Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Beater Road Test: Delorean

Friend of Beaterblog and Waterford hot-shoe Merritt Scott Collins shares her thoughts on the most '80s car of them all:

It was well-worth the 29-year wait to finally see The Wall performed live. Roger Waters exceeded my wildest expectations.

Driving a DeLorean? Not even close.

I set out in the DeLorean with high hopes. It was a sexy car in its time that reeked of money, power, and cocaine smugglers. This car commanded a $10k premium in its day. And that was 30 years ago. So it had to be awesome, right?!

I hummed a few bars of “Keep On Lovin’ You” to get into that 1981 mood and turned the key.

It didn’t take long to discover that I was, indeed, able to travel through time in it…unfortunately, it was only one minute at a time, just like everyone else. Heck, in the DeLorean, it actually felt like a minute and ten seconds. The darn thing accelerates like a bus. My WRX has more get-up-and-go.

And was that a beer cooler in between the driver and passenger seats? No, just a big bulky…encasement. No center console for mints, maps or parking meter change. No cup holder, either.

And don’t get me started about reverse gear. I pushed the gearshift, I muscled…the car kept inching forward. Thank goodness my mechanic’s number is on speed dial. Pull UP on the gearshift, you say? You gotta be kidding. Yet another of England’s fine contributions to powertrain engineering. God save the Queen.

Okay, the stainless steel body is still cool. Futuristic even by today’s standards. The gull-wing doors are, admittedly, fun to play with. Just add a pair of white Ray-Bans, a Palm Beach tan, subtract 20 lbs. and 20 years, and I could’ve been a rich guy’s trophy wife headed to lunch at the Club. I sure felt cool driving it. I mean, people stared as I drove by, Then again, people also stare when there’s broccoli in your teeth, so maybe that’s not the best gauge of “cool.”

My conclusion? Don't be so gullible, McFly. Park the DeLorean, buff it with a diaper, stare at it a while, and drive the Porsche 924 Turbo instead. And let the 80s rest in peace.


  1. I had a crappy land lord in college who claimed to work for DMC prepping cars off the boat from Northern Ireland. He claimed the build quality was lacking and each car was extensively checked and reworked before being shipped.

  2. I hate it when a pin prick of reality bursts a perfectly good fantasy balloon. Well written Merritt, I am glad you suffered the disappointment and not me.

  3. I think that the worst part of the Delorean is that 88MPH is off the end of the dial.