Drivers who fill their cars with expensive ‘superfuels’ and expect to see big economy gains should think again, according to a report by What Car?.
Real-world tests were carried out for What Car? by the AA’s former senior research engineer, Peter de Nayer. In these tests, high-octane premium fuels including BP Ultimate, Shell V-Power, Esso Supreme and Total Excellium performed little or no better than their cheaper equivalents, in spite of costing around 7% more per litre.
“Our tests show that premium fuels are an unnecessary expense with no major fuel economy benefit,” said What Car? editor, Steve Fowler.
“The verdict is still out on whether superfuels prolong engine life, as fuel manufacturers claim. Nonetheless, even using the fuel companies’ own figures, you’re unlikely to travel 7% further on a tank of fuel for a 7% increase in your fuel bill.”
The top-performing fuel in What Car?’s tests was Sainsbury’s 97-octane fuel, which delivered 0.5 mpg more than its 95-octane fuel in real terms that means just 6 miles more per tank.
“Unless the prices of these superfuels come down, there are far easier and cheaper ways of reducing your fuel consumption and your car’s emissions,” continued Steve Fowler. “By changing your driving style, anticipating the road ahead and sticking to the speed limit, you can make fuel savings for free!”
What Car?’s Top Tips for more economical and greener driving are:
* Change your driving style – don’t use the accelerator like a switch be gentle and don’t over-rev the engine. Allow more time for your journey, too.
* Lose weight – don’t leave heavy items in your car that you don’t need and remove roof racks and roof boxes when you’re not using them.
* Look after your car – a properly maintained car with correctly inflated tyres will use less fuel.
* Switch It off – If you’re stuck in traffic, switch your engine off. And don’t use energy-sapping features such as air-con if you don’t need to.
* Anticipation – reading the road and traffic conditions will enable you to drive more smoothly, helping economy and your passengers’ constitution!
* Stick to the speed limit – driving at the legal limit or just below and selecting the highest gear possible without letting the engine labour will pay dividends.
* Leave the car at home – an engine is at its most inefficient when cold, so don’t use the car for the shortest journeys.
* Plan your journey – avoiding busy times when the roads are most congested, while bypassing roadworks will mean less stop/start driving and less fuel used.
PLEASE NOTE EMBARGO - Not for publication or broadcast before 0001 hours Friday 28 Sep 2007
The first revised Highway Code in eight years has today been unveiled by Road Safety Minister Jim Fitzpatrick. The updated Code offers the latest road safety rules and advice, as well as promoting greater courtesy and understanding among all road users, particularly those who are most vulnerable.
A new Safety Code for Novice Drivers, to help motorists better navigate their first few months behind the wheel, has also been added. It offers practical advice like "If you are driving with passengers, you are responsible for their safety. Don't let them distract you or encourage you to take risks" and "Never show off or try to compete with other drivers, particularly if they are driving badly".
Road Safety Minister Jim Fitzpatrick said:
"The Official Highway Code is for life, not just for passing your driving test. It is a crucial tool for all road users - car drivers, motorcyclists, cyclists, horse riders and pedestrians alike - and applies to every stage of your life. Road safety is a responsibility we all share and everyone should have a copy of the Code to keep their knowledge up-to-date.
"However, we know that the first few months after passing your driving test can be a risky time. This is reflected in the latest Code which offers practical safety advice and reminders of the rules new drivers must abide by."
The Code has also been updated to include new legislation that has been introduced on vehicle emissions and smoking in vehicles that are work places, as well as the provision of new stopping/directing powers to VOSA and Highways Agency Traffic Officers. Alongside this, it references new initiatives like Quiet Lanes, High-occupancy Vehicle Lanes, Home Zones and Active Traffic Management schemes that people should be aware of, as well as increasing, re-writing or enhancing existing advice to promote greater co-operation between road users and further promote safety.
The Code is substantially updated every 8-10 years. The last significant revision was in 1999.
Notes to Editors:
1. The Highway Code celebrated its 75th birthday in 2006. When it was first launched in 1931 - at the cost of one old penny - there were just 2.3 million motor vehicles in Great Britain, yet over 7,000 people were killed in road accidents each year.
2. It is the official guide to using the roads safely and legally. It has contributed enormously to road safety and reliable road transport. However, every day, on average around nine people are killed and around 80 are seriously injured in road collisions. So it is as important as ever that all road users, including drivers, motorcyclists, cyclists, horse riders and pedestrians, should update their knowledge of The Highway Code.
3. Much of the advice in The Highway Code has changed and evolved over time by necessity. The basic advice in a Highway Code of 30 years ago may not be applicable today, given increased traffic volumes; larger, faster vehicles; more complex road layouts; updated/new road signage and markings; and many other factors.
4. All road users have a responsibility to ensure their knowledge is updated, in order to adjust their awareness and actions appropriately, for the benefit of others and for their own safety.
5. The new Code was drawn up following a public consultation which resulted in 26,963 comments being received, all of which were considered and evaluated by the relevant groups within DfT and DSA before the final wording was decided.
6. The revised Code has increased in size by approximately 50%. It includes 29 more rules than previously and many other rules have been increased, rewritten or enhanced to make things much clearer for all road users on how they should act or react in a variety of situations.
7. The Official Highway Code is published by The Stationery Office Ltd (TSO) and is priced at £2.50. Visit http://www.tsoshop.co.uk/highwaycode or call 0870 600 5522. Copies are also available from all good High Street and online bookstores The Code is also available for free at http://www.direct.gov.uk/highwaycode.
8. For the first time TSO are publishing The Official Highway Code on CD-ROM. The new, interactive version, launching in November 2007, will feature a range of interactive quizzes and games to test knowledge and understanding of the rules of the road
Jeep has teamed up with outdoor clothing and equipment retailer, Snow+Rock, to produce a new special edition Jeep Grand Cherokee, available for a limited time at Chrysler dealerships.
The stylish newcomer is available in both Limited and Overland guise and extras include chrome tail lamp guards, black running boards, rear splash guards, a moulded cargo tray, multi-purpose roof crossbars (Limited models only) and a choice of ski carrier, roof box or bike rack.
And to make this new model even more attractive, there’s £2,000 off the price of the standard Limited and Overland models, plus customers will receive a Snow+Rock voucher for £250 which can be spent at any one of its 16 stores in the UK.
