Last week I mentioned that Iran received hundreds of
thousands of British CKD cars in 1969. I asked what was it called in Iran and
the UK? The answer was the Peykan in Iran and the Hillman Hunter in the UK.
First in was Kevin Maguire.
So to this week. It is often thought that Henry Ford
‘invented’ the assembly line approach to building cars, but he did not. Who did
pioneer the assembly line approach in cars? Clue 1901.
For the Automania FREE beer this week, be the first correct
answer to email [email protected]
84 percent of older drivers
want refresher courses
The IAM (Institute of Advanced Motorists) has welcomed the
new RAC report on older drivers which finds that 84 percent of drivers aged 70
or over acknowledge the value of a refresher driving course. What about you?
Ready for a run down the shops?
Neil Greig, IAM Director of Policy and Research said: “With
ever-growing numbers of older drivers looking to stay safe and maintain
independence, it is encouraging to see that there is a high degree of support
for refresher courses.
“Older drivers have most of their crashes on high speed roads,
particularly on slip roads and at junctions and roundabouts. Updating their
skills to deal with these hazards and helping them to stay mobile for as long as
possible should be the key aim of refresher courses. The IAM provides a Drive
Check 55 refresher course which specifically address these issues (this is in
“The IAM does not support compulsory retesting or medicals as
we believe they will force many perfectly safe drivers to give up driving too
early. This loss of mobility makes them a far greater financial burden on
society and less able to access services and support. GPs need more training and
information to help them advise patients on giving up driving and refresher
I have to take the IAM to task here. In Australia there are
compulsory medicals over the age of 70, and really, what is the problem with
this? At least you know the fellow on your left should be able to see you! I do
not see how it could possibly force “perfectly safe drivers to give up driving
True story, I had a lovely old chap come in to my surgery for
his driving medical. He was 92 years old. I asked him why he still wanted a
driver’s license at that age and he said that every Thursday he went to the
supermarket to get his week’s supply of groceries. That was it. He never drove
at night (when his visual problems would be a worry) and never went more than
three km each way. The authorities would have had me fail him as his vision was
not 100 percent, but I decided that the best medical test I could give him was
to go as passenger. I left my rather perplexed nurse looking after the surgery
and away we went. He was careful and mindful of his visual problems, but really
drove well and safely. I gave him a pass on his promise to restrict the driving
to daylight hours and between home and supermarket. Did I do wrong? I don’t
think so - he came back the next year for his annual medical and he still drove
As an aside, since for me, driving is much more than A to B,
I would hate some doctor somewhere to tell me I could no longer drive either.
World’s Fastest One-Make
They say that motor racing is like having a bonfire in your
backyard and inviting other drivers round to throw 100 dollar bills into the
fire. The person with most hundred dollar bills left by the time the BBQ is out
of coals is called the winner.
Cheap motor sport?
Well, here is the closest I can find to that and it is called
the Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo series. The 2010 season is featuring the
Lamborghini Super Trofeo: a lightweight version of the Gallardo LP 560-4. The
Super Trofeo has a reworked chassis and a power output of 419 kW (570 hp in the
old money) from its V10 ‘Iniezione Diretta Stratificata’ engine. The race car
features Lamborghini’s permanent four-wheel drive, making the Super Trofeo the
only one-make, all-wheel-drive motorsport series in the world, and excluding F1
probably the most expensive.
And what is ‘Blancpain’? Hardly a household word (in my house
at least). It is a luxury Swiss watch called Blancpain, which is the series’
title sponsor, creating a perfect partnership between two prestigious and
highly-innovative brands (according to Lambo’s press handout). Its President and
CEO, Marc A. Hayek, races a Super Trofeo following his successful 2009 race
season, where he secured four race victories and finished second in the Pro-Am
That’s the way to do it. Buy your own series.
This has nothing to do with getting hard disks to work, but a
quick look at the number of cars that have been sold as initials only. Most of
them were due to boardroom fallouts and bankruptcies!
Curved Dash Olds 1903
Remember the name Ransom Eli Olds, the man who made the
Curved Dash Oldsmobile a household name in 1901. You can be excused if you can’t
remember, but Ransom Eli Olds was squeezed out of his own company by the board,
so he went off and formed a company called the REO. REO went on to make trucks
through to 1975.
Remember the Stutz Bearcat? Performance cars built by Harry
Clayton Stutz way back around 1912. Sold well and the Stutz name had a good
following. However, Harry decided that Stutz needed competition and formed the
HCS company, also producing sporty runabouts, but when HCS started producing
taxicabs, that was the end. By 1927 Harry was out of business.
Korea’s Grand Prix circuit
to finish on time?
There has been much speculation as to whether the new Korea
International Circuit will be finished on time for the Korean GP in October.
Yes, say the management! I just wonder.
I wonder even more about the decision to site this circuit,
so far away from the principal cities in Korea. Seoul is South Korea’s capital
city, and according to KIC, the circuit can be reached by air, car, bus and
shuttle bus. For those arriving from outside of South Korea, the majority of
flights will be routed through Seoul Incheon International Airport (ICN), with
domestic flights from the nearby Kimpo International Airport (GMP) connecting to
Kwangju Airport (KWJ).
If you think Gatwick North and Gatwick South represents a
hassle, try this, as far as getting to the KIC. From Seoul Incheon (ICN): By
Air: airport bus (approx US$5) or taxi to Kimpo International (GMP) - approx 45
minutes, then flight from Kimpo International (GMP) to Kwangju Airport (KWJ) on
Asiana Airlines or Korean Air - approximately 1 hour. You’re not there yet, from
Kwangju Airport (KWJ), the KIC can be reached by car (1 hour) or by KIC shuttle
bus service, which will run from October 21-24 at regular intervals.
However, if car or bus suits you, then on arrival at Seoul
Incheon (ICN), self-drive car hire with English GPS to KIC - approx four and a
half hours, or catch the bus, approx 5 hours.
KOVA also released some photographs of KIC. Does it look to you as if it will
be ready? I have my doubts.
The unfinished KIC