Episode 163: Just Wood Smoke - Aston Martin Factory, Porsche drops some diesels, FCA seeks classic cash, Alan stands in some snow

FOLLOW UP: ASTON MARTIN FACTORY COMPLETES PHASE ONE

Aston Martin’s new factory in Wales has finished the first phase of construction. Reception, offices and the staff restaurant has been completed. Converting the three large hangers into a production line begins in April. To read more click the Motor1UK link here.

REBEL ALLIANCE NEEDS A NEW LEADER AFTER 2022

During the announcement of Renault Groups' financial results, Carlos Ghosn revealed that he will be staying on as the head of Renault as well as the Alliance. This did not please all analysts, with some bemoaning that there seemed to be no succession planning at the company. To read more click the Autocar article here.

PORSCHE DROPS SOME DIESEL ENGINES

Porsche has now dropped a diesel option in the Macan and Panamera. This follows on with the new Cayman only having petrol and hybrid options. Porsche has put this down to a “cultural shift” in customers. To read more click the Autocar article here.

NATIONAL GRID TO CHARGE UP EV NETWORK

National Grid has announced plans to add facilities for charges with up to 350kW capacity to be installed in 50 locations on the UK motorway network, enabling 90-96% of the population easy access to a charging point. To read more click the Autocar article here.

LOCAL GOVERNMENT TO CHARGE FOR DIGGING UP THE ROAD

Following a trial in London and Kent, a scheme that allows local councils to charge those who want to dig up the road will be charged up to £2500 a day. This is to encourage utility companies to talk to each other and do their work at the same time, thereby reducing congestion. To read more click the Autocar article here.

FCA SEEKS CLASSIC CASH

FCA is joining manufacturers who are offering an official restoration service for classic cars. FCA Heritage, as it is known, is hoping to get a slice of the classic car scene. To read more click the EVO link here.  

ALAN STOOD IN SOME SNOW

Thanks to Toyota UK Alan was at the WRC Rally of Sweden, last weekend. Hyundai and Citroën bounced back after a disappointing outing last time. Neuville taking the win ahead of Breen, who now gives up his seat for Loeb. To read more click the Autosport link here. To see Alan’s videos and photos, click here.

VEHICLE EMISSIONS FALL

Between 2012 and 2016, motor vehicle emissions fell 12%, according to official Government figures. However, these aren’t good enough to get within limits as outlined by the EU. To read more click the BBC News link here.

CALL TO BAN HANDS-FREE CALLS

Mr Loophole, Nick Freeman, has called to make it illegal to use a phone whilst driving even if it’s hands-free. Research has shown that doing so impress concentration to the level of two pints of beer. To read more click the Telegraph link here.

LIST OF THE WEEK - WORST HOT-HATCHES EVER

Andrew Frankel has written a list of the worst hot-hatches ever. To read this click the Autocar link here.

AND FINALLY - MAN DRIVES A LONG WAY FOR A PINT

Ben Coombs, from Plymouth, has driven 20,000 miles to drink from the most northerly and southerly public bars in the world. That sounds astonishing enough, but he’s done it in a TVR. To read more click the BBC News article here.

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