Author Topic: In the Covid-19 era, getting to the start of local walks  (Read 631 times)

gunwharfman

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I live in a flat city (Portsmouth) and my local off-road running area is 7 miles away. My wife has a car and I decided to give up cars completely in January 2020. For over a month I used our local bus and my bus pass to get me to my running area. The bus stop is 50 yds from my front door. It was all going so well then Covid-19 came along!!!

My son and his wife bought a new car and I inherited their old one, so I was back to driving again. The MOT is due soon so I'm getting to the point where I can sell it or just dump it, buy another car or go back to my original poisition and use our local bus again? In reality I don't think I'm going to do that until Covid-19 susides to an acceptable level.  :-\

But I also have other possibilities, I've thought about buying an electric bike or even a small motorbike or moped? I only need to whizz around the city, or just to get to my runs and what I think is really my answer has actually arrived! A Citroen Ami, a two seater electric car which really appeals to me! But its only on sale in France at the moment and may not appear in the UK for some time? >:(

Its only about £5000 or it can be leased (in France anyway) and in France can be driven by a 14 year old, I'm not sure about in the UK? Unless there is something that I haven't thought about, as it stands today, I want one!  O0

ninthace

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Re: In the Covid-19 era, getting to the start of local walks
« Reply #1 on: 15:37:20, 15/10/20 »
http://grasshopper.golf/seniorpro.html  And save yourself £1000!  Not sure it is road legal but you could probably drive it on the pavement  :)
Edit to add - You could nip across the channel and buy an Ami if you want one at the rush.  The thing that would worry me is I have owned more than one French car, including a Citroen, and the one thing that let them down was their electrics - not sure I would want an electric car made by a Frenchman, and I don't care where M. Ampere came from  ;) 
« Last Edit: 15:46:28, 15/10/20 by ninthace »
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tonyk

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Re: In the Covid-19 era, getting to the start of local walks
« Reply #2 on: 16:26:20, 15/10/20 »
The Citroen Ami sounds like a death trap with its pathetic top speed of 26 mph.How is it supposed to keep up with modern traffic?

 Take your car for an MOT.The worst it can do is fail and even if it costs a few hundred pounds to put right its better than spending £5k on a mobile coffin.

gunwharfman

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Re: In the Covid-19 era, getting to the start of local walks
« Reply #3 on: 17:35:45, 15/10/20 »
In our city 26mph is really fast! I personally don't worry about keeping up, if I'm in front all they have to do is keep up with me! There are lots of modern coffins on our roads, bikes, mopeds, disability scooters, electric two wheel scooters and skateboards, so if I did manage to buy a Citreon Ami at least I'd be sitting down in an accident.   :)

When my wife and I drove into our estate yesterday we noticed a neighbour who can hardly walk, he's had both knees replaced, and he has just aquired a 'monster' Volvo. We watched him struggling to get out of it and then he had this 'long' walk to the rear of his 'car' to get his Waitrose food bags out of the boot. He then had to carry the bags up a 20 step staircase to get to his kitchen and lounge. Being a three story house, once in the lounge, he then has to walk up a flight of stairs, or down a flight to get to one of his two toilets.

Ideal house and an ideal car for a disabled man.

BrionyB

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Re: In the Covid-19 era, getting to the start of local walks
« Reply #4 on: 18:04:17, 15/10/20 »
I like the look of the Ami too - it looks like something I could actually drive (and park  ;D ) and there are 20mph limits around here anyway.


However, I don't really need a car in town, as I can easily walk or get the bus. It's getting to more remote spots for walking that's the problem, but not sure the range or reliability of this is going to be up to that...

gunwharfman

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Re: In the Covid-19 era, getting to the start of local walks
« Reply #5 on: 18:38:36, 15/10/20 »
For me, it's not a problem, a 14-mile round trip.

Bigfoot_Mike

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Re: In the Covid-19 era, getting to the start of local walks
« Reply #6 on: 18:52:07, 15/10/20 »
My wife (Peugeot) and I (Citroen) have both had French cars before and are not keen to go back, even before Ninthaceís comments on electrics. Likewise, we wouldnít go anywhere near an Italian car (I canít afford a Ferrari). The reliability records for these manufacturers are truly awful. As for the Ami, regardless of origin it is definitely not for me. Just because other people take to the roads in potential coffins, it doesnít mean I should. It looks like an update on a Sinclair C5. In any case, I canít see how I would put it on and canít imagine that any non-hobbits would be able to fit inside one.

gunwharfman

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Re: In the Covid-19 era, getting to the start of local walks
« Reply #7 on: 19:29:29, 15/10/20 »
For me one of the benefits of being 5' 6" tall, or is it 'small?' I recently used my Citroen C4 7 seater so that my son and daughter in law could have their first new car, a Citroen C3 automatic. His wife has never driven a geared car. Citroen gave me £5000 for it. Not bad for a 150,000 mile diesel I thought. When I tried to part exchange it I was offered £800. That car never let me down, just 1600cc, in many ways the best and most versatile car I've ever owned, and its fuel economy was fantastic.

