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The Motorists' Guide

The Motorists Guide

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  1. Why do you Road Trip? Is is the journey, the destination or just the experience? List your reasons below
  2. TAKE THE STRESS AND RISK OUT OF YOUR EUROPEAN ROAD JOURNEYS ROAD SAFETY and breakdown organisation GEM Motoring Assist has published advice for staying safe and secure on European road journeys this year. The advice takes the form of six top tips covering planning, equipment, safety, legal matters and security issues. Neil Worth, road safety officer at GEM Motoring Assist, said: “The European motorway network is excellent and extensive, but it’s important to ensure that you and your vehicle are safe and legal before you drive off the ferry for a family holiday or business trip. By using our tips as a starting point, you can go a long way to maximising your safety and minimising the risks you face while you’re travelling, as well as the inconvenience and expense of being unprepared if anything does go wrong.” 1. Check your documents before you go Is your driving licence valid? Are the passports for everyone in your party all in date? Do you have appropriate insurance? Are you covered for the country or countries you’re visiting? Do you have breakdown cover as well? Run through all the necessary paperwork in plenty of time, so that you have everything to hand on your journey. 2. Carry the right equipment Different countries have different rules. Most require that you carry high visibility reflective jackets, a first aid kit and a warning triangle. Some countries also insist on replacement bulbs and fuses, a fire extinguisher or spare pairs of spectacles for any drivers who need them. French rules require that you carry a disposable breathalyser, but under the current system, police are unable to enforce payment of the €11 fine. Make a point of checking the specific requirements for each country you plan to visit, so that you won’t risk a fine if you’re stopped. 3. Know the rules Make sure you understand the specific traffic rules and signs. Drink-drive limits across Europe are lower than in the UK, and police officers in most countries can issue and collect on-the-spot fines for traffic offences. If you’re in any doubt about local parking regulations, ask someone before leaving your vehicle. Remember, ignorance is no defence. 4. Budget for motorway tolls The European motorway network is excellent and extensive; you can cover long distances quite easily – but there is a price. For example, the 715-mile motorway journey from Calais to Fréjus on the Mediterranean coast will cost you a fraction under €100. Toll tags such as the French ‘Liber-t’ device can save time at tolls. Register your details online before you travel and you’ll receive your own tag which you place in the windscreen of your car. You can then drive through the toll plazas without needing to find coins or credit card, as you receive an invoice and pay shortly afterwards by direct debit. 5. Fill up off the motorway You can save significantly by leaving the motorway network to buy your fuel (and refreshments). For example, a litre of diesel costs around €1.37 (£1.16) at a French motorway service area, compared with €1.21 at a supermarket. Just be aware that the older automatic payment mechanisms at French fuel stations may still decline British credit cards (though the problem is much less significant than it used to be). It’s also worth noting that bigger supermarkets have toilets and very reasonably priced cafés – and are often no more than a couple of minutes’ drive off the autoroute. 6. Don’t drive for so long that you become dangerously fatigued Don’t ignore the early signs of fatigue when you’re at the wheel. Share the driving if possible, and take regular breaks. Fatigue-related crashes are most likely to happen between 2am and 6am, although there is also an increased risk during the afternoon, when our body clocks experience a natural dip in alertness. Don’t be tempted to press on when you’ve been at the wheel for several hours. Avoid heavy meals, as these can exacerbate the symptoms of fatigue, and certainly don’t drink alcohol during journey breaks. 7. Be vigilant at motorway service areas Don’t fall victim to crime when you’re enjoying a break on a long motorway journey. Huge numbers of people pass through service areas every day, making them hotbeds of criminal activity. Make sure you lock your car when you’re parking, and don’t leave high value items visible. Watch out for possibly bogus ‘officials’ who try to tell you that your tyres are illegal and that you’ll need to purchase a new set on the spot. Don’t let children out of your sight at any time, and in particular make sure you accompany them to the loo. 8. Disable any speed camera alerting systems from your satnav before you arrive in France. There are harsh penalties in France if you are found with any sort of speed camera detection system in your car, regardless of whether or not you are using it. So, make sure you disable the alerting mechanism before you drive anywhere in France. Check online if you are unsure of how to do this. If you have a built-in satnav, then be sure to check with the car manufacturer if you are in doubt as to how you switch off the speed camera alerts.
  3. Anyone planned a road trip through Europe yet and when are you setting off? What restrictions have you researched and how easy (and fun) will it be to traverse the various countries?
