From the chair: April 2019

For some time the car industry has been focused on electric traction. This is particularly so with European manufacturers who have long been under political pressure to reduce levels of CO2. European makes have also had to contend in short order with the demands of...

From the chair: March 2019

In three months time, The Western Group Annual PR Driving Day on 5 June will take on a new look, writes Robin Roberts. For the first time, a small range of motorcycles will be included and available to test ride and those without riding licences will be able to sample...

From the chair: February 2019

This month brings mixed news on the motoring front. The French government now seems likely to abandon its experimental 80kph (50mph) speed limit which applied to all roads except dual carriageways and autoroutes.Intended to last until July 2020, the limit was...

From the chair: January 2019

It’s that time of year. Preparations are underway for the annual Western Group of Motoring Writers PR Driving Day at Castle Combe Circuit, Chippenham on 5 June 2019. That’s when, for one day only, the motor industry PR machine gets into gear and the UK’s finest PRs...

From the chair: December 2018

Changing times reflected in new rules and regulations of The Western Group of Motoring Writers at the AGM. The Western Group of Motoring Writers has made the biggest change to its constitution since foundation in 1983. This year’s annual general meeting, courtesy of...

From the chair: November 2018

The opinions of AA spokesman Edmund King’s are often sought as a representative of the motoring public spokesman on behalf the motorist and his common sense views are always a welcome counterpoint to anti-car minorities. His recent remark that the chancellor should...

From the chair: October 2018

The awards’ season is well underway with various groups and publications giving gongs left-right-centre.  Certificates fall like autumn leaves and in some cases it’s definitely a situation of giving something to some category to justify putting on the event and...
From the chair: September 2018

From the chair: September 2018

This month the WLTP, the world harmonised light vehicle test procedure, goes live. This replaces the NEDC consumption test which dated from the 1970s. WLTP imposes far more stringent, ‘real world’ controls including analysis of emissions during idling and under full...
From the chair: August 2018

From the chair: August 2018

This month will see the annual meeting of the motoring writers’ groups and motor industry companies. While I know Kieron Fennelly will be representing thewesterngroup and has a few points to make on our behalf, I don’t know who will be attending and speaking for the...
From the chair: July 2018

From the chair: July 2018

This is the holiday season and quite a few of us will be driving to or through France. As usual we can enjoy the better roads and apart from the usual bottlenecks, less traffic, but beware: the French have reduced national speed limit on single carriageway roads to...
From the chair: June 2018

From the chair: June 2018

It’s almost here.  THE best-kept secret in the automotive calendar emerges from its temperate state deep in the Cheddar Gorge caves on Wednesday 6 June. Then, the ageless army from thewesterngroup membership will muster at Castle Combe Circuit for the...
From the chair: May 2018

From the chair: May 2018

I recently attended an event organised by a ‘premium’ manufacturer for journalists to try some of its increasingly wide range. The company’s PR supremo informed the gathering that not only was his the ‘leading’ premium brand, but if you added up all the horsepower of...
From the chair: April 2018

From the chair: April 2018

There is a reason that a clock-face is circular: time goes around. On a different scale of time, so does thewesterngroup driving day, the PR Day for the industry to let its hair down and enjoy its products. Registration is well underway for this year’s #DD2018 on 6...
From the chair: March 2018

From the chair: March 2018

In an age when information is efficiently disseminated via the Internet and product reveals have become theatrical productions in their own right, I really don’t see the point of modern motor shows. With the Geneva show kicking off the European season, I’m tempted to...
From the chair: February 2018

From the chair: February 2018

I’ve long held the tongue in cheek view that, once a manufacturer wheels out a range of heritage vehicles on a product launch, it’s game over for the newer, shiny stuff.  Why? If your head isn’t turned by a slice of well-preserved nostalgia you might want to...

From the chair: January 2018

From a professional perspective I won’t be sad to see the back of 2017.  No doubt such a bold, albeit negative, statement isn’t exactly what you’ve settled down to read, but I feel it’s worth saying. Before I put you right off your remaining mince pie, let me...