It’s been 21 years since the release of ‘Need For Speed: Underground’ and local financial advisor, Garrett Henry (39) is starting to realise that his teenage automotive aspirations might not be that realistic.

The Betoota Heights based father-of-three drives a VW Passat, in the back of his mind, he always assumed that by this stage of adulthood he’d be driving a kitted up compact Japanese street racer.

“I mean the Passat goes alright” he sighs.

“It’s from the seperate NMS (New Midsize Sedan) line. So it goes well for fuel and and boot space. But these aren’t the type of features that used to excite me as a young man”

As a student of the golden era in Playstation racing games, as well as the the Fast & The Furious film franchise, Garrett harbours a perhaps pointless but in-depth encyclopedic-like knowledge of both the illegal and street-legal early-2000s import scene.

“The V-dub can’t drift” he admits.

“Don’t tell the missus but I took it down to the Betoota Ponds industrial estate when she was at her sisters with the kids last month. Even in the rain, I couldn’t really send it”

Like many middle class Australian men his age, Garrett’s late teens and early twenties were spent drag racing in the virtual back alleys and discrete concrete spillways of the fictional Olympic City – a cityscape based on certain suburbs in Florida, Los Angeles and Tokyo.

It’s because of these priceless memories that Garrett always told himself the sole purpose of graduating university and eventually obtaining employment in a well-paid white collar sector, was to eventually get his hands on a Skyline GT-R V-Spec with neon lights that match the paint job.

The fact that his now day-to-day vehicle is German-made D-segment family wagon, paints a sore contrast to what he thought he’d be taking to the streets with when he finally earned enough money to drive whatever he wanted.

But with the rise of EVs, and his kids outgrowing even the family wagon, Garrett’s dreams of one day spending his evenings racing Asian gangsters for cash in a Costco car park are looking more and more less likely.

“I don’t even know if you can attach an underglow kit to the Vee dub” he groans.

“But it fits two baby seats and has racks for mountain bikes. So it’s practical”

Garrett’s pensive frown turns into a smirk.

“For now”


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