Health officials in the Indian state of Rajasthan are launching a new campaign in an effort to reduce the high population growth in the area.
They are encouraging men and women to volunteer for sterilisation, and in return are offering a car and other prizes for those who come forward.
Unless the forthcoming incarnation of the Vauxhall Corsa is significantly better than the current one, you have to wonder about the true criteria for the title of Car of the Year. The one I drove screamed “I was built to a budget!”. It certainly was quiet, as long as you left it idling out of gear and didn’t attempt to drive anywhere. Unladen, it needed over 4000RPM to do 70MPH in favourable conditions. It found every imperfection of the road surface and rammed it into your lower neck. After three hours of motorway driving, it left me with muscular pains in my thighs for four days. Thank goodness I don’t have to drive it anymore.
I’ve driven a fair few cars, some of which I’ve reported upon before. There are now a few more to add to that list, as follows:
This year, many things have changed for me. One of the most immediately significant, upon leaving the security-blanket of the Jubilee Line, has been passing my driving test.
More than by luck than judgement, I reached the other side of the high-risk age group (as the insurers so coldly put it) before attempting to drive. I’m lucky enough to be one of those people who picks things up quickly, so I started learning and practicing at the end of June and passed mid-August. Almost immediately, again more by luck than judgement, I walked into a job that sees me doing quite a bit of driving – not least because, as I don’t drink, I’m usually the designated driver after a piss-up.
Driving a car is, for the most part, pretty easy. Once you can get the thing to go where you want, it’s just a question of thinking about where everyone else might want to go in theirs, and trying not to be in the exact same place at the same time. One thing that has really struck me, however, is the sheer variety of cars – all with their own strengths and weaknesses. I hadn’t realised, before driving, just how different the machines are from each other. Seems kind of obvious now, but when you’re a pedestrian, a car is a car is a car.
So, here’s my thoughts on what I’ve driven so far:
It all started in 2005 when Ian Wright, Wrightspeed founder and CEO, built the X1–to date the fastest street legal electric car in the world.The X1 is a concept car and a test platform based on a modified Ariel Atom. It is not a production car, and never will be. The X1 proves that electric drive can deliver extreme performance without compromising its intrinsic efficiency.
There’s two established reasons not to run your car on cooking oil: it’s a legal requirement to pay tax on vehicle fuel, and cooking oil is for cooking.
When stories like this turn up in the press, people invariably start bleating about “the environment”. Will someone please think of “the environment”. Fingers get pointed, usually at the Government, and all because finger-pointing is a lot easier than facing up to the real issues.