  4. Travel to the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein will change from 1 January 2021. Things you may need to do before you go include: check your passport get travel insurance that covers your healthcare check you have the right driving documents organise pet travel - contact your vet at least 1 month before you go There are more things to do if you’re travelling for business. For example, going to meetings and conferences, providing services (even with a charity), and touring art or music. Passports: check if you need to renew You may need to renew your British passport earlier if you’re travelling from 1 January 2021. On the day you travel, you’ll need your passport to both: have at least 6 months left be less than 10 years old (even if it has 6 months or more left) If you do not renew your passport, you may not be able to travel to most EU countries and Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. You can check whether your passport is valid for the country you’re visiting. Healthcare: check you’re covered You should always get appropriate travel insurance with healthcare cover before you go abroad. Your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) will be valid up to 31 December 2020. It’s particularly important you get travel insurance with the right cover if you have a pre-existing medical condition. This is because the EHIC scheme covers pre-existing conditions, while many travel insurance policies do not. Entering other countries Border control: you may have to show your return ticket and money At border control, you may need to: show a return or onward ticket show you have enough money for your stay use separate lanes from EU, EEA and Swiss citizens when queueing Visas for short trips: you will not need one if you’re a tourist If you’re a tourist, you will not need a visa for short trips to most EU countries, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. You’ll be able to stay for up to 90 days in any 180-day period. Different rules will apply to Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus and Romania. If you visit these countries, visits to other EU countries will not count towards the 90-day total. You may need a visa or permit to stay for longer, to work or study, or for business travel. Travel to Ireland will not change from 1 January 2021. You’ll also be able to work in Ireland in the same way as before. Taking food and drink into EU countries You will not be able to take meat, milk or products containing them into EU countries from 1 January 2021. There are some exceptions, for example certain amounts of powdered infant milk, infant food, or pet food required for medical reasons. Check the rules about taking food and drink into the EU on the European Commission website. Taking plants and plant products into EU countries You’ll need a certificate to take certain plants and plant products into EU countries from 1 January 2021. Check the rules about taking plants and plant products into the EU on the European Commission website. Travel There may be changes from 1 January 2021. What these are depend on how you’re travelling. However you travel, check before you leave for any delays or disruption. Driving You may need extra documents from 1 January 2021. You might need an international driving permit (IDP) to drive in some countries. If you’re taking your own vehicle, you will also need a ‘green card’ and a GB sticker. Compensation if your travel is disrupted Some travel insurance policies only cover certain types of disruption. Check your provider’s terms and conditions to make sure you have the cover you need if your travel is cancelled or delayed. Your consumer rights will not change from 1 January 2021. This means that if your travel is cancelled or delayed you may be able to claim a refund or compensation. Check your booking’s terms and conditions to find out more. Pet travel: allow at least 1 month to arrange From 1 January 2021 you will not be able to use the existing pet passport scheme. Instead, you’ll need an animal health certificate (AHC) for your pet. Allow at least 1 month to arrange this and relevant vaccinations. Follow the guidance about pet travel to Europe from 1 January 2021. Mobile roaming: free roaming may end From 1 January 2021, the guarantee of free mobile phone roaming throughout the EU, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway will end. Check with your phone operator to find out about any roaming charges you might get from 1 January 2021. A new law means that you’re protected from getting mobile data charges above £45 without you knowing. Once you reach £45, you need to opt in to spend more so that you can continue using the internet while you’re abroad. Your phone operator will tell how you can do this. If your travel company goes out of business You’re protected if you buy a package holiday and the company goes out of business. You get this cover even if it’s an EU company, as long as the company targets UK customers. Otherwise, you can claim compensation if you used your credit card. You’ll continue to be able to claim for payments between £100 and £30,000.
  5. Travel to the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein will change from 1 January 2021. Things you may need to do before you go include: check your passport get travel insurance that covers your healthcare check you have the right driving documents organise pet travel - contact your vet at least 1 month before you go There are more things to do if you’re travelling for business. For example, going to meetings and conferences, providing services (even with a charity), and touring art or music. Passports: check if you need to renew You may need to renew your British passport earlier if you’re travelling from 1 January 2021. On the day you travel, you’ll need your passport to both: have at least 6 months left be less than 10 years old (even if it has 6 months or more left) If you do not renew your passport, you may not be able to travel to most EU countries and Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. You can check whether your passport is valid for the country you’re visiting. Healthcare: check you’re covered You should always get appropriate travel insurance with healthcare cover before you go abroad. Your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) will be valid up to 31 December 2020. It’s particularly important you get travel insurance with the right cover if you have a pre-existing medical condition. This is because the EHIC scheme covers pre-existing conditions, while many travel insurance policies do not. Entering other countries Border control: you may have to show your return ticket and money At border control, you may need to: show a return or onward ticket show you have enough money for your stay use separate lanes from EU, EEA and Swiss citizens when queueing Visas for short trips: you will not need one if you’re a tourist If you’re a tourist, you will not need a visa for short trips to most EU countries, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. You’ll be able to stay for up to 90 days in any 180-day period. Different rules will apply to Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus and Romania. If you visit these countries, visits to other EU countries will not count towards the 90-day total. You may need a visa or permit to stay for longer, to work or study, or for business travel. Travel to Ireland will not change from 1 January 2021. You’ll also be able to work in Ireland in the same way as before. Taking food and drink into EU countries You will not be able to take meat, milk or products containing them into EU countries from 1 January 2021. There are some exceptions, for example certain amounts of powdered infant milk, infant food, or pet food required for medical reasons. Check the rules about taking food and drink into the EU on the European Commission website. Taking plants and plant products into EU countries You’ll need a certificate to take certain plants and plant products into EU countries from 1 January 2021. Check the rules about taking plants and plant products into the EU on the European Commission website. Travel There may be changes from 1 January 2021. What these are depend on how you’re travelling. However you travel, check before you leave for any delays or disruption. Driving You may need extra documents from 1 January 2021. You might need an international driving permit (IDP) to drive in some countries. If you’re taking your own vehicle, you will also need a ‘green card’ and a GB sticker. Compensation if your travel is disrupted Some travel insurance policies only cover certain types of disruption. Check your provider’s terms and conditions to make sure you have the cover you need if your travel is cancelled or delayed. Your consumer rights will not change from 1 January 2021. This means that if your travel is cancelled or delayed you may be able to claim a refund or compensation. Check your booking’s terms and conditions to find out more. Pet travel: allow at least 1 month to arrange From 1 January 2021 you will not be able to use the existing pet passport scheme. Instead, you’ll need an animal health certificate (AHC) for your pet. Allow at least 1 month to arrange this and relevant vaccinations. Follow the guidance about pet travel to Europe from 1 January 2021. Mobile roaming: free roaming may end From 1 January 2021, the guarantee of free mobile phone roaming throughout the EU, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway will end. Check with your phone operator to find out about any roaming charges you might get from 1 January 2021. A new law means that you’re protected from getting mobile data charges above £45 without you knowing. Once you reach £45, you need to opt in to spend more so that you can continue using the internet while you’re abroad. Your phone operator will tell how you can do this. If your travel company goes out of business You’re protected if you buy a package holiday and the company goes out of business. You get this cover even if it’s an EU company, as long as the company targets UK customers. Otherwise, you can claim compensation if you used your credit card. You’ll continue to be able to claim for payments between £100 and £30,000.
