Ownership, 26 years in the making
In July 2022 I picked up the car I had to ring my local Suzuki dealer about, in 1996, after driving past and seeing one up on ramps out the front. I was stopped in my tracks by the Vitara-based targa-topped X-90, but couldn’t afford it at the time.
I’ve kept an eye out for X-90s for over a decade and come close to buying many times, but things never worked out.
They did this week: after selling
my Land Rover, what should pop up on Gumtree? An X-90 with a low price, some dents but a seemingly strong engine.
I rang the owner in northern NSW and it had been in his shed for 4 years, not on the road. He bought it locally, but never got stuck into it.
My daughter joined me to look at it, leaving it idling for quite a few minutes, without any cooling problems. The roof panels were out, as was the driver’s glass due to a problem with the window regulator. So it wasn’t perfect – I figured if I could look past the dents, it seemed like a good buy.
After a test drive on the front lawn to test the brakes and agreeing on a price, we discovered that an unregistered vehicle permit wasn’t a quick online form like in Queensland – I had to line up at a “Service NSW” shopfront for one. Thankfully, they’re open on Saturday morning. The permit itself cost a fraction of the Queensland charge, so the wait was worth it.
With the permit on paper, it was time to drive 165km home. Clouds were rolling in, so I put the glass panels back in the roof – and then discovered a nasty bit of rust on the trim of one. There’s also a tiny bit of rust on the passenger side C-pillar.
As I left the driveway, the engine made a bit of a racket, but after some fresh fuel and running time it drove home just fine.
The window will be the first order of business, to seal up the interior.
I’m not sure I’ll be keeping the “sexy lady” devil and angel mudflap adornments. They were already out of date, 26 years ago.