Episode 18 : Pencil Poking Needs - 2015 New Car Registrations in the UK, CES 2016, Detroit Motor Show, Cycle Paths

This week Alan and Andrew discuss the 2015 new car registration figures for the UK, a selection of CES highlights, their pick from the Detroit Motor Show and following a tweet from Andrew how cycle paths should be designed.

The show has not been quiet in supporting UK manufacturing and the figures of new car registrations for 2015 were great! A record year. Mostly it was gains, for example Jeep, with 176% increase in sales, which a lot must be down to the Renegade. But there were a few who took a backward step. SEAT was a bit of a surprise, and both the chaps hope they can turn that around in 2016 as they are fans of the cars and the brand.

Last week CES 2016 was still ongoing, so Alan and Andrew decided to leave it until this week. However, there was so much information that Alan decided they each needed to select a Good, Bad and Wildcard item.

Amazingly they both selected the same Good item. The FaradayFuture FFZERO1 Concept wowed Alan and Andrew. The clever modular design to the components and architecture caught their eye, not the ridiculous body design.

Alan selected the collaboration between HARMAN and Microsoft as his, 'not so good' pick. He gets a touch ranty and cross. One of the confusions is why we need this, as we already have devices to do it now. Andrew also weighs in, agreeing with Alan. As we are in the 'Information Age' workplace productivity needs to be looked at by most companies. Many companies use Victorian era yard sticks to judge productivity. Time working is the goal, when it should be the quality of what is produced.

Andrew puts forward the BOSCH Haptic Touchscreen as his 'not so good' selection. Whilst on the one hand this should be exactly what Andrew applauds he doesn't. The amount of money spent in fixing this "problem" is a waste as there already was a lower cost solution, that we all knew worked. They're called switches and buttons!

Alan's 'wildcard' is the Kickstarter project called Carloudly. This is a Head Up Display (HUD) for any modern car. Effectively it is a kindle velcroed to the top of your dash that links to your smartphone, which is connected to the diagnostic port under your dash. Simples. Andrew feels HUDs are where manufacturers should be going as it keeps our eyes on the road. The more this is done, the better!

Andrew didn't select a specific product, but that manufacturers seem to treat CES as a motor show and make big announcements. Alan, was more surprised in the number of announcements from Detroit that could have been made at CES.

Speaking of Detroit, Alan and Andrew turn their attention it. Alan starts off with the Chrysler Pacifica, which he then goes on to suggest is good looking. Much to Andrew's shock. He doesn't agree with Alan over that, but is that because of his prejudice against MPVs?

Andrew mentions the reveal of the Volvo S90, which is a very handsome car. As the S90 is mentioned Andrew is contractually obliged to subliminally request a POLESTAR version from Volvo. You may miss it as he's so subtle about it.

Alan chats about the car he feels is a proper replacement to his old Infiniti G37, the Q60 Coupé. They both agree this is a nice looking car. The engine line sounds interesting too. Infiniti has had a run, recently, of good looking cars. Long may this continue.

Lexus also revealed a new coupé, the LC500! Both Alan and Andrew like this, although the MASSIVE grill is a bit of a problem for Andrew.

Alan brought up the Chevrolet Bolt, which claims to be the first mass produced electric vehicle that will do 200 miles on a single charge. That takes it into Tesla territory, from a range point of view. Andrew is a bit dismissive, as it isn't coming to the UK.

Alan is confused exactly what Ford Pass is about. Ford want to do what iTunes did for music, but for the motorists. On the surface it looks like they want to be the internet for people, but Andrew will investigate this further in a later special episode.

Andrew tweeted out, at the weekend, due to his frustration with cyclists not using dedicated cycle paths next to a dual carriageway near him. The response from @mindful_man was such that his tweet was worth discussing. He pointed out how, in many situations, the design of the paths, especially near junctions, mean that it's safer and easier to us the road.  Alan helps Andrew understand what the problems are. They agree to disagree over the some of the points but now we all have a better understanding of what cyclists have to go through.

Alan rounds the show out by asking the question if Harris Tweed will become THE material of choice for all perfect interiors this year, following a tweet from @MotorPunk.

Amazingly Alan made it through a show without mentioning his MX-5. Expect normal service to be resumed next week.