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Classic Cars

Morgan Factory Tour

Stepping into the Morgan factory in Malvern is like stepping back in time. There is a wonderful article on the Moss Motoring site about a tour through the factory that has been producing Morgans since 1919. To understand the circuitous path that a Morgan car travels, from Malvern Link to your driveway, we were lucky enough to have a docent to shepherd us through the process. Dixon is the embodiment of an English gentleman. He has been part of Morgan for many years and he led our group through the Morgan manufacturing process. Be sure to check out the list of 10 Morgan facts you didn’t know!

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Events

MG 2012 Sets Attendance Record

The Peachtree MG Registry of Atlanta completed their hosting of the North American MGB Register (NAMGBR) National Convention this past Sunday in Dillard, GA at the Dillard House Inn & Resort (www.dillardhouse.com). The event showed a record attendance with nearly 300 cars registered and over 230 cars making it to the show field on Saturday. Both numbers are records for NAMGBR National Convention shows. In addition to the Saturday car show, attendees were also treated to multiple events throughout the week. Tech sessions were held at the Dillard House Convention Center on multiple topics Wednesday through Saturday, including a “rolling tech session” by John Twist of University Motors in Michigan. Event participants could roll their car through a tech station and have any problems with their cars diagnosed. MG 2012 also featured touring events to The Tail of the Dragon […]

Lola MG LMP675
Corporate Business

Lola Cars Enters Administration

Lola Cars has announced that it is going into financial administration as it continues to search for possible investors. The group, which was formed in 1958, said the latest economic downturn has caused a serious cash-flow problem that had forced it into making the decision. It also blamed the move on the HMRC not paying ongoing R&D tax credits. “It is with enormous regret that a decision has been taken to issue Notices of intention to appoint an Administrator to Lola Cars International Limited and Lola Composites Limited,” said Lola in a statement. “This step allows the board to continue its discussions with possible investors and prospective purchasers with a view to securing the best outcome for the staff, creditors and customers of both businesses.” Lola creations have claimed five LMP2 Le Mans 24 Hours titles since 2000. The company […]

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Highlights

Bentley Returns to Le Mans

British luxury car maker Bentley recently recruited Graham Humphrys, who designed the 1999 Le Mans 24 Hour-winning BMW. It’s seen as a major step for Bentley making a possible return to the world’s greatest endurance race, the Le Mans 24 hours. Bentley, now owned by Volkswagen, have recruited Graham Humphrys who designed the BMW V12 LMR at Williams Motorsport which was victorious 13 years ago at Circuit de la Sarthe in France, venue for the world’s greatest endurance race, the Le Mans 24 Hours or the 24 Heures du Mans as it is known in France reports Autoweek. The new Bentley project team also includes John Wickham who was Bentley’s team director a decade ago. Brian Gush, who is director for chassis and powertrain development at Bentley, but whose responsibilities also include motorsport, is reported as saying, “Graham is helping us […]

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Corporate Business

Lotus Set to Resume Production

Lotus Cars says it has secured enough investment from its new Malaysian owner, the automotive giant DRB-Hicom, to restore full car production at its Hethel, UK assembly plant in the next few days, and continue build-up to the launch of the first of its new-wave models, the Esprit supercar due in showrooms before the end of 2013. A four-model, five-year plan devised by CEO Dany Bahar has had to be amended because a 60-day financial “freeze,” a routine occurrence when Malaysian firms sell major assets, has interrupted the flow of agreed development funds and introduced considerable production delays. The resumption means that from beginning of May Lotus should be making Elises, Exiges and Evoras at a combined rate of 44 cars a week, and will be continuing to to spend on the development of the Esprit, especially its own-design V8 […]

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Corporate Business

Jaguar’s New Roadster

Jaguar is invoking its iconic E-Type roadster to challenge Mercedes and Porsche with its first two- seat sports car in almost four decades. The F-Type, due to be unveiled in September and go on sale as soon as next April, will be Jaguar’s smallest auto in more than a half-century as the marque seeks a return to its sporting tradition following decades spent focusing on luxury sedans. What’s more, it has been confirmed that the roadster will be built on English soil in Birmingham. “If the product can do what the original E-Type did for Jaguar, it will be a huge boost,” said Peter Schmidt, managing director of Warwick, England-based Automotive Industry Data. “What they’re doing is laudable, it’s good for the brand and it’s good for the image. But nobody should expect miracles.” The E-Type, introduced at the 1961 Geneva […]

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Highlights

London Low Carbon Motor Show

Saturday 5th May saw doors open at London’s ExCeL to Ecovelocity, the low carbon motor show, which showcases the latest in eco technology from both mainstream and specialist automotive manufacturers. Motorists looking to change their car for a greener cleaner vehicle can test drive the latest eco cars from Vauxhall, Peugeot, Mia, Honda, Nissan, Citroën and Chevrolet. The show provides visitors with the opportunity to view the current and future options for more environmentally responsible motoring, gain an understanding of the technology and processes involved in developing low carbon vehicles and an insight into the benefits of owning one. Unique to Ecovelocity is the chance for motorists to actually get behind the wheel. Giles Brown, organiser of EcoVelocity commented, “Visitors to EcoVelocity this year are able to test drive numerous  low carbon vehicles, including hybrids, electric vehicles and range extenders on the […]

