True Dit: Scenario: A hot summers day driving along the M5 Motorway-heading back to Plymouth after a three-day range recce. I had a young boy racer tailgating me in the fast lane, who was being egged on by two of his young chums. As I was unable to pull over due to the flow of traffic I just ignored them, which enraged the driver no end. After a mile or so I entered the middle lane to allow them to zoom past in their piddly little 1.3 litre Ford Ka, that sounded as though the pistons were ready to blow through the bonnet/hood. Just as they overtook I was given the mandatory finger as well as two raw eggs for my troubles, which then slowly smeared along the side of the LWB Landrover Defender. Fifteen miles later I pulled into a motorway service for a break and refreshments, and as requested I awoke the two gorillas who were fast asleep in the back portion of the cab. I enlightened them both about the boy racing youths, pointing out the now congealed raw eggs smeared along the ‘aft’ part of the vehicle. A low rumbling growl emanated from the larger primate. Six foot four ‘Tiny’ was not a ‘happy-chappy’ at all, and he had every right to be angry as he had signed the Landrover out from ‘Motor-Transport’ that had to be returned as issued (fully topped up with fuel, and clean-very-very-clean!) As we walked towards the eatery I noticed the girly blue coloured Ford Ka parked up, as well as its three pimply youths sat at a table slurping slush puppie’s. Tiny was quite an awesome looking Marine in full combats and green beret, and took charge of the situation in hand as I and the other primate ordered and ate. After forty-five minutes or so curiosity got the better of us both so we left to find the big man, who was stood next to a gleaming Landrover that had obviously been hand washed from bumper to bumper (the Ford Ka had only just left.) Tiny then explained the occupants had profusely apologised and ‘volunteered’ to clean the vehicle; after which he bone crunched their hands prior to their departure, though not before he had ‘requested’ them to sit on the remainder of the raw eggs that they were using as ammunition-all twenty-two of them… Karma comes in all shapes and sizes, very similar to primates I suppose? Yours Aye.
I would never endorse or advocate speeding or racing on a public highway; but it just so happens that such an incident has recently happened. As such, I feel it is my public duty to expose and shame the drivers involved, not that I take any satisfaction in doing so… Yeeeeharrrrrrrr!!! American Muscle vs Italian Muscle Lamborghini Gallardo with a tubi exhaust battling it out with a 2006 Corvette Z06 which was bone stock. American V8 vs Italian V10 (prime steak or pasta; let me think) Last chance ladies & gentlemen, place your bets please… Yours Aye.
Half way point looking ‘down’ Garrowby Hill, with the Vale of York in the far distance… On my return from York this morning I started climbing Garrowby Hill, which from the base to the summit is around two miles long that covers a climb of around five hundred feet. Even though the road was absolutely clear I sensibly cruised along at 70mph… Out from nowhere travelling at ‘warp speed impossible’, a red streak slashed past my peripheral view only to disappear into a tiny red dot in front of my very eyes! It happened so fast that even when I cleared the summit there was no sign of the vehicle along the open road in front of me? Fifteen bewildered minutes later I pulled into a small country garage for fuel, to find the red dot fully enlarged, and parked in a side bay. Prior to my arrival the owner had time to fuel up, take a leak, buy a coffee and ‘vape’ as he rested on a picnic bench.Half way point looking down Garrowby Hill, with a light dusting of frozen snow and ice… I have mentioned before that I am a 4 X 4 man, which makes sense living in the middle of the country side, where the hedgerows along the small twisting country lanes in summer can be over twelve to fifteen feet high. Winter brings its own driving hazards with deep snow, and wet mud laden roads from where tractors drag claggy earth from the fields on their exit. In the past I have assisted in pulling cars fitted with low profile tyres out of hedgerows, and snow banks; never requiring assistance myself, as I smugly plough through in all wheel drive. BUT: This morning as I caught the red powerful cat-like beast at rest, I felt a twinge of some thing run through my body. Even more so when the owner climbed back into the ‘cockpit’ and turned the engine over, which growled loudly then settled into a rumbling purrrrrrrr…