  6. Alfa4 I have to say I don't think the Juke is as good as the Alfa for a Road Trip but then anything is good for a Road Trip isn't it?
  7. List your ideal Road Trip tunes to play on your journey
  8. Here's a list of European Road Trips to consider for the future 1. Autobahn, Germany The Autobahn is Germany’s famed highway system where there are no speed limits in non-urban regions. It gives drivers the option to really put the pedal to the metal while traveling the beautiful German countryside. 2. Route 500, Germany This beautiful drive cuts through the midst of the Black Forest, and offers drivers incredible views along with a smooth journey through the mountains. This picturesque route from Feldberg to Waldkirch is almost 70 km long and on a clear day offers awe-inspiring views that reach from the Northern Black Forest across the Rhineland Plain to the Vosges mountains in Alsace and on to the Swiss Alps. 3. Ring of Kerry, Ireland The Irish countryside is noted for its rugged beautiful, and Ring of Kerry is the idea European road trip. This 200 km loop takes you through the mountains, to the beaches, lakes, and rivers of the Emerald Isle. When you fly to Ireland, you can arrange to pick up a car rental near the airport and hit the road. Visit charming villages along the way and be sure to take in a view of Skellig Michael island off the coast, which featured prominently in the recent Star Wars movies. 4. Amalfi Coast, Italy South Italy is one of the best vacation destinations for a European road trip. Driving the Amalfi Coast will take any traveler back in time, with the beautiful architecture of Italy on full display. From town to town, taking the tour of the Amalfi Coast leads travelers from one incredible destination to another. It’s the mix of history, architecture, food and scenery that makes this one of the best road trips in Europe. 5. Les Corniches, France A set of three different drives at three different altitudes with three different scenic tours of the region, Les Corniches give drivers options for a European road trip where you can see all that the beautiful French countryside has to offer. Be sure to spend time in Monaco, as all of Les Corniches drives take you to the amazing and distinctive city. 6. La Route des Grandes Alpes, France The route of the High Alps, this drive takes you throughout the mountains of France. Built solely for tourists that wanted to travel a scenic route through the region, La Route des Grandes Alpes takes drivers through 4 national parks and 16 mountain passes. Make sure to enjoy the incredibly beautiful Geneva Lake, a stop on this scenic drive. 7. Trollstigen, Norway This beautiful mountain pass road is known as the Troll Route, and is famous for being one of the most scenic European road trips. From mountains to waterfalls, drivers will be able to experience the beauty of Norway while traveling from Åndalsnes and Valldalen in the heart of the country. 8. Klausen Pass, Switzerland An Alpine road that winds its way through the fabled Swiss mountains, Klausen Pass takes drivers through a long and winding journey of beautiful scenery on one of the best road trips in Europe. Every four to five years the Klausenrunnen takes place, a wild car race that travels Klausen Pass. If you are in the area be sure to take in this incredible event! 9. Estoril Coast Drive, Portugal This beautiful drive takes travelers along the amazing and under-rated coastline of Portugal, from Lisbon inwards to Sintra. On the trip, you have to make a stop at the National Palace in Sintra, as the incredible architecture and history are some of the most amazing in all of Europe. 10. Route Napoleon, France Following the route taken by Napoleon Bonaparte when he traveled from Elba to Grenoble, Route Napoleon runs through the French Alps. Scenic views abound, as this famed road allows drivers to take a step back in time in rural France. Connect with this historic region on your European road trip. 11. Romantic Road, Germany This road that cuts through the heart of Germany offers a look at the countryside in medieval times, with architecture and art dating back hundreds of years. Make sure to visit during the annual Oktoberfest celebration, as there will be much to see and do! Germany’s excellent road network makes it the ideal location for a European road trip. 12. Great Dolomite Road, Italy A drive through northern Italy on the Great Dolomite Road takes travelers into a different side of Italy, far from the trendy cities and tourist traps. Many of the rural villages along the way have incredible food to offer, so be sure to make a stop and enjoy the culinary delights! 13. Furka Pass, Switzerland This winding pass through the Alps is a world-famous European road trip, and drivers can test their nerve and their vehicles as one hairpin curve leads to another, to another, and to another. A challenging drive, but an extremely rewarding one, which is why it’s one of the best road trips in Europe. 14. Atlantic Road, Norway Running a little over 8 km, this amazing architectural marvel of a road may be the most incredible road in all of Europe. Going over water via multiple islands, the Atlantic Road is unique and amazing. 15. Stelvio Pass, Italy Located high in the Eastern Alps, this beautiful and dangerous drive is routinely on the top lists of great driving roads in Europe. Featuring amazing mountain vistas and tight curves that will test any driver’s skill, it may be the best drive for auto enthusiasts in the country, if not in all of Europe. 16. Col de Turini, France Famous as the site of both the Tour de France as well as the Monte Carlo Rally, this road is full of incredible hairpin turns and curvy roadways that will have any driver feeling like a professional. This is another road that is a challenging drive, however the thrill of tackling the famous roads with a strong connection to the history of motorsports makes this a memorable European road trip. 17. Transfagarasan (DN7C), Romania This meandering road travels throughout the Carpathians, and is routinely ranked amongst the world’s best drives. From Transylvania to Wallachia, the road also known as the Transfăgărășan is filled with gorgeous architecture from a time long passed. 18. São Miguel Island, Portugal This island is located in the Azores, an archipelago of volcanic islands found in the North Atlantic Ocean. To get here, you’ll need to take a 2.5-hour plane ride from Lisbon. From there, you’ll need to pick up your car rental at the airport grab a map of the island, and explore to your heart’s content. Some must-sees include the Sete Cidades volcanic crater, the Lagoa do Fogo, and the Furnas hot springs. 