My thoughts on all things motoring, press releases, reviews & techie stuff, from around the world.
Please note that the pictures of vehicles within this blog are used as examples of the specific press releases, on occasions, due to the lack of available official pictures, examples are re-produced.
ANY AND ALL PROFANITIES WILL BE REMOVED AND THE PERSON/S RESPONSIBLE WILL BE BANNED, NO EXCEPTIONS.
I will try my best to provide detailed info on various cars and what is like to live with them, I have already produced a few for Jaguar-car-forums, I will do my best to be unbiased, but it will be hard for some cars. I will re-produce press releases and copy from other motoring news.
MG wins first manufacturer title in British Touring Car Championship (BTCC)
MG driver Jason Plato finishes second in drivers championship as most successful BTCC driver ever
British brand ends Honda’s four year reign as champions in dramatic season climax at Brands Hatch
MG also celebrating fastest growing manufacturer and 90th anniversary in 2014
MG fans worldwide are celebrating today as the iconic British brand celebrated its maiden manufacturer’s title in the prestigious Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship in the season finale at Brands Hatch. The victory was an incredible result for MG, following the brands race to the grid after the rapid formation of the team in 2012 and ending the four year dominance of Honda in the Championship.
MG Sales and Marketing Director Guy Jones said “Everyone at MG is delighted with this victory and the team’s success in placing the iconic MG brand, with its rich history of motorsport, back at the top of such a prestigious, exciting and challenging championship as BTCC. I want to thank everyone who worked so hard to make this a success both on and off the track. The team here at MG, Ian Harrison and the team and Triple Eight, the drivers Jason Plato, Sam Tordoff, Tesco, Castrol and all our other sponsor partners.”
This programme has been a key part in re-establishing the MG brand in the UK and also globally. It has raised awareness of the brand with TV, online and press coverage that is not only followed in the UK but also across the world. The MG6 GT race car was designed to resemble the road car as closely as possible and in addition to the on-track programme, we have also operated a very successful mobile showroom next to the track, so BTCC fans can see and touch the latest MG6 and MG3 products.
MG literally raced to the grid in 2012 where the MG6 GTs turned their wheels in anger for the first time in the opening race and yet the team was winning races from that initial weekend. The goal was to win the manufacturers championship but to do this meant defeating the established and highly successful Honda team, reigning champions for the past four years. It is therefore a great achievement and credit to all at Triple Eight to achieve this in just three seasons.
The news of MGs maiden victory was announced during a dramatic action packed weekend at the final weekend of the championship at Brands Hatch that saw MG drivers Jason Plato and Sam Tordoff start the weekend by taking pole and P2 in qualifying to lock out the front row of the grid in race one.
The opening lap of the first race saw Sam pass Jason off the start line before a huge multi-car accident on the first lap. The MG duo showed their class in the first race delivering an impressive one-two.
Race two secured the manufacturers championship for MG before a rain soaked race three in near zero visibility conditions, where Sam finished an impressive fourth and Jason an amazing seventh after starting from the back in the pit-lane. Jason finished second in the driver’s championship and remains the most successful driver in the history of BTCC.
MG is currently the fastest growing automotive brand in the UK with sales up 573 percent year to date (SMMT data) due to outstanding value of the latest products, which are designed and assembled in the UK and the major expansion of the national dealer network. The MG3 supermini offers top of the range specifications including DAB audio and Bluetooth, finished off with diamond cut alloy wheels all for under £10,000. With a range of over one million exterior and interior personalisation options and group 4E insurance it is designed attract a whole new younger generation to the brand, in addition to appealing to loyal MG fans.
The MG6 is already a favourite with MG owners for its drivability, affordability and exceptionally high levels of standard equipment included and was also voted by owners to be the Best Handling and sixth overall Best Car to Own in the 2014 Auto Express Driver Power Awards. The appeal of the MG6 product range has been further increased with the addition of the new 350Nm, 129g CO2 performance diesel and new business lease rates starting from just £149 per month plus VAT.
