Farewell, yellow Mini

I got my yellow Mini in November 2014. It was an 07 reg which already had 115,000 miles on the clock and cost £5,000.

I loved yellow cars from when they started to become a thing when I was in my 20s. At the age of 30, I got my absolute dream car – a yellow Beetle. I drove it for 10 years, before it became too expensive to run. It wasn’t completely knackered, but it wasn’t far from it – it was doing only 150 miles on a tank of petrol, which at that time cost £60.

A few months later, I got the Mini.

I must admit, at first I was underwhelmed, because I loved my Beetle so much.

But I grew to love the Mini. It was quirky and distinctive, with a black and white checkered roof, and it was a lot easier to drive than the Beetle!

I must say at this point that I don’t enjoy driving and I’m not a good or confident driver (in fact, I’m quite the opposite). I don’t love cars generally, but I get very attached to yellow cars.

My boys both learned to drive in the yellow Mini. My eldest passed his test within three months of his 17th birthday and my younger son passed his as soon as lessons and tests were allowed again following Covid.

The yellow Mini had some dramas over the years. There was the accident, which eventually led to it setting on fire after a respray at the garage. And the garage claiming it wasn’t their fault… A few months later, it broke down again, because of the fire damage to the engine. It was a mechanical write-off, but we weren’t giving up on it. My husband knows how much I cared for that car, so he did everything he could to ensure it would be up and running again.

Mini, car, 365

Fast forward to 2021 and the passenger side door stopped opening from the outside. Luckily, this was just after its MOT, as I suspected it would be a problem. My car was getting noisier and noisier, which suggested the engine was coming to the end of its useful life, but the bodywork was in excellent order, and it was still my beloved car.

My husband had a plan for it. We would buy a reconditioned engine and spend about £1,000 on bringing it back to life. It was worth it because it would be far cheaper than a new car and could extend its life by two or three years.

But then it went for a service. I made a casual enquiry about fixing the passenger side door.

Apparently it wasn’t an easy job. It required a BMW part, which was £200 before any labour. The mechanic gave me a list of £900’s worth of reasonably urgent works it needed – and that was before the £1,000 replacement engine we’d planned.

The passenger door was an MOT failure waiting to happen. Even I knew I couldn’t justify nearly £2,000 on trying to extend the life of a 2007 car with 160,000 miles on the clock. But hopefully it would run until the MOT in November and we could just get a replacement then. A yellow one, of course.

But Mini stopped making yellow cars a long time ago. I realised that to buy another yellow car would be to buy a crap car. There’s no point replacing one car on its last legs with another car on its last legs.

So I had to take the difficult decision NOT TO GET A YELLOW CAR.

I opted instead for volcanic orange, which is on the yellow side of orange and as close as I was going to get to yellow.

In the meantime, we continued to drive the yellow Mini. My son even drove it up to Birmingham on his own a few times, but my eldest was wary of doing any long journeys in it.

As I drove my son to his exam the other day, he said he didn’t know why his brother worried about going in the car, as it was fine. When I went to pick him up a couple of hours later, I couldn’t get it into gear. This is the sort of thing that happens to me sometimes, as I’m not a good driver. When it happened a second time, I thought I was being a particularly careless driver that day. When it happened a third time, I realised it wasn’t me! We pulled into a service road and my son drove instead. Being that bit stronger, he could get it into gear, but there was definitely a problem.

We made it home, but the car never started again.

The pressure was on to find the orange Mini. We located one in Stratford-upon-Avon, one in Swindon and one in Oxford, all fairly low mileage. We went to look at the one in Stratford and paid a deposit two days later. The next day, with me stuck in my bedroom with Covid, my husband and son went to collect the orange Mini.

It is a lovely car, but it will take some getting used to. When I drive my yellow Mini, everyone waves to me. When I drive my husband’s car, nobody notices me. It will take a while for people to know the orange Mini.

I need to look into getting a checkered roof for it. And then I have to hope that yellow cars come back into fashion again, because in 10 or 15 years’ time, I’ll be needing another new car!

New car, Car, Mini, Orange Mini, Silent Sunday, My Sunday Photo

 

Author: Sarah Mummy

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4 Comments

  1. Your yellow minis are so cute. it sounds like yours was a big part of your life. I didn’t even notice the difference in colour of them both until you mentioned. I thought it was just brighter becuase it’s newer. x

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    • Thank you! That is good to know. It is definitely a yellowish orange! x

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  2. I can’t believe you had the yellow mini that long – I think I remember you getting it! You def need to get the roof done! I take it you don’t fancy stepping away from BMW then as I am sure other brands still make yellow cars.

    Post a Reply
    • I wouldn’t be surprised if you remembered me getting it! It was before my younger son even started secondary school, so it was a long time ago.
      I really like Minis. They’re easy to drive and they look cool. Probably the only other car in yellow is the Fiat 500 and I’ve been told that they’re unreliable.

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