19. The Algarves, Portugal Three hours south of Lisbon is the Algarve region, which is home to breathtaking cliffs, blue waters, and mosaic-filled historic centers. Driving is the best way to explore this region. Simply fly into Faro Airport, pick up your car rental, and head west towards Sagres. The entire drive itself is only three hours, but you’ll want to make stops at Albufeira, Portimao and Lagos. 20. Ring Road, Iceland A visit to Iceland is not complete with a drive on the famous Ring Road. Take this road if you want to see all that Iceland has to offer, including a visit to the city of Reykjavik, a drive on the Golden Circle sightseeing route, and a stopover at the picturesque Snæfellsnes Peninsular. Drivers may even be blessed with a view of the aurora borealis on this route.
  9. Google Maps link to open downloadable map routes for your Road Trip link to Google Maps
  10. TrailRunner mini — GPX Viewer.appdownload.zip
  11. New rules to come into force on Thursday have an impact on car buying, servicing and driving England is set to go into a full national lockdown this Thursday (5 November), joining Wales and much of Europe (but not Scotland). But what does that mean for motorists and car buyers? Car drivers may be unsure of the restrictions affecting vehicle usage, while would-be car purchasers will be deciding whether or not to put their commitment on hold. Although the proposed restrictions on leaving the house and entering retail premises currently seem to be less severe than in the previous lockdown, the government is taking drastic action to prevent social gathering and unnecessary contact. To that end, there will be a number of new rules coming into force that dictate what you can do with your car, how you can maintain it and whether you can buy a new model. Here is a rundown of the measures affecting motorists across Britain: Can I still buy a new car? Unlike last lockdown, some non-essential retailers in England will be allowed to remain open as of 0001 on 5 November, though only to operate a click-and-collect service. As it stands, car dealers can once again continue to offer a click-and-collect service, while operating a contactless delivery service. Showrooms, however, must close their doors, and there will be heavy restrictions imposed upon test drives, meaning prospective buyers will have to go out alone. When it comes to collecting a pre-purchased car, the dealer will have to sanitise the entire vehicle - including the keys - and will likely offer walk-through videos rather than in-person demonstrations. The National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA) is campaigning for English dealerships to be exempt from the restrictions, with many having invested heavily in operating to a Covid-secure model since reopening in June. The trade body is urging the government to follow the example set by Germany, where national lockdown rules do not mean dealerships have to close. The national lockdown is currently scheduled to run until 2 December, though cabinet minister Michael Gove has said it could be extended if coronavirus infection rates do not significantly decline. In Scotland, a five-tier lockdown system is in place, with showrooms allowed to remain open in Tiers 1, 2 and 3, while only outdoor forecourts can open in Tier 4. Wales is currently in a state of national lockdown until 9 November, and all non-essential businesses have had to completely close, including car dealerships. Can I buy a used car? Used car dealers in England are subject to the same rules as their new car counterparts, meaning they can remain open if they trade according to a contact-free, closed-showroom model. Buying privately is not advisable during the lockdown, as the rules state you should only leave home for essential purposes or to work if you cannot work from home. If you must buy a car so that you can work, shop or care for a vulnerable person, social distancing rules must be adhered to at all times, and you should not share a car with anyone from outside your household. Can I visit a garage? During the last lockdown, the government granted drivers a six-month MOT extension to avoid unnecessary driving and people coming into close social contact at garages. It has been confirmed that this measure will no come into effect again because garages are allowed to remain open - not least because there's still a lengthy backlog of MOTs from the previous lockdown. If you have to use your car during lockdown, it must be roadworthy, so book in for an MOT test before the date of expiry, and have your car serviced if it's due. Garages remain open in Wales, though only for essential repairs and MOTs, and in Scotland the rules vary according to region, with the highest-level tiers advising against all but essential travel. Can I go for a drive? Strictly-speaking, as with the last lockdown, motorists should not go for a drive just to get out of the house. There are a number of key exceptions that allow driving, including to travel to a place of work if you cannot work from home. However, this time you will be allowed to drive to outdoor spaces to exercise. Driving is also allowed if you need to shop for essentials, while parents can drive for childcare purposes and to take their kids to school. You can also drive to take care of vulnerable relatives or to attend a medical appointment. As before, there are questions being asked regarding the police's ability to enforce these driving rules. There are currently no plans to close any roads. Article courtesy of AutoCar View the full article
  12. lol...you're not wrong there John54510 time to dig out the Turtle Wax 🙂
  13. Hope to do a road trip to Europe in February/March....Covid and Brexit permitting
  14. Same here Steve (although not a key worker, but working all through the lockdown)....took out the X-Trail, Z3 and BMW bike so they all got a run to keep things turning over