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Auctions & Sales

24 Lotus Cars to Be Auctioned

One of the largest private collections of Lotus cars will be dismantled in June during the 2012 Goodwood Festival of Speed, the annual motoring celebration at the grounds of Goodwood House in West Sussex, England. The collection of 24 Lotuses consigned by Bonhams is owned by the Dutch textile magnate Olav Glasius, who in addition to being a collector is a vintage-racing enthusiast and the chairman of Lotus Club Holland. The British sports-car marque will be this year’s featured brand at the Festival of Speed, an honor rendered somewhat inelegant by Lotus’s financial troubles. This month, Dany Bahar, chief executive of Lotus Cars, told Evo magazine that development of new models was being held up for three months as the company awaited either an infusion of cash or a sale by its Malaysian parent, Proton. In a telephone interview, James […]

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Caterham

Lotus and Mansory Team Up

Even though Lotus and Mansory have two compete different approach to making cars – the former likes light and agile cars with no excess, while the former prefers big, ostentatious cars with lots of garnish – they decided to join forces. Lotus officially announced Mansory as their customization studio. Their differences will complement each other, probably. Mansory has already had a go at the Lotus Evora, and contributed on the Evora GTE and Swiss Beatz Red Evora projects, but the first outcome of this alliance will be shown at the 2012 Paris Motor Show. Lotus does not reveal any details on it, they just say it’s very exciting. For Lotus Mansory will be providing bodywork, trim and special finishes for the Elise, Exige and Evora. As the Official Customisation Studio, Mansory is working closely with Lotus’ engineers and designers to […]

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Corporate Business

Bentley Motors a Top Employer

Bentley Motors was named as the Top Employer in Britain for the year 2012. The company with headquarters in Crewe, Cheshire offers their 4000 employees with exceptional working conditions as stated in the report submitted by CRF Institute. The company is reputed for creating a conducive working atmosphere for their staff while staff in return upholds company values and gives their best to the company. Bentley offers their employees special promotions of engineering careers and award winning graduate and apprenticeship programs. The company sold 7003 cars in 2011 resulting in a 37% increase in sales. New models were launched and the company and their employees worked wholeheartedly throughout the year. Member of the Board for Personnel, Christine Gaskell MBE said, “Everyone who works at Bentley is proud of the brand. We work hard to ensure the commitment to excellence seen […]

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Corporate Business

MG Site to Open for Free Tours

MG Motor UK at Longbridge, UK is to be opened up for guided site tours. Visitors will be given the chance to see the history of the site and all the latest technology side by side. The guided tour will take around two hours. Participants will visit Lord Austin’s office, moved many years ago but still let up as it was when he was still alive, and the MG Museum. Visitors will also be shown inside the huge state-of-the-art Technical Centre where 300 engineers work on new MG cars and components. In the Sales Centre the latest MG6 GT fastbacks and MG6 Magnette sports saloons are on view. . The tour does not include the car production area at the moment, but it is hoped to include this in the near future. B31 Voices will be going on the maiden […]

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Highlights

New MG Uncovered at Silverstone

The MG6 that will contest the 2012 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship has made its public debut during the annual season launch at Silverstone. The car, which will be run by Triple Eight under the MG KX Momentum Racing banner, was revealed in the Silverstone pit lane before taking to the track for tracking photos during the morning media launch in the hands of Jason Plato. With work still to be completed on the car to bring it up to full race specification, the team failed to take part in the afternoon test session, with the MG instead being loaded back into the transporter to allow the team to continue work ahead of the season opener at Brands Hatch at the end of the month. Double champion Plato will be joined in the two-car team by Andy Neate.

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Classic Cars

Vauxhall Supports Classic Drive It Day

On April 22, this year’s Drive It Day to promote use of classic and interesting cars, Vauxhall is opening its Heritage Centre containing about 70 historic cars from all eras. There is free entry between 10am and 4pm, during which any classic car owners can partake of light refreshments and the opportunity to see one of the largest manufacturer’s heritage collections in the UK. Vauxhall’s Heritage Centre can be found on Park Street, Luton LU1 3HG, behind the main Griffin House headquarters on Osborne Road, where there is ample parking. The annual Drive It Day, which is organized by the Federation of British Historic Vehicle Clubs, encourages owners and enthusiasts to take their own classic out on the road to celebrate motoring heritage at its finest. It was launched to celebrate the Thousand Mile Trial in 1900 in which 64 cars set […]

