For many, cars are not merely a way of getting from A to B
In particular where classic cars are concerned they are part of a dream, an experience, or a way of life. So we’re going to look at creating those dreams – you’ve got your classic car, where’s the best place to drive it?
Even if you’re not yet the owner of a classic there’s an experience to be had, with bespoke rentals a great way of getting behind the wheel of something super-cool.
Having gone Down Under in the last article, in this edition we’re staying close to home and looking at the UK.
And if we inspire you to start looking for one of your own, check out our for sale section.
Where to go
With the whole of the UK to choose from, there’s plenty you could do. From the Lake District to the Welsh hills, the UK is covered in stunning scenery combined with cracking driving roads.
But, for pure completeness and longevity, we’ve picked on – the Inverness to Nairn circular in Scotland. A two-day drive, this is a proper road trip.
It includes the coast alongside Lossiemouth, before you head inland, passing castles and distilleries, on into the Cairngorms National Park.
What to take
We’ve got to be talking about classic British sports cars for this trip; it’s as simple as that. The MGB is one of the most affordable options. Made between 1962 and 1980, predictably older models cost more, later ones can be had for a couple of thousand.
A two-door roadster or hardtop, it is simple, fun to drive and affordable to run. The 3.5L GT V8 is the desirable one, albeit it was only available in hardtop form. Similarly, the Triumph Spitfire was built between 1962 and 1980 and there are still plenty on the road.
You wouldn’t know it to look, but it was based on a Triumph Herald, albeit shortened. The big difference was that it was far nicer on the eye, designed as it was by Italian Giovanni Michelotti.
Moving up the price scale a little, we present the Lotus Elan. We’re talking about the original, built from 1962 to 1973, rather than the 1990s reboot.
Light, fun and stylish motoring for sure. If you’ve got plenty of money to spend, it doesn’t get more British than the Aston Martin DB5.
Made famous by Bond, James Bond, it’s a luxury grand tourer that needs little introduction. Beauty, power, style and grace personified.
Likewise the Jaguar E-Type, which blew the competition out of the water when it came on the scene in 1961.
With a 150mph top speed and a 0-60mph time of less than seven seconds, it was a revelation in an era of cars with drum brakes and mediocre performance.
And, finally, Morgan. Any Morgan will do. Quite possibly the quintessential British sports car, some even have wood in their chassis.
What to see
Lossiemouth, in Moray, was originally the port belonging to nearby Elgin before it became an important fishing town.
There’s been a settlement here for more than 1,000 years, yet the current town has formed over the past 250 years, with four separate communities eventually merging into one.
After a mooch around the town, head inland, passing distilleries and castles. One of the most notable distilleries is the Glen Moray Distillery, which is close to Elgin and is open to the public.
From there head into the Cairngorms National Park. Despite only being established in 2003 as the second of two such parks established by the Scottish government, it is already the biggest national park in the British Isles and in 2010 expanded into Perth and Kinross.
Get set to experience mountains and rolling hills and, basically, plenty of stunning scenery to provide the backdrop to you classic drive.
On the way back to Nairn look out for the picturesque Dulsie Bridge off the A939. It was built in 1755 by Major William Caufield and three companies of soldiers and crosses a deep gorge on the River Findhorn. For history buffs, it carries the once-important military road that linked Braemar to Fort George.
How to get there
It’s pretty simple really – just drive there. If you’re in your own classic then that’s the way to go. If you’re planning to rent a classic to do this one in then you can fly to Inverness airport and go from there.
You could even enjoy a scenic train ride to north of the border and then search out a rental from there.