It was a big cat, the most powerful production sports car that Jaguar has ever produced, with a 5.0 litre V8 Supercharged 550 engine that can achieve 0-60 mph in just 4.2 seconds, and a top speed of 186 mph where permitted. (Garrowby Hill is not permitted). Yours from £97, 465-
Benedict Cumberbatch narrates Jaguar XKR-S A stiff upper lip is key! I watched and listened as the big cat nudged onto the open country road, known locally as the five-mile dash, a favourite for top end speed machines as the road is straight as a pin. The big cat rumbled and then growled, as its 5 litre V8 supercharged engine opened up allowing the beast to disappear in two blinks of an eye. As I watched it turn into a little red dot, I recalled pulling a BMW saloon out of a ditch along the same road last Winter; the twinge disappeared as I remembered the shocked look on the BMW drivers face. Big wheels good, small wheels bad… Yours Aye.British Villains drive a Jaguar XKR-S… ‘Oh yes, it’s good to be bad’
A photographer has come up with an unusual pet project – snapping ecstatic dogs as they hang their heads out of car windows for a new calendar. Lara Jo Regan, 48, embarked on her task for the 2014 calendar ‘Dogs in cars’. The unusual shoot, which took place in Los Angeles, California, was aimed at exploring the unbridled joy experienced by pugs and huskies when a breeze hits their faces. Who let the dogs out? Calendar features deliriously happy pets indulging their passion for hanging out open car windows The true hazards of letting your pooch chill in the slipstream, a vast Veterinary £-$ bill. (With apologies to Lara Jo Regan for the unsavoury comment of earlier; whose heart is truly in the right place over animal welfare)
While a dog’s head is outside of the vehicle, anything coming too close to the car it is riding in becomes a danger ~ another car’s mirror, a sign, a mailbox, or even shrubbery. The chance of falling or jumping out of the window is great. Just because your dog hasn’t bolted out of the open car window before doesn’t mean he or she never will. Any temptation at all could present itself and even at city speeds hitting the pavement can be deadly. Getting hit by another car is almost guaranteed. A sudden turn, stop or swerve can throw your dog from the car with the same results. Unless your car is equipped with power window locks ~ and you use them, a dog standing on an armrest can inadvertently roll the window up on itself causing choking or severe injury. A power window motor is unyielding. A tiny speck of debris lodged in an eye can cause no small amount of discomfort and require medical attention. Larger debris such as rocks, glass or even bugs can do more to an eye than just cause discomfort ~ they have the potential to tear the eyeball open, resulting in blindness! Think about what happens when one of those items hits your windshield. There is also the potential for debris to enter into a dog’s ear and cause problems. The safest way to ride in the car with your dog is to keep it restrained. A window open just two to three inches ~ enough for a nosy nose to catch-all the passing scent’s while staying out of harm’s way is more than enough. Even riding the sun-roof can lead to severe injury, or decapitation through a rear shunt…
True dit: several years ago I was over taking a vehicle on a slow-moving dual carriageway, when I realised that the Golden retriever sat on the rear seat of the vehicle had the window rolled up crushing its throat, its eyes had rolled back, and for sure it was dying. I forced the vehicle to pull over and raced to the rear door and pulled the dog clear. Fortunately there was a really good Veterinary practice only a few hundred metres away, I jumped in with the dog and carried out canine CPR as I instructed the tearful owner to drive to the practice-PDQ.
Long story cut short…The dog survived with a soft tissue crush injury, the owner received a dressing down (from me) as well as a lecture from the senior Veterinary. Who also showed the owner a ‘horror photographic journal’ of dog injuries resulting from the practice of window-riding. “Split eyeballs, the actual removal of an eyeball from the cavity (from a small bird strike), split nose, premature blindness, eye damage caused through wind pressure, and long-term ear and nasal problems.
Please: Should you be an owner who allows your canine to ride the wind; I urge you to cease the practice now, no matter what your argument may be! If you need convincing, then sit in the back of a vehicle with your own face riding the wind, and see how long you last. If only one person heeds this friendly advice it will be worth it… Yours Aye.
