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The Road to Britain’s Dashcam Boom!

 

We live in an era where if it hasn’t been filmed, it hasn’t happened, and British motorists using dashboard cameras to record their journeys has doubled over the last year, according to the RAC.

The RAC estimates that 9% of drivers (2.9 million motorists) have fitted dashcams. Add those to the thousands of cycle-helmet cameras, and the result is that millions of mundane journeys – and the occasional accident – are being filmed.

Dashcams represent a loss of faith: can we no longer rely on fellow road-users to tell the truth if we are involved in a crash?

The cameras have created a social media boom in spectacular crash footage but fears that dashcams are infringing personal privacy have caused them to be banned in Austria, Luxembourg, Portugal and Bavaria, Germany. Many European countries’ police forces do not accept dashcam footage, but such video evidence is increasingly used in investigations over fatal shootings in the United States.

There seem to be few privacy concerns expressed in the US and Britain, where some insurers now offer reduced premiums if motorists fit dashcams.

Insurers such as RAC, which conveniently sells dashcams, claim that British motorists are buying the devices to protect themselves from fraudsters who abruptly stop in front of another car to cause an accident. I’ve spoken to several minicab drivers who use dashcams, and they say it is to give them peace of mind when driving in urban areas at night.

Most positively, the RAC survey finds that a quarter of motorists think that a dashcam will improve their driving. Can the technology help create safer roads?

Last year, Brenda Holmes allowed the release of footage from the camera belonging to her son, David, 38. It showed the motorcyclist riding along a single-carriageway road in Norfolk and a car turning across him. David’s last word is “Whoa,” before his bike hits the car. He died in the collision. It is hard to think of a more shocking or powerful road-safety message, and it has been watched more than 17m times on YouTube.

Get in touch with us at Autoworld if you have any motoring needs – we will be happy to help you


Ford Transit 50th Birthday Celebrated

 

On October 9 1965, Ford introduced the commercial vehicle that would rule British roads.

A Ford Transit Mk1 is now a rarer classic than a Jaguar Mk2, but there was a time when no high street would have been complete without at least one. Back then, the average delivery van driver might have favoured a Shane Fenton quiff, a brown shop coat and an artfully angled Woodbine, plus an interesting approach to driving. A dab on the throttle, a hand signal not officially approved by the Highway Code, and it was off to the next shop with Hillman Avengers scattered in the Transit’s wake.

The Transit was the first joint project undertaken by Ford GB and Ford Germany, the first British light commercial vehicle to offer car-like comfort and handling qualities, and a vehicle that became so popular that within months of its launch on October 9 1965, an entire market sector became known as “Transit-sized”.

The driving seat (the passenger seat cost extra) was limousine-like compared with the upholstered planks fitted to rivals, a floor-mounted lever controlled the all-synchromesh gearbox and power was from the V4 engine that was also used in the Capri and Granada. In short, this – as your friendly local Ford dealer would have told you – was a van for the “Motorway Age” and, indeed, Ford regularly tested prototypes on the still speed limit-free M1.

The Ford Transit has become the definition of a van and is now in its seventh generation

The message to large and small businesses alike was clear: for just £542 you could own a panel van that was actually fun to drive. This was a phrase rarely used to describe the Transit’s main rivals

The Transit’s lines were a balance between form and function and as Ford had spent £10 million on “Project Redcap”, it was understandably keen to produce a van suitable for all of its key markets.

Forward control – the driver being stationed above, or in front of, the front axle – maximised load space but made maintenance an utter misery, as any firm that used Commers or J4s would have reported to Molyneaux. And something else to be avoided was the independent front suspension fitted on a Bedford; inexperienced drivers were prone to running into high kerbs, incurring time-consuming and expensive repairs, so the Transit featured more robust cart springs.

To reinforce the message, boxer Henry Cooper appeared in early PR shots to highlight the new Ford’s strength and durability, while an appearance with the Small Faces in pop film Dateline Diamonds emphasised that here was a van that was truly swinging.

An early high-profile role for the Transit was distributing London’s Evening News and in 1966 there were few pedestrians who were not aware that the sight of a black-and-yellow van might mean a bundle of papers being hurled out of the passenger door!

A true Brutish icon!

For all the latest car part and accessories, contact us at Autoworld on 01204 53 43 33


10 Cars You Need To Drive Before You Die

 

Pretend for just one moment you could drive any car you wanted. Not necessarily own, but just drive once before your time is up. What would they be? Take a look at what we would choose here at Autoworld and why not tell us your picks too.

