6 Of The Best UK Classic Car Shows

There’s nowhere better than the UK for classic car enthusiasts, don’t you agree? There are always different events and shows going on throughout the year that your calendars are always jam-packed – and it can be very tricky trying to make time to go to them all! Here are just a few of our very favourites if you’re looking for a few events to go to this year.

The Chiltern Hills Rally

This Vintage Vehicle Rally is run by The Game Club, raising money for lots of local charities, and is one of the most established events of its kind here in the UK. It takes place each year, with classic car owners coming together in the beautiful Buckinghamshire countryside to share their passion with one another. It takes place on the third Sunday of May, between 10:00 and 17:00.

Goodwood Festival of Speed

This is one of the most famous of all car events and certainly not one to be missed. It’s taking place this year between June 29th and July 2nd, so you’ve got plenty of time to get yourself organised and to make sure your car is in tip-top condition. Fans come from all over the country to spectate and participate, with supercars, bikes, Formula 1 cars and heritage vehicles all taking on the 1.16-mile Hillclimb – which has proven challenging for even the greatest of drivers the world has ever seen.

Silverstone Classic

For a fantastic weekend of historic motor racing, make your way to the Silverstone Classic Event, taking place between July 28th and 30th. The circuit is world famous so a must if you’ve never been before and there are all sorts of events going on, from displays from car clubs to interactive driving activities, a vintage fun fair, air displays, live music and a shopping village. You’ll have a wonderful time!

Goodwood Revival

Later on in the year, taking place between September 8th and 10th, we have the Goodwood Revival event. Each year, the golden era of the Goodwood Motor Circuit (between 1948 and 1966) is recreated beautifully, with legendary drivers and riders coming to the event, as well as some of the biggest cars and motorcycles ever to have been made. Priceless cars from the Revival era take to the track for a few days of historic racing – making it an absolute must-see.

Brighton Beach Classic Show

Who doesn’t want to go to the beach in summer? And on June 4th you can combine a trip to the Brighton seaside with an exciting motor show where hundreds of vintage and classic cars will be on display on the promenade. Even better is that it’s free entry and not ticketed, so should be a relatively cheap day out!

Gloucestershire Vintage & Country Extravangza

And then there’s this event taking place on August 4th-6th. Attractions include a live arena with demonstrations covering everything from dancing tractors to steam, a fun fair and an animal section. It includes vintage displays of more than 600 classic cars and bikes, steam engines, military vehicles, a vintage tea room and lots more.

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Government Announces Funds To Fight Congestion

Chancellor Philip Hammond has announced a new wave of spending to help cities and towns across the UK fight congestion.

In total, the government will release £800 million to help deal with traffic hotspots on the UK’s road network, the Express reported.

Of this money, £90 million will be awarded to councils in the north of England to help them tackle serious pinch points on roads, while the Midlands will receive £23 million.

In addition, a competition fund worth £690 million will be set up, giving councils across England the chance to access additional cash to help them make improvements to local road systems. However, the mechanism for applying for these funds has yet to be revealed.

AA president Edward King OBE welcomed the government’s commitment to further infrastructure projects. He commented that the urban congestion competition “should help”, adding: “The government needs to work faster in tackling congestion without compromising safety.”

However, there was no clarity on potential tax changes for diesel cars, with the chancellor simply stating that more detail on this area of policy will be provided in the Autumn Statement later this year.

David Bizley, RAC chief engineer, described the omission as “a warning shot to diesel drivers”, and said that the continuing uncertainty surrounding diesel cars will be a worry for both private motorists and business drivers.

One positive for motorists is that Mr Hammond left the freeze on fuel duty in place for the seventh successive year.

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Peugeot 3008 Named Car Of The Year 2017

The Peugeot 3008 model has been named as Car of the Year 2017 by a jury of experts at the Geneva Motor Show this week.

In total, 58 journalists from 22 European countries made up the jury, which whittled down the options to seven finalists for the title.

The other cars in the running were the Alfa Romeo Giulia, Citroen C3, Mercedes-Benz E-Class, Nissan Micra, Toyota C-HR and Volvo S90/V90.

However, it was the Peugeot that emerged the winner, with the jury looking at value for money, innovation, security and design when making their decision.

