The day has come! We have a car!! It is over the specified engine size for the competition by 0.1 litres or 100cc. This isn't bothering us too much cos we'll just pay the £100 penalty since its all for charity anyway. Yes yes! We know that its not in the spirit of the competition but it is 28 years old which gives it a 2 year lead on anyone in our team so it is certainly classed as an old banger! It also gained a close second in the prestigious BBC crap cars award. Our previous choice of car the Daihatsu Move only made 27th place!
Our little beauty (Barney) is a 1980 Austin Allegro 3 Series with a 1.1L engine. Its done around 86,000 miles and we paid £265 for it. We were hoping to find a car for free but time was pushing on and we fell in love with Barney. You might be wondering why he's called Barney, we had to honour the previous (and only) owners who thought it was such an old banger that any day the floor would fall out and they'd have to run along Flintstones style!
To our knowledge we haven't found anyone who is crazy enough to embark on a voyage of this length with their Allegro. This is probably for a good reason! Allegros have taken part in the Dakar Rally and a couple of other charity rallies but none have driven as far as Mongolia! Dakar is a mere 4000 miles from London and easily managed by an Allegro. Some other crazy cats drove their Allegro all the way to Tashkent (Uzbekistan). Good effort guys but still its a good 1500 miles straight line distance from Ulaanbaatar!
Are we mad? Yes. Yes we are! But there are no losers in what we're trying to do! We raise a load of cash for Charity, have a laugh doing it, give some guy in Mongolia a car and give the British Leyland haters a kick up the jacksie!
If you want to read more about the Austin Allegro and its eventful history click here