Peter Lambert, Managing Director of Chrysler UK Ltd, said: “The limited edition Snow+Rock Jeep Grand Cherokee is ideal for people who enjoy making the most of the great outdoors.
“Not only does it look great, but comes with a range of functional accessories which make life easier for carrying equipment and tackling the rough stuff.”
For further details on the Jeep Grand Cherokee Snow+Rock limited editions, and the full range of Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge models please contact your local Chrysler dealership.
Snow+Rock details can be found at: www.snowandrock.com
Gaydon, Warwickshire 21 September 2007 − Land Rover is supplying 49 of its vehicles to the Highways Agency, the organisation responsible for maintaining and operating England’s motorways and major ‘A’ roads.
The new Discovery 3 vehicles will replace existing Land Rovers from the agency’s fleet which have been used by its uniformed Traffic Officers, who patrol the motorways day and night helping to keep the traffic moving. The vehicles have been used intensively in recent months to cope with the disruption caused by this summer’s floods. In the last 18 months, each vehicle has clocked up approximately 213,000 miles of use.
Land Rovers are selected by the Highways Agency for their towing and load carrying capabilities, good all round visibility and their capacity to cope with a variety of adverse weather conditions, such as snow, ice or floods. The 4x4s assist Traffic Officers in dealing with accidents, carriageway debris and broken down vehicles.
Since August 2006, Land Rover has delivered a training programme for the agency, which all Traffic Officers must complete. Seven Land Rover Experience off-road centres run the 'Adverse Weather Conditions Driving Course’ which has been designed to ensure that all officers have the knowledge and ability to use the vehicles safely and effectively, and in all weather conditions.
The training programme adheres to Land Rover’s Fragile Earth policy, which incorporates an off-road code for responsible driving and actively encourages the use of environmentally conscious practices.
Land Rover’s UK Marketing Director, Andy Griffiths, said: “With nearly 60 years of experience, in overcoming the elements and negotiating any terrain, Land Rover has a wealth of experience to share.
“The training programme has been specially developed with the needs of the Traffic Officers in mind and has been designed to ensure that Officers are ready to cope with the worst that the British weather can throw at them.”
Land Rover works with emergency services, police, and ambulance teams across the country. The company supplies a quarter of the global aid agency market and is involved in numerous important conservation programmes worldwide, which are hugely beneficial to local communities. Without the use of Land Rovers, some of their rescue missions or emergency operations would be impossible.
Genuine Environmental Taxes Must Be Revenue Neutral
Both opposition parties are overtly promising to use so called "green" taxes to reduce the existing tax burden, whilst the Government are moving stealthily in the same direction.
The Lib Dems are suggesting that green taxes will fund a cut in the basic rate of taxation, whilst the Tories want to tax carbon emissions so they can "give money to families".
The ABD believes that, whatever the arguments for and against environmental taxation, a tax cannot be a "Green Tax" unless it is revenue neutral.
"The politicians are contradicting themselves", said the ABD's Nigel Humphries. "It's no longer about the environment at all - it's just political opportunism hiding behind a green smokescreen."
If carbon emissions are such a crucial issue, the purpose of "Green Taxes" should be to reduce them. The whole idea is that people change their behaviour to avoid paying the taxes, and so reduce emissions. As soon as political parties suggest using environmental tax money to fund tax cuts elsewhere, they have made the assumption that people will carry on emitting carbon and pay up.
The ABD urges all political parties to separate Green Taxes from the overall revenue equation - any money raised should be used to give incentives in the same area. Only then can they be properly discussed and evaluated on genuine environmental merit.
Gaydon, Warwickshire, 18 September 2007 – A well-earned and exciting reward was waiting for Land Rover's TrackNAVCHALLENGE 2007 winners yesterday, when the model builders took to the hills at the Land Rover Experience Centre, Eastnor, to experience the real thing.
The 'A Team' from Chase Technology College, Burntwood, that built its victorious model to successfully tackle an in-door all-terrain track at the TrackNAVCHALLENGE final held this July, was treated to expert demonstrations of full size Land Rovers by highly skilled instructors. The team also received instruction in responsible off-road driving as part of Land Rover's commitment to protecting the environment.
After an exhilarating morning in the mud and ruts, the students tried their hands at laser clay pigeon shooting.
Commenting on the day's events, the 'A Team's' teacher, Martin Baylis said: "You only need to look at the students faces to see how much fun they had today." Adrian Coles, the team's technical consultant added: "Experiencing the capabilities of Land Rovers in action has inspired them even more for next year's challenge."
TrackNAVCHALLENGE is aimed at 14-18 year old students and tasks them with designing and building a radio controlled four-wheel drive model which emulates what a real Land Rover can do.
The ambition of TrackNAVCHALLENGE is to raise awareness, interest and enthusiasm in engineering through the practical 'hands-on' application of Design and Technology, Mathematics and Science.
TrackNAVCHALLENGE's new website is now up and running! See www.tracknavchallenge.co.uk for more information on the challenge or for educational establishments wishing to register for the next academic year.
An overwhelming majority of motorists want to see the much-hated speed hump removed from British roads.
According to research by online car-buying guide, NEWCARNET.co.uk, a massive 87 percent of drivers said they would gladly see all versions of the ‘sleeping policeman’ put to sleep permanently in order to avoid an average annual bill of £235.71, possible injury and even structural damage to their houses!
Speed humps were introduced in 1991 as a measure for controlling vehicle speeds, and the Government claims that for every 1mph decrease in speed, the chance of an accident reduces by 5 percent.
But recent studies found that speed humps have caused injury to drivers, especially those with bone conditions such as osteoperosis, increased road noise and pollution levels and mechanical damage to vehicles*.
Data from independent automotive warranty specialist, Warranty Direct, shows that over the last 10 years, an average of 1 in 8 cars has suffered suspension damage that could be directly attributed to speed humps, described by some as ‘inverted potholes’. The highest average cost of repairs topped £319** in 2005.
Guidelines on the construction of speed humps say it is illegal for them to be raised more than 100mm from the road surface, although the Department for Transport states that, to avoid grounding, they should not actually exceed 75mm.
The regulations also state that humps can not be sited within 25m of bridges, subways or tunnels because the impact of vehicles traversing them sends a shock wave through the ground. Depending on the weight of traffic and the proximity of buildings, that could cause structural damage.
