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Sunday, 1 April 2012

Black Betty: A Driving History part 11, 2004 *supercharged* Commodore

We call her "Black Betty".  After many years of denial, I'm now gonna fess up.  I bought this particular commodore for 1 reason.

She's supercharged.  I spoke about that feeling of power that I get everytime I start a car (see the very first Driving History post- the 87 Lebaron).  Well, this car gave me that rush, more powerful than on that first drive.

Acceleration wise, she's pretty quick.  185kw of pure power.  But when you're already doing 100, and there's a big assed road train in front you, maybe driven by my stepson, just plant your foot.  The power is intense as you sink into your seat, blasting past the three trailers and prime mover like they were standing still.  That's what I'm talking about.  Power.  Speed.  Driving taken to the next level.

There were a couple of issues with this car.  The first is, blinded by the power, I proabably paid about $2000 too much for it.  The second, this wonderful engine is married to a 4speed auto.  But then, at the time, I was still fumbling with the intracacies of driving a manual (see a Driving History, the TX5), so the Auto was the probably the best option.

Do I have any really good stories about it?  Well, I have one.  But I wasn't there, it was the fault of The Wife.

Both The Wife and I work 55km from where we live.  There are a number of routes one take to get to work.  Including a short cut.  This short cut will knock 10kms off that, if the road is up to standard, and you don't go too fast.  The Wife used to take this road alot with lines like "Its not that bad," or "The council has just graded the road."

Then one day, she went to work, a little early. And she decided to take the short cut.  Only she was in the habit, as one gets into when one knows the road, of taking it a bit fast.  The commute usually takes about 40 minutes.  But an hour later she hadn't arrived at work.  I had no clue what was going on, because that route has no mobile coverage.

The wife went rocketing down that road, and obviously hit a rock or something because (as we found out later) she punctured the tranny pan.  She said she "heard a big bang" and the car kept going a short distance, then stopped.  She had to wait an hour and a half to get a ride to the nearest town (no mobile coverage, and no one uses the road).  I think she was lucky to have waited only an hour and a half.

The repair cost $400, the tow was extra.  The impact site looked like someone had put a big calibre bullet just above the pan.  And fortunately, the car's computer stopped the car before any damage was done to the transmission itself.

I'm sure it must have given her a fright, but, she still uses the road, though not as often.


  1. now now... lets cut to the truth... The road granted is not real good. BUT it is better than the bloody road up to our house so I figure why not... less traffic no cops(i hate seatbelts)and WTF I like speed.I was mooching, ok flying down the road...its a dirt road and its a rally type feel when your flying along. Anyways, back to the story, I had a shit CD on so I did slow a bit to about 80km/hr from 100 and i decided to change the CD. I was looking at the CD's in the case when I heard this bang.. I thought... fark!!! did i hit a roo??? hope it wasnt a farmer.. looked in my rear view mirror and couldnt see anything so breathed a sigh of relief and continued on thinking damn,, musta been a rock.. about 20 minutes later as the car is climbing out of a creek bed it just dies.. like dies in the arse bad.. wont start... so i gets out thinking damn damn damn.. and sees all this red stain in the dirt then thinks shit shit shit.. how am i gunna explain this to MOTH. (Man Of The House), So anyway, im out in the middle of the bush hot as hell and im thinking aint no way im getting in someones car.. Im just going to ask for a message to get to daughter. By the time a vehicle came along I coulda almost mugged them and without a second thought jumped in his car with a take me to town pleeeeeeese!!!. Talked to roadside service mob and they said be out later on, so I went back and put hazard lights on.. Fkg roadside service went the next day so needless to say battery was flat. I was lucky no one stole my baby,, sheesh not happy. And yea.. MOTH not happy either and Glassy the machanic had great delight telling MOTH about all the bumps and dings under the car... Did put me off driving that way for some time but hey, life is short, live hard,, I go that way still but a bit slower,,,hahahaha And BTW from just past where i hit the rock to where I stopped was a oil stain all the way... oooopppss

    1. sorry,, forgot to add that im the WIFE otherwise known as "she who must be obeyed"... forgot to add my name to the reply above

    2. I'm just named after a morphing insect.

  2. Hey! I found you through the A - Z challenge. I have to admit I know absolutely nothing about cars. But I will say this: I spotted your dog in the post below and he's gorgeous and sounds adorable!

    It's nice to meet you :)

    Nikki – inspire nordic

  3. thanks nikki. He's a real character.

  4. Supercharged sounds good to me! I'm glad more damage wasn't done and that your wife was alright.

    I'm your co-host for the A-to-Z! If you didn't get an email from me the other day, it may have gone in your spam box. Please feel free to contact me via my profile or reply to that email if you need anything or have any questions.

    Shannon at The Warrior Muse, co-host of the 2012 #atozchallenge! Twitter: @AprilA2Z

  5. thanks Shannon. I will have to pop by and visit your site. I'm so glad I stumbled across the challenge, the experience is terrific!