Last night after living in my garage for 18 months, my beautiful Nissan Figaro finally saw the light of day. As I drove it onto the driveway I felt sad that I will soon be saying goodbye to this wonderful car and the memories it holds.
I haven’t driven it since the birth of my 3rd child, trying to manoeuvre 3 small children in a tiny 2 door car became too impractical. I now drive a car from the other extreme, a huge 7 seater Chrysler Grand Voyager, practical, luxurious but lacking the sentimentality and character of my beloved fig.
The Fig represents a life lost, as I smelt the leather and heard the familiar heavy clunk of the doors, I remembered the days when I went out to work, driving without children with the roof down in the sunshine. Days when our then family of 3 would go out to the pub for lunch and watch as everyone stared at us, especially little girls). My daughter was the envy of the town as she went out with mummy in her pink car.
Five years ago I was looking to replace my car and lots of discussion ensued. At the time we were trying for a second baby but after a few sad episodes it was uncertain whether this would actually happen. My previous car was a cabriolet and I loved driving with the roof down in the summer so we looked at various cabriolets with boot space big enough for a buggy. Then one evening my husband asked what car I would choose if I could have any car. This was easy, since seeing Figaros on the web I had fallen in love with their retro look and beautiful interior and the girly pink one was the one I coveted most. Acknowledging that we shouldn’t put our lives on hold, my husband suggested I stop being practical and just go for what I really wanted. I have to say I didn’t take much persuading.
Figaros are imported into the UK from Japan where a limited number were produced in the early 1990’s for Nissan’s anniversary year. Mine was shipped to the UK and refurbished to a wonderful standard by Algy’s Autos. Pink isn’t an original colour but it was made to order with pink piping on the leather seats and pink interior. My Figaro is a 1991 model and comes with air conditioning, electric windows and cd player.
Figaros and Babies
Soon after collection, I fell pregnant with my 2nd daughter. It was a great pregnancy car because there is loads of space in the front, and being an automatic, with my short legs I don’t have to squash up to the wheel to reach the clutch.
There was no way that I was going to trade in the Figaro for a bigger car, so I spent time researching buggies that would fit into the tiny boot. After trying pretty much every buggy Mothercare stocked I found the Quinny Zapp fitted in the top boot (the one that holds the roof when the top is open) and the frame could be used with a Maxi Cosi car seat to use from birth. From 6 months old the smallest Maclaren buggy, the Volo, fits in the tiny bottom boot allowing babies to be driven with the roof down (if they can cope with the wind).
The car has 4 seats; the back seats are small and don’t have a lot of legroom but are big enough for children, car seats or short people like myself. A rear facing stage one car seat fits comfortably in the front passenger seat but can also fit in the back with a bit of manoeuvering.
I love my Figaro but as we are moving overseas I am going to have to let it go. She has 48750 miles on the clock, has always been kept in a garage and has been wax-oiled underneath. As a 1 litre turbo automatic she is not for speed freaks but for style and fun she is difficult to beat. She is selling for a price of £7,000 ono.
In the meantime I am going to get her back on the road and my girls and I are going to enjoy her for the short time we have left.