MG is also celebrating the 90th anniversary of the brand in 2014 with exclusive 90th Limited edition models of both MG6 and MG3 now available.
Honda engineers Fergal McGrath and James Warren, driving a Honda Civic Tourer, have won this year’s MPG Marathon eco-driving challenge in a nail-biting finish with last year’s champions, Nick Chapman and Rosemary Homer.
Over the two days of the event, which was again sponsored by ALD Automotive and TRACKER, the Honda pair expertly guided a Civic Tourer 1.6 i-DTEC around the specially designated 330-mile route, recording an outstanding 97.92mpg.
However, it was a very close run thing following a determined and sustained challenge from reigning champions, Chapman and Homer, both employees of Leicestershire County Council, who, until last year’s event, had never even met before.
Again driving a 1.6 litre TDCi Ford Fiesta Titanium ECOnetic, the Leicester pair achieved an average of 97.08mpg, just fractions of a mile per gallon behind the eventual winners.
“Having won last year’s event at their first attempt, Nick and Rosemary so nearly became only our second pair of drivers to win the event for two years in a row,” said event organiser and Fleet World managing editor, Ross Durkin.
“Commiserations to them, but all credit to Fergal and James. Their performance in recording an average of 97.92mpg over the two days was quite exceptional given the challenging driving conditions that all the contestants faced.
“It is testimony to their expert eco-driving skills that they have emerged triumphant against a very strong field of competitors, including nine former champions, and shows what can be achieved with the current generation of eco-friendly models available on the market today.”
In third place overall were John Kendall and Paul Nieuwenhuis, who achieved a very creditable 95.00mpg in Citroen’s new C4 Cactus crossover. The pair drove the low-emission BlueHdi 100 Feel model which emits just 82g/km of CO2.
Alongside the competition for the best outright MPG, the Marathon also challenged drivers to improve on the manufacturers’ official fuel consumption figures for their vehicle.
And claiming first place in this category were Marathon new-comers and current Ford motor racing stars, Louise Richardson, and her co-driver, Harrison Scott.
Louise 21, star of the family-run Richardson Racing team, is the first female racer of an EcoBoost Formula Ford car, while 18-year old Falcon Motorsport driver Harrison is current leader of the 2014 Dunlop MSA Formula Ford Championship.
The pair were driving a powerful new Ford Fiesta ST-3 1.6 litre 182ps EcoBoost model with an official combined fuel consumption of 47.9mpg. But the racing stars blew that figure completely out of the water, achieving an astonishing 75.77mpg, over 58% better than the official figures.
“It was an outstanding achievement from Louise and Harrison in their first MPG Marathon and showed what can be done in terms of driving frugally, even in today’s modern, high-powered super-minis,” said Ross Durkin, who was presiding over the 14th MPG Marathon to date.
“They had to curb their natural racing instincts in trying to use as little fuel as possible over the two-day event and did so brilliantly,” he said.
In second place in the percentage improvement category was the pair of Richard Aucock and Katie Beck. Driving an all-wheel drive Subaru BRZ Sports Coupe 2.0i SE Lux with a combined fuel consumption of 36.20mpg, their performance of 55.42mpg was 53% better than the official figures.
Claiming third spot in this category were former rally star, Andy Dawson, and long time co-driver and motorsports journalist, Andrew Marriott, the 2012 MPG Marathon champions.
Behind the wheel of a new high-powered Ford Focus ST-3 2.0T 250PS with an official fuel consumption figure of 39.20mpg, the highly-experienced duo achieved 56.78mpg, some 44.84% better than the manufacturer’s own figures.
Other notable achievements this year included that from British Touring Car Championship stars, Matt Neal and Gordon Shedden, both members of the 2014 Honda Yuasa Racing Team, who were driving a Honda Civic 1.6 litre diesel Tourer.
Taking part in their first-ever MPG Marathon, their performance of 80.23mpg saw them finish in ninth place in the field of 26 teams of competitors.
In the light commercial vehicle category, there was a quite brilliant performance from Dan Gilkes, editor ofVan Fleet World, and co-driver, Ray Penford.