Massimo Pini, of NEWCARNET.co.uk, said: “Discrepancies exist not only in the rules for constructing speed humps, but also councils’ reasoning for installing them. In Barnet, for instance, the local council removed all speed humps in 2005, and recorded a 14.9% drop in accidents in the first six months. Usually, councils install speed humps on the grounds of improving safety!”
The humps also cause a dangerous distraction to drivers, slow the progress of emergency vehicles, and often divert heavy traffic on to less suitable roads, as motorists seek to avoid the discomfort of driving over them.
A petition signed by 6,622 motorists, calling for the scrapping of all speed humps, was delivered to the Government in July.
For more information, visit NEWCARNET.co.uk.
Politicians planning for prosperity must work with, not against, motorists, according to Edmund King, speaking at the Liberal Democrat Autumn conference today (18).
The car remains the vehicle of choice for commuters, business travellers and shoppers, because of its unique combination of convenience and flexibility. With 93% of passenger journeys and 67% of freight movements taking place on the roads, Britain's prosperity depends on realistic planning, not pious hopes of a switch to public transport enforced by punitive pricing.
According to RAC Foundation research*, Britain remains as car-dependent today as we were in the 1990s. The study concludes that only those already using public transport were prepared to use it more - those who had never tried travelling by bus have not been persuaded to give it a go.
- In the period 1993 - 2005, the percentage of the population with a valid driving licence rose from 67% to 72%, and demographic trends predict continued increases, particularly in the number of women drivers.
- Only one-fifth of the population frequently use buses. Fifty per cent of the population have never used a bus.
- Only seven per cent of the population regularly cycles.
- The average UK commuting journey is 8.5 miles, and the average business trip covers 20.6 miles **.
Speaking at the Liberal Democrats' Autumn Conference, Edmund King, executive director of the Royal Automobile Club Foundation, will say:-
"The UK is still a car-dependent nation. Cars could be used less; and we could be smarter about tele-working, home shopping and teleconferencing; but the car will continue to be the workhorse of the economy. Cycling and walking have a part to play in tackling congestion but they are only ever going to be a realistic prospect for a small percentage of business journeys.
"With or without road pricing, it is clear that the UK can only avoid gridlock by investing in additional road capacity. We need to spend more on mitigating the environmental effects of roads by using tunnels and we need to speed up the introduction of cleaner, greener, safer cars. We don't need to keep our heads in the sand and just hope that cars will disappear."
In order to keep up with the strong demand for Outlander in Europe and new Lancer* worldwide, Mitsubishi Motors Corporation has decided to transfer production of the Outlander (for European markets) to its regional production hub (Netherlands Car B.V. [NedCar], Born, the Netherlands) during 2008.
The company currently produces Outlander at its Nagoya Plant in Okazaki, Aichi Prefecture and the new SUVs for PSA Peugeot Citroën at its Mizushima Plant in Kurashiki, Okayama Prefecture. As production of the Europe-market Outlander shifts from Nagoya to NedCar, production of the new SUVs supplied to PSA Peugeot Citroën will be transferred from Mitsubishi Motors' Mizushima Plant to its Nagoya Plant.
The decision to make the above transfers has been taken in order to ease the strain on production capacity at the Mizushima Plant, thus avoiding any missed sales opportunities in view of the strong sales of Outlander in Europe and of the Lancer in markets worldwide.
Mitsubishi Motors' European production hub NedCar currently manufactures the Colt compact car, the company's best selling model in Europe. The company plans to produce Outlander at its NedCar plant until the model reaches the end of its life cycle.
Taking The Rough With The Smooth
Off the road vehicle operations are hard on equipment and any construction fleet manager, quarry manager of forestry contractor will confirm that soft, loose and uneven ground conditions and heavy loads put a real strain on the hardware their sectors use.
That usually means big, heavy and expensive equipment running ferry operations to roadside transhipment points where loads are switched to a conventional HGV. For larger organisations, that may well be the most economical approach. However, for the smaller user, perhaps faced with a shorter haul, this poses something of a problem. Run an on-highway truck off road, and you risk a dramatic rise in maintenance costs by using vehicles over terrain they were not designed for. Yet even if you can find specialist off-road plant that is road legal, chances are that this comes with its own set of downsides, including longer journey times, heavier fuel costs – and a heightened on-road footprint.
There is however one European supplier which has a goods vehicle with proven off the road potential. One designed to handle some of the roughest and toughest conditions a fleet owner can expect to operate in.
Only one company that has consistently provided support (and race vehicles) capable of withstanding the rigours of desert raids such as the Paris-Dakar. The same company which for decades provided Central and East European states with the means to transport anything from paper to munitions across unpaved roads from the Baltic to Siberia, The Caspian Sea to The Artic Circle – Tatra.
Now Tatra has appointed its first ever commercial vehicle distributorship in the UK. Tatra Trucks UK Ltd..
Tatra Trucks UK Ltd has been supplying spares and service to Tatra truck operators throughout Europe for the past few years and has delivered both new and used vehicles to the market upon demand. This latest move is a step up both for Tatra Trucks UK Ltd and Tatra a.s, in the Czech Republic. “Tatra has an excellent range of vehicles that are ideally suited to full off road, on/off road and full on road operations in any situation. We believe that there is a place in the market for a truck which by being more suited to the job than traditional compromises, makes a lower impact on the environment and on the operator’s budget.” says commercial director John Dunford.
The Pewesy, Wiltshire-based firm eventually intends to offer the full range of Czech-built Tatra trucks here in the UK, though is to launch with the Jamal model.
A member of the T-163 family, this is a bonneted 6 x 6 truck designed for use in off the road environments but with full on-road capabilities. Powered by a 12 litre, air cooled, turbocharged V8 Euro 4 440 bhp diesel engine the Jamal comes with a technically advanced transmission offering 14 gears: five coupled to a two-gear reduction box, and all with synchromesh, with the exception of reverse and ultra low speed gears. These drive independent air assisted leaf sprung swing axles with optional lockable axle or inter axle differentials, with a part time front axle drive facility.
Having the means to get the vehicle and its up to 25,000kg load moving it also needs to stop and the Tatra Jamal T 163 comes with automatic shoe adjustment and Wabco ABS anti-lock braking as standard..