My sons old Honda Jazz is a great car but leaks like a sieve, its forever misting up. I drilled 4 holes though the floor for the water to drain out.

I now know what my lifestyle is and I'm sure will be for months to come so if I get the chance and if I think it will be what what I need to whizz around the city and to to to the top of Portsdown Hill and back again I'm going to be sorely tempted to buy an Ami.

My attitude to cars has obviously changed as I've got older and I had the fortune (or was it misfortune?) to marry into the garage trade. That proved to be really helpful to me. My father in law persuaded me to look upon cars for what they really are, a rusting and deteriorating box of metal on equally deteriouting four rubber tyres. Even if the car is brand new and is the latest design my life I know will still be the same from the day before I bought it to the days after I bought it. Once I adopted my attitude towards cars (about 34 years ago) I then knew I was liberated forever from its tyranny and its danger to the world I live in!

ninthace

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Re: In the Covid-19 era, getting to the start of local walks
« Reply #8 on: 20:02:55, 15/10/20 »
My car last car had a 7 year warranty as does my current version - any problems are the maunfacturer's and so far their service has been excellent.  Any snags found during servicing have fixed for free, even ones I did not know about.  Apart from those, I had a flickering headlight issue on one side, both sides were changed for free.  The current model, a hybrid, will do a 30 mile round trip on battery alone.  Unfortunately GWM, it cost a little over 4 times your £5k budget but it will do a bit more than 20 mph.
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tonyk

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Re: In the Covid-19 era, getting to the start of local walks
« Reply #9 on: 20:34:38, 15/10/20 »


I now know what my lifestyle is and I'm sure will be for months to come so if I get the chance and if I think it will be what what I need to whizz around the city and to to to the top of Portsdown Hill and back again I'm going to be sorely tempted to buy an Audi.





 

richardh1905

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Re: In the Covid-19 era, getting to the start of local walks
« Reply #10 on: 07:54:54, 19/10/20 »
I would be sorely tempted by an electric bike, gwm.


I've seen a few electric mountain bikes on the hill, including a rather elderly gent enjoying himself on Carrock Fell (by 'rather elderly' I mean just a bit older than me  :o ). Now think what you may about mountain bikes on hills, but I thought it great that it enabled him to get out.


I bought a mountain bike late last year, but given the state of my knees and the fact that Grange is built on a substantial hill, I strongly suspect that my next bike will be electric. Not cheap, though, a decent one will cost the best part of 2 Grand. Edit - upwards of 2 Grand!


EDIT2 - might not be a good choice from one point of view - E bikes are highly stealable. :(
« Last Edit: 08:02:33, 19/10/20 by richardh1905 »
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gunwharfman

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Re: In the Covid-19 era, getting to the start of local walks
« Reply #11 on: 09:56:26, 19/10/20 »
The Chef at our local pub bought a £1000 electric bike and secured it with two 'D' shaped steel locks to the railings outside his kitchen, one on each wheel and around the metal stem that supports the seat. It was stolen within a week, the thieves just cut through the 'D' locks with bolt croppers. Over the past 5 years, I've had two bikes stolen, both had large but flexible locks securing them to the large galvanised bike units that we see everywhere and both were stolen from the same place, from inside our local Portsmouth Harbour railway station. Bolt croppers were used as well.

I presume the learning is that even expesive locks are no match for bolt croppers? Maybe the companies advertise in the same way that 'waterproof' clothing and 'waterproof' boot companies do.

If you do get an electric bike do try to have a read about them in Which because when they tested the propulsion units they found that one (Bosch I think) was good and the rest were not so good.

forgotmyoldpassword

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Re: In the Covid-19 era, getting to the start of local walks
« Reply #12 on: 10:32:08, 19/10/20 »
Yup the e-bike thing has some major discrepancies in the motor quality and ability to handle different terrains.  Worth doing some in-depth reading if you're seriously considering spending £2-3k on a bike.

richardh1905

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Re: In the Covid-19 era, getting to the start of local walks
« Reply #13 on: 12:48:44, 20/10/20 »
I think that the tool of choice for bike thieves nowadays is a battery powered angle grinder - will cut through anything.
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Bigfoot_Mike

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Re: In the Covid-19 era, getting to the start of local walks
« Reply #14 on: 12:59:06, 20/10/20 »
The bike lock needs a very high volume alarm triggered by excessive movement. That might dissuade potential thieves, unless they come equipped with ear defenders.