Wed Oct 26 11:19:33 SAST 2016

The Lumina ain't for the kids

By Bruce Fraser | Jan 13, 2010 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

EVER noticed how some of the good things in life come with an age restriction?

EVER noticed how some of the good things in life come with an age restriction?

You have to be 18 or older to order a silky smooth Jack Daniels over the bar; you have to be 18 or older to savour the aroma of a genuine Cuban cigar and you have to be 18 or older to view Paris Hilton's latest bedroom antics.

But there is an excellent reason for this law!

Can you imagine a bunch of 12-year-olds getting together during the school hols and parking off with a couple of "hot" videos while putting their feet up and enjoying a couple of "shots" and a puff of the good stuff while mom and dad are hard at work?

It's bad enough that 18-year-olds can get away with it, but 12-year-olds? Eish!

Which somehow brings me to the Chevrolet Lumina SS - because this vehicle should have some sort of age restriction.

Not because it is dangerous but because it is no vehicle for a novice.

With a beast of a 6,-litre V8 engine lurking under the bonnet it definitely takes a bit of getting used to.

First up you have the stiff clutch pedal. After a week of driving the Lumina I swear my one leg is bigger than the other after the workout it got.

Next is the gearshift. Now unless you have the biceps of Mike Tyson forget about trying to change gears in this baby. Trying to get from first gear to second is like arm wrestling a WWE superstar.

OK, so I'm stretching it a bit, but you get what I mean.

But once you get going, make sure you're strapped in nice and tight for a ride to remember.

The sporty leather seats are designed to go with the roll of the vehicle - and the electronic stability programme (ESP) that the vehicle is fitted with corrects the vehicle when entering a skid zone.

The cabin's storage space is ample and the small compartment designed for your sunglasses comes in handy.

Coming in at R415320 you expect a vehicle to have all the bells-and-whistles and the Lumina obliges handsomely.

Rear park assist, ABS brakes, electric windows (front and back), cruise control. The list goes on and on ... and on! Name it and it is there.

But for the motor enthusiast who buys a vehicle such as the Lumina, they are not doing it for the excellent air-con system or booming hi-fi.

No, they buy it purely for what lies in front of the driver and under the bonnet.

Pushing out 270KW and a massive 530NM this is a serious muscle car. Sure there are faster sedans on the road in the 0-100 km/h stakes but where the Lumina comes in to its own is the huge amount of torque on offer.

Put foot in 3rd or 4th gear and in a flash the scenery is but a blur as you are forced back into your seat.

It's that instant power that is its main attraction and even when cruising at 130kmh your pulling less than 2000rpm.

All that power does come at a price and I have to admit that it's pretty thirsty.

If you do a lot of round-town driving expect to see the fuel gauge dropping quicker than an Australian - where the vehicle comes from - denying of having any convicts in his family tree!


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