The Jamal is designed to work in arduous conditions and benefits from Tatra's long tradition of engineering excellence and innovation. The company pioneered the development of independent swing axles and the rigid central backbone tube that enables special vehicles to be constructed without a traditional chassis frame. Deceptively simple, this construction has been proven since the 1920s on a series of successful high-mobility military transport vehicles and light armour, including the British Army's Pinzgauer and Tatra's own 8 x 8 Extreme C130 Hercules airportable military specification model.
‘The motor sector has become the target of choice for political parties jostling to be the greenest during this year’s conference season, and the Treasury’s leak of plans for a £2,000 tax on new cars, prior to an official announcement as part of the Pre-Budget Report, is another cynical attempt to score points,’ according to Sue Robinson, director of the National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA), the body representing franchised car dealers.
A leaked Treasury paper has revealed plans for a £2,000 ‘Purchase Tax’ on new, higher emission vehicles bought from franchised car dealers, linked to an increase in road tax. Those buying vehicles with lower emissions would still pay the tax, but receive a rebate.
Robinson believes that the plan is a bad idea: ‘the tax will be only be fully levied on a small number of vehicles, so it is unlikely to have any measurable environmental impact. However, the impact on motor dealers could be considerable. Apart from increasing prices in the showroom, the need for a tax rebate on smaller vehicles could tie dealers up in a red tape knot.’
Robinson adds: ‘It is a media sound-bite to get attention during conference season. However, if it does appear in the Pre-Budget Report, the NFDA will raise this issue in our submission to the Chancellor.’
NEW MILITARY VERSION OF JEEP WRANGLER UNLIMITED REPORTS FOR DUTY
Iconic off-roader returns to its historic roots with multipurpose vehicle
Chrysler LLC today unveiled the Jeep® J8 multipurpose vehicle at the 2007 Defence Systems & Equipment International (DSEi) military trade show, making the legendary vehicle available for reenlistment in active military service.
“Jeep vehicles made their original debut in 1941 for military duty, and have built their reputation with more than 65 years as the world’s benchmark for off-road capability and versatility for civilian and military vehicles,” said Thomas Hausch, Vice President – International Sales, Chrysler LLC. “The new Jeep J8 marks the brand’s return to vehicle production for military and civilian government use – the same capability that makes the Jeep Wrangler and Wrangler Unlimited famous also makes the Jeep J8 a truly multipurpose vehicle.”
With the all-new 2007 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited as the starting point, Jeep engineers increased its capability and versatility. The frame of the Wrangler Unlimited is reinforced for increased ruggedness and to allow greater payloads – up to a maximum of 1,339 kg (2,952 lbs.). Axles, brakes and suspension components are engineered specifically for more demanding military and civilian government use, including utilising a leaf-spring suspension system in the rear. The J8’s Command-Trac® four-wheel drive system allows maximum versatility and performance in both on- and off-road conditions.
The Jeep J8 is powered by a 2.8-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel engine that produces 118 kW (158 hp) and 400 Nm (295 lb.-ft.) of torque, providing towing capability of up to 3,500 kg (7,716 lbs.). The engine is mated to a five-speed automatic transmission. The J8 also features a unique air-intake system with special filtration and a hood-mounted snorkel that enables the J8 to wade in water up to 762 mm (30 in.) deep and tackle sandstorm conditions for up to five hours.
Available as a two-door with an extended pickup bed for personnel or equipment transport, or a four-door multipurpose vehicle, it may be produced with numerous vehicle-body and seating configurations in either right-hand- or left-hand-drive.
While not designed for front-line combat operations, the Jeep J8 is fully armour capable and excels in a variety of duties ranging from command vehicle to troop/cargo carrier, ambulance, communications vehicle and other duties – also making it suitable for civilian government applications. Heavy-duty bumpers with tow eyes allow the Jeep J8 to be easily transported by aeroplane or helicopter.
The Jeep J8 will be produced in a Chrysler LLC joint-venture facility in Cairo, Egypt, and will be available in spring 2008.
Jeep in the military
In June 1941, the U.S. Army received its first shipments of the Willys MA, the rugged 4x4 vehicle that came to be called the Jeep. This predecessor to today’s Jeep Wrangler would prove so vital to the Allies’ World War II effort that General Dwight D. Eisenhower declared that the war could not have been won without the Jeep vehicle.
Jeep vehicles have been produced for various militaries around the world. The Jeep J8 marks the start of Jeep’s renewed commitment to supply the defence community with the highest-quality 4x4 vehicles available anywhere in the world.
Borla’s recently introduced Cat-Back exhaust system for the mighty 6-litre V8 Hummer H2 (2003-2006 models) is now available in the UK from sole Borla appointed distributor USAutomotive Ltd, competitively priced at £578.00 plus vat.
The more compact Hummer H3 is also catered for with a similar Borla exhaust system to boost the performance of the 3.5 litre 5-cylinder engine, which retails for £517.50 plus vat.
These two top quality T304 stainless steel systems are dynamometer tuned for power, and are said to offer improvements of between 7 – 15 per cent over the standard Hummer exhaust system. The knock-on effect of improved engine breathing is better economy too.
The precision construction of these quality exhausts is evident from the smooth, mandrel bent tubing all the way through to the split rear tailpipes, which is why Borla can offer a 1,000,000 mile warranty on all of its products.
The Hummer Cat-back exhaust systems are designed to offer true bolt-on performance and easy fitment. These two systems and many other Borla products are stocked by USAutomotive Ltd at their Bedford premises, who can be contacted on 01234 273155, email email@example.com or visit their web site at www.usautomotive.co.uk.
With immediate effect The 4x4 UK Club is asking all of its members to voluntarily refrain from driving Green lanes where they cross agricultural or common land being used by livestock subject to the current animal movement restrictions put in place to contain the latest foot and mouth outbreak.
We will provide further updates as and when the current restrictions are relaxed
Note the movement ban covers cattle, sheep, pigs and other ruminants
Frankfurt 10 September 2007 – Land Rover remains on target to achieve its third successive record sales year after a spectacular August in both well established and emerging markets around the world.
Last month, global sales were over 15,000, a 36% increase over the previous August. This puts Land Rover in its strongest sales position in its near 60 year history with over 141,000 cars sold so far this year, 13% ahead of 2006.