Hakan Matson, president of the jury, commented: “The jury recognises that the market share of SUVs and crossover cars has been steadily increasing. The Peugeot is a worth winner.”

This is the first time that an SUV has been awarded the coveted Car of the Year prize at the motor show.

Peugeot launched the new 3008 model at the beginning of 2017 and it has picked up numerous awards since then. Among its features are the state-of-the-art Peugeot i-Cockpit interior layout, which the company claims provides a “more intuitive and engaging driving experience”.

Within this i-Cockpit are a multi-function steering wheel, a 12.3” head up digital instrument display and an 8.0” capacitive touchscreen.

A recent review of the model in the Guardian described the SUV as “refined, resourceful and alluring”.

You could always make your Peugeot 3008 look even more special by investing in alloy wheels for the car once you’ve picked it up from the forecourt.


Are Automatic Car Washes Bad For Your Vehicle?

These days, it’s all about saving time wherever you can and automatic car washes will always be a popular option for drivers who simply don’t have enough hours in the day to wash their vehicles themselves. But would you continue going to this kind of car wash if you knew you could actually damage your vehicle in the process?

According to the Greenock Telegraph, a motorist has claimed that his sports car was actually damaged by this kind of car wash, saying that his Mazda 6 was scratched after he visited a local petrol station to use the car wash last month (February).

Peter Beaton, 47, is claiming that there are now scratches on the door and roof, which will cost him around £300 to repair. He explained to the news source that he took his car to a body repair specialist and they told him immediately after seeing the scratches that they’d been caused by a car wash.

“They told me that you can tell that the scratches are from the bristles of the big brushes as they are all equal distance apart and are not just random scratches,” Mr Beaton said.

It is bad luck if an automatic car wash scratches your car or damages it in another way, but you can check before you use it to see if it’s likely to cause any problems. For example, check that the car wash doesn’t use abrasive brushes instead of cloth (which some older washes may well still do). Perhaps try and see if there’s a touchless car wash in your local area, which will eliminate this problem entirely.

You’d also be very wise to give your car a once over after you’ve left the car wash but before you drive off so that if there are any issues you can alert management immediately and ask them to take care of the situation.

Also take care when opting for an after-wash wipe down. Always check to see the condition of the cloths that the employees are using. If you notice that they’re old or rough, speak up and ask them to use a fresh new cloth so you know your car won’t be damaged. Or you can skip this step – remember that simply driving your car home will allow it to dry naturally after being washed.

If you’re worried, it might be a good idea to try and find time to clean it yourself so you know it won’t get damaged. Alternatively, avoid the automation altogether and find a car wash that does it all manually. The added benefit of this option is that you can get the interior of your vehicle cleaned at the same time, which won’t add too much to the price and it’ll feel like a new car straight away.

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Tips To Stay Safe On Icy Roads

With the UK braced to experience a cold snap as we move into March, now is the ideal time to make sure you know how to drive safely in icy and snowy conditions.

Firstly, you need to make sure your vehicle is in good condition before you set off. Top up the screenwash, check your tyre pressures and check that all your lights are working.

Once you set off, you need to remember that when the roads are icy, the grip of your tyres is significantly reduced, and therefore your braking distance will be considerably longer. Make sure you leave a larger gap than normal between your vehicle and the one in front to stay safe.

Keeping your driving smooth – so that’s in terms of acceleration, braking and gear changes – will help avoid any skids, and don’t worry about driving in a higher gear than usual if this helps you improve your car’s grip on packed ice.

Of course, in the UK wintry weather also often means windy weather and that brings its own challenges.

The RAC recently offered some top tips if you’re setting out on a drive in very windy conditions, which include making sure you have supplies in case your journey takes longer than expected, and to carefully plan your journey.

Other top tips include driving more slowly than usual and to be aware of the effect strong winds can have on the handling of your car. Remember that winds gust, so be prepared for sudden blasts of wind, rather than a consistent wind that you can easily anticipate.

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Potholes – The Scourge Of British Drivers Everywhere

Driving can be a really pleasurable experience and something that many people absolutely love to do. But the state of the roads in the UK can often make it more like a nightmare than anything else, as the last thing you want to do is cause damage to your car as you bob along.

