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Me & My Car

My Mercedes 320 CLK is good looking, comfortable and full of tricks but the lack of boot space means the time has come for us to part company, says Lorenzo Satchell

When you spend an average of half your working week in your car and untold hours at the weekend ferrying the family around, you need to have something you can rely on.

It not only needs to look good – I’m OK on that front since my six year old daughter thinks her Daddy’s car is cool – but it also has to be comfortable and practical. In my book, my silver Mercedes 320 CLK convertible scores highly on all these criteria.

Some people reading this (and in my office) might say it’s a hairdresser’s car but I put this down to jealousy.

My car has all the bells and whistles including heated seats and a six-CD player. There’s no doubt that the Merc is designed for comfort. Using the convertible roof is a pleasure too, but one I get to experience far too infrequently thanks to the weather in this country.

The stereo system is ear-splittingly good, which gives me an excuse to indulge my passion for music from the 1960s to the present day, stopping at one or two random places in between.

But if my daughter is in the car with me, it’s non-stop Disney tunes, particularly from TheLion King. I try to make sure the roof is closed when this is playing.

If I could change one thing about the CLK it would be to make it bigger, particularly the boot. This would save me from the regular fight to squeeze my assorted golf paraphernalia in.

A recent trip to Homebase to buy a garden table also left me slightly red-faced when it wouldn’t fit into the boot. I ended up having to drive home with the roof down in less than clement weather – not a pleasant experience.

At home, I also have the use of my wife’s Mini Cooper so I can pretend to be Michael Caine whenever I need to. But there’s still the problem of space so after three years together and I hate to think how many miles, it’s time for the Mercedes and myself to part company.

I’ve already got my eye on a successor, which sadly won’t be my dream car – the outstanding Aston Martin DB9.


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