The all new Freelander 2 has helped to deliver some of the rise, but the flagship model, Range Rover, now in its fifth year, continues to dominate the luxury segment with sales 20% ahead of last year. The growth has been driven by the popularity of the new V8 diesel engine which gives a 32% fuel improvement and a 15% cut in CO2 emissions compared with the naturally aspirated petrol engine.
Growth was seen in virtually all markets with strong performances in Russia (up 92% year to date) and China (up a phenomenal 178% in August and 87% ahead year to date).
August was also a great success in the more mature markets. The US was up by 32% and Europe by 50% (25% year to date).
Phil Popham, Land Rover’s Managing Director, said, “To achieve this level of growth in both new and established markets against a background of intense
competition is testament to the strength, desirability and relevance of the Land Rover brand and the truly impressive model line up.
“The global presence and strong model mix puts us in a flexible business position and we remain firmly in the black.”
The figures were released on the eve of the Frankfurt Motor Show where Land Rover will reveal details of sustainable technology and a major partnership with a global humanitarian organisation.
The first phase of construction of the rallycross circuit for the 2007 London Masters competition, held at ExCel on Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th December is now complete. Built in three phases, the first phase involved creating a hardcore base which will withstand any amount of punishment from the top Rallycross cars.
The surface has been screened, re-graded, leveled and rolled to the highest specification. The loose sections of the circuit, that needed to be constructed three months prior to the event to give time for the areas to settle, are now in place to ensure that the surface is perfect for high performance motorsport.
The circuit is a minimum of 14.5 metres wide with an approximate length of 650 metres. The lap time for a Division 1 car is expected to be between 30 and 35 seconds with an average speed of approximately 80mph. The circuit has been constructed with fast flowing corners, featuring two spectacular yumps.
The work was carried out by the PSM Motorsport Ltd circuit construction team & Starting Grid Ltd in association with Shannon Holdings. Philip Bunn from Starting Grid said: “It was amazing to see the bulldozer go in and there were a few nail biting moments but the foundation of the circuit is now in place and looks fantastic. We would like to thank Ollie O’Donovan and Shannon Holdings for their involvement with the event and the supplying of the equipment for the construction.”
The London Masters is just one of the exciting features of the 2007 London Motorsport Show which covers all disciplines of motorsport from karting through to Formula One and is a must for any motor racing enthusiast. For information, visit www.londonmotorsport.co.uk.
There are a number of sponsorship opportunities available for both The London Masters and The London Motorsport Show. For further details on these and information on exhibiting, please contact Philip Bunn on tel: +44 (0)1444 246446 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org. For information, visit www.londonmasters.co.uk.
The new Porsche Cayenne GTS, which makes its world debut at the IAA Auto Show in Frankfurt, Germany, on September 11, features a specially developed chassis: it is the first Cayenne to offer the electronically-controlled damping system, Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM), with steel springs. This combination, which also lowers the Cayenne by 24mm, was previously reserved exclusively for Porsche sports cars.
Furthermore, the car boasts an enhanced version of the direct fuel injection (DFI) 4.8-litre V8 petrol engine. The engine in the Cayenne GTS yields 405bhp (298 kW) at 6,500rpm – 20bhp more than in the Cayenne S. Maximum torque remains unchanged at 500Nm at 3,500rpm.
In order to further exploit this horsepower increase, the GTS comes as standard with a six-speed manual gearbox and a shorter axle final drive ratio than the Cayenne S (4.1:1 as opposed to 3.55:1). The Cayenne GTS can thus accelerate from 0-62mph (0-100km/h) in just 6.1 seconds, precisely 0.5 seconds quicker than the Cayenne S.
The Cayenne GTS can be specified with the Tiptronic S six-speed automatic transmission, in which guise it offers an average fuel consumption of 20.3mpg (13.9 litres/100 km) in accordance with EU standards.
The Cayenne GTS is fitted with Porsche Traction Management (PTM) permanent all-wheel drive and the adaptive PASM chassis as standard. Air suspension is available as an option, as is the Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control (PDCC) active anti-roll system which enhances the handling and ride comfort further still. Newly-developed 12-way adjustable sports seats and a mix of leather and Alcantara upholstery creates a sporty interior ambience.
The new Cayenne GTS is instantly recognizable: the front and rear share styling cues with the Cayenne Turbo, and the striking 14mm wheel-arch extensions offer plenty of space for the 21-inch alloy rims with 295/35 R21 tyres fitted as standard. Two new colours have also been reserved exclusively for the GTS: GTS Red and Nordic Gold Metallic.
The new Porsche Cayenne GTS will be priced from £54,350, including a Porsche Vehicle Tracking System (VTS), a sophisticated vehicle security package approved to Thatcham Category 5 standard, and a Porsche Driving Experience programme. The car will be on sale in the UK and Ireland from February 2008.
New Shell LubeMatch website gives customers instant access
Shell Lubricants has launched a new online tool – Shell LubeMatch – to help customers match their vehicles and engines to the correct lubricants, whether in the commercial vehicle, bus and coach, industrial or off-road sectors.
“A lot of this information has been previously available in data books, but this remarkable new tool gives customers instant access to a huge amount of data on engines, lubricants and oils to check they have the right specification for each application, wherever they are,” explained Andrew Gibson, UK Marketing Manager for Shell Lubricants.
The site – www.shell.co.uk/lubematch - is simple to use with drop down menus to provide recommendations for the right oils and greases in seconds. Easy to navigate icons on the homepage take users to the seven different categories: Motorbike; car; bus & coach; commercial vehicle; agricultural; off-road; and industrial. “Each category has many different manufacturers and variants, so we wanted to make navigation as straightforward as possible,” added Gibson.
The fact that the information is now stored electronically also means that Shell can instantly update information with new products, specifications and changes in applications. Visitors to the site can view or print a detailed lubricants recommendation chart for each application after answering a few simple questions. The site covers both commercial and passenger vehicles as well as industrial applications, so will be particularly useful for companies with multiple equipment and applications.
* 4 September 2007 sees the 100,000th QASHQAI produced at Sunderland
* European sales pass 66,000 in just five months of sales
* Production increased to meet demand
* Typical buyer is younger than C-segment and compact SUV average
Trappes, France (6 September) – In the 12 months that have passed since it was unveiled, Nissan’s QASHQAI has enjoyed great success.