  15. After this long period of lockdown, many cars have not been driven and may have hidden issues which could compromise safety when returned to the road For the short amount of time that it takes to check your car before setting off is a worthwhile investment, even if it does highlight a problem that you have to resolve, it is still more beneficial to get it sorted before leaving home. A few quick checks similar to those listed below could save you a lot of money on vehicle repairs, fines or even avoid an accident occurring. Added to the fact that a lot of cars benefited from having a six-month extension to the MOT expiry date this can have a detrimental effect upon the safety and roadworthiness of your car. What you should check on your car before you set off on a journey Fluids – Engine coolant and oil levels, power steering fluid, screen-wash, Electrics – Battery condition, lighting, warning lamps, horn, washers and wipers Tyres – Pressures, condition, spare wheel or sealant Brakes – Pad wear, brake fluid level Other areas to consider having checked over by a Garage before setting off Drive Belts – Camshaft Timing Belt, Auxiliary Drive Belt (Alternator, Air Conditioning, Power Steering) Air Conditioning – Does it blow cold air? Does it smell? Brakes binding see related article
  16. That makes three of us....really chomping at the bit to go for a long blast to clear the pipes and take in the sights, seems so long ago now but in reality it isn't, just probably didn't appreciate the freedom we had before
  17. XCP have a range of Maintenance Fluids in the automotive and DIY market and have product placement with some major players in the automotive arena. The XCP range is quite unique, and this is mainly because of the properties of their products being vastly different to that of their competitors, making it safer to use with its higher flash point when using it on hot engine parts, very useful when spraying onto a hot exhaust manifold bolt in order to loosen it. We carried out a review for the products on an Alfa Romeo, which like most cars, is stored outside without cover all year round. Therefore, the resulting corrosion is quite minimal due to air being constantly circulated around the exposed parts. However, there are some linkages that are tighter than they should be, hinges and joints that aren’t as loose as they should be and general surface corrosion to take care of. So which product to use first? We opted for the Multi-Purpose spray to start with and then apply the Rust Protection on those parts that require a rust inhibitor. Finally, the Lubricate and Protect Maintenance Spray was used to seal in the newly freed-off and cleaned parts. How did we test the products? The test vehicle used for the lubricants was a 2006 Alfa Romeo GT with over 100k miles of British road use. It goes without saying that this is an ideal vehicle for any test evaluation, especially as it was used to dismantle original front suspension components. So how did the XCP Multi-Purpose Maintenance Spray perform? Prior to freeing off the seized components that were earlier identified, it is necessary to ensure that the fluid can enter between the two surfaces. The spray was of a high enough pressure to penetrate, and it would seem to have quite an effective capillary action necessary to find its way deep enough into the surface areas. After giving the components some time for the fluid to penetrate, the fasteners were undone with very little effort and noticeable traces of the fluid having travelled down through the threads. Prior to reassembling the components and fasteners that did not require any thread locking application, a liberal spraying of the Rust Protection spray was applied to any areas that you do not wish any corrosion setting in. Time will tell how effective this treatment is. You can buy this product here Lubricate & Protect Maintenance Spray Anyone who has ever owned an Alfa Romeo will know how irritating the suspension creaking noises can be. Dry bushes are usually to blame and because of this, the suspension components were spayed with this spray prior to refitting. Once again, time will tell how effective this has been. You can buy this product here Rust Protection Maintenance Spray To finish off any repair work and whilst you’re in the area it’s handy to liberally spray the Rust Blocker in the general area to ensure that no corrosion sets in with the salt deposits during the Winter months. Again, time will tell as to how efficient this spray is at preventing any corrosion. You can buy this product here Summary Overall, it is most definitely a very impressive pack of Maintenance Sprays that seem to cover all eventualities that you would encounter when working on vehicles. Would we have some in the toolbox for the vehicles that come through for repair….Yes, most definitely! Product & Company Overview XCP produce a range of products to provide the highest standards in maintenance, lubrication and rust protection. They have a noteworthy list of credentials including Edd China, the AA (who in 2012 selected XCP™ ONE™ as their preferred multipurpose spray) and the Honda Racing British Super Bike Team. XCP products beat market leaders including WD40, ACF50 and PlusGas when it comes to performance (loosening & lubricating) and are safer to use as the liquids themselves are non-volatile and non-flammable. VIDEO CLIP XCP advert starring Edd China VIDEO CLIP Product flammability tests
  18. The LC500 is available as a 5.0 litre V8 which is bred from the race-track or if you are after something a little less aggressive and eco-friendly then look no further than the LC500h which is powered by a 3.5 litre V6 and hybrid motors. Available in standard trim, Sport or Sport+ versions are offered with very little difference in price between them. The LC500 that we road tested was the 5.0 litre V8 with Sport+ Pack. ENGINE / DRIVETRAIN The 5.0-litre V8 engine that Lexus has chosen to power the LC500 is a great choice to provide the flexibility for a smooth GT cruiser and also to propel the car to immense speeds in very little time. Combined with an excellent transmission, there is very little to complain about on the performance front. Utilising a 10-speed transmission which is controlled by Magnesium Paddle Shift and incorporates a manual ‘M’ mode for driver control and selection of the gears. Additionally, there is also the Drive Mode Select function which switches between Eco, Comfort, Normal, Custom, Sports S and Sports S+ modes to further enhance the drivers’ experience. Moving onto the chassis, an adaptive variable suspension featuring multi-link design engineered from scratch to provide excellent vehicle response and super-sharp handling but maintaining a superior ride comfort and stability. Adaptive Variable Suspension is used to control the damping forces on all