The roads on which we drive upon often look the same, not only the scenery, but also the cars which inhabit them. There are usually a hell of a lot of Fiestas around, Clios, Golfs, it might leave you thinking the car industry is a pretty dull place, full of dodgy secondhand cars, so we thought we would have a look at some of the cars that you see once in a blue moon that make you do a double take, trying to remember if you have seen one before.
I saw an Aixam Ecity on the roads a couple of months ago on a drive from Manchester to Birmingham and it left me puzzled, not only did I not recognise the car itself, but upon closer inspection I couldn’t even recognise the cars badge. It wasn’t until a few days later that I saw a picture of one online that I realised the badge was Aixam and the car was the Ecity. The Ecity hasn’t been received very well at all, it is fully electric, has 4 seats and is powered by a small 13kw electric motor which offers a maximum range of 65 km. It is said to be sluggish and unexciting. They’ve been around since 07, so if you want a deal you will probably be able to get a good price on a second hand Aixam Ecity.
The Nissan Figaro is a different kind of rare to the Ecity, with the Figaro you don’t see them too often as only 20,000 were ever built, and Nissan haven’t made one since 1991. But they really are good looking little cars. I will always remember the Nissan Figaro, someone had one on my parent’s road back when I was little, and I remember thinking it was the crème de la crème of cars and to be fair, at the time, it was! It had air conditioning, a CD player, leather seats and an open roof which was pretty impressive back in 1990.
This is an odd one, the Volkswagen EOS has been around since 2006, it has the weight of Volkswagen behind it, it looks fantastic, yet it still isn’t a household name in the same way the Polo, Golf or even the Scirocco. It is a coupe model which has a retractable hardtop, and it looks excellent with the roof down. I guess there isn’t a huge demand for convertibles in the UK what with the weather, but still, you would expect to see a fair few more EOS’s knocking about.
I am always dubious about cars with human names, it just doesn’t sit well with me. But the Renault ZOE, (despite the fact that it has a girl’s name), is one that has taken my interest. I guess it because it is an electric vehicle, which looks pretty good, and has had some pretty positive reviews, with AutoExpress claiming it is one of the best electric cars yet. It is still relatively new to the UK market so I guess I should give it a little more time.
Another car you don’t see much of is the Proton Gen-2, in fact there is every chance that you haven’t even heard of it. It is a five door hatchback offering from the Malaysian car producer Proton and whilst in writing it sounds like it would be a pretty decent car, it received many mixed reviews with a lot of people slagging off the car’s interior. On the outside I would say the Gen-2 is a little outdated in terms of styling, but at the time it came out in 2004, I can imagine it would have been attractive to many.
Let us end this list with a bang, a bang which comes in the form of the Noble M12! The M12 is a fantastic car, both to look at and to drive, so it really is a mystery that you don’t see more of them about. Obviously, due to the nature and price of the car you wouldn’t expect the roads to be awash with Noble M12’s but I would expect to see them a little more often at least. I remember seeing it featured on one of the first ever episodes of Top Gear, before James May was on the show, Clarkson loved it, and since then, I have too. For a second hand Noble M12 you will be looking at £20,000 to £30,000.