Alan has a new wagon! He traded in his Golf GTI for this shiny Jeep Grand Cherokee, which is about twice the size and will allow him to carry a thousand tons of sports gear and go on longer journeys in more comfort.
It has a 5.7 litre V8 Hemi engine, making about 350 horsepower. Yeah, baby!
And see that handsome posterior? Press a button and the boot/trunk lid opens and closes automatically... or you can just lift the glass by itself if you just want to throw something in.
There's even a chance I might get to drive it a little more often than the old car. See this little button on the lower part of the door? It's a seat and mirror and radio and everything else memory! Which means Alan only has to press it to get his positions back; always a bug bear.
I have driven it a little, around the neighbourhood. It's BIG. and LONG. You look in the rear view mirror, and see a car shaped tunnel stretching behind you, across a few time zones.
Talking of looking behind you, it has a reversing camera! It lowers the mirrors, too, so you can see what is immediately behind you. This is great for making sure there are no cats in the vicinity.
It has illuminated cup holders! And little lights in the doors, so you can find things in the pitchy black.
It has real wood inside, that actually looks like wood! Alan thinks too many car manufacturers specialise in making real wood look like the finest imitation plastic. Jeep didn't do this.
It has a heated steering wheel! And an automatic full beam light dipper, although Alan thinks it doesn't react quite as fast as he'd like.
Remember when cars came with heated drivers seats and everyone thought this was great? This beast has heated seats in the front and rear. The front seats also have cooling fans in, so your butt stays chilled. In Texas, this is a Wonderful Thing. All the little holes in the seat leather allow airflow to be drawn through the seat.
It has a navigation system all built in, which knows the way to the pub!
And plenty of music from satellite or MP3 or CD or a 40GB hard drive...
And fancy suspension that goes up and down depending on terrain.
So we're pretty happy with this shiny new behemoth. Stay tuned for further adventures :-)