Amid the florid shapes and colours that are the trademark of most of today’s cars, it cuts a distinguished figure and I’m pleased to be getting exclusive use of it for the next two days.
It is warmed up, fuelled and ready to go, but, as we motor out of town with smooth six-cylinder dignity towards the 10:30am coffee stop at Entrevaux, I still feel slightly chastened by Vauxhall PR manager Simon Hucknall’s comment the evening before.
When I suggested that a Ventora felt out of context on the French Riviera, he said: “Yes, but hasn’t it got just as much right to drive on these roads as anything else?”
I had to agree, but somehow it still feels as if the scenery is being back-projected and I’m some mute ITC henchman who will shortly have a punch-up with Jason King behind some potted palms.
In fact, the Ventora was a favourite in Department S, usually driven by King’s sidekick Stewart Sullivan.