Whether you are a loyal reader of this blog or not, you must have somewhere inside you some kind of interest in cars. Many times, you have heard or uttered the common phrase “I love cars, it’s my passion”, with all its variations you can imagine. After a while, my mind opened (“wisdom” say old people like me) and to a large extent I realized that under the same motto, you can put several acceptances. Not only do we not have the same car but we also don’t have the same passion (sorry Alex). So I dared to dig a little into the subject, let’s discuss love.
A safe space warning : bad intentions and mild prejudices are present in this other post. Go straight to the conclusion if you are allergic to it.
The car is just one accessory among others. An external symbol of wealth (or similar wealth), the car’s sole purpose is to establish social status, appearance or to compensate for a lack of personality. Whether it’s a Ferrari or a GTi, it doesn’t matter more than jewelry or an infinity pool. The manager hangs out at his favorite spots, whether it’s Monte Carlo’s most sophisticated restaurant or a clandestine race gathering at 2 a.m. (he doesn’t participate). It is difficult to find in the installer a loyal car fan. All are interchangeable as long as he can see a way to flatter himself. Excessive customization, often in dubious taste, sometimes completes this unpleasant picture.
Enthusiasm rating: 1/10
A young influencer
For anyone born after 1998, social media is a second brain or an escape from dull office work. Because of its widespread interest, the car has allowed some people to escape relative obscurity and leave the parental home without obtaining their bachelor’s degree. The charismatic young man is characterized by speaking fast but loud enough to reach his camera’s microphone. He often runs, goes around each car, trying more or less serious details. Models that came out before 2015 do not speak to him and the car is very valued. Unfortunately, more interested in access than the car, he’s rarely a big fan and will quickly tire of his newfound passion when he realizes that not everyone is a Shmee150.
Enthusiasm rating: 3/10
Overwhelmed with enthusiasm, visiting everything the internet has to offer in terms of groups, forums, dedicated websites, converting people around him, uneducated people live in a car… but ultimately they don’t know much about it. Not falling into any other category already mentioned, it seems that his real passion is to have one. He will be the first to run behind the Murcielago but he will ask you on the way back “What was the Ferrari?”. He will be happy with the Max / Lewis duel but he doesn’t know who Mika Häkkinen is. A little annoying at first, non-readers are often endearing, as their enthusiasm is contagious and as they are eager to fill their gaps. Come to think of it, we were all uneducated once.
Enthusiasm rating: 5/10
He started his activity with only one goal to keep records of the cars he met. As time passed and the Internet grew, he wanted to put an impact on his photos, so that they would be more than photo albums. It is clear that he is in the networks, he moved from Facebook to Instagram and forgot Flickr for a long time. In search of that photo, he travels through the scenes and streets of the most beautiful cities in Europe and hopes to be the only one there. Eternally dissatisfied, he buys more and more expensive equipment (as if he bought the skill) and approaches the owners for personal shots. If he has the patter and enough technical skill (let’s talk about talent), he can make a living from it. What interests him is about the entire design of cars as we only see in his production. Sometimes we even forget that the important thing is cars and not pictures.
Enthusiasm rating: 6/10
If he generally appreciates the charms of the fun car, the hedonist cannot imagine his love of the car without sharing it in many social experiences. A member of the club, working in dedicated groups, is always ready to park his car in the parking lot of the common gathering or on the elegant lawns of Chantilly. For the hedonist, passion for cars is found at the wheel and in others. He travels the road, the road book by his side, in a more or less organized procession. Every weekend or vacation photo will see his mountain adorning the landscape. A car is about life, whether it’s a VW Combi or a Porsche 911.
Enthusiasm rating: 7/10
The sports one
The cars are interesting but what matters is when they are lined up on the circuit and fighting for victory. From the 24 Hours of Le Mans to the Monaco Grand Prix via the 1000 Lakes Rally, the sportsman is defiant the team and its many estimates. From the Hamilton / Verstappen battle, he will always choose Senna. The athlete gives a distracted ear to street cars, it’s only interesting if they sponsor a competitive team. 95% of athletes are tifosi, of course.
Enthusiasm rating: 8/10
Taking pictures and knowing the full history of Ferrari visiting cars in their hands is not interesting. The main attraction of the car for the mechanic is obviously to disassemble, reassemble, fix, maintain the object of his passion. Adjusting carburetors, calibrating cams, controlling damping, updating brakes: the work is many and takes more time than just driving. Modern cars do not like him very much: a lot of electronics, very integrated, not enough smell of gasoline and oil. On the other side of the coin, we sometimes wonder if the passion would not be the same for locomotives or any mechanics to play with.
Enthusiasm rating: 8/10
From the profile next to the mechanic, just change “tinker” to “car”. His life is decorated in pink when he takes the wheel, the glitter comes when he can do it on the German autobahn, the circuit or, for the complete original, in the Nürburgring. The Green Hell is his temple, his favorite place for weekends and even holidays. His passion is managing trajectories and choosing the best tires to constantly improve his times. The tester is more interested in the larger versions of the classic sports cars and doesn’t even think of buying one without the option of connecting it to the list. The 911 GT3 RS was built for him but he regrets that many bought it to parade around town with such a gem.
Enthusiasm rating: 8/10
Over time, he created a passion within his passion. For the uninitiated, this is all just metal on 4 wheels but to him, the model or brand trumps all. Be it Mercedes or Brabus, he cannot be defeated by his favorite manufacturer or model. Even those who might consider themselves knowledgeable about cars are left behind. It identifies each chassis number by a line on the left door. A professional navigates accounting packages better than a manufacturer’s CFO. He corrects the posts of the pretentious community managers who know social network but not their mark. He will end up writing a book, in 4 or 5 years, about the next 30 years.
Enthusiasm rating: 9/10
The principle of accumulation is a widely shared human habit. The only problem with cars: they take up a lot of space and are very expensive. However, the collector lives his interest in possession and the possibility to enjoy his own cars. Taking a variety of forms, the collections can be mono-brand, mono-era, mono-model or a happy mix of anything and everything as long as the car conveys an emotional model. Whether he shares or jealously keeps his collection a secret, the collector devotes time and resources to his passion. We value them more because they often share, without saying so.
Enthusiasm rating: 9/10
There it is finished. By way of conclusion, let us humbly admit that these few caricatures are inspired by real events and that each of us has a few percentage points of each profile in it. Enjoy!
Photo credits: Thomas D, Ugo Missana, Pierre Clémence