Behind the wheel of Renault’s all-new Trafic SL27 Energy dCi 120 Business, the pair achieved 55.55mpg, the best overall mpg and also the best percentage improvement, being 16% better than the manufacturer’s official figures of 47.90mpg.
Day one saw the contestants start from the luxurious Cotswold Water Park Four Pillars Hotel, at South Cerney near Cirencester, and head for the Brecon Beacons, with a lunch stop in Abergavenny, Monmouthshire, and an afternoon tea stop in Worcester.
On day two, they again set off from South Cerney, heading for Andover in Hampshire for a coffee stop and a lunch stop at the stately Bailbrook House Hotel in Bath.
In all, the course comprised a combined total of approximately 330 miles, although contestants were free to plan their own routes, provided they included a number of pre-agreed, fixed points, which made keen navigational skills essential.
All participating vehicles were again fitted with TRACKER tracking equipment so that event organisers knew exactly where each car was and how far it had travelled.
“Congratulations to all the contestants in this year’s MPG Marathon. There were some outstanding team and individual performances, some near misses and some great results.
“Above all else, this year’s event showed conclusively that the current generation of modern cars and vans are more fuel-efficient and more environmentally friendly than ever before, and are an outstanding testimony to the achievements of all the participating motor manufacturers,” concluded Ross Durkin.
SEAT celebrates series of new UK sales records, including best ever single month, best quarter and year-to-date market share
Retail sales up 27% year-to-date and fleet up 11.5%
SEAT international sales up more than 10% too, with UK its largest growth market
SEAT is celebrating a series of new UK sales records, including best month, quarter and year-to-date market share. Finding homes for 9,594 of its cars, the Spanish brand’s stellar September performance dwarfed the same month last year by a lofty 1,096 units. It also eclipsed its previous best, set earlier this year in March.
The sporty, design-led marque is also basking in the glory of its biggest quarter ever on our shores, with 15,269 sales. Resulting in its highest ever September market share, at 2.25%, it propelled SEAT to its most impressive year-to-date market share, at 2.18%.
Leading the charge was the Leon range. In September, just shy of 4,000 of them were sold, and more than 6,500 overall in the third quarter. The iconic Ibiza also continued to shine. Celebrating its 30th anniversary, it’s still proving to be as desirable as ever, with 3,971 delivered in September alone.
While the numbers poured in, SEAT also maintained its healthy sales mix. In September, 5,527 UK retail sales showed growth of almost 10% on last year, with an even rosier picture year-to-date versus 2013, up over 27% over the same period, at 24,377.
Not to be outdone, its fleet team also posted a strong set of figures. At 4,067, its sales shifted upwards 18.2% on last September, and pushed SEAT’s year-to-date fleet growth to 11.5%.
Commenting on SEAT UK’s sales success, Director, Neil Williamson, “I’m delighted with our performance so far this year, and last month’s results are just the icing on the cake. We’ve got a great model line-up, with cars like the new Leon X-PERIENCE coming online soon. Plus, we’re winning plenty of awards and comparison tests too. It’s also encouraging to see our dealers making good returns as well, long may it continue. All we’ve got to do now is maintain our focus to deliver what I’m confident will be yet another record-breaking year for SEAT in the UK.”
Internationally, the news was equally positive, with SEAT sales up more than 10% year-to-date. The brand ended the third quarter with an aggregate increase of 10.5%, and 294,000 vehicles delivered, 27,900 more than in the same period 2013 (266,100). This growth momentum is being sustained by Leon sales, with the ST already making its mark, selling 32,700 units already, of the range’s total 117,500 so far this year. The SEAT Alhambra, with 17,000 vehicles (2013: 14,100) is also making solid gains, up 21.0% year-to-date.
Dr. Andreas Offermann, Vice-President for Sales and Marketing, highlighted growth in the main European markets. “SEAT is increasing above 20% in the United Kingdom and Italy, and more than 10% in Spain and Germany. In Portugal sales have almost doubled, and in Eastern Europe we are growing by 55%. The improvement in our results is based on a solid and ever-increasing range coupled with a stronger presence in Europe”.
