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.

Saturday, 26 November 2016

Time Warp pre production 1991 Ford Granada Scorpio to go under the hammer by Classic Car Auctions.

  • A pre-production 1991 Ford Granada Scorpio with just 1,325 miles on the clock, will be offered at auction by CCA.
  • The car has been in storage for over two decades and been preserved in excellent condition.
  • The car narrowly avoided scrappage thanks to its owner, making it an exceptionally rare find on the market.
A pre-production 1991 Ford Granada Scorpio, used exclusively by Ford for training purposes, will be offered at auction by Classic Car Auctions (CCA) on 3rd December at the Warwickshire Exhibition Centre.
An incredibly rare find, the car was saved from destruction by its current owner with just 1,325 miles on the clock, and has spent almost all of its life in dry, heated storage having never been road registered.

The right-hand drive, automatic 24V example was built by Ford and donated to a technical college in Belfast, Northern Ireland, to be used for the training of technicians before the production model was launched to the open market.
After a stint in Belfast, the car then visited numerous colleges across Country Antrim as it continued its career as a test vehicle. Once training phases were completed, the car was put into a storage facility.
Training cars were usually scrapped at this stage, but this car, with its demanding technical specification, remained in storage for a number of years.  However, when the current owner, a lecturer at the college, heard that it had been scheduled for disposal, he stepped in to take ownership of the car and save it from being destroyed.
“When I heard the car was going to be destroyed I just couldn’t let it happen,” explains the car’s owner. “It’s in stunning condition and has barely been used. I planned to keep the car forever, but a change in my circumstances means that, sadly, I have to let it go. I’m hoping another Ford fanatic, like myself, will give the car a good home.”
Today, after years of careful preservation, the car appears to be in incredible ‘time-warp’ condition. An inspection of the car reveals that all electrical items are fully functioning, with the interior and exterior looking 'as new', commensurate with its tiny mileage.
Presented in stunning black with a black leather interior, this unique Ford will be offered at ‘No Reserve’ when it goes to auction.
“This car has spent almost all of its life preserved in heated, dry storage and has an unbelievably low mileage for a car that’s 25 years old,” comments Guy-Lees Milne, auctions manager at CCA. “Ford fans and collectors won’t find another pre-production, training car out there in this condition on the market.”

30 years after the police tested the Ford RS200 rally car for motorway driving, they now trial the Focus RS.

The world’s most exclusive ‘police-car’ – based on the multi-award-winning Ford Focus RS – has been on test with police forces across the UK. The £31,250, four-wheel-drive, front-engined hyper hatch reaches 60mph from a standing start in under five seconds.

This special version of the Focus RS – on trial exactly 30 years after a Ford RS200 police car was put to the test - could be voted a ‘stunning hit’ by expert traffic policemen lucky enough to get behind the wheel, and is sure to intimidate would-be speeders.
Powered by a 2.3-litre turbocharged, 16-valve, four-cylinder Ford EcoBoost engine, the Focus RS develops 345bhp in standard road-going form – meaning that even the fastest Ford RS models of 30 years ago are no match for the Ford RS police cars of today.

The body was designed by Ford of Europe Design’s Ernesto Rupar, while the mechanical design and development was the responsibility of Ford Performance’s chief engineer, Tyrone Johnson. The Focus RS has won a host of awards since its launch, including Top Gear Magazine’s Car of the Year 2016.
Law-breakers would be relieved to learn that, due to limited production numbers, Ford does not expect many police forces to offer a patrol car capable of catching anything on the road. “But until they have tried it we won’t know whether it meets any specialist need”, said Terry Adams, Ford’s police sales manager.
Most forces will continue to rely on the standard Ford Focus and Ford’s biggest-selling police vehicle, the Transit Custom, for patrol duties. Ford supplies more than 1,500 vehicles to Britain’s police forces across the country, including the Ford Kuga and Ford Ranger in rural areas.
Unlike the RS200, the Focus RS includes most practicalities expected of a police patrol car, including rear doors for suspected criminal accommodation and a boot large enough for traffic cones.

The United Kingdom has tipped the 80% mark for exportation of motor vehicles, which is great for the economy.