Potholes can be found absolutely everywhere and they can cause untold damage to a vehicle, whether it’s to the tyres, wheels, the steering wheel centring, the tracking or something else. Hitting a pothole at higher speed can cause serious problems and you could even lose control of the car and have an accident if you’re really unlucky – so if you do see a pothole, do all you can to avoid it or drive over it as slowly as you can.

Last year’s Annual Local Authority Road Maintenance survey revealed that the total amount spent in England and Wales in 2015 on filling potholes across each region was estimated to be just over £118 million. This compares to the £144 million spent filling them in the year before – which suggests that pothole problems are only going to increase for drivers in the future.

So what do you do if your car is damaged by a pothole? Your first call to action should be to report it, so that it can be logged officially and your local council has an obligation to get it fixed. Warranty Direct recently set up a dedicated site to help with this (potholes.co.uk), or you could go with fillthathole.org.uk – either one will help you get the ball rolling. Alternatively, you could just get in touch with your local council directly.

However, bear in mind that if you do drive over a pothole and your car sustains serious damage, you could have a claim against the authority that’s responsible for keeping the roads in good condition.

While the pothole problem in the UK doesn’t seem to be going away any time soon, there may well be a change in the air. According to the Daily Telegraph, the Court of Appeal has just ruled that councils should be forced to fix potholes immediately after jogger Lee Crawley tripped on a deep pothole while out running and was unable to bear weight on his ankle for ten days.

Barnsley Council argued that it wasn’t to blame because it took all reasonable care in the circumstances to make sure the highway in question wasn’t dangerous. But Mr Crawley claimed that the authority’s breach of duty and negligence directly caused his injury.

It’ll certainly be interesting to see how this pans out and whether councils around the UK do start to fix potholes in a more timely manner. We’ll be keeping an eye on this story for any developments and let you know what goes on!

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Top Tips For Tyre Maintenance

You could have the brightest and best van alloy wheels that money can buy, if you don’t look after your tyres as well you’ll find you’ve just wasted a tonne of cash. Tyre maintenance is something every driver should know about – so here are some top tips to help you get the most out of your car.

Tyre pressure

You should check this at least once a month, especially during the winter as tyres can lose even more pressure when it’s colder. Don’t put yourself at risk – always check to see that your pressure is right. If it’s not, you run the risk of decreased vehicle handling and premature tread wear.

Replace them sooner rather than later

If you wait until your tyres are on their last legs, you could do untold damage to your car so if you think the tyre tread depth is below the wear bar between the treads make sure you replace them as soon as you can.

Avoid mismatching your tyres

If only one tyre needs replacing (like after a puncture, for example), always make sure you buy a new tyre that’s the same as your others. You could affect the handling of your car otherwise and the rest of your tyres could well see serious wear and tear as a result.

Drive well

You can also protect your tyres by being a good driver, so avoid sharp or unnecessary braking and try to drive as smoothly and carefully as you can. If you see a pothole, do your best to avoid it! And read this article in the Daily Telegraph about why you should be careful when buying second-hand tyres as well.

Iconic VW Campervan Gets An Electric Makeover

Can you name someone who doesn’t love the look of the VW campervan? It’s such an iconic model of car, come to represent freedom, excitement, travel and a certain hedonistic lifestyle that many of us dream about… but which all too often never becomes a reality.

That could all change thanks to the latest model of the vehicle, the I.D. BUZZ concept car, a zero emission, all-wheel drive electric multipurpose vehicle (MPV) that has space for bikes and boards, eight seats and which can travel for up to 600km without having to be charged up again.

The model was showcased for the first time at the North American International Auto Show earlier this month in Detroit. It’s the first MPV that can be driven in fully automated mode as well. All you have to do is push on the steering wheel gently and watch as it moves back instantly, disappears into the cockpit and the I.D. BUZZ is switched from manual to the fully automated I.D. Pilot mode.

The driver is then able to turn around and face the passengers in the back, with laser scanners, ultrasound and radar sensors, a front camera and area-view cameras all scanning the surrounding area. Further traffic data is sent to the vehicle via the cloud.

“The I.D. BUZZ is not just a giant in terms of space: by virtue of its design it also becomes one of the world’s most comfortable cars. At 3,300 mm, it has an extremely long wheelbase. Located in between in the vehicle floor is the battery. It lowers the centre of gravity and ensures perfect weight distribution. The suspension of the I.D. BUZZ, with its electronically regulated shock absorbers, additionally ensures top-class comfort. The zero emission all-wheel drive system with output power of 275 kW / 374 PS (electric motors front and rear each delivering 150 kW) is the perfect match for the car’s dynamic character,” Volkswagen noted in a statement on its website.

