What Car?

Need to buy a car but it seems much more complicated here and the criteria are different than the UK. Due to a lack of investment during the Soviet period of occupation, the roads compared to the UK are pretty bad. If you suffer from sea sickness then you need to take pills when you are driving. In Riga, the capital city, many of the main roads have huge tyre grooves, due to years and years of heavy goods vehicles travelling along them. Sometimes trying to get out of these grooves is downright dangerous particularly when trying to overtake. I’ve just realised why so few drive in inside lanes where all the HGV’s and coaches/buses travel. Oh, forgot to mention that many roads in Riga are made from cobblestones and uneven ones at that. To make matters worse the tram lines run down the centre of the roads which are uneven at the best of times, and on cobbled roads they tend to slope towards the pavement. Downright dangerous when trying to get out of the way of a tram which has right of way.

Out of Riga only the main roads have an asphalt surface. Off the main carriageways most of the roads have a rough sandstone gravel surface which in the summer creates clouds of dust and is incredibly noisy as the gravel hits your wheel arches.

So What Car? Can’t really afford or justify a luxury 4×4 such as Range Rover, so thinking of a crossover such as a Toyota Rav4 or VW Tiguan.

Any thoughts or ideas would be appreciated. Must be economical to drive and be in region of 140 bhp, so driving back to the UK will be easy and not too costly.

Word of warning to anyone thinking of driving to Latvia. In the UK I’ve been stopped and booked for speeding 4 times in 43 years of driving. In Latvia and Lithuania I’ve been stopped for speeding 4 times in the 3 periods (5 weeks) of time I’ve spent here. You just have to know the rules as there are so few speed limit signs. Luckily I’ve not been booked yet or had to pay a fine. Just tell them I don’t speak Latvian/Lithuanian and I don’t have any cash on me. I suspect the cash wouldn’t end up in government coffers.


This entry was posted in Latvia, Riga and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to What Car?

  1. Sue Charlton says:

    Will an updated satnav give you the speed limits on the roads?


    • aedoxsey says:

      I just probably need to update the Latvian maps.


    • Santa says:

      Hello Endrew:D My husband definitely suggest You Rav4, VW absolutely cannot survive on our roads for mor then a year. Do you want to buy a new car or used? In both ways You can/should go to Toyota center, they have new and used cars, it”s much safer to bay there because you can be sure that even used car will be in a good condition. At least you will know about the problems, if there is some.

      p.s. sorry my writing skills are poor


  2. Jane says:

    Drive carefully then xxxx


  3. Madara says:

    My parents (in Latvia) have Toyota Yaris. Small but biggish same time and very good on petrol. They go countryside once a week at least and it’s not bad for those roads.


  4. Santa says:

    http://www.kartes.lv/?wp=137&lg=2 speed limit map you can find here, . How to find us?
    Address: Krasta iela 105A, Riga, LV-1019
    Phone: (+371) 67317540
    Fax: (+371) 67317541
    E-mail: kartes@kartes.lv


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