Sales of the compact crossover began in March and, by the end of July, the total number of deliveries had reached 66,000 units across Europe, far beyond expectations. Indeed, to meet demand, Nissan has invested an extra 3.5m Euro to increase production of QASHQAI by 20 per cent at its factory in Sunderland, United Kingdom. A total of 850 QASHQAIs are now manufactured every day at the Sunderland plant, and on 4 September, the 100,000th QASHQAI was manufactured there.
Furthermore, to ensure that the Sunderland factory can meet demand for QASHQAI in Europe, it was recently announced that production of QASHQAI will be expanded to the Kyushu plant in Japan to satisfy demand for the model in Japan, where it is known as Dualis. Production will start in Japan early in 2008, with an annual output of 24,000 units per year. In Japan sales of Dualis have reached nearly 10,000 units since its launch in May.
In Europe, Nissan’s early customer research has highlighted some interesting trends. Simply speaking, QASHQAI is bought by younger people than the C-segment average, and by more women:
The typical buyer is 44 years old, three years younger than the C-segment average and six years younger than the Compact SUV average. Seven out of ten buyers are male, four per cent less than the C-segment and six per cent less than the C-SUV average.
Particularly encouraging is the statistic that one third of QASHQAI buyers fall into the 36-45 year bracket, against a 20 per cent average for the C-segment and 27 per cent for the C-SUV. Initial customer feedback shows that buyers like the QASHQAI for bringing something new to the market; for its strong, distinctive design which sits between a traditional hatchback style and a more robust, elevated SUV shape.
Nine out of ten QASHQAI buyers in Spain are first-time Nissan buyers and that trend is nearly repeated in Italy (84%) and UK (83%). QASHQAI buyers have consistently cited the premium quality interior and overall design as key factors in changing brands to Nissan. As anticipated, buyers of QASHQAI typically used to drive a compact hatchback, such as a Mégane or Focus, an entry-level family hatchback, such as a Laguna or Avensis, or an SUV, such as a RAV4 or Freelander.
In terms of the car, half of all QASHQAIs have been specified with the 1.5dCi diesel engine, with the 1.6-litre petrol engine as the next favoured choice with 22 per cent, closely followed by the 2.0-litre diesel at 20 per cent. And the mix of QASHQAIs equipped with the ALL MODE 4x4 system is 25 per cent.
Two-thirds of QASHQAIs ordered are in Acenta grade, the middle specification level, while the most popular option is the panoramic glass roof. Metallic black has proved to be the most popular colour, with 31 per cent of orders, followed by Blade Silver (26%) and Faded Denim (16%).
The QASHQAI was designed and developed in Europe following extensive research of local market buying patterns and a deep consumer analysis of unmet needs among car-buyers. Nissan Europe’s product planners identified an opportunity in the market to design and develop a vehicle which provided more dynamic design, without the perceived aggression of a compact SUV, yet maintained the elevated driving position which is popular, but not at the expense of driving enjoyment. The QASHQAI is that model.
The QASHQAI was designed at Nissan Design Europe, situated in Paddington, London, while technical development was undertaken at its technical centres in Cranfield, England, Barcelona, Spain and near Bonn, Germany.
Despite the UK government urging everyone else to “Go Green” it isn’t quite so keen to get recycling itself. Yes it will quote tonnes of paper recycled, energy saving from newly insulated buildings, and so on, but these are all easy options, when it comes to making a real commitment, things can be very different according to environmental transport consultancy, Aardvark Associates.
One of the biggest costs any vehicle fleet operator faces is that of its tyre supply. It comes a close runner to fuel, the biggest cost, and labour, the next biggest cost. The commercial market has realised that where truck tyres are concerned there is a clear cut case for retreading as an integral element of a fleet’s tyre programme. The UK has some of the largest truck fleets in the world and some of the biggest run a retread tyre policy for their drive axles and trailer axles.
Retreading extends the life of the tyre casing – the most costly part of the tyre, and saves millions of barrels of oil every year in the UK. In hard economical terms, retreaded truck tyres pay dividends for everyone from the new tyre manufacturer through to the consumer of the transported goods. In environmental terms retreaded tyres extend the useful life of a tyre casing, therefore making the use of raw materials more efficient. They require less energy to manufacture than new tyres, and they delay the day when the used tyre has to be disposed of. Which is why fleets operated by Tesco, ASDA, Sainsbury’s, Christian Salvesen and others all run on retreaded tyres.
Interestingly the MoD doesn’t run on retreads, yet the US Army recognises their worth and stocks up on retreads for its forces in times of trouble. The MoD is happy to use thousands of new tyres during vehicle testing and manoeuvres, which get sold part worn on the surplus market – when they could just as easily use retreads without putting anyone at any risk and save money, save natural resources, and at the same time create an independent database of real life statistics on retread tyres.
According to industry figures, the UK consumes something close to 47 million car tyres per annum, many of these car tyres could be retreaded, but they are simply scrapped, or shipped to overseas markets either for resale to third world countries, or for retreading in South America. Retreaded truck and car tyres have to meet stringent standards in Europe and the UK, and it could be argued that they meet stricter test standards than new tyres. Yet our government refuses to sanction the use of retreaded car tyres on municipal or government vehicles.
Moreover, it insists that retreaders in the UK pay full Climate Change Levy, whilst new tyre manufacturers receive massive discounts – creating an uneven playing field that allows the new tyre manufacturers to transfer manufacturing operations to China, where they produce the self same tyres they used to manufacture in the UK, doubtless without the same emission controls, and ship them halfway around the world to sell them on the UK market at prices that not even the UK retreader can match. The carbon footprint of a tyre manufactured in China and shipped to the UK where it will ultimately be scrapped must be outrageous compared to a retread alternative.
The civil servants who deal with enquiries about retreading are patently acting on outdated information. The last survey carried out by the government into retreads was some 10 years ago – before computer assisted inspection and manufacturing processes. The process of retreading a tyre today is highly controlled, has to meet high standards and has to be very efficient on pure economical terms. The adjustment rate for retreaded tyres, that is the level of returns from manufacturing faults is around 0.5% in most quality retread operations. This compares with a reputed 5% adjustment rate from new tyre manufacturers (of course that latter figure cannot be confirmed as no new tyre manufacturer will admit to its failures).