Jaguar Land Rover North America is proud to announce Paretti Jaguar is celebrating 45 years of quality service and success as a Jaguar franchise in the New Orleans area.
The thirteenth oldest of 163 Jaguar stores in the nation, Paretti Jaguar is the fourth generation of Jaguar dealerships in the New Orleans area. Opening the Metarie location in 1976, were Karl Schroeder, General Manager; Richard Findley, Sales Manager; Alan Trahern, Sales and Jim Gurry, Parts Manager, all who remain with the Paretti company today.
"It has been a long journey of hard work and dedication, none of which could have been possible without a great staff and loyal customers," says Craig Paretti Jr., President of Paretti Imports.
Craig Paretti Jr., President of Paretti Imports and Michael Rase Jr., Vice President of Paretti Imports were presented with a plaque to celebrate the milestone at the grand opening celebration of Paretti Jaguar's sister store, Jaguar Baton Rouge on October 9th in Baton Rouge, LA. Ed Moran, Regional Vice President, Jaguar Land Rover North America conducted the presentation.
"It is with great pride that we recognize Paretti Jaguar for 45 years of business excellence in the New Orleans market," says Joe Eberhardt, President and CEO, Jaguar Land Rover North America. "This success is especially gratifying given the brand's new product momentum. As a premier manufacturer of luxury sedans and sports cars, Jaguar has an exciting future ahead and we very much appreciate the valuable contribution the Paretti team has made to the business."
Agreement signed in Federal Chancellery in presence of Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and Federal Chancellor Dr. Angela Merkel
Volkswagen and further Chinese joint venture partner SAIC agree on new proving ground in Xinjiang province
Prof. Dr. Winterkorn: “Together with its strong partners Volkswagen is focusing on innovation, eco-friendly technologies and excellently trained employees in China.”
Cooperation with Ministry of Education: Centers of competence for teacher training to be set up to strengthen expansion of dual vocational training system
After 20 years of successful cooperation the Volkswagen Group and its Chinese joint venture partner First Automotive Works (FAW) are extending their present partnership for a further 25 years, until the year 2041. In addition, the Volkswagen Group and the Chinese joint venture partner SAIC are investing in the Shanghai Volkswagen (SVW) proving ground in Xinjiang province, western China. Both agreements were signed in Berlin today in the presence of Li Keqiang, Premier of the People’s Republic of China, Dr. Angela Merkel, Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany, and Prof. Dr. Martin Winterkorn, Chairman of the Board of Management of Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft. A joint memorandum concluded with the Chinese Ministry of Education concerning cooperation in the field of vocational training was already signed yesterday in Wolfsburg.
Based on today’s extended cooperation, Volkswagen and FAW will be able to significantly expand existing research and development activities in China and move into new business areas in the coming years, above all in the field of alternative drive technologies. The agreement was signed by Prof. Dr. Jochem Heizmann, Member of the Board of Management of Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft with responsibility for China and President and CEO of Volkswagen Group China, and Xu Jianyi, Chairman of the FAW Group. Back in July of this year, Volkswagen and FAW agreed to expand their production capacity by building two new plants in Qingdao and Tianjin.
“Together with its strong partners Volkswagen is focusing on innovation, eco-friendly technologies and excellently trained employees in China. Today’s agreements pave the way for the sustainable development of China’s automotive industry and for the Volkswagen Group and its joint ventures to benefit from growth”, Winterkorn underscored during the signing ceremony.
Volkswagen is further expanding its activities in western China – and is joining up with the Chinese joint venture partner SAIC to invest some €100 million in a new proving ground in the Xinjiang region to test models from Shanghai Volkswagen. The facility will be built to the south east of the Urumqi plant commissioned in August 2013. Heizmann and Chen Zhixin, President of SAIC Motor Corporation, also signed a joint agreement to this effect today.