UK CAR MANUFACTURING (data for October 2016)
  • UK car manufacturing dips -1.0% in October to 151,795 units as domestic demand falls.
  • Exports rise for 15th consecutive month, with 122,765 cars built for overseas markets, up 1.7%.1
  • Industry remains strong, up 9.2% year-to-date with more than 1.4 million vehicles produced.
UK car manufacturing dipped -1.0% in October, ending a 14-month run of growth for the industry, according to figures published today by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).2
151,795 vehicles were built in the month, with production for export growing taking an 80.9% share of volumes. 122,765 cars were shipped to overseas customers, an uplift of 1.7% on the same month last year, and offsetting a -10.9% decline in production for the home market. 

Despite the fall, domestic demand remains strong, with production in the year so far up 3.3% and at its highest level since 2005.3 Overall production levels, meanwhile, achieved a 17 year record of 1,444,248 – up 9.2%.
Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, said, “October's figures underline the export-led nature of the industry, with eight out of 10 cars built for overseas customers. Despite model changes which have ended the consistent growth pattern of the past year or so, we are still on track for a record number of exports.
“Given this dependence on global trade, it is crucial that British-built cars remain attractive to international buyers and exports are not subject to additional tariffs, costs and other barriers to successful trade. It is also essential government ensures there is economic stability and a competitive business environment to ensure we continue to attract the global investment that is behind this performance.”
  1. UK car export volumes have risen in every month since July 2015
  2. UK car manufacturing last fell in July 2015
  3. October 2005, when 363,513 units were produced for the domestic market

Skoda has topped the One Million sales one month earlier than last year, and 2017 will top it even sooner with the Kodiaq.

  • Growth course: ŠKODA delivers one million vehicles to customers by mid-November – around one month earlier than previous year
  • Successful top model: ŠKODA SUPERB sales up 85.2% over the same period last year
  • Further growth momentum thanks to new ŠKODA KODIAQ and comprehensively upgraded ŠKODA OCTAVIA
  • Outlook: ‘Strategy 2025’ sets the course for company’s future and defines high-growth areas of activity
ŠKODA surpassed the mark of one million vehicles delivered in 2016. This means that ŠKODA has reached the milestone approximately one month earlier than 2015, and has delivered a seven-digit number of vehicles for the third year in a row. 
The top model ŠKODA SUPERB has made a considerable contribution to this success. From January to today, almost 115,000 units of the flagship have rolled off the production line – an increase of 85.2% compared to the previous year. 
The launch of the new large SUV model ŠKODA KODIAQ and the comprehensively upgraded ŠKODA OCTAVIA promise further growth momentum for 2017.
“The current financial year shows that ŠKODA can sustainably tap into new customer segments with a modern model range on the international markets,” says ŠKODA CEO Bernhard Maier, adding: “We will also continue our growth course in 2017. 

The new ŠKODA KODIAQ is going to play an important role in this; the model will expand our range in the growing SUV segment.”
The flagship ŠKODA SUPERB has recorded particularly dynamic development over the year to date: Between January and October, almost 115,000 units of the top model made their way to customers around the world. Compared to the same period last year, this represents an increase of 85.2% (January to October 2015: 61,900 vehicles). The popular small car ŠKODA FABIA and the compact ŠKODA RAPID are also showing positive trends. Deliveries of these models increased by 6.7% and 7.0%, respectively, over the same period.
The heart of the brand, ŠKODA OCTAVIA, has made a significant contribution to the expected record sales: ŠKODA delivered 361,700 units of their bestseller from January to October. In the coming year, major revisions are planned for the ŠKODA OCTAVIA. The successful model is set to further strengthen its successful position on the international markets.
ŠKODA will be launching their first large SUV on the markets next year. With the ŠKODA KODIAQ, the brand is launching their campaign in the currently largest and fastest growing SUV segment. The new model will open up new customer groups for the traditional brand. Orders are already being placed for the ŠKODA KODIAQ, which will be heading to the first customers in February 2017.
Beyond the positive outlook for 2017, ŠKODA has set the course for long-term growth. The plan of action is set out in Strategy 2025, with which the Czech manufacturer is preparing for the challenges facing the automotive industry. Key aspects of the future strategy include electromobility, digitalizing the company, products and manufacturing, as well as new mobility services and connectivity. ŠKODA intends to grow in two dimensions: Firstly, in terms of increasing vehicle sales; and secondly by expanding the growth course to include new business segments, such as digital mobility services.

Ssangyong unveils two special Edition Turismo models, the Black and White Editions.

