This Is Something That Is Happening In The World.

By Tim Smith

Meet ‘Milky’. It’s a V8 engined milk-float.

‘Compared to my 600+bhp Nissan competition car, this was still more of a pig than a cow to drift,” says the former British Drift Champion Matt Carter. “With no seat belts or doors, it was a case of hanging on rather than hanging the tail out!’

Quite.

Oh, and Falken now do a lovely range in unusually sized tyres. Yes they do.

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That’s am old Buick/Rover V8 poking its nose out there.

 

 

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Nice. Tracksuit.

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BMW Do Some Gran Turismo, May Have Revealed The M4 DTM Car

By Tim Smith

Karin Habib, Director of BMW design, states at the beginning of this little ditty of marketing and gaming that;

‘The first time I heard about the idea for us to design a car for GT6 I actually didn’t quite believe it, but at the same time I thought it was a pretty amazing opportunity for us.’

Wait, you didn’t quite believe it? Really? Really, really? Really, really, really?

A surprised man.

A surprised man.

Anyway, given the chance to do this type of project you could be forgiven for thinking that the designers might go a bit crazy; a nuclear power plant, or hubless wheels or some crazy glue sniffing aero package.

Nope.

What we get is better and worse, all at the same time.

Hullo, there. Are you the M4 DTM?

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This Rolls-Royce Has Quite Nice Paint.

By Tim Smith

Rolls-Royce have made another special edition with some extra bits and some quite nice paint. Oh, and the promotion video has some inspirational music.

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When I was a boy of nine, or there about’s, my Mum and Dad had a Citroen BX. Now, aside from the all of the pneumatic trickery (which, when you’re about nine, is possibly the most excellent thing a car can have. Well, apart from five turbo’s or something) it was a ‘Leader’ special edition. It had all stickers on the side saying ‘Leader’, in case you were phoning your insurance company and you forgot what type of car it is. At least I assume that’s why people put there car’s model name in big letters down the doors or wings or bonnet.

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I guess it must have had some special electric windows or some dealer fit carpets or something, because this car was clearly built to lead. Not like those Cavaliers that were good at nothing at all apart from having the cool badge designation of CD or, even better, CDX.

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Never, though, did the BX try to evoke a great or powerful achievement of a man or woman from the past. Those who put it together knew it was just a mass market car, and although they did a fine job of making it distinctive and interesting, when the marketing men and women got hold of it they didn’t think,

‘I know, let’s call it the BX Bonaparte, or Descartes or Hugo or Satre or something. Anything, to make us look like we’re doing something that means more than just a car. I mean merde, these people are paying MONEY for this stuff. We’d better make them think they’re taking part in an event’. 

Or maybe they did. But then the eighties were quite… cokey… if you know what I mean.

All of this brings us to the Rolls-Royce Phantom Drop-Head Coupe Waterspeed Collection. Which is a thing.

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A cool looking thing, that is a Rolls-Royce Phantom Drop-Head Coupe, which is a good thing,  but it’s still essentially Rolls-Royce Phantom Drop-Head Coupe, only this time, with some makeup on.  Some blue makeup.

Remember those anodised valve caps you could get for motorbikes? Yeah, them.

Remember those anodised valve caps you could get for motorbikes? Yeah, them.

 

Here’s an overblown video for your eyeholes:

 

 

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Monday Long Termer, Rover 75: 12/05/14′

By Tim Smith

It’s been a while, I know. Truth is, I haven’t owned a car for over a year. In that time I’ve been renting, mostly. It’s been nice having a near brand new car every so often and it’s given me a taste of where the current affordable market is. Truth is, it’s largely where I left it, but that’s another story for another time.

So, after living in the war economy, student life, money pit, I’ve finally got myself into a position where I can save a bit of money here and there for the initial outlay needed to get me on the ol’ car market ladder. So what have I chosen to save up for?

A Rover 75.

I Repeat.

A Rover 75. That’s the 37th best British Car as voted for by Autocar readers.

My first car was bought on a whim, with money that wasn’t really mine. So, this time, I’ve decided to do it properly. And doing something properly always involves lists and the ticking of boxes:

1. It must be in ‘Connessuir’, sorry, ‘Connesir’, wait, Ive got this… ‘Conn’… Eff it. Top spec trim. Not ‘Club’ trim. I’ve decided that the 75 will be my gentleman’s express and having blanked switches on the dash is a little uncouth.

2. It must be the pre-facelifted version. The later versions suffered from quality problems. And they were ugly. You can thank the Phoenix Consortium for that.

3. It must have the ‘Serpent’ wheels. These rather pretty looking things were used in all of the original press pictures when the 75 was first released, but didn’t appear to be actually offered for sale. Later they did. I have no idea of the process behind this. Either way, they do exist, and they do look good. Although not as good as those in the press pictures. Those buggers.

I'll take it.

I’ll take it.

4. It must have the projector headlamps. They look cooler. I know it, you know it, even that bloke down the pub who knows nothing about anything knows it.

5. It must come in a dark colour. Preferably blue, but green is acceptable.

6. Here’s where things get tricky. I would prefer the two-and-a-half litre petrol V6, possibly with a bit of tuning taking it up to ZT190 levels, but realistically the diesel would be best. A four cylinder diesel doesn’t quite fit into the smooth image of the curvy 75, but I plan to use it for drive stories, and petrol is just a little too expensive verses consumption.