Previous comment removed on Lara Jo Regan, whose photographic work promotes animal welfare and safety at all times. It was never intended to create offence, simply to highlight the dangers attached to third parties allowing their pooches to window surf…
FILSON American Expedition Vehicle (AEV) Brute Double Cab, Custom Jeep Wrangler. A bespoke truck in the spirit of the Jeep Gladiator Concept & the Land Rover Defender 130 61″ x 60″ Cored Composite Bed: Stamped Steel Cab Closeout: Double Cab Hardtop: Double Cab Rocker Guards: AEV Double Cab Rear Bumper: AEV Water Pump Kit:AEV Under Mount Tire Kit: AEV ProCal: AEV Jack Base: AEV Badging: AEV Instrument Cluster: AEV Logo Headrest: AEV Serialized Build Plaque: AEV Premium Front Bumper: IPF 901 Off-Road Lights: AEV Front Skid Plate: AEV Winch Mount: Warn 9.5cti Winch: AEV Heat Reduction Hood: AEV 17″ Alloy Wheels: BFGoodrich 35″ Mud-Terrain Tires: Filson Edition AEV Brute | FilsonIn creating the Brute, AEV stretched the wheelbase by 23 inches, created a custom back half of the cab body, and added a 61-by-60-inch cored composite bed. AEV favored the 3.6-liter V6 engine, good for 285 hp, along with a six-speed manual transmission for the project. AEV has also beefed up the suspension, along with adding a whole host of off-roading equipment, including a skid plate, off-road lights, a 9.5cti winch by Warn, and 17-inch wheels of AEV’s own design shod in BFGoodrich 35-inch Mud-Terrain tires, along with other modifications. The end product was a formidable machine that looked ready for use by the forestry service, serious hombres who may own a ranch incorporating buildings from a Gold Rush ghost town, and any individual who can have an hour-long discussion about the merits of different types of barbed wire.
Enter outdoor goods company Filson, which has been catering to individuals who can have an hour-long discussion about the merits of different types of barbed wire for over 100 years. Filson had AEV throw in a 6.4-liter V8 instead of the 3.6-liter V6, and added their own materials to the interior, including their own signature leather for the reworked seats, dry finish tin cloth, and a pair of Rugged Twill bags. All the trail equipment available on the top model of the Brute remains, and the Filson edition Brute is finished in a custom forest green paint. The price of entry is $130,000 or in Great British Pounds £ 80,547 including the base vehicle used by AEV for the conversion.
You know you can justify it, so go ahead, order one today… Yours Aye.
A Cadillac called ‘The Duchess’, made for Edward VIII and Wallis Simpson, set to fetch £500,000 after 60 years out of the public eye An historic Cadillac built for the Duke and Duchess of Windsor is expected to sell for the princely sum of up to £500,000 after surfacing for the first time in 60 years. The jet black American built car cost a staggering $16,000 (£9,900) when the former King bought it new in 1941. It was one of the first cars to have electric windows and is decked out with jewellery compartments, cigar lighters, wool carpets and walnut finish.Here I sit drooling with envy over the ‘The Duchess’ who just oozes class and style. She’s way out of my league... Yours Aye.
If ever you are thinking of visiting Scotland for a break, visit Edinburgh for a few days. If you fancy a real outdoors break visit the Western Isle of Mull where you can walk, cycle. climb, swim, fish, eat, drink, and be merry among some of the warmest friendliest people in Scotland. It has castles and distilleries to explore, as well as provides some of the most scenic back drops for art and photography. The wild life around the Isle is second to none; sea otter’s, sea eagles, dolphins, whales, etc, etc. Duart Castle Isle of MullIt also pro-ports to have the finest fast Car Rally ‘in the world’ in the shape of the yearly Mull Rally In which this week, Peter Taylor, 22, made it around the 8.3 mile stretch of the picturesque island of Mull in just six minutes and 42 seconds. Despite being faced with the challenge of a series of hair raising bends and even a new chicane on the island’s narrow single track road, Taylor and his co-driver flew around the course, winning richly deserved praise from rally fans. Sit back and fasten your seat belts & watch the incredible back seat video of the record breaking rally run Sick bag not supplied Yours Aye.
The end of the road for the Queen’s favourite 4×4, as the Land Rover Defender is set to cease production in 2015. But a replacement is already waiting in the wings The Defender can be traced back to early 1990s, but is still based on the 1948 model. Having this year reached its pensionable age of 65, one of Britain’s best-loved vehicles, and a favourite with the Queen is to cease production. For now! The last of the current Land Rover Defender’s will roll-off the production lines of Jaguar Land Rover’s (JLR) Solihull factory in the West Midlands in December 2015. But already a bold new successor for the 21st century is on the drawing board ready to replace it. A small ‘family’ of Defenders is even being prepared, including a sporty beach-buggy style.