  • Black and White special edition Turismo announced
  • Distinctive metallic Space Black or Grand White exterior
  • New dark grey interior and new style seating
  • 2.2 litre Euro 6 diesel power, automatic transmission and 4x4
  • Available from just £26,250
Offering family and business users a car to transport seven adults in comfort together with their luggage, the SsangYong Turismo is almost without rival.
Now this capacious seven-seater is available as two stylish limited editions - Black or White, and as well as having a distinctive metallic Space Black or Grand White exterior, includes a smart new dark grey interior complete with new style seating.  Other special features include a heated steering wheel, Kenwood DAB radio and sat nav.
Based on the top-of-the-range Turismo ELX with selectable four-wheel drive, these new special editions come with a premium specification that includes a 7-speed Mercedes-Benz automatic transmission, cruise control, parking sensors, rear seating privacy glass, 17” diamond cut alloy wheels, roof rails, heated front seats, rain sensing wipers and automatic headlights.  These limited edition models are available from just £26,250.

At over 5 metres long and with a 3-metre wheelbase, Turismo is larger than a standard sized MPV people carrier, and features an upgraded 2.2 litre Euro 6 diesel engine.
Thanks to its 3,000mm wheelbase, the Turismo provides a huge interior space where seven adults can travel in supreme comfort with their luggage loaded in the back, and without having to compromise on passenger accommodation.  There are three rows of seats as well as the large load space which can be further increased by removing the third row completely.  This gives a massive load carrying capability of between 875 litres with seven adults seated, through to two adults and 3,146 litres of load space.
With its selectable 4x4 with low ratio, this Turismo special edition is a car you can rely on, no matter what the winter throws at you and is especially safe and practical whether towing a caravan, horsebox or boat trailer, or when driving on snow and ice, and has an impressive 2 tonne towing capacity.
The new Turismo utilises double wishbone front suspension and rear independent multi-link suspension for executive saloon style ride quality.  This set-up offers a quiet and comfortable driving environment with firm body control, a flat ride and optimum stability regardless of the road conditions.
5-year limitless mileage warranty
All models in the SsangYong range are covered by a best-in-class 5-year limitless mileage warranty.  Designed to be totally transparent and give customers complete peace of mind, ‘limitless’ means just that: not a maximum mileage condition that some brands impose in their small print.  All the major mechanical components are covered including wheel bearings, suspension joints and bushes, steering joints, shock absorbers and even the audio system.  Wearable components such as clutch discs and brake friction materials which could have their life reduced by poor driving are covered for one year or 12,500 miles, and the battery and paintwork for three years.

The new Lotus Exige 380, the top of the range car that will shame supercars, lighter, lower and more power.

  • Fastest Exige ever: 0-60 mph in 3.5 secs
  • 375 hp and 352 hp per tonne
  • Weighs from 1,066 kg dry and 1,100 kg kerb
  • Aerodynamic downforce of 140 kg at top speed
  • Nose-to-tail carbon components as standard
High powered, highly evolved, and ferociously fast, the Lotus Exige Sport 380 is the most aggressive iteration yet for the Exige model line up.
Taking the fight straight to six-figure supercars, this new, top-of-the-range model carries over the lessons learnt in the development of the acclaimed Exige Sport 350, launched last year, but with significant revisions lowering weight, boosting power and enhancing aerodynamics.
Rather than relying excessively on electronics, or allow sterile interfaces to dull the experience, the extreme Exige Sport 380 offers a pure, undiluted drive that has to be experienced to be fully appreciated.
Unrivalled in its class: faster, sharper, and more direct than adversaries, the Exige Sport 380 is definitely not for the timid. With a dry weight of just 1,066 kg with lightweight options, and boasting a potent power-to-weight ratio of 352 hp per tonne, the new, pure-bred Lotus has been conceived to out perform and out manoeuvre so called supercars. The new Exige is blisteringly fast off the line, dispatching 0-60mph in 3.5 seconds before reaching a top speed of 178 mph.

