Ford, on the road to freedom

 

 

Most youngsters have their heroes. They can be living (think sport stars such as Lionel Messi and Caster Semenya), or fictitious (Batman and Captain Marvel). Or it could be a motor vehicle.

Cape Town-based radio technical producer Brett Kannemeyer only ever idolised one kind of motor vehicle — Ford.

“As young boys, we admired Fords, particularly Ford Escorts. To us, those cars represented freedom and independence.”

Then Kannemeyer decided to do something about it. He joined the Ford family. Ignoring more modern models, he wanted something classic, something that made a statement. A car that would turn heads.

“Three years ago I got my hands on a 1976 Ford Escort Mk2. It was literally an old lady’s car. It belonged to my friend’s grandmother who only ever drove it to church. It sounds cheesy, but that’s exactly what happened,” he gushes.


Kannemeyer chases freedom and the excitement of the open road. His gas-guzzling dream car has taken him up and down the Cape Peninsula, and has turned its wheels on national roads.

“The only thing is the car doesn’t have any air conditioning. So when it is hot, I have to open the two side windows. And that breeze is the only thing that’s there to cool you down,” he says. “And it’s loud too. The radio often has to compete with the sound of the engine. And the people in the back seat? I can’t hear them talking.”

It’s attention 29-year-old Kanne-meyer wants, and it’s attention he gets. Maybe the ego of a young man peacocking his way through life.

“Not a day goes by without me standing at a robot and someone giving me the thumbs up. I also get so many offers from people to buy her. It makes me feel proud.”

But like all Peter Pans, Kannemeyer realises he too must grow up. Having welcomed his first child, Isla, into the world in July, priorities have changed; he may not be able to keep his custard-coloured carrier for long.

“Safety has become a big issue for me. While my car looks beautiful, there’s little safety features. All there is is a belt strap bolted to the interior of the car. I don’t think it will save me, I don’t think it could save my family,” he says. “That car came out in the 70s. Back then safety and comfort wasn’t the most important thing. It was about getting from point A to B.”

So what will he drive next?

“I’m in the market for a BMW E46. It’s a daddy’s car. Comfortable, reliable and safe. But I’m going to miss her. The way she turns heads. But with my new baby girl, I would trade the world just to know that Isla is safe and comfortable.”

Subscribe to the M&G

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever.

The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years, and we’ve survived right from day one thanks to the support of readers who value fiercely independent journalism that is beholden to no-one. To help us continue for another 35 future years with the same proud values, please consider taking out a subscription.

Lester Kiewit
Lester Kiewit
Lester Kiewit is a Reporter, Journalist, and Broadcaster.

Related stories

Semenya’s long run for justice ends

World Athletics, in its pursuit of Semenya, has destroyed anything resembling fairness. The waters have been polluted, leaving future generations to wade through a set of rules that make sense to very few people.

‘Wrong side of history’: Caster Semenya’s CAS appeal shot down

South Africa’s star Olympic athlete may well have run out of legal options after latest loss in Swiss tribunal

To fight Covid-19, we must fight intellectual property, trade and investment rules

These restrictions must be overturned or ignored because they are limiting the production and importing of essential medical equipment such as ventilators

LISTEN: Lockdown isn’t designed for kids with extra needs

The department of basic education is providing online resources for learners during the lockdown. But, once again, children with special-education needs are left out

Apartheid criminals still at large

Corporations and banks that aided the apartheid regime have not been brought to book, so they continue to act with impunity

​Eskom will be fixed, service delivery improved, Ramaphosa promises at ANC 108

ANC president says only his party can improve lives, as Northern Cape residents lament their struggles in South Africa’s sparsest province
Advertising

Subscribers only

The shame of 40 000 missing education certificates

Graduates are being left in the lurch by a higher education department that is simply unable to deliver the crucial certificates proving their qualifications - in some cases dating back to 1992

The living nightmare of environmental activists who protest mine expansion

Last week Fikile Ntshangase was gunned down as activists fight mining company Tendele’s expansions. Community members tell the M&G about the ‘kill lists’ and the dread they live with every day

More top stories

The high road is in harm reduction

While the restriction of movement curtailed the health services for people who use drugs in some parts of the world, it propelled other countries into finding innovative ways to continue services, a new report reveals

Khaya Sithole: Tsakani Maluleke’s example – and challenge

Shattering the glass ceiling is not enough, the new auditor general must make ‘live’ audits the norm here in SA

State’s wage freeze sparks apoplexy

Public sector unions have cried foul over the government’s plan to freeze wages for three years and have vowed to fight back.

‘Veteran’s stripes’ vs ‘kind and fair’

This weekend the Democratic Alliance will choose between two starkly different visions for its future
Advertising

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…

The best local and international journalism

handpicked and in your inbox every weekday