Time & tactics have changed within the Military, though there will always be a requirement for a type of Land Rover Defender utility vehicle. Having used them in a variety of forms for most of my adult life, I can honestly say I am not saddened to hear the end is nigh for this wonderful aluminium clad beast. Especially when the military start to off load them onto the civvie market. The pick up price will plummet, as will the price of parts, which are already around in abundance. Bootneck’s zeroing weapons; WMIK Land Rover’s Yours Aye.
Driving tests in foreign languages to be banned to stop learners cheating! Learner drivers are to be banned from taking road tests in a foreign language to crack down on fraud and boost safety. From early next year candidates will no longer be able to use prerecorded foreign language voice-overs – which are used to read out questions – or interpreters in theory and practical tests. The decision by Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin follows a spate of fraud convictions involving ‘back seat’ interpreters who help their clients cheat by using the foreign language to give covert coaching.Driving tests in foreign languages to be banned to stop learners cheating! Whitehall sources said the fraud scandal was ‘yet another problem the last Labour government failed to tackle’. In 2007, Labour transport minister Jim Fitzpatrick said of the interpreting scheme: “This system works well and we have no evidence to suggest that it is being abused.” I almost spat a mouthful of tea over the dogs when I read the article… This is the first I have heard of it, but since 2009 around 1,000 licences have been revoked due to fraud during tests. Which is a drop in the ocean to those still driving with a licence generated through fraud. When is this country going to wake up to the fact that English is our first language, not urdu, or polish or any other European/Asian tongue. Yours Aye.
Safe to say I am not a lover of battery driven cars, not matter what propaganda is spouted out by the makers. I love to hear the growl and rumble of a turbo driven engine sat within the bodywork of a real muscle car, or a 4×4 beast. Batteries are for torches, watches, clocks, and what ever other device requires them, other than a vehicle. So when I caught the following article, I mused over it as I poured my mid morning cup of tea.
Shares in electric Tesla Motors fell more than 6 per cent on Wednesday after a video showed one of the firm’s electric Model S vehicles engulfed in flames in Seattle. The stock dropped after the initial reports, and then again when a spokesman confirmed the fire began in the battery compartment of the car. The Model S has previously been touted as the safest car in America and it received among the highest scores ever recorded from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in August. In an incident report, officials wrote they thought the fire started in the car’s battery following a crash, not due to a fault. (The battery in any Hybrid vehicle requires to be replaced after so many charges, on average it works out to be roughly six years. The price of the battery is roughly one third of the price of the car when bought new; A new ‘Toyota Prius Plug-in-Hybrid’ is roughly £30,000, hence a new replacement battery will cost £10,000)!
There is an electric ‘Toyota Prius Plug-in-Hybrid’ that travels along the small, narrow, country lane that runs past my home into the small village. At lease three times each week it passes me as I take my walk, always without warning, because not once has it been running on petrol as it creeps along. Each time I almost drop from a heart attack as it glides silently past. In bygone years there would have been a bloke carrying a red flag walking in front of it, to warn pedestrians of impending doom. Yesterday I walked to the village to place a letter into the post box, only to catch the driver of the Toyota parked next to the box doing the same thing thing. In a courteous manner I spoke of the problems the cars silence brings, some thing he was aware of. We both agreed that Toyota should place some kind of artificial engine noise within the system as a warning device, after all, even a new peddle cycle has to be sold with a bell; as a requirement of law. Victor Meldrew shown, not the actual driver…
This morning as I returned from a short walk I was deep, deep, in thought about research I’m involved in. When all of a sudden, a savage wild boar let out a blood curdling scream, as it almost grabbed me; In fact it was a huge lion that let out a blood curdling roar that almost grabbed my leg; No, it was an echoing scream from Cerberus the mythical creature with three heads, on one body, with a long tail, and razor sharp talons, that almost grabbed my right leg.
In actual fact it was all three of those described, or it may as well have been. Because the idiot driving the Toyota Prius waited until he was right next to me, and (((honked))) his bloody horn to warn me he was there! Sitting on a branch in the safety of a tree I could feel my heart beating ten to the dozen, as I watched him raise a hand, and wave as he silently glided away along the country lane. Yours Aye.