7. This leads me into another tricky issue. Like most people who enjoy driving, I prefer a manual, but having driven several different engines with several different types of transmission I discovered something interesting. Diesel’s prefer auto’s.

With a petrol, an auto blunts the character, the responsiveness of the driving experience. Diesels don’t start from a responsive place, but do need that cream of auto feeling to make things a little more civilised. Here’s a statement for you; I actually preferred an A4 2.0 TDI with a CVT to the manual. Yes I did.

As it stands, I’m half way to my car fund target. It should take another 8 weeks or so to make the rest up. Your choice of deity only knows how long it will take to find the exact model I want. Couple this with research into the issues and availability of what I want, and I may be lead to change my mind on some of the details.

One thing is for sure though. I’m gonna keep you updated every Monday at the usual Tim Smith posting time of 6:00pm, GMT.

 

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Lord Drayson Is Your New Master, Bow Down On To The Electrified Ground Beneath His Feet.

By Tim Smith

Lord Drayson (of much EV racing car and Electric Land Speed Record fame), has announced, together with Imperial Innovations plc, the formation of a new company, Drayson Wireless.

You may remember Drayson from him leaving a high placed government defence procurement position to go and take part in Le Mans. You may also remember him from this Chris Harris video. If none of these ring a bell, then maybe, in the coming years you’ll remember him because his name might just be stickered over everything that carries and moves in London.

Drayson in the middle. Some famous bloke on the right.

Drayson in the middle. Some famous bloke on the right.

The new company will work on the application of wireless charging technologies over the coming years. It’s a fair bet that vehicles with predictable patterns of use such as busses, taxis and delivery vehicles will be the first to take advantage of the technology.

Indeed Qualcomm (a tech company that part of Drayson’s team have taken experience from) already have a foothold in this area.

The other half of the partnership, Imperial Innovations, is a technology company specialising in the transfer of high-end new technologies in both the bio and mechanical sectors. In 2005 they signed a deal with Imperial College London to commercialise technology derived from the research that takes place there.

Make no mistake, this is a major move on a future large scale that could see Lord Drayson secure a monopoly on an emerging and potentially enormous market.

It is nice to think, though, that parts of London may become hushed and somewhat (for London, at least) calm.

 

 

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Ford Opens The Order Book For A RHD Mustang. Oh, And Sienna Miller Has A Shower.

By Tim Smith

Ford will offer the first 500 Mustangs to be sold in Europe during a football game*. 150 of those will be offered in RHD, and for us, here on this rainy archipelago, this is a good thing.

Both fastback and convertible versions will be offered up for order with either I4 Ecoboost (2.3 litres, 309ps, 407Nm) or V8 (5.0 litres, 426ps, 529Nm) motors.

Ford says that the RHD Mustang will be made in the UK when it goes up for sale in 2015.

Steering wheel orientation not pictured.

Steering wheel orientation not pictured.

Now that’s all well and good, but mainly, I’ve liked the web page they direct you too. First (actually third but details, details…), there’s a timer. Second you notice that as you scroll down there is a neat shutter effect. Oooo, ahhhh…

Then, as if by web-based elastic trickery there’s Sienna Miller. It looks like she’s just had a shower, ’cause her hair is all slicked back, which is lucky, ’cause all she does is leave dirty great big paw prints all over the Mustang as she has a bloody good look ’round. She also kicks the Mustang. I have no idea why, but she won’t be getting in on any of those Autotrader ads that say ‘NO TYRE KICKERS’, I can tell you.

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Sienna Miller McGrubbyhands in ‘I still can’t work the damn crop tool properly’ picture.

 

Then, she gets right inside of the Mustang, feels up the steering wheel and pretends to do some driving. Next, after feeling up more of the cabin she appears outside again and clicks her fingers. As if by magic nothing happens.

Sienna appears a little annoyed by this so she approaches the front of the Mustang and effectively mounts its bonnet in a mating position as old as time itself. To finish, she tells us she loves an American accent. Which I do too. So that’s Sienna Miller/Tim Smith: 1. World: Nil.

Sienna Miller mounting a Mustang. Yep, that’s happened,

We’re also invited to watch a behind the scenes making of video. Which I didn’t.

Keep scrolling and you get some nice pictures of the Mustang, which actually, is quite good, as it’s a handsome thing.

Keep going, though, skip the hipster-esque video (trust me, you’ve got better things to do with your time) and we finally get to my favourite bit, a good ol’ fashioned info-graphic showing the Mustang at the movies.

The last two slides are a video of the last 5o years of Mustang (cool) and some more graphicy things giving you all facts about the Mustang and stuff (which is also cool).

Overall I liked the Mustang’s European website. But, and I never thought I’d say this as a hetrosexual male, less Sienna Miller humping, please.

                                                                                                

* I honestly cannot be bothered to explain this.

 

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Braking A Bloodhound Is Like Stopping A Bus From 160MPH. In The Wet.

By Tim Smith

‘Our brakes are unusual’ Brian Coombs says as he holds a carbon brake rotor from a fighter aircraft. What’s left of another brake rotor of the same type sits as broken, overheated pieces in a box to his left.

So how do you stop a 1000mph car?

This. Is. Cool.

 

*Pssst – turn the captions on for subtitle japes…*

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