Better late than never

Despite what many of my peers say, I am, in fact, a man. And as a man, I have various responsibilities.

Now the internet and various books aimed at the male who has no real skills to talk about, books like ’10 things a man must know!’ and ‘tying a bow tie – the essential man skills’, tell us men  that of all of the skills passed down over the last few millenia, skills like lighting a fire without matches, how do build a rudimentary shelter, how to trap, kill and skin a rabbit, and, more recently, how to fix your own car with some level of competence, have been lost.

Instead, the skills that every man ‘must know’ include things like how to erect shelves, how to install a baby seat, and, more worryingly, how to apply hair products to your bonnet and ‘man moisturizer’ to your rather unimpressive face.

The argument these poor and petty excuses for men use in their defence is simply: ‘well women can do these things, so why can’t I?’.

Well the answer is simple. Because you’re a man.

A horse does not wake up after its daily quota of three hours and think ‘I want to be a cow’. Men, you are separate to women. Accept it.

Anyway, as I was saying, men have certain responsibilities and duties that they must uphold until their last breath.

Similarly, as a something of a motoring journalist, I have certain duties to fulfill. One of these duties is that of choosing my car of the year for 2010.

Every motoring resource in the world, at some time since the new year, has decided on what they should crown to be car of the year. I, however, forgot, but I have a number of very valid excuses.

Firstly, I was ill for around six weeks prior to Christmas day and then for another two weeks after all the festivities had ended. Secondly, I couldn’t decide.

There have been a lot of good cars over the past year, in amongst the chafe.

In my opinion, the new Ford Grand C-Max – well, by new I mean reheated leftovers – is the best family car. Although it may not be the best for adults in the back, it is a much better car for the driver and looks much better and much more refined than its rivals.

‘But what about small cars? I hear you shout. Well, I certainly have a lot of choice.

The Hyundi i10 is a wonderful little car and a very worthy contender, as is the new Renault Clio and the Vauxhall Corsa. The new Audi A1 probably would be a contender too, but its way too expensive.

Actually, the best small car of 2010 has to be the Citroën DS3. But, I have to confess I am little bit annoyed that that’s my choice, because every other person who likes cars has come to the same conclusion; I wanted to be different.

But to the wind with being different – I like the DS3. It looks brilliant. There are no two ways about it. It also looks great on the inside and goes very well.

For those of you who like luxury cars, there is only one real choice, the Aston Martin Rapide. I know it’s not as spacious as a Rolls Royce Phantom or Bentley Arnarge. I also know it’s not as fast as a Porsche Panamera, but what do Porsche know about luxury. It looks excellent, has the most amazing, if a bit fiddly, interior, and has a 6 litre V12 engine with that classic Aston howl. It is brilliant.

But now what about best super car? Well, again, I have been spoilt for choice. The Mercedes AMG SLS is a smashing thing to look at with a very modern and impressive interior, but it’s maybe not the coolest of cars, so that’s out.

The car you probably think I will declare as the winner is the Ferrari 458 Italia – I know it is. From the moment it was released, despite the whole catching fire business, people loved it. It was the first really excellent looking Ferrari for a number of years. Add to that its 4.5 litre V8 engine with 570 bhp and you have a Ferrari that people will take photos of, rather than key.

Read more about the Ferrari 458 fires and see the pictures.

See pictures of the Ferrari 458 Challenge.

So, to show how in tune I am with car fans, that will be my choice for the best supercar of 2010. But – and it really is a big but – the 458 is £169,545, before you even get to the options list. That is too much. I know its good, but it’s still too much.

So there we have it. A round-up of the best cars of 2010, but by best, I mean they are good at what they do and not necessarily my absolute favorite.

So, to business. The Lamborghini Murcielago LP 670-4 SV would be a prime contender, but they don’t make it any more. The 640’s little brother, the brand new Lamborghini Gallardo Convertible – the ‘Performante’ – is another contender, and as a fan of the Gallardo I am tempted, especially as it’s a convertible.

But, one car in particular stood out. Photos of this thing give me goosebumps. It’s the bullet fast hypercar, the Koenigsegg Agera.

With this car, money is no object, with prices starting at over £750,000, which is a lot when you consider it’s a couple of seats strapped to a 900 bhp 4.7 litre supercharged V8.

Read more about the Koenigsegg Agera.

What matters most though is how it makes you feel, and I feel happy and excited just looking at it. This is definitely my favorite car of 2010.

I hope 2011 will present the motoring anorak with lots to talk about, but what I really hope is that I remember to pick my favorite car on time.

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About Seán Ward

I run newmotoring.com, a website for enthusiasts who don't wear tweed.
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