1964 Ford Thunderbolt

Ford Thunderbolt by Autoworld in Bolton

Specially built to go fast in a straight line, the Thunderbolt was built on a Ford Fairlane chassis with extensive modifications such as 427 cid V-8, conservatively rated at 425 hp (600 hp is more like it). That meant aluminium or fibre-glass everywhere and no heat, visors, arm-rests, or mirrors. Nothing extra to slow the going fast. And go fast it did, clocking a quarter mile time of 11.61 seconds at 124 mph.

Bugatti Veyron EB 16.4

Bugattu from Autoworld = tha car part specialists in Bolton

With the world record for top speed by a production car at 267 mph, the Veyron is an engineering marvel. Built by Volkswagen’s Bugatti Automobiles from 2005 through 2014, the Veyron is powered by a 16-cylinder engine with quad turbochargers that produces over 1000 hp and requires no less than 10 cooling radiators. All this power comes at a lofty price with the Veyron retailing for nearly £1 million.

Ferrari F40

car parts specialst Autoworld in Bolton talk about the Ferrari F40

The last Ferrari personally approved by none other than Enzo himself would have to make the cut, right? Produced from 1987 to 1992, the F40 was arguably the most extreme exotic of its day with one car magazine referring to it as a “legal drug.” Hyperbole aside, the F40 was the fastest and most expensive Ferrari ever with a top speed that crested 200 mph and a sticker price of about £300,000.

Aston Martin DB5

Aston

Without question, the DB5 is the most iconic and recognized of Commander James Bond’s automobiles. And unless your pockets are extraordinarily deep, you most likely won’t find a DB5 with an ejection seat or champagne cooler. But you will find a 282 hp motor, leather seating, along with unlimited style and elegance.

1963 Chevrolet Corvette Split Window

CAr parts and accessories for the Chevrolet in Bolton

Heralding a new design for the Corvette, the ‘63 Stingray continues to be one of the most desired and collectible Corvettes of all time. While the new Stingray was lighter than the previous year’s model, power still came from a small block 327 cid that, in top fuel injected form, made 360 hp.

1967 Ferrari 275 GTB

Ferrari at car servicing in Bolton

Memphis: I’ve been in L.A. for three months now. I have money, I have taste. But I’m not on anybody’s A list and Saturday night is the loneliest night of the week for me.
Roger the Car Salesman: Well, a Ferrari would certainly change that.
Memphis: Perhaps. Mmmm. But, you know, this is the one. Yes, yes, yes…I saw three of these parked outside the local Starbucks this morning, which tells me one thing. There’s too many self indulgent wieners in this city with too much bloody money! Now, if I was driving a 1967 275 GTB 4-cam…
Roger the Car Salesman: You would not be a self-indulgent wiener, sir….You’d be a connoisseur.

Now, we aren’t prone to quoting Gone in 60 Seconds too often. But when it comes to this particular Ferrari, no other words are needed.

Original Shelby GT350

CAr accessroies in Bolton from Autoworld - for the Shelby motor car

While we are on the subject of the legendary tuner, we would also seek to try an original GT350. Taking a fastback Mustang, Shelby worked his magic to create a roadworthy version of a race car. And while the standard GT350 was a tough competitor, the addition of the race-ready option (£1,000) added even more racing parts including the awesome vented rear plexiglass window. Handsomely finished in standard white with optional blue racing stripes.

Porsche 911 Turbo S

Autoworld, Bolton - the car parts specialist

Trying to identify the most desirable year and model of the Porsche 911 is pointless, there are tons of them. So we’re going with the new 911 Turbo S. Blending the signature 911 style with modern design and aerodynamics produces a 911 capable of sub 3 second 0-60 times. And seeing as the overall look of the 911 hasn’t changed dramatically since 1963, you’re virtually assured continued desirability.

Bentley Continental GT

Bentlry

Sure, we like to go fast, but sometimes you need luxury too. Fortunately, the Continental GT shows us that luxury and performance can co-exist. Interiors crafted of the finest leathers and wood veneers pair ever so nicely with the twin turbocharged 12-cylinder engine. And since the Continental GT is mass-produced, it’s less expensive than other coach-built Bentleys.

1955 Mercedes Benz 300SL

Merc

Who doesn’t love the gullwing doors on the 300SL? But why does it have those doors? Aesthetics aside, the gullwing doors were used as the superleggera style chassis did not make room for traditional open out doors. So they opened up. Interestingly enough, the ‘55 300SL was the first vehicle with a form of direct fuel injection. This particular model sold for over £1,500,000 at auction.

How many of these have you had the pleasure of driving? If you have any car needs, then you know who to contact as we would be pleased to help you. Please feel free to call us at 01204 53 43 33.