“Our success in China would not have been possible without our long-standing Chinese joint venture partnerships”, Heizmann commented. “We are firmly convinced the extended cooperation with FAW we signed today reinforces our excellent strategic position going forward. We will be introducing our newest testing methods in China at our new proving ground, and will be paying very close attention to the appropriate training for our employees. This is clear testimony of Volkswagen’s commitment to the Chinese market.”
As Prof. Dr. Horst Neumann, Member of the Board of Management of Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft with responsibility for Human Resources, Organization and IT, underscored: “Dual vocational training along the lines of the system Volkswagen has implemented almost all over the world closely links theory and practice and ensures that young employees acquire a high standard of specialist skills.
That is why we want to encourage even more higher vocational education institutions in China to commit to dual vocational training.” Together with Prof. Guiren Yuan, the Chinese Minister of Education, Neumann signed on Thursday in Wolfsburg a memorandum on cooperation in the field of vocational training in which the Volkswagen Group and the Chinese government undertake to expand the dual vocational training system in China. Plans include nine centers of competence for teacher training and for teaching programs that closely link theory and practice in line with the German vocational training principle. These educational facilities will specialize in tooling, automation technology, bodyshell technology and automotive technology as well as pedagogy. The first centers have already been set up in Changchun and Yizheng.
The Volkswagen Group is one of the most successful companies in the Chinese automobile industry. Together with its joint venture partners SAIC and FAW, the Volkswagen Group builds models from the Volkswagen Passenger Cars, Audi and ŠKODA brands for the Chinese market. Vehicle production includes engines and components manufactured locally by the Group and its partners. In total, the Volkswagen Group has a presence at 17 production locations in China comprising eight vehicle sites and nine component sites. Shanghai Volkswagen has already announced the building of a new factory in Changsha to expand vehicle production capacity. Furthermore, FAW-Volkswagen is to construct two new production plants in Qingdao and Tianjin.
In the first three quarters of this year, Volkswagen Group China together with its Chinese joint ventures Shanghai Volkswagen and FAW-Volkswagen delivered more than 2.7 million vehicles, an increase of 15.2 percent on the comparable prior-year period.
eBay Motors star takes his second drivers championship as MG claims manufacturer honours
eBay Motors driver Colin Turkington was crowned the 2014 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Champion after a quite pulsating final day of racing at Brands Hatch.The Ulsterman came into the weekend with a relatively comfortable points margin, but had to overcome the challenge from MG’s Jason Plato – the most successful BTCC driver in history.
Plato laid down an immediate marker by claiming pole position ahead of his MG KX Clubcard Fuel Save team-mate Sam Tordoff, whilst Turkington could only manage fourth on the grid behind Honda Yuasa Racing’s Gordon Shedden.An action packed opening race commenced with a huge multi-car accident, as well as providing three different leaders in the opening half lap.Pole-sitter Plato was jumped off the line by Tordoff, who then immediately had the BMW of Turkington blasting around his outside as the pack roared into Paddock Hill Bend for the first time.
There was drama behind after a coming together between the Airwaves Racing Ford Focus of Fabrizio Giovanardi and Shedden’s Honda Civic Tourer sparked a sequence of incidents in the pack.Shedden’s machine slid sideways across the track following the contact and was hit heavily by the unsighted Rob Austin. Jack Goff’s VW was bumped from behind in the melee and briefly became airborne with both Dave Newsham and Alain Menu also involved.
Matt Neal’s Honda was also car collected in the incident, ending the triple-champion’s day as he was flown to hospital for a precautionary X-ray on his ribs.
When the dust eventually settled it was Plato leading from Tordoff, with Turkington in close pursuit. The MG duo held on for an impressive one-two but it wasn’t enough to deny 32-year-old Turkington from claiming his second BTCC title.
Turkington’s eBay Motors squad was ready in the pitlane to welcome its man home, as the West Surrey Racing-run team also secured the Teams’ and both Independents’ championships.
“I am over the moon,” said the new champion. “I wanted this more than ever and I was prepared to do whatever it took to win the title.
“I suppose the main feeling is relief. We were ready to do battle until race three so I really wasn’t expecting to clinch the title so early in the day. I actually thought I was a point short when I crossed the line so I didn’t want to celebrate until I was absolutely sure.