shock-absorbers with the ability to manage 650 different variations of suspension settings. EXTERIOR The most definitive aspect of the LC500 has to be the exterior styling with its distinctive coupe body and futuristic lighting. Combine this with the fact that the body is not just stylish but also lightweight and extremely strong. Ultra-high tensile strength steel, lightweight aluminium and Carbon-Fibre Reinforced Plastic are used throughout the car ensuring high-rigidity throughout. The roof is available as either a glass panoramic or Carbon-Fibre infill (depending on model specification). Both roof panels are made to complement the styling of the LC500 and even incorporate the lines of a traditional Japanese sword on the rear edges of the chrome plating. There is a retractable rear spoiler and this extends automatically at speeds above 50 mph to provide extra downforce and stability at high-speed. The Sport+ Pack version has side aero intakes to reduce turbulence around the rear wheels to further improve handling. LED Headlights are an ultra-compact style fitted with triple-projector LED units which allow for a short front overhang which is crucial for high-speed handling. The rear lamps are also LED which are inspired by the afterburners of a Jet Fighter aircraft and have a holographic effect which also incorporates a sculptured metal frame that follows the Lexus ‘L’ motif throughout. SAFETY FEATURES The Lexus LC500 is designed with high-speed performance in mind, but safety features, both passive and active, are also a major design element of the car. A pop-up bonnet, activated by sensors mounted in the front bumper ensure that in the event of a collision with a pedestrian, the impact raises the bonnet and by allowing more space between the hard components of the engine compartment and the pedestrian, the level of injury is reduced. To protect the vehicle occupants, eight airbags are fitted, driver, passenger, head, knee and curtain shields running the full length of both cabin sides. INTERIOR The interior of the LC500 is no less spectacular than the exterior styling. Lexus has directed their design on an interior specifically focused on the driver. The steering wheel is crafted by a Takumi master and when grasped seems to instantly instil a feeling of confidence within the driver. Already, the overall feeling of the cars’ demeanour is coming through when seated in the comfortable and supportive sports seats, and this is even when it is parked with the engine off. All of the controls and driver interfaces are positioned to hand and are designed to be easy to operate when driving. The instruments are positioned to allow the driver to view them at all times and are in line with the natural view of the road ahead with very little distraction. The interior temperature is carefully monitored and adjusted to provide the occupants with the optimum environment for comfort and wellbeing. The Climate Concierge system features pioneering Nanoe® technology to release negatively charged particles into the cabin area to purify the air and deodorise the seats. The overall effect is to moisturise the skin and hair whilst leaving the occupants relaxed and fresh throughout the journey. Entertainment is provided by the usually high standards from Mark Levinson® Premium Surround system with GreenEdge™ technology and incorporates 13 speakers throughout the car. Designed specifically for the LC range, the system delivers a digital home-theatre experience and is further enhanced as an optional extra by Clari-Fi™ which rebuilds sound lost in MP3 digital compression. Boot space is sufficient for two weekend bags and other small items but you would be restricted to carrying a great deal more. The vehicle Battery is beneath the cover within the boot floor. TECHNOLOGY A Lexus wouldn’t be a Lexus if it wasn’t for the quality of build and the technology that is utilised to enhance the driving experience. The LC500 is no exception and the list of standard equipment is quite extensive. The driving data is very clearly displayed through a multi-function display panel and also through an optional, extra-wide (174mm x 48mm) ‘Head-Up Display’ on the windscreen. Information such as safety warnings, navigational guidance and engine readings are clearly displayed for the driver to review without compromising the view of the road ahead. The Premium Navigation system is built-in to the dashboard and features a split-screen 10.3” display with the input being made through either voice command or through a TouchPad with Remote Touch Interface. Driver warning systems such as tyre pressures monitoring, parking proximity and traffic sign recognition are clearly displayed within the vehicle using visual and audio to highlight the alert. Blind Spot Monitoring and Rear Cross Traffic Alert feature within the LC500. Radar devices mounted in the rear bumper detect vehicles in adjacent lanes that are not visible in the door mirrors. If the driver is indicating to change lanes and should another vehicle enter into the blind spot, a warning signal appears in the mirror along with a buzzer to warn the driver. The Rear Cross Traffic Alert functions by alerting the driver to another vehicle manoeuvring behind. ROAD TEST SUMMARY The Lexus Owners Club have been very fortunate to be offered the opportunity to road test the LC500 and this is our unbiased opinion of what we consider to be one of the best performance cars to roll off the Lexus production line. The version used for road test was the Sport+ Pack with the V8 engine. First thoughts when entering the car is that it is an easy to get in and out of which sometimes is not the case with other GT coupes. Once settled in the comfortable and supportive sports seat, the engine is started via push start button and foot applied to the brake pedal. Engage ‘D - Drive’ or ‘M - Manual’ through the selector and whichever mode suits your style of driving. The default mode is ‘Comfort’ with Eco, Sport and Sport+ on offer in the model we had. Pulling away and driving in built-up traffic conditions presented no issues to the car which drove sedately as any other Lexus, but when approaching a Motorway and entering the slip-road, well that’s a completely different kettle of fish. The engine and transmission are swift to deliver the power with absolutely no delay encountered. However, in Sport or Sport+ mode, the response time is even less. Power delivery is incredibly smooth and with gear changes made automatically