Six months ago I bought a Land Rover Discovery 4 with seven seats (or actually I bought two, but the 2001 Discovery Series II is strictly reserved for the dirt). We’ve had our eyes out for a seven seater for some time - having three little girls on the same back row seat has proven to be a rather explosive mixture - but I must admit for me having some geographic distribution wasn’t the leading argument in moving forward with the British beast.

XC90

No, if having a seven seater family car had been the main driver, I probably would've picked a Volvo XC90. Truth is, I've always had a thing for Land Rover and this presented itself as the perfect opportunity to pull the trigger. There was only one problem: welcoming the Discovery meant saying goodbye to my magic blue metallic '05 Volvo V70 2.4D.

My Land Rover Discovery 4 ready to get its feet wet.

My Land Rover Discovery 4 ready to get its feet wet.

This is why: because my love for cars has been shooting rather big holes in our family budget, I've promised my wife I'd get rid of the Volvo as a sign of good faith. Obviously, she's right in marking the boundaries of my ever expanding collection, as the Discovery weighs about as much as the total car fleet of the Principality of Liechtenstein, and we've had to close a second mortgage to come up with the monthly road tax payments.

"as I took on a macho Kawasaki rider in a traffic light sprint"

Maybe just a few more weeks...

But I can't do it. I just can't get myself to sell the V70. Recently, I've washed it from the outside and inside in an attempt to get it ready for a market sale. Twice, as a matter of fact. Afterwards, it just stands there, ready for a photoshoot that's meant to seduce a future owner and all I can think about is how pristine it looks. Maybe I should drive it for a few more weeks, I hear myself saying. This is been going on for months now.

Last night I suddenly realized why I'm having so much trouble saying goodbye to my Swede: over the past ten years there's always been a V70 to accompany us. Our first one, a 1998 Classic, which had already travelled earth's circumference ten times over, was there when we drove our first born daughter home from the hospital in an oversized baby car seat.

That side profile!

That side profile!

In the second, a black 2.5T with 200 horsepower, that same daughter was crowing with joy as I took on a macho Kawasaki rider in a traffic light sprint and won (only in the first 100 meters, but hey who's counting). And in our present V70, the one looking like a million dollars in the photo above, we've crossed large parts of Europe with our party of five - assuming we were able to cram three girls into their car seats before sunset.

But I'm not letting my nostalgia get the better of me anymore. It's high time I kept my promise and allow the Volvo a life after Niels' Garage. Yes, this is it. Without a doubt. Tomorrow I'll kick things off with a thorough wash.

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