“To be able to celebrate with the team and my family is a really proud moment. Lewis [Colin's son] wasn’t old enough to remember the first one and part of the reason to get back into the BTCC was to do it for him, so I’m delighted.”
Race two was all about MG KX Clubcard Fuel Save securing the Manufacturers’ Championship but the encounter wasn’t without incident.
Plato finished first on the road but was later penalised for his involvement in a race-ending shunt for Turkington. The eBay Motors BMW led the way in the early running before contact from the MG behind sent Turkington spinning into retirement.
Airwaves Racing’s Mat Jackson took over the reins but his lead didn’t last long after the multiple race-winner spun it away of the exit of Hawthorns. Plato baulked up while Jackson was having his moment, allowing the BMW of Rob Collard to nip through.
Changes for top spot were far from finished, however, after Morgan got past Plato before producing a stellar move by leader Collard at Paddock Hill Bend. Plato made it through too as Collard’s soft compound tyres began to drop in performance.
Morgan then slid wide to seemingly hand victory to Plato before the latter’s post-race penalty gave the Mercedes driver a maiden success. Incredibly it was also the first overall win for the German marque in the BTCC.
“It’s brilliant,” beamed Morgan. “We’ve been praying for a podium for so long, so to get a win at the last event of the year is just fantastic.”
Shedden produced a master class in treacherous conditions in the season finale, ending a challenging campaign on a high for Honda Yuasa Racing.
Tin-top rookie Jack Clarke scored an incredible second placed finish after seeing off a number of challengers throughout the contest. The pole-sitter lost out to the fast-starting BMW of Nick Foster off the line but he retook the lead with a great move at Graham Hill Bend.
Shedden made light work of Foster and immediately set about attacking Clarke ahead of him. The 26-year-old held on well for a number of laps before the Scotsman slipped through on the exit of Hawthorns.
Jackson completed the podium, rounding off an excellent season for the multiple race-winner in which he completed all 30 encounters. It was a hat-trick of accomplishments for Ford drivers as Dave Newsham also collected the Jack Sears Trophy for making up the most places of any Independent driver throughout the campaign.
It was all eyes on Turkington after the final chequered flag of the season, however, as he took to the podium in front of a huge crowd and collected the much coveted BTCC trophy for the second time in his career.
The glittering occasion rounded off a record breaking and hugely successful 2014 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship, which saw 31-cars take to the grid, including seven former champions. Such has been the competitiveness of the burgeoning series that Adam Morgan today became the 11th different race winner in 2014 – a year that has provided more victors than in any other in the history of this illustrious championship.
So many drivers have made the top step of the podium during the season, but of course there can only be one champion, and that richly deserved accolade goes to eBay Motors star Colin Turkington.
2014 BTCC Champion Colin Turkington said: ”The emotion is so hard to describe – it’s like no other feeling in the world. Under the surface there’s been so much pressure, that race felt just like the 2009 finale. The car this year has been awesome, there hasn’t been one track where we’ve not been on the podium.”
Runner-up Jason Plato said: “Colin, the car and the team are world class – I’ve said it a few times that it would’ve been wrong for him to have a disaster – this is his moment, he deserves it and he needs to enjoy the moment. The most important thing for us is the manufacturer’s title – it’s a fantastic result, I’m dead chuffed, it’s been a great effort from Triple Eight and MG. Just reward for three years hard work? I think so. As a team, we’ve done a brilliant job. To come from not having a shell six weeks before the first race in 2012 to where we are last year and this year, we’ve been the dominant force.”
Third placed driver Gordon Shedden said: “We had a bit of liquid sunshine that came to our aid in race three. The car was awesome – we were lucky to get back out after race one, the team did a great job and the win is for them. It’s a fantastic end to a tough day. Congratulations to Colin and WSR – they are totally deserving of the championship. We’re hoping to be back and racing the new Civic Type R next year – it looks absolutely awesome!”
