Weddings. Big dresses and white Rollers. Not, it would seem, anymore. Over the last few years at Great Escape Cars we've seen a steady growth in demand for self drive wedding cars. After a flat 2013 - when weddings overall dropped due to that unpopular combination of the numbers 1 and 3 - demand for 2014 self drive wedding cars has literally exploded. This may be because we have more wedding cars than ever or because couples are discovering the flexibility and value offered by self drive hire.
The best way to assess 2014's the most popular wedding cars is to see where customers spend their money. So here are 2014's favourite wedding wheels. With some surprises....
1. HMC Healey
Retro style and V8 power, the ultra rare Healey MkIV butched up the original's style and in the right colour combination - metallic blue over cream - is the perfect wedding motor. The Great Escape Cars Healey is nipping at the heels of our ever-popular E Type convertibles as the wedding car of choice. And those who drive it can see why - it's planted and pointable like a 90s TVR but swoopy and stylish like a 60s classic. And it's not, on any terms a kit car. It's so popular that we've relocated it to our Cotswolds site in the Midlands to make it more accessible.
2. Morris Minor Convertible
If you get your kicks at a more sedate space, then the Morris Minor is for you. The humble Moggy makes a virtue of slow, forcing occupants to unwind and enjoy a more relaxed pace. All the better to enjoy the grins and smiles from passersby elicited by the drop top Minor's Noddy styling. Nice people drive Minors and the car's feel-good, slow-paced character make it perfect for a retro or quirky wedding. It is also practical - that rare thing, a full four seater convertible with high windows to help protect the bridal hair. We have three for hire in Devon, Yorkshire and the Midlands.
3. Jaguar E Type
The evergreen E has to be the ultimate boy's toy. Coupe or convertible, it is the car that gets every wedding guest cooing and smiling, recalling neighbours, relatives and colleagues who Once Had One. The convertible, with its extra wheelbase and easier access, is more bride-friendly and ideal for good weather but the coupe is, in our opinion, the real looker. Whichever you choose, few cars deliver the sheer sense of occasion that being behind the wheel of an E Type delivers. We have five for hire from our Cotswolds, Yorkshire and Devon sites, two coupes and three convertibles.
4. Chevrolet Corvette
If you can't do what the hell you want on your wedding day, when can you ever do what the hell you want? No car throws caution to the wind quite like the loud and proud Stingray Corvette. Ours turns all that to 11 with its combination of brilliant white bodywork and red leather interior. Frankly, we love it. Because there is nothing subtle about the American E Type. It is a big car but a very neatly styled one. It is also surprisingly brilliant to drive - quick, sharp and tenaciously attached to the Tarmac. You can hire ours from our site in Yorkshire near Harrogate.
5. Classic Mini
There was a time, believe it or not, when badging a car as a Mini meant it was actually small, even by the most generous of measures. The original Mini takes diminutive to a new level but it's compact scale hasn't prevented its popularity as a wedding car. Of course, you need the right Mini for a wedding - something understated and true to the original rather than a rally-inspired or big-tyred modified Mini. The Mini is a popular wedding car for couples who want something different, stylish and distinctive. It's also peanuts to hire -£160 for a weekend. We have a classic Mini in the Midlands and two more being restored that will go on our Yorkshire and Devon fleets later this year.
6. Porsche 911
There have been a lot of 911s over the years, as the car has moved with the times to continue appealing to young - and not so young - bucks with big bucks to spend. As a child of the 80s I've always hankered after a wide bodied whale tale in red, naturally, but that's just me. For real life which requires actually driving on public roads, where people will see me, I'd much rather have an earlier car in a more subtle shade. When Porsche extended the 911's wheelbase in 1967 it arguably made a good car great. For stylish metrosexual couples - and the rest of us - there can surely be no better wedding car than one based on one owned by Steve McQueen. Our '69 911 for hire in the Midlands is one such car - a replica of the one he owned and then drove in the brilliant opening sequence to the film Le Mans. It's cool, when cool was a word that really did mean cool.
So there you have it, 2014's favourite wedding cars, at least from our fleet of 60 cars. A wedding, of course, is the perfect way to sample a car you've always wanted to drive. Although we admit there are cheaper excuses. We have developed new wedding hire packages that make it simpler and easier to hire our cars and fit them into complicated wedding logistics. We offer flexible collection and return times and a nationwide delivery and collection service on our own dedicated transport.
To find out more about our wedding cars call 01527 893733 or visit http://www.greatescapecars.co.uk.