Categories: Column - Wat is jouw vakantieliefde? Die van mij heb ik net gekocht: een Lada Niva News

Column - What is your holiday love? I just bought mine: a Lada Niva


Many holiday memories for me are linked to cars. I can still vividly remember the black Pontiac Firebird, which was parked opposite us at a Swiss campsite. I must have been about six years old. But more recent travels in adult life are also laced with car memories. In the United States I fell in love with a Chrysler 300C, in Java we hobbled – with a thousand other tourists – in a caravan of old Land Cruisers to the base of the Bromo volcano, to get a glimpse of its rumbling crater. But my sweetest holiday car memories came from Ukraine, Georgia and Russia. There a love for rickety old Soviet cars blossomed.

My parents wanted a Lada and I did an internship at Skoda

Nor can I explain why cars from Eastern Europe attract me so much. My parents once considered buying a Lada 1200 Combi. They had my approval, and I still feel the disappointment when it turned out to be a used Ford Escort. I completed my internship at the automotive technical school in Apeldoorn with the then importer of Skoda, exactly at the time when Volkswagen had taken over the Czech manufacturer. And during my travels through the former Soviet states, a rosy glow has developed across my field of vision for Volga, Zaporozhetsen, Ladas and Bukhankas.

In a moment of weakness, I gave in: for a Lada Niva

I know: it's better not to allow holiday romances into your everyday life. That can only fail. But in a faint, rosy-colored moment, I gave in anyway. I probably said 'yes!' way too quickly when I went to look at a Lada Niva.

The car comes from Lithuania, has served at border control and has barely 60,000 kilometers on the clock. That sounds good, right? Incidentally, the seller had his doubts about the mileage. He told me that customs officials in Lithuania get a bonus if they have traveled enough kilometers on an annual basis. Presumably they have cheated with the mileage, and the counter in the Niva should indicate much less.

Let me assume it turns out disastrous, then it's not that bad

There is no Dutch registration on the car yet. While you are reading this column, I hope to be able to offer the Niva for inspection soon – after some technical love. Did I make the right choice, or did I overlook many pitfalls due to blind love? Let me just assume that a re-acquaintance with this old holiday love could turn out to be disastrous. Hopefully, then the practice will only go well. Have you ever succumbed to an automotive holiday flame?



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Dreamer is what I am, but unlike many, I struggle to make my dreams come true. I own, seo, admin and site editor. I am a father, married, Christian, Northeastern/Brazil and Libran. I love cars <3

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