From the intricately engineered exposed-gear-change linkage, to the swathes of carbon-fibre components and Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres as standard, every inch of the Exige has been carefully cultivated. Firmly defined as a Lotus for the enthusiast, the car can be seen as an expression of intense engineering - challenging accomplished drivers to extract the car’s true potential.
Jean-Marc Gales, CEO of Group Lotus plc, commented: “We’ve saved something special for our last new car of 2016. We have built upon the foundations of the excellent Exige Sport 350 and developed a perfectly proportioned, intuitive and attainable supercar for real roads. The cut in weight is nothing short of drastic and, combined with the hike in power and its enhanced agility, we’ve created something exceptional - far greater than the sum of its parts. The Exige Sport 380 is so good, that it is no longer the best in class, it’s now in a class of its own.”
Unashamedly analogue and unfiltered
Lotus’ approach to developing the perfect sports car has allowed the Exige Sport 380 to lay claim to the title of the best sports car under £100,000. A true supercar car for the road, the Exige focuses on the three key attributes that have made the company a firm favourite with driving enthusiasts: reduced weight, higher performance and honed aerodynamics.
Raised on the roads around Hethel, and exercised on the company’s famous test track, the new car can trace its lineage back to the very first Exige, launched in 2000. Now the headline car of the range, sitting above the Sport 350 model, it is instilled with Lotus’ DNA and packed with a potent 375 hp engine into Lotus’ acclaimed two-seater.
Weight less
While employing some of the high-performance components premiered on the Exige Sport 350, Lotus returned to the Lightweight Laboratory in order to cut kilos from the kerb weight. Infused with carbon fibre from front to back, the Exige Sport 380 features hand-made, high-gloss visible weave components as standard to deliver a weight saving when compared to the Exige Sport 350. This includes the front splitter, revised front access panel, new rear wing and rear diffuser surround, which together save 2.7 kg. A lightweight, transparent polycarbonate rear window saves 0.9 kg over the glass equivalent in the Exige Sport 350. In addition, the carbon race seats (-6 kg), lithium- ion battery (-10.3 kg), ultra-lightweight forged wheels and grooved two-piece brake discs (-10 kg) combine to cut a massive 26.3 kg. A new design of rear transom panel now has two rear light clusters, rather than the four on the Exige Sport 350, with reversing and fog lights now mounted inboard, cutting weight by a further 0.3 kg.
In line with its illustrious lineage, the Exige Sport 380 employs Lotus’ lightweight extruded and bonded aluminium structure, as the company continues to lead in the field of advanced automotive construction techniques. Lotus is working continuously to engineer out the excess mass from its cars, and the company’s chassis technology remains the benchmark.
Power play
The company’s powertrain division has left its mark on the car, with the uprated 3.5-litre supercharged V6 engine generating 375 hp at 6,700 rpm and 410 Nm (302 lbft) of torque at 5,000 rpm. Refined from extensive testing and development, it’s a design that’s proved its mettle by powering some of Lotus’ latest supercars, including the track-focused 3-Eleven and the recently revealed Evora Sport 410.
The power boost comes from a revised supercharger pulley, which increases charge pressure, an uprated fuel pump, a recalibrated ECU and the introduction of a revised exhaust system – as used in the Evora 400 and Evora Sport 410. Allowing owners to enjoy the new Exige for longer between fuel stops, it also comes with an enlarged, 48-litre petrol tank.
Providing faster, cleaner changes, the Exige Sport 380’s six-speed manual gearbox uses Lotus’ acclaimed open-gate design. Eliminating lateral movement, by precisely aligning components, it features light-weight machined and cast aluminium parts. Aesthetically appealing, the open transmission mechanism also helps contribute to the car’s reduced weight. The manual gearbox has been further enhanced through the introduction of a new oil cooler, ensuring the gears operate at the optimal temperature no matter how hard they are performing.
The Lotus Exige Sport 380 is also available with an optional six-speed automatic gearbox, where drivers can select gears sequentially via the forged aluminium paddles located behind the steering wheel, or rely on the gearbox’s fully automatic mode. The automatic gearbox option will be available from Spring 2017.
The Lotus Exige Sport 380 features Lotus’ Dynamic Performance Management (DPM) which provides enhanced ‘Sport’ and ‘Race’ settings. Proportionally increasing throttle response, lowering traction slip thresholds and removing understeer recognition, it provides the driver with a finer level of control before the system intervenes. DPM also utilises an engine exhaust bypass valve at mid-to-high engine speeds, further reducing back pressure to boost throttle response and engine performance in both ‘Sport’ and ‘Race’ settings.
