feet, did I fall out of love with them? A little, but that’s not the whole story.

Being a car enthusiast shouldn’t mean you’re stereotyped into one genre, or one scene, for it is an ever-changing hobby. I’ll draw on my own experiences here. Some say that I’m a Japanese car enthusiast, and yes, looking at my car ownership history of five Nissans and two Subarus it definitely appears that way. But it’s not why I’ve ended up owning seven Japanese cars to date. The reason is that they’ve satisfied my desire at that particular moment in my life. That they’ve happened to be Japanese is largely unrelated.

I’ve watched other car enthusiasts evolve as their needs have changed. Maybe the Skyline or (insert any other impractical sportscar here) they had as a single person no longer fits their life of family transport duties. Or they’ve grown tired of the attention their WRX with a loud exhaust attracts. Whatever the circumstance, they’ve found themselves having to come to a compromise, commonly moving to something that whilst satisfying their changing needs, still tickles them in the right spot.

I come back to my own story, at a cross-roads in my own car ownership life. I’ve found myself moving away from a scene I know so well – modified street cars and sportscars – into one that I’ve received a late introduction to, that of offroad 4WDs. See, what excited me before – squeezing more power out of a car as well as well as making it look aesthetically fast, tackling a hillclimb, a motorkhana, a track day – has been diminishing, and the allure of exploring the country, maybe encountering a challenging situation or two along the way has been increasing. I shouldn’t be surprised if there are others out there with similar passions, they’re both car enthusiasts and nature enthusiasts.

Don’t pigeon-hole yourself. You could be missing out on a whole other world of cars that could take you to places and see you making friends you never expected.

Are you a car enthusiast who has changed your interest over time, maybe from street to offroad, or track to vintage? Tell us your story…


Juliette Remfrey

Juliette Remfrey

A car enthusiast with a background in the modified street car and sportscar scene with a developing passion for offroad 4WDing.