2014 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship – Brands Hatch GPRace 1
1. Jason PLATO (MG KX Clubcard Fuel Save): 15 Laps 2. Sam TORDOFF (MG KX Clubcard Fuel Save): +0.900 3. Colin TURKINGTON (eBay Motors): +1.807 4. Mat JACKSON (Airwaves Racing): +3.319 5. Adam MORGAN (WIX Racing): +3.473 6. Rob COLLARD(eBay Motors): +3.692Race 21. Adam MORGAN (WIX Racing): 17 Laps 2. Sam TORDOFF (MG KX Clubcard Fuel Save): +1.220 3. Rob COLLARD(eBay Motors): +3.078 4. Andrew JORDAN (Pirtek Racing): +3.092 5. Tom INGRAM(Speedworks Motorsport): +5.309 6. Gordon SHEDDEN (Honda Yuasa Racing): +6.846Race 31. Gordon SHEDDEN (Honda Yuasa Racing): 15 Laps 2. Jack CLARKE(Crabbie’s Racing): +3.614 3. Mat JACKSON (Airwaves Racing): +4.426 4. Sam TORDOFF (MG KX Clubcard Fuel Save): +4.758 5. Aron SMITH (Chrome Edition Restart Racing): +7.083 6. Andrew JORDAN (Pirtek Racing): +8.532
Click here for the classification from Brands Hatch.
Fabrizio Giovanardi was given an official reprimand and two points on his racing licence for an incident involving Gordon Shedden
Tom Ingram was given an official reprimand and two points on his racing licence for an incident involving Fabrizio Giovanardi
Jason Plato was given a ten-place grid penalty and three points on his racing licence for an incident involving Colin Turkington. The decision was appealed by West Surrey Racing, the stewards upheld the appeal and Plato was subsequently given a 20-second time penalty and as this was his third reprimand of the season had to start the following race from the back of the grid
Race three: Mat Jackson was given a verbal warning for an incident involving Aron Smith
In a monumental battle for the country’s most coveted car trophy, the Mazda2comesfrom behind to capture the Car of the Year Japan award.
Typhoon Vongfong, this year’s fiercest storm, might have weakened when it made landfall on the Japanese archipelago on Sunday, but a storm of different proportions was brewing inside the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation on Tokyo Bay.
In a nail-biting finish between the Mazda2 and the Mercedes Benz C-Class, the Hiroshima compact car polled 423 votes to come from behind and win the Car of the Year Japan by just 19 votes. The C-Class finished with 404 votes. This result means that Mazda’s highly rated Skyactiv technology and unique styling combination has picked up Japan’s top award twice in three years, after the CX-5 snagged the COTY trophy in 2012.
Kiyoshi Fujiwara, the Godfather of Mazda’s Skyactiv technology proudly holds the Japan COTY trophy.
In a tightly fought contest, the Demio polled the maximum 10 votes from 22 of the 59 jurors while the C-Class picked up ten votes from 18 jurors. Each juror is allocated 25 votes, must give 10 votes to their best car and spread their remaining 15 votes among their next best 4 cars.
The BMW i3 came third with 340 votes, Subaru’s Levorg finished 4th with 124 votes and the Suzuki Hustler ended up in 5th with 65 votes.
“With the Mazda2, we have rewritten the rule book for compact cars. Our new Skyactiv technology, excellent mileage, reasonable pricing and unique design all contributed to our victory today,” commented Mazda’s EVP, Kiyoshi Fujiwara.
In three minor award categories that were introduced last year year, the BMW i3 picked up the ‘Innovation Award,’ the Honda N-WGN captured the ‘Small Mobility Award’ and the ‘Special Achievement Award’ went to the Toyota for its Fuel Cell program.
Maserati continues strong positive sales trend that has characterised Europe in 2014.
The UK, with 158 new registrations in September alone, remains one of the top European markets for the Trident Marque. With a total of nearly 1,000 units registered since the start of the year and an increase of +285% compared to the same period of 2013.
