WHEN you have had a lifelong passion for driving, what would be the point in slowing down?
That is the message from 99-year-old Adam McLeod, from Gosport – who is still on the roads in his Vauxhall Astra.
He got in touch with The News after reading about Reg Morris, who is still driving at 94.
Adam initially passed his driving test in 1938, and has owned more than 40 cars in his lifetime, buying them cheap at auctions and selling them on a few years later.
He says that he has been a car fanatic ever since he was a small boy – and that passion has remained with him throughout his life.
He said: ‘My first car was a little Austin Seven, which I bought for the equivalent for £50.
‘I suspect it may be worth quite a fair bit more than that today.
‘Since then I have been through more than 40 different cars.
‘I would buy them at auctions as cheap as I could and then pass them on after using them for a few years.
‘The reason I did this is that I have an incredible passion for motoring, and wanted to drive as many different cars as I could in my lifetime.
‘I would sell most of them for the same price I bought them for, so that other people could enjoy them too.’
Of all the cars he has driven, Adam says that Audi is his favourite manufacturer, and that he loves how they feel to drive.
He said: ‘I have owned an Audi and it was an absolute joy to drive – it was so quiet and unbelievably smooth as well. I never owned anything too fast; with the amount of traffic and the speed limits in the country, I don’t see the point in having a sports car – you’ll never realise the car’s potential.
Mr McLeod also uses his car a lot more than just going to the shops.
He said: ‘I actually did a drive of about 200 miles recently – that was a fantastic drive and I felt more than comfortable doing it.
‘I absolutely love driving so I think that is what keeps me going on longer journeys like that.
‘For me, it is the independence that you get from driving that I enjoy – just because I am 99 doesn’t mean I need to rely on people for things, I can still do it myself.’
‘So long as you take things at a safe pace, you can go pretty much anywhere.’
At the age of 99, Adam believes he may be one of, if not the oldest driver in the region.
He said: ‘If there is anyone my age or older who also drives, I would certainly be interested in meeting them some time.’