Aero advantage
As with all Lotus cars, aerodynamic efficiency plays a key role in the Exige, helping it to drastically expand its performance envelope. Extensive CFD modelling work has allowed Lotus’ design team to fine tune specific areas, in order to deliver a substantial overall improvement. The revised front access panel modifies the air flow exiting the car’s horizontally mounted radiators, before it travels over the car, while the carbon front spoiler and rubber lip spoiler combined with the carbon barge boards reduce pressure under the vehicle.
In addition, twin pairs of front canard wings, mounted forward of the front wheels, a carbon rear wing and air blades behind the rear wheels, all work to help raise downforce to a massive 140 kg at maximum speed - a 60% gain over the Exige Sport 350, which generates 88 kg at its maximum speed. This increase in downforce does not come at the penalty of drag which remains the same as the Exige Sport 350.
Favouring mechanical solutions over electronic systems, including key parts such as unassisted steering, means that the Exige Sport 380 delivers the driver an intuitive experience. The extensive use of carbon fibre on the bodywork has lowered the centre of gravity, helping contribute to the Exige’s exemplary steering feel and precision handling characteristics.
Making the most of its performance potential, the Exige Sport 380 is fitted with Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres as standard (265/35 ZR18 rear and 215/45 ZR17 front). Selected for their tenacity, and 10mm wider at the front that on the Exige Sport 350, the increased mechanical grip is complemented by the car’s ultra-lightweight forged alloy wheels, which are available in either black or silver. Either option is complemented by AP Racing forged, four-piston brake callipers and grooved performance two-piece brake discs.
In addition to its already impressive credentials, it’s possible to sharpen the Exige further still. Opting for the full exhaust system in titanium improves the car’s overall balance, by removing 10 kg from beyond the rear axle. For customers who frequently go to the track, the optional Track Pack provides Nitron two-way adjustable dampers and Eibach adjustable front and rear anti-roll bars.
The optional Carbon Exterior Pack contains a one-piece carbon roof panel and a distinctive carbon louvered tailgate. The carbon roof panel is 2 kg heavier than the standard soft-top but this weight increase is offset by the carbon louvered tailgate which saves 2 kg.
As befitting such a stand-out car, the Exige Sport 380 is sprayed and hand finished in one of ten individual colours. Providing some drama and drawing the eye to the beautiful composite carbon components, an optional exterior accent pack is also available in one of five key colours to deliver some finer detailing to the car’s undeniable presence.
The car’s kerb appeal is enhanced by revisions to the Exige’s design front and back. Distinctive blackened headlamp surrounds provide a more aggressive demeanour, whilst to visually accentuate the width of rear of the car, a new rear transom features two lamp clusters rather than four.
The hand finished detailing continues inside, with the carbon fibre sports seats trimmed with either Alcantara®, leather or tartan, with all featuring contrast stitching.
The optional lightweight carbon fibre sill covers provide a motorsport theme when entering or exiting the Exige Sport 380 and, thanks to their lower profile and contoured finish, aid ingress and egress. The Interior Colour Pack provides contrasting surrounds to the transmission console, HVAC surround, carbon seat eyelets and electric window bezels in one of four colours. A new integrated entertainment system can also be specified, including iPod® connectivity and Bluetooth® functionality, along with air conditioning.
For owners wanting more, the new Exige Sport 380 can be personalised through the increasingly popular Lotus Exclusive programme. Combining traditional British craftsmanship with modern design, the service inspires customers to spend time tailoring the character of their Lotus with a comprehensive array of options.
The Lotus Exige Sport 380 is available as a roadster as standard and as a coupe as an option.
Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price
UK (Pound Sterling)£67,900
Germany (Euros)€89,900
Japan (¥ Yen)¥12,760,000
Technical Specification:
Max power375 hp (380 PS, 280 kW) at 6,700 rpm
Max torque410 Nm (302 lbft) at 5,000 rpm
0-60 mph3.5 seconds3.5 seconds
0-100 km/h3.7 seconds3.7 seconds
Max Speed178 mph (286 km/h)170 mph (274 km/h)
Kerb Weight
with lightweight options
1,110 kg
1,100 kg
1,121 kg
1,111 kg
Dry Weight
with lightweight options
1076 kg
1,066 kg
1,087 kg
1,077 kg
Downforce at maximum speed140 kg140 kg
Fuel Consumption mpg (l/100 km) *
Extra Urban
19.5 (14.1)
37.2 (8.3)
28.0 (10.4)
21.1 (13.3)
39.8 (7.6)
30.1 (9.7)
COemissions242 g/km225 g/km
* Final fuel consumption and emissions figures to be confirmed