Italy, Germany, France, Switzerland, Netherlands and Spain have contributed significantly to the increase of sales in Europe, with a result of +391% compared to the same period of last year, with 4,207 new vehicles registered during the first nine months of 2014.
Positive results were also obtained thanks to the debut of the new Diesel engine, present in both the Quattroporte – luxury flagship of the Trident– and the Ghibli – executive sports saloon.
At Germany’s Touring Car race finale at Hockenheim Audi will stage one of the most extreme piloted driving demonstrations to date
Audi to underscore piloted driving potential as part of the programme for the final German Touring Car Championship race at Hockenheim
Live broadcast on Audi Media TV from 12:45pm on October 19, 2014
Two-minute lap time and up to 149mph expected
A driverless Audi RS 7 Sportback will tackle Germany’s Hockenheim circuit at race speed next week to underscore the potential of piloted driving technology. With the latest Audi developments on board, the concept car will drive autonomously to its physical limits with millimetre precision as an exciting sideshow for the German Touring Car Championship (DTM) finale on October 19.
As its sophisticated sensors guide it around the challenging circuit, the RS 7 Sportback piloted driving concept car will be approximately as fast as with a professional racing driver at the wheel. Tests conducted so far indicate that on the grand prix track a lap time of just over two minutes can be expected, and that the technology demonstrator should reach speeds of up to 149mph.
New car to create 7,000-mile-long GPS picture all over UK
Final image will have particular relevance to public on day of release
Few cars are as widely known in Britain as Vauxhall’s Corsa, and to celebrate the launch of the Fourth Generation model an early prototype car is being used to achieve the GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS’ title for the Largest GPS Drawing.
The image is being generated by Jeremy Wood, one of the pioneers of GPS-art, but will have the final flourishes applied by motoring journalists as they test New Corsa for the first time during a UK-wide launch organised by Vauxhall this month.
On completion, Vauxhall aims to have achieved the world record for the Largest GPS Drawing (minimum distance to beat is 4,451 miles) while at the same time visiting most of Britain’s towns and cities as part of an epic, month-long endurance drive that will cover over 7,000 miles of the UK’s mainland.
When the final image is revealed at the end of October, it will stretch from Scotland to the South Coast of England and will be recognised as one of the most spectacular virtual drawings the world has ever seen. It will also have particular relevance to the day on which it goes live.
GPS-art combines drawing, travelling (in many different forms) and technology to create art-work on a very large scale. GPS receivers determine the artist’s position by trilateration of microwave signals from satellites orbiting at 12,500 miles altitude. Tracks of a journey are recorded in the GPS receiver’s memory via a transponder (which in this case is fitted to the Corsa’s roof) and can then be downloaded.
‘Corsas can be found in every village, town and city around the UK, so we wanted to visit as many locations as possible during the record attempt to raise awareness of the new car,’ said Simon Hucknall, PR Manager for Vauxhall Product & Heritage. ‘We also wanted to create a truly unifying image using modern technology, which squared well with the level of innovation in the new car.
GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS is excited that we’re already close to breaking the record, and if we do, our car and GPS artist will have covered in a month what many motorists drive in a year.’
GPS artist, Jeremy Wood, has been creating ‘digital marks’ on water, over-land and in the air for more than a decade. His work is exhibited internationally and is in the permanent collection of London Transport Museum, the V&A and University of Arts in London.
‘This is by far the most challenging commission that I’ve taken on,’ said Jeremy. ‘In order to make the image instantly recognisable, I’ve driven New Corsa on a huge mix of roads and travelled some of the most convoluted routes to ensure that the outlines are clear and memorable.’
But despite the daunting task and epic mileage, Jeremy has nothing but praise for his early, pre-production Corsa 1.0-litre ECOTEC: ‘It’s wonderfully comfortable and quiet for covering a high mileage every day – not what I expected from a small car. It’s also averaged 50mpg, which given my stop-start work has been a pleasant surprise.’
Jeremy’s final image will be revealed at the end of October, through multiple media and social network channels. Not only is it set to become a GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS title, but the subject of the picture will have a particular resonance with the British public on the day of its release.