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Aston Martin

New Aston Martin Heritage Showroom in London

Having opened a new facility in Goldhawk Road, West London this week, Nicholas Mee & Co says it is the first ever high-street, officially endorsed, Aston Martin Heritage showroom. The company was established 21 years ago and held a party to celebrate the opening, with guests including Aston Martin CEO Dr Ulrich Bez and Director of Works Service and Parts Operations, Kingsley Riding-Felce. Riding-Felce said: “Aston Martin takes its heritage very seriously, and it is crucial that current and prospective owners of our Heritage models are able to receive the kind of levels of service and specialist knowledge that is expected of the Aston Martin brand. “Up until now our heritage network has not had such prominence in London and it is wonderful to see Nicholas and his team investing so heavily in the future of Aston Martin’s Heritage business.” […]

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Classic Cars

Historic Cars To Display at Gaydon

A wealth of unseen historic British cars could soon be on display at the Heritage Motor Centre after a trust based there received a lottery cash boost. The British Motor Industry Heritage Trust has received initial support from the Heritage Lottery Fund for a £2.5 million project to create a new building to store and display the Trust’s reserve collection of historic British cars, at the Gaydon centre. Funding of £51,100 has been awarded to help the Trust progress their plans to apply for a full grant in 2012. If two more rounds are awarded building work on the new project could begin in 2013. The Trust has a collection of almost 300 cars, telling the story of the motor industry in Britain from the 1890s to the present and although more than 160 of these vehicles can be seen […]

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Highlights

MG6 Magnette Sports Saloon Road Test

Trying to break into a new marketplace is never easy – and it’s a damn site harder when it’s the ultra-competitive car market. That, though, is effectively what MG is trying to do as the company’s Chinese owners return to the table with the first new models to wear the MG badge in 16 years. Their task is made even harder by the history involved here. The messy demise of the previous company cost the brand a lot of the goodwill and then there was the, perhaps understandable, scepticism as the Far Eastern conglomerates stepped in to pick over the wreckage. However, the Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation seem to be taking the right steps to woo the army of MG followers back. They have set up their UK headquarters in what is retained of the Longbridge plant, which had become […]

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Corporate Business

MG Names Top Open-Points

MG has exclusively revealed to Car Dealer Magazine the 10 most important towns and cities it wants to find new dealers for. The UK car manufacturer, which was relaunched in 2008 with the backing of Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation, wants to establish showrooms in the following eight locations in England: Birmingham, Derby, Leeds, Liverpool, Nottingham, Northampton, Swindon and South London. The firm, which has recently launched a new range of models that have been designed and engineered at its 69-acre site in Longbridge, Birmingham, also wants to establish outlets in Glasgow and Edinburgh. MG’s list of potential dealership locations also includes more than 20 medium-priority locations, including Brighton, Exeter and Guildford in the south of England, and Blackpool, Burnley and Carlisle further north. And at the bottom of the list are six low-priority spots, including in England, Barnstaple; in Wales, […]

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Corporate Business

MG Motor UK Appoints GMAC

MG Motor UK Ltd has selected GMAC UK plc, a subsidiary of Ally Financial Inc., to be its preferred retail financing provider in the UK for manufacturer programmes and standard rate finance. GMAC UK will provide financing to MG customers under the MG Financial Services brand. Guy Jones, sales and marketing director of MG Motor UK, said: “GMAC is a trusted financing source in the industry. As a company with extensive experience, resources and capabilities in the UK market, GMAC will support our brand and help us grow our business. This important development allows us to offer a competitive range of retail finance products for the new MG6 GT, Magnette and following models.” “We are extremely pleased to enter this new retail relationship with MG in the UK,” commented Ed Paulat, GMAC UK managing director.  “We look forward to working […]

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Aston Martin

‘The Persuaders’ TV Material Discovered

Exciting new material about the filming of ‘The Persuaders’ TV series has been uncovered in the Archives of the British Motor Industry Heritage Trust (based at the Heritage Motor Centre in Gaydon, near Warwick) during a major re-cataloguing project. ‘The Persuaders’ celebrates its 40th Anniversary having debuted on British TV in September 1971. The stars of the show were Sir Roger Moore and the late Tony Curtis, who drove an Aston Martin DBS and a Ferrari Dino 246 GT respectively. Sir Roger Moore was re-united with the actual Aston Martin DBS used at a recent event, to commemorate the anniversary and the release of the series on Blu-ray DVD. Photographs, film production records and correspondence relating to this classic Seventies TV series have come to light in the personal collection of the late Roger Stowers. Roger Stowers worked at Aston […]

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Classic Cars

Heritage Motor Collections Centre Gets Funding

There’s been a great deal of excitement at the Heritage Motor Centre this week as it’s been announced that they have received initial support from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for a new Museum Collections Centre project. This project will enable people to see the whole collection for the first time in a purpose-built facility that will also include a vehicle restoration and conservation workshop. The Centre has been awarded a first round pass by the HLF along with funding of £51,100 to help them develop plans to apply for a full grant in 2012. The complete project is expected to cost around £2.5 million. If second round funding is awarded and match funding is also obtained, building work on the new project could begin in 2013. Keep an eye here and on their website for future announcements.