Yesterday when time within my home stood still for seven and a half hours, I pondered upon the thought of autonomous self-driving self-parking vehicles, as well as the nonsense being spouted by the ‘earth-is-doomed’ Green-lobby here in the UK & Europe. To me it simply makes no sense at all, why would anyone purchase a £28,000 vehicle, then give away the pleasure of driving it to a computer? Self-driving Mercedes-Benz unveiled
Technology made by man is easily defeated by man, placing such high tech into vehicles makes them vulnerable & easy targets for the ill disposed, including terrorist attacks. God forbid that a convoy of vehicles travelling at 80-mph along a motor-way is electronically hijacked, and then wrecked on purpose (is that too Hollywood to imagine)? Rather than subscribe to such technology, I would more willingly commute by double-decker bus, and for those who know me, that is far too hard to imagine! Yours non-autonomously Aye.
The need for speed is not a modern day phenomenon, indeed it was the reason for the introduction of the Red flag traffic laws. ‘Enforcing ‘self-propelled vehicles’ to be led by a pedestrian, waving a red flag or carrying a lantern to warn innocent bystanders of the vehicle’s approach’. Fortunately the act was repealed in 1896. (Possibly due to the fact, the red flaggers them selves were being squashed in large numbers, as the popularity of horseless carriages and congestion grew).
117 years later, we have the other end of insanity, driven by the the latest craze for supplying narcissist material to the internet Man completes car loop around Manhattan in 24 minutes in terrifying internet craze for drivers to try and record fastest journeys around the city It will end in tears, the law of averages says so. It is hoped that those participating in such time trails only wipe themselves out, when they over take, or misjudge a bend (allowing innocent travelers and bystanders to go on about their own business in safety). Those who have lost loved ones or friends will certainly agree… Yours Aye.
In my own humble opinion; the only vehicle that should have an engine in the rear, is a Main Battle Tank, which is one reason why I have never really liked Porches, per se! Even with the engine up front, this two-tonne fiery beast is going no where fast, not with a top speed of 15 mph, the slowest Porsche ever? Yours for $ 31,137,807 USD. (£20,000).
John Deere, advancing forward. Yours Aye.
For your late Sunday chuckle, do read John Tamny’s The Unions Didn’t Bankrupt Detroit, But Great American Cars Did. I am not chortling over Detroit putting out great American cars (several of our homegrown vehicles are excellent), I am groaning over the wage American autoworkers get in comparison to our foreign partners. I am all for our folks getting a livable salary, but the generous benefits package, plus the legacy costs of retired autoworkers really drive up the cost of our cars.
I had wanted to buy an American car when I returned from deployment and the two I looked at (the Jeep Wrangler and the Dodge Charger) were overpriced in comparison to what I could get from a foreign maker. And the American dealerships were run-down dumps. It was, quite frankly, very disheartening. Now at my Japanese car dealer, I’ve gotten to know folks from every department. I even hugged my sales-lady good-bye, emailed my service rep about questions, and generally enjoyed going to the dealer. It has never happened like that in my life.
As Detroit looks at a possible bankruptcy, the question becomes where do the cuts occur? Of the several options, retirees (pensioners) and investors are both being considered:
Officials overseeing Detroit’s finances have called for reducing — not eliminating — pension payments to retirees, but have not said how big those reductions might be. They emphasized that they were trying to spread the pain of bankruptcy evenly.
When the small city of Central Falls, R.I.,declared bankruptcy in 2011, a state law gave bondholders preferential treatment — effectively protecting investors even as the city’s retirees saw their pension benefits slashed by up to 55 percent in some cases.
Detroit, by contrast, wants to spread the losses to investors as well as pensioners, and hopes to find cheaper ways to cover retirees through the subsidized health exchanges being created by President Obama’s health care law.
Bill Nowling, a spokesman for Kevyn D. Orr, said the emergency manager’s restructuring plan would treat bondholders the same as retirees in bankruptcy.
“How can we tell pensioners or city workers that we’re going to have to adjust their payments on their pensions because of decisions that they didn’t make but that affect them, but that we’re going to pay more to people who made risky investments?” he said.
There are no quick solutions, but part of the blame rests squarely on the corruption that was/is rampant in Detroit. Thugs like former Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick and his pals looted the city. And they were not the only ones. . .
If you happen to find yourself in friendly Nashville, Tennessee, do go by the Frist Center for Visual Arts. They’ve an amazing collection of Art Deco automobiles from the 30s and ‘40s. (Hand Salute: NavyDavy, thanks for the link!)
Lotus intends to build a motorcycle called the C-01. The bike will be a hyper bike with integrated racing technology. It will be manufactured of materials like carbon, titanium and aerospace quality steel, which are also used in Formula 1. I wonder if Lotus is going to pair with a known company like they did with the Corvette.