or through the paddles, there was no bucking experienced as is the case with some other performance cars. As the soundtrack from the LC500 V8 engine via the tuned exhausts, well there is not much that can overshadow it. Something that was noticeable during the drive was that the cabin was incredibly quiet, even with the windows down, there was not any noticeable wind noise or draught, apart from the noise of the V8 when unleashed. The economy is not one of the main reasons for the decision to buy the V8 LC500, but on road test with varying styles of driving and traffic conditions, the LC delivered between 21.6 and 27.6 mpg. Carefully driven with very little traffic to hinder your journey you could probably achieve around 24.6 on average. Handling comparisons have been made with a Porsche 911 and the LC500 was deemed to be ‘not as responsive’. This is probably the case but the wheel certainly felt positive and grounded during application into bends. The suspension delivered a very smooth ride over a variety of road conditions and never faltered with delivery into corners. The transition between driving modes was noticeable with the dampers tightening considerably more so when placed in Sport or Sport+. Interior space is designed as a 2+2 seater but as is the same with all performance GT Coupe’s the rear seating, although adequate for younger children would be less suited to adults unless the seats were positioned further forwards. Driver controls are perfectly positioned for operation in normal driving circumstances. The Lexus touch panel is conveniently placed to control various functions is intuitive and easy to use, and the car also features a voice control to facilitate the operation of some features. The steering wheel also housed quite a few function buttons for Cruise Control, Audio, Lane Control, Telephone and Voice Control as is standard layout on many Lexus models. Above the instrument panel and housed in the binnacle are two rotary controls which operate the Driving Modes on the left-hand side (Comfort, Eco, Sport, Sport+) and on the right-hand side, there is Traction Control which has the option of ‘Off’ or ‘Snow’. But one of the best features available to the driver is the colour Head-Up Display displayed on the lower part of the windscreen. Providing useful information about speed and navigation along with other selectable data to the driver, this is definitely a very useful feature. Would we buy one? Most definitely, yes! However, which version would we choose? For the number of extras that you can acquire that would seriously enhance the drive and also the resale, the Sport+ Pack is the way forward. Considering the marginal cost between the options, the Sport+ pack is not much further to stretch and in our opinion would give so much more back in return. There is, however, a tough decision that has to be made and that is do you go for the V8 or the Hybrid? That would have to be a personal choice but with only 0.3 seconds on the 0-60 mph time between them, it’s definitely going to be a tough choice. TECHNICAL INFORMATION Engine 5.0 litre V8 petrol Transmission 10-speed Automatic (Rear Wheel Drive) Engine Power (bhp / kW) @rpm 477 / 351 @7100 Mpg (Combined) 24.6 0-62 Mph (secs) 4.4 CO2 Combined (g/km) 263 Above information based on LC500 with 21” wheels COST (effective as of September 2017) LC500h – from £76,595 LC500h Sport Pack – from £80,595 LC500h Sport+ Pack – from £85,895 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS Special thanks to Snows Lexus, Hedge End for the loan of the Lexus LC500 used for road test For more information about the LC500 visit: http://www.snowsgroup.co.uk/lexus/ http://www.lexusownersclub.co.uk/forum/lexus-owners-club.html/lexus-reviews/lexus-lc500-review-r2/
  19. If you've already seen Le Mans '66 the movie, then you'll probably have a burning passion for all things motorsport, especially the Le Mans 24 Hours race Transporterama specialise in Le Mans 24 Hours books and memorabilia and are constantly adding to our stock of race programmes and literature. In fact, we positively live and breath Le Mans 24 ! Check out our stock items here - https://www.transporterama.com/index.php?/store/category/12-le-mans-24-hours/
  20. A brand new Book listing the history of Jaguars' people that made the car and shaped the future of the motor industry. This book, when published will be available exclusively through Transporterama so you can pre-order copies to be amongst the first to receive one when issued later this year. Book Club Members will receive first reserve copies, 10% Discount and FREE postage within the UK. To pre-order your copy of the book as soon as it is available then click the link http://bit.ly/JagBook No money will be taken upon pre-order, it is merely to reserve copies and to gauge expected print run Please pre-order your advance copy by placing an order. No monies will be taken as this is to register interest only. Price is expected to be in the region of £25.00 BOOK CONTENTS.pdf
  21. UPDATED September 2019 With links direct to Gov.UK for information for British Motorists traveling to Europe
  22. What to look for when buying a used car - Used Car Buying Checklist So you're looking at a second-hand car but don't know what to look out for, read our guide and print a copy to take with you when viewing potential purchases....you could save a fortune! Web Links have been inserted into the text to help you find additional helpful information and websites Price How much is the car actually worth, and are you paying too much? It is always worth negotiating price but only after you have thoroughly checked the car and find there are minor repairs that need to be carried out, so worth asking for a discount to compensate for this Documents Carry out an online Vehicle History Check....the small cost could save you thousands of pounds and give you peace of mind. Vehicle checks are an easy way to see if there is any outstanding finance, has it been stolen, has it been written off and much more information to ensure that you are buying a genuine car Can the seller show you the V5C Registration Document? Is the seller the registered keeper shown on the V5C? If not, why are they selling it for someone else? Does the registration document have a watermark? Any spelling mistakes on the registration document? Do the VIN (vehicle identification number), engine number and colour match the V5C? Does the number plate match the V5C? Has the VIN