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Let's imagine...
By Martin Pollard
I have a car - a trusty Nissan Space-Wagon, which has served me well for the past five years. It has carried myself and my family around without trouble through many exciting journeys, always there, always reliable.

But the engine has now done so many miles that it needs to be changed this summer. The car's chassis is still in great condition and is perfectly suited for carrying my family in comfort, so I have decided just to replace the engine. But the engine I am replacing is a unique of a kind, so I have had to select from a wide range of different models and engine sizes.

After a lot of thought, I decided on a nice fast, powerful, Italian sports engine...the thinking behind it being that my nice family motor will now be able to out-race the other cars as I jostle for position on the highways and bring me out at the front of the queue.

So I send my car into the garage for the re-fitting, and on my arrival back home I receive a phone call from garage saying that my new engine will not fit into my nice family motor. Unfortunately, my Italian Sports engine is not compatible with my family car suspension and gearbox, and refuses to work. But I am so keen to get this new engine inside my family vehicle that I decide to replace my suspension and gearbox (the parts that have helped my family ride in comfort over all these years), so I instruct the engineer to pull out all the incompatible parts, and replace them just to get that new engine fitted...I just want to feel that power and acceleration, and see the surprised faces of those driving alongside me as my "family run-about" streaks past them.

So I am now left waiting for delivery of my upgraded mean machine...but have I made the right decision?

What started out as the replacement of just the engine has now ended up as a major overhaul. Will the new suspension still understand the needs of my family and carry them smoothly and comfortably as we journey on, up and over the bumps and potholes you find on the highway? Will the gearbox grind and grate against the weight of my family sitting in the back? What if my new suspension and gearbox itself is not compatible with original family chassis? Will I keep changing parts until all I am left with is a sleek red Ferrari, with no room for my family at all?

But what if everything goes well and to plan, I will now have a super charged, turbo-injected family machine. Ready to take me and my family further and quicker than ever before, I will miss my old reliable engine...but, hey, check out the badge on the engine, the smoothness of the gear change and wipe the dust from your eyes as I burn past you!

Problem now is, my car is now a prime target for car long till someone steals it from me?