The government refuses to sanction the use of retreaded tyres on non-HGV vehicles. The reasons quoted vary from them having a shorter lifespan and being uneconomical, to being unsafe. The lifespan is subjective, any retreader worth his salt can generate real figures showing how well his tyres perform compared to new tyres. If they want longer lasting tyres the retreader is in a better position to create them than any mainstream manufacturer as compounds can be custom blended for small batches of tyres. It follows then that the economic argument can also be deflated, as this depends upon the new tyre cost, and the lifespan of the tyre. Simple maths says that a quality retread has to be cheaper than a new tyre (especially if the Climate Change Levy disparity is taken out of the equation).
As for the safety aspect, again this is based on subjective opinion. There have been no objective tests carried out to prove this argument one way or another, but niche markets such as off roading and motorsport suggest that safety is not an issue. Not to mention the simple fact that aircraft tyres can be retreaded as many as nine times. Or that earthmover tyres from most manufacturers are retreaded now as a matter of routine.
Moreover, the retread industry may well be under threat simply because it does not have the political clout to be heard above the ranks of the mainstream manufacturers. Until recently the suppliers of new goods vehicles could supply tractor units fitted with retreads as original equipment (OE) – and this was a real option for some buyers. However, this OE option was closed off, and may well also be closed off for the trailer market too. This restriction on the market is bad enough, but there is legislation coming that will require truck tyres to be certified for their passing noise level and also their rolling resistance.
The new tyre manufacturers are pressing the EU for a rule that insists on all tyres meeting these standards, but are also quite adamant that there is no need for retreaders to have their tyres certified. It seems that they might wish to control the retread market by specifying the tread patterns and the compounds used in tyre construction, thus eliminating all but the biggest independent competition, and taking full control of the retread market for the new tyre manufacturers. Since the independent retreader cannot financially meet the demands of certification he will excluded from the market.
So, Aardvark asks, how does this impact upon the environment? Well, if you are a new tyre manufacturer you will only retread your own brand of tyres. Michelin do not retread Bridgestone tyres and so on. This creates a restrictive trading practice, that means non-retreading tyre manufacturers who might sell their tyres in the EU, such as Yokohama and Toyo, are left with no retreading option – remember the independents have all been pushed out of business, or been forced to sign up to a new tyre manufacturer franchise. So those tyres which get sold on new price rather than lifetime costs have nowhere to go at the end of their useful life. They become environmentally inefficient.
The worst case scenario is that tyres deemed unfit for Europe get shipped out to third world countries for “retreading” but actually end up getting sold as roadworthy tyres – this already happens now. As far as the tyre industry is concerned they can wash their hands of the tyres once they reach Lagos, or Accra, or Johannesburg. One might read that as an African life not being worth the same as a European life – A sentiment not going un-noticed in many parts of Africa which are becoming dumping grounds for Europes’ automotive waste.
So, how green is our government in light of this evidence? In all of the above, the UK government could take a stand on environmental issues and actually do something that makes a real difference.
The European crossover assault continues with the SEAT Tribu concept shown above. The Frankfurt-bound show car was leaked to Carscoop, but unfortunately, no specifics were given to go with the photos. Carscoop speculates that it's possibly built on the VW Tiguan platform. We speculate that its very Audi R8-reminiscent front end treatment and more angular lines signal a possible change in the marque's design language. We'll also go out on a limb and guess that there's a TDI underhood (because it's a European VW brand making a Euro-show debut) and that someday, SEAT will offer a trucklet loosely based on this, albeit with 4 doors and taillamps that are higher than bumper-level. We'll stop now and wait for the inevitable press release from SEAT, at which point we'll tell you the real story. At least rearward visibility won't be a problem in this puppy.
Chrysler Group will show the four new models that will be launched in the UK in 2008 at next week’s Frankfurt Motor Show.
The Jeep Cherokee is all-new and will launch in the UK in May 2008. On-road ride and handling have been improved and refined with a new independent front suspension, new five-link rear suspension and rack-and-pinion steering. The Cherokee will feature an updated 2.8-litre diesel engine, the Selec-Trac II full-time four-wheel drive system plus the choice of a six-speed manual or five-speed automatic gearbox.
Peter Lambert, Managing Director of Chrysler UK, said: “The Cherokee started everything off for Jeep when we first launched our brands here in 1993. Since then the Cherokee has become an off-road icon in the UK with more than 50,000 sold so far.
“The new Cherokee’s exterior has been redesigned and now takes on a more rugged, classic Jeep look. Inside, cargo and storage space has increased and seat comfort has been improved, while the new optional ‘Sky Slider’ full-length canvas roof is sure to attract customers wanting the open air benefits of a convertible combined with the space and safety features of a family SUV.”
The all-new Chrysler Grand Voyager, the Chrysler Sebring Cabrio and the Dodge Journey will also be on show on the Chrysler Group stand.
The Chrysler Grand Voyager will launch in early 2008 with an all-new exterior and a new interior design with Stow ‘N Go seating together with an updated 2.8-litre diesel engine.
A host of new features will make the new seven-seat model the ultimate people carrier. Heated first and second row seats; rear-view interior conversation mirror; a removable torch in the rear quarter panel; electric windows in the power sliding second-row doors and movable LED reading lamps will all help make the new Grand Voyager very family-friendly.
The Chrysler Sebring Cabrio will be launched in the UK in early 2008 with a petrol and diesel engine. All UK models will feature a folding soft roof that folds into three sections and stows in less than 30 seconds. The automatic roof system features automatic latching, a powered tonneau cover and remote control via the key fob.
Peter Lambert added: “The Sebring Cabrio is a large four seat two-door convertible that will offer outstanding value for money compared to the competition in a stunning package. The Cabrio is three inches longer than the saloon and this means that despite the folding roof there is enough cargo space to hold two golf bags when the roof is retracted – or four golf bags when the roof is up!”
The all-new 2008 Dodge Journey is a seven seat crossover MPV that combines the space and practicality of an MPV with the style of an SUV and the ride, handling and fuel efficiency of a family saloon. It will launch in mid-2008 and effectively replaces the Voyager in the Chrysler Group model range.
* Innovative Kuga Crossover will be revealed at Frankfurt Motor Show
* Inspired by the iosis X Concept revealed in Paris 2006
* On-road Focus DNA with 'intelligent' AWD for substantial off-road ability
* Powered by Ford's efficient 2.0-litre 136PS TDCi engine
BRENTWOOD, Essex, 05 September, 2007 – Ford's product portfolio is expanding again – and in another new direction. The new Ford Kuga is an exciting AWD crossover that combines style with technology and promises impressive on-road dynamics coupled with substantial off-road ability.