plate been tampered with? Do VIN numbers etched on glass or lights match the VIN plate and V5C? Any sign of scratches on glass to remove etched-in marks? Check whether the vehicle has had any Safety Recall work carried out Does the car have a current MOT (if the car's more than three years old)? Check the MOT history and status of a vehicle Mileage Does the mileage, age and appearance of the car look consistent? Any sign like worn screws that the instruments might have been tampered with? (Digital odometers can be tampered with electronically so clues like this won't exist) Check recorded mileage on service records, MOT Certificates and other documents. Does it look consistent with current mileage/condition and increase steadily year on year? Check MOT status and history online (with vehicle registration and make). Accident damage Any signs of inconsistent gaps between panels or mismatched colours that could be a sign of extensive repairs? Is the paint finish even across the car? Any traces of paint spray on handles, window seals or plastic mouldings? Could the car's colour have been changed? (Look under carpets and in other hidden areas in particular.) Any unusual looking welding under the bonnet or in the boot? Safety Are the tyres in good condition and all of the specification, dimensions and correctly inflated? Tyre wear can indicate incorrect pressures or even chassis damage or wear. Tyres with less than 3mm of tread will have to be replaced soon Some vehicles may require tyres to be fitted in pairs so consider this when buying and compensate for the additional cost. Is the spare wheel or tyre inflator/sealant kit in serviceable condition? Are the jack and other tools present? Do all the seatbelts operate correctly? Check there are no cuts or fraying that could affect the way they work. If airbags are fitted, Check that warning lights operate as described in the handbook – normally they will come on with the ignition and then go out? Do all lights and windscreen wipers/washers work correctly? Test drive Do all warning lights operate normally? Lights will generally come on to test and then go out – unless there's a fault. Are the brakes effective or does it take a long time or a lot of effort to stop? Is braking even or does the car pull to one side? Any unusual noises when you brake? Is the handbrake effective? Any steering vibration or pull to one side? If ABS is fitted, does the warning light go out after the engine is started? Engine Any abnormal noises when the engine is started from cold? Does the oil warning light go out as soon as the engine starts? Any signs of excessive visible exhaust emissions? Does the clutch operate normally? A noise when you press the pedal or a high biting point could mean that repairs will be required soon. Is the catalytic converter in good condition? Look for a recent emissions test, either alone or as part of an MOT. This will confirm that emissions are within the stringent limits applied to modern cars. Is there sludge on the underside of the oil filler cap? This could indicate poor servicing or predominantly short journey use. Is the oil level right? Too low shows neglect; too high could be a clue that the engine is using oil but it could just have been over filled in error. Has the cambelt been replaced according to the service schedule? Locks, windows and general controls Do all the locks, including central locking and remote control, work properly? Do all windows, including any sunroof, open/close normally? Any signs of forced entry, damaged or different locks, suggesting they've been replaced? Have you got all the right keys? Check the handbook to see which keys were provided when the car was new. Modern keys are expensive to replace, particularly the coloured 'master' key provided by some manufacturers to programme new spare keys to the car. Are locking wheel nuts fitted? Check that the special adapter required is included with the tool kit. Make sure it fits too. Do all the minor controls operate correctly – heating, ventilation, air-conditioning, radio/CD, navigation etc? Original article source: courtesy of the AA http://www.theaa.com/car-buying/used-car-inspection-checklist
  23. Is Ford’s AWD mega-hatch as special as we first thought? And can the Focus RS beat stiff competition from the Volkswagen Golf R and Mercedes-AMG A45? Here it is at last – the Ford Focus RS. We have been a passenger on track, driven it on the Continent and in the UK, and now it is at our test track ready for a thorough Autocar workout.The new RS has been a long time coming. It’s curious to think, given how much attention is given to it, that this hot hatch is only just on its third generation, despite the first one arriving back in 2002.Unlike some sports cars or hot hatches, there isn’t a central driving theme to the Focus RS, no familiar DNA that will tell you – as it might in an everyday Ford – that, ah, yes, this is the new Focus RS.If there is an underlying theme, it has taken a third car to realise it: after all, once could be a fluke, twice could be coincidence, but it takes three things to ascertain a trend. The Mk1 RS was pulled off the standard Focus line for finishing – at great cost – where it received wider bodywork and a trick Quaife limited-slip differential of shocking brutality. The Mk2 RS of 2009 was created to roll down the line like any other Focus. The trickery, again, was focused on getting its power to the road.Again there was a limited-slip diff, but with 301bhp to deal with, it was never going to be enough on its own and there was no chance of fitting anything other than front drive and MacPherson struts. So in went a Quaife diff and RevoKnuckle front suspension, a torque-steer-reducing addition that helped to deploy power to the road without destroying its driver’s forearms. And, once again, it’s the drivetrain and suspension that are recipients of the trickery this time around. The theme is this: the RS Focus has never shied from trying something new in order to get tyre-monstering power, for a car of its size, to the road. This time, four-wheel drive gets the nod.But unlike rival systems, it’s not just front-led, pushing power rearwards when you need it. Nope. Ford Performance has promised something special. And special it will need to be to fend off the vast list of competitors including the Volkswagen Golf R, BMW M2, Mercedes-AMG A45, Audi TT RS and Audi RS3. View the full article
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