Archive for December, 2011

Down Memory Lane – Land Rover Organise Heritage Run

An exclusive Heritage Run is to be hosted by the Heritage Motor Centre (HMC). It will be running from the home of the Land Rover Factory in Lode lane in Solihull through to the HMC in Gaydon.

The event, on Sunday 30th September 2012, will be a procession of 100 Land Rovers new and old, and will be viewed by many, giving them the opportunity to watch history on the move.

Anyone lucky enough to take part in the run will receive a plaque recognising the occasion, and a photo of them with their car. Before they leave Solihull they will have coffees and on arrival they will be receiving free entry to The Heritage Motor Centre Museum with a one off guided tour, a talk and the option to take part in a Land Rover Experience followed by lunch.

The organiser and events executive at the Heritage Motor Centre, Emma Rawlinson,  said that this gives an opportunity to Land Rover and Range Rover enthusiast to get together and be part of this one off event.

Land Rover usually have a show at the Centre in April but are delaying it until 2013 as the new ‘Land Rover Lifestyle Show’.

Anyone wanting to be involved in the Heritage Run can do so by calling a hotline on 01926645029, the cost will be £50 per car with 2 people, and can be purchased over the phone.

For any further information, please visit the website at the www.

Mini to launch Countryman JCW

A high performance John Cooper Works (JCW) variation of the Mini Countryman is to be revelled at the Geneva motor show next March. The prototype is undergoing its final testing in winter snow in Austria at present prior to the big launch.

The JCW is said to be headed up for a ‘significant power hike’ compared to the Mini Countryman Cooper S which it is based on, but certain speciation details are not yet clear. Its turbocharged engine has been set out to increase from the moderate 177bhp 1.6-litre petrol to 215bhp.

The car’s speed is also on the up, increasing from 0-62mph in 7.6 seconds (Cooper S) to just 7 seconds.  The JCW will house the Cooper S sports suspension, insiders of the new model have revealed.  Its rear brakes have also taken an upgrade, with 296mm rear disc brakes, an increase in diameter of 16mm compared to the Cooper S.

Some of the car’s specification remains unclear, but changes to the grille, bumper and wheel arches are clear. A new rear bumper and pseudo diffuser make up the final modifications to the prototype.

The World Rally Championships is all too familiar with Mini, but the Countryman JCW will now give it a further platform from which to promote itself.

The original plans for the Countryman JCW were to roll it out to rival the VW Golf GTI, however this is not the car the Countryman now hopes to compete with. The car is hoped to be in UK showrooms by summer 2012.

Winter Tyres – are they worth the investment?

As hazardous conditions increase due to the more harsh winter conditions, fitting winter tyres could be a valid option for our road users.

Offering a dramatic reduction in stopping distance, industry experts advised that winter tyres work more effectively than normal tyres when temperatures become lower than seven degrees.

With statistics from the Met Office showing that temperatures have been hitting an average of below seven degrees from mid November to March since 1980, having some fitted could be of great advantage for the chilly months.

With a different tread pattern and compound, snow tyres offer extra grip when compared with regular tyres.  A reduced performance under the same conditions can be seen in ‘summer’ tyres due to an increase in hardness and loss of elasticity.

Dependant on vehicle type, the average cost for a standard family car is £300 for a full set.  This is without the added cost of having steel wheel hubs fitted in order to mount them.

Whilst a rear wheeled drive BMW could struggle to make its way through a mini roundabout in Britain, the same vehicle with winter tyres is able to easily negotiate a snowbound European Alpine road.

Last years early cold snap in the UK meant winter tyre sales were booming, to such an extent that stockists were caught out by demand and had sold out in early December, leaving vehicles struggling to cope in treacherous conditions with unsuitable tyres.

The Department of Transports data shows that only 11 per cent of UK car accidents are caused by skidding during dry conditions, compared with 48 per cent during the winter.

Sales Soar For Luxury Car Maker Bentley

bentleyLuxury car-maker Bentley has announced that UK sales have risen by more than 20% by last month.

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Value For Money Saloon Is Coming To The UK

suzukiSuzuki, best known for its smaller cars, has announced that from January they will offer the Kizashi D-segment saloon. The car manufacturer believes that there is currently an opening in the UK for value for money saloon.

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Economic Crisis Affects UK’s Forecasted 2012 New Car Sales

car for saleThanks to the deteriorating financial situation Britain’s car makers are writing off 40,000 new car sales from their 2012 forecasts.

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Police Warn Motorists To Be Vigilant As A New Technique Is Employed By Car Thieves

Motorists are being warned of the latest advance in car thieves’ techniques, where an electronic device can be used to jam the remote locking system of a vehicle.

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Soaring Trade In Stolen Car Parts As Metal Prices Continue To Rise

Staffordshire and the West Midlands have been the target of thieves looking to cash in on high metal prices, as parked vehicles are having their catalytic converters removed according to new figures.

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Motorhead Producer Goes Electric

Music producer for Culture Club, Motorhead and the Beach Boys, Steve Levine has been consulted in an effort to come up with an artificial sound for a Jaguar electric car. He is said to be looking for a luxury feel when experimenting with sound, not just a sound to alert pedestrians, for the Jaguar CX75 (pictured left).

Whilst electric vehicles aren’t totally silent, the minimal sound that they do produce is seen as a dangerous factor as unsuspecting pedestrians are unaware of their approach, Mr Levine was consulted to come up with some ideas to help combat the issue.

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West Midlands Reap Benefits of Car Exports

A government backed agency say 1,500 new jobs have been created by automotive suppliers in the West Midlands region.

MAS, the Manufacturing Advisory Service, said suppliers had benefited from a global export increase by car companies in the West Midlands.

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