On sale in the UK summer 2008, the new Ford Kuga will be unveiled to the public at next week's Frankfurt Motor Show in near production form. This trend-setting newcomer takes many of its design ideas from the iosis X concept shown at the Paris Motor Show last year.
Combining elements of SUV and estate car design with a coupé-like profile in a package similar in size to a Focus hatchback, the Kuga is the latest showcase for Ford's acclaimed kinetic design.
The Ford Kuga will boast an intelligent all-wheel-drive system which contributes positively to normal road use and helps give an almost sporty dynamic ability for those who want to use it cross country.
Kuga's powertrain will feature Ford's established and fuel efficient 2.0-litre, 136 PS Duratorq TDCi common-rail diesel engine, mated to the slick Durashift six-speed manual transmission. Further details of the Kuga powertrain will be released closer to launch in early 2008.
Adopting many of the styling cues from Ford's iosis X Concept, and finished in the same unique "Ice White" body colour with the bold wheel arches filled with the same 19 –inch alloy wheels, the Kuga has poise and presence. The athletic look is highlighted by bold features such as the trapezoidal front grills, rising belt-line and kick-up of the rear window graphic and the dramatic swept back headlamp shapes.
For the production Ford Kuga the roof profile of the iosis X Concept has been adjusted to a slightly higher silhouette offering comfortable accommodation for five people. Practicality is a key attribute and the luggage compartment is accessed via a split tailgate. Together with the divided rear lights this ensures the maximum full load width is available for loading and unloading.
Inside, fine leathers and striking orange piping dominate. The Ebony interior is set off by a centre console and details in the door which also feature the piano-white finish from iosis X.
A hint of the technology coming in Kuga, and other future Ford models, is seen in the new Blaupunkt navigation system which incorporates a 7-inch colour display to also show images from a rear view camera incorporated into the tailgate
The new classifieds section is now on-line
You no longer need to log in separately to use it. All registered forum and club members are automatically logged in when they log in to the forum.
There are a few other improvements too
1)You can upload more than one pic for an ad,
2) ads can be a standard item for sale or auction (ie to highest bidder)
3) you can receive direct payment for items via paypal - please note if using this feature your e-mail address used for the forum MUST match the e-mail address you used to set up your paypal account
4) I have also added a special section to list stolen vehicles.
I have transferred all the existing ads from the old classifieds section. However I am sure some of the items have been sold so if you recently placed an ad in the old classifieds and have subsequently sold the item please check and mark the item as sold
Now that it's been confirmed the BMW X6 will make it's world debut in Frankfurt next week, those tasked with keeping the prototypes under cover have been given the green light to show a little more skin... err, metal. These newest shots don't leave much to the imagination, giving us a very clear view of both the front and rear of BMW's SAV.
The front clip has a decidedly sportier appearance than its big brother the X5, with larger air dams, kidney grilles and fog lamp recesses. The sloping roofline out back is as extreme as we expected, and the small spoiler integrates smoothly into the hatch.
Frankfurt is less than a week away, so, as always, watch this space.
[source: World Car Fans]
18 NOT ENOUGH
When many are starting to take their driving lessons at the beginning of the new academic year, the House of Commons transport committee has recently called for the minimum legal driving age, which currently stands at 17, to be raised to 18 years, in a bid to cut the amount of road-deaths on UK roads. Figures from 2005 show that there were 19.2 deaths for every 100,000 motorists aged 17 to 21, a worrying rise of 55% compared to 1992.
However, according to the latest research by Motorpoint, the UK’s largest car supermarket, 66% of respondents to a poll on the company’s website think that increasing the age by only one year would not have enough of an impact, and that in fact it should rise by four years to 21. This could significantly reduce the amount of accidents on the road, but many argue that raising the legal limit to this degree would severely inhibit the independence of the UK’s young population, with statistics showing that 70% of 17-year olds now drive themselves to work.
A new legal minimum age of 18 in the UK, would both fall in line with other European states and help alleviate the growing concern that 50,000 17-year-olds now pass their driving test with less than six months’ driving experience every year, according to the Association of British Insurers, which is equally reflected by the results from the Motorpoint poll.
Commenting on the findings, David Shelton, Managing Director of Motorpoint explains: “There is strong evidence that many consider the age of 17 to be too young to take to the wheel, and as many return to their studies, this time of year presents heightened concern. Many customers come to our five outlets to buy their first car, and as a supporter of RoadSafe, we have a responsibility as a retailer to inform them about the importance of safe driving.“
For information on the latest deals at Motorpoint, refer to www.motorpoint.co.uk
Solihull, 3 September 2007 – Hard work by Land Rover employees has enabled the company to donate a brand new Defender to a Solihull farm that specialises in training young people with learning difficulties.
The Family Care Trust’s Newlands Bishop Farm received a Defender 110 Station Wagon. It is the first beneficiary of a Land Rover vehicle under the 4x4 manufacturer’s ‘Motor-Vate’ programme and was nominated by Land Rover employee, Michael Dacre,
The Motor-Vate scheme is an incentive to improve attendance and savings made by cutting absenteeism are shared with employees and the local community. Previously, two randomly selected employees with perfect attendance records, each received a brand new Ford car and many other local organisations have already received generous donations.
Newlands Bishop Farm, situated in Catherine de Barnes, provides a successful working and training environment for young people with learning disabilities to develop their work and social skills with the opportunity to gain accredited qualifications from Sutton Coldfield College in numeracy, literacy and ICT. A wide range of activities takes place at the farm’s facilities, which include a local gardening round, a woodworking unit and a horticultural, vegetable and animal area.
Daniel Adams, the manager of the farm, said: “The Defender will make an incredible difference to the farm. Not only will we use it extensively off-road to
maintain the 10 acre site, our new 4x4 will also be used to support our community work, external events and provide transport for day trips. We are extremely grateful to the generosity of Land Rover and its workforce.”
Paul Cope, manufacturing director of Land Rover, Solihull said: “We are committed to supporting the local community and with everyone’s hard work, today’s donation has been made possible. We are proud that the versatile Defender, with its capable off-roading qualities and ‘workhorse’ attitude, will assist Newlands Bishop Farm in the great work they do with young people.”