Hopefully this new model will help the company repair its damaged reputation following the diesel emission scandal that rocked it hard back in the autumn of 2015. Then, it was revealed that some cars should not have been deemed fit for sale because it is alleged that they produced more nitrous oxide emissions than was permitted. It’s been suggested that cars affected were only able to pass emissions tests because defeat devices were fitted to engines that reduced their emissions under test conditions.

Now, according to the Daily Mail over 25,000 motorists from the UK have joined together in legal action against Volkswagen. The manufacturer agreed on a £15 billion settlement with car owners in the US, but thus far nothing has been offered to drivers in Britain or in Europe.

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2010 Porsche 911 Sport Classic Up For Sale!

If you’re into your classic car alloys and the like, and happen to have a small fortune hidden underneath your bed right now, then what about treating yourself to the 2010 Porsche 911 Sport Classic that’s just been put on the auction block.

According to the Daily Express, the car – which has a front lip spoiler, ducktail rear spoiler and Fuchs-style alloys, is basically like new since it’s done just 80 miles on the clock. It’s actually one of the rarest 997-generation Porsches as well, since production models of this vehicle were limited to just 250.

Paul Michaels, chairman of Hexagon Classics which is selling the car, said: “The 911 Sport Classic was such a hit with Porsche collectors that the 250-car limited run sold out even before the company officially announced it. It’s not hard to see why – it harks back to legendary 911s like the 2.7 RS but mixes those classic cues with some well-chosen modifications to make it a proper enthusiast’s machine.

Investing in classic cars is generally speaking a win-win situation for those who choose to splash the cash in this way. Speaking to This is Money, Mr Michaels gave his predictions as to which cars would make the best investment for 2017 – including the Porsche 911. He also recommended picking out Astons, Alfas and Jensens, as well as the Jaguar E-type V12 Series III Roadster.

This latter car went up in value by 15 per cent last year, in part because fewer people are now able to afford the earlier Series 1 six-cylinder cars and also because celebrity interest in such models has increased.

Your Complete Guide To Buying Alloy Wheels

If you’ve got yourself a new car and want to invest in BMW alloys or similar, it’s best to do a bit of research and reading first so you know what to shop for and why alloys are such a good investment for you and your vehicle.

Alloys are simply wheels that have been cast from a lightweight mixture of aluminium, which can dissipate heat very effectively – better than steel options, in fact. You can also reduce the unsprung weight of your car by fitting alloys, which means you’ll find you can take advantage of better steering and braking response.

As you research these kind of add-ons, you’ll likely come across the term plus-sizing or up-stepping, both of which mean that you’re increasing the diameter of the wheels while reducing the profile of the tyres so that the rolling radius remains the same. The benefits of this include better handling of the car (as well as improving the appearance of your car overall). However, plus-sizing can make the wheel package heavier, while reducing tyre profile can see the car’s damping deflection under compression reduced as well.

Once you’ve had your new rims added to the car, you’ll need to make sure you know how best to care for them so they stand the test of time. Before the wheels are fitted, coat them with car polish to prevent brake dust and road salt from damaging the surface the first time you use them. You’ll also need to treat the surface of the alloys as well. Use soapy warm water to keep the wheels clean on a regular basis and never use an abrasive cleaner or wire wool pad.

When buying them in the first place, consider which ones would look best on your car. Silver and black are the most popular colour choices, while gloss, matte and polished finishes are good options to go for as well. Then you need to think about spoke patterns – bearing in mind that the design of your alloys will certainly dictate how often you have to clean and maintain your new wheels.

Also think about the cost implications of your new alloys. Because they’re not a necessary part of a vehicle, you can spend an awful lot of money – so do some research to find out what kind of price point you’re looking at and take it from there.

Of course, alloys will show signs of wear and tear after a certain period of time but you can get them looking good as new yourself by sanding down any damaged areas and then repainting them. However, you can always employ an alloy wheel refurbishment specialist to help you get rid of any curb scratches and scuffs.

If you’d like to find out more about alloys and which ones would work best with your particular car, get in touch with us today.