Digging the dirt on cleaning

There’s a thin line between taking pride in a clean car and clinical obsession. Step over it, warns Simon Hacker, at your peril… Readers with young children might scratch their heads at any tribute to the world of cleaning and valeting: “Ah yes,” the thought process goes, “a clean car… I remember having one of […]

The weird world of ECOTY

With more than half a century of dishing out gongs, the European Car of the Year has been no stranger to controversy. Simon Hacker selects the keys to five cars of contention. Just what was that Fred van der Vlugt thinking? When he conceived the idea of a European award for the best motors, supposedly […]

Parking a nightmare

It’s not the number of cars on our roads that creates a problem, so much as the headache of where we leave the things. Simon Hacker searches for a safe place to park your sanity. 1 A new website that catalogues the rude messages drivers post on each other’s badly parked cars marks just another step […]

The quick and the dead

Reports of waning popularity for unrestricted autobahns prompts Simon Hacker to ask if 2016 could be the year the world slows down. 1 It’s official: we’re slowing down. Sort of. Scientists have worked out that the tidal pull on our oceans, thanks to the moon, is making our earth days longer. It’s not something we’re that […]

The new age of socket wars

Could the energy of the electric vehicle movement soon consume itself? As popularity for hybrid and EV cars continues to rise, Simon Hacker warns sparks may soon fly in the UK… 1 Individuality is a cool thing, you might say, until everyone’s doing it. Take the inexorable global rise of the electric vehicle (EV). Everybody, including […]

Psst, fancy an Evoque lookalike?

Imitation might be the sincerest form of flattery, but it can be a sore point to designers. Simon Hacker cross-examines today’s copycat cars – and asks if originality ever existed 1 We’re all used to that dismissive snort from anyone beholding the car catwalk’s latest offering: “that’s just a recycled Audi/Mercedes-Benz/Ford under a cheaper badge”. The […]

Driving home? You must be crackers

A fresh sprinkling of statistics suggest we’ll be in our cars less than ever this Christmas. Simon Hacker unwraps the truth 1 Yes, it’s that time of year again when we hear a lot of traffic-based lyrics. Chrissie Hynde will warn you that two thousand miles is no commute for anyone who’s had one mince pie […]

Stubbing out stupidity

As legislation comes into force to ban in-car smoking with children on board, Simon Hacker asks how seriously any of us take the rules of the road 1 Itís been a long time coming, but earlier this month, England banned drivers from smoking with children on board, the only get-out being a roofless car. The ban was […]

LIVING IN CARS: 4×4 B&B anyone?

As the number of homeless in the UK continues to rise, anecdotal evidence suggests a new popularity for cars as improvised shelters. Simon Hacker investigates ñ and asks if a cheap 4×4 is the wisest choice of mobile home 1 I have form on this subject, so Iíll come clean here: I have lived in a […]

Who’s driving you home?

After Fiat Chrysler recalls 1.4 million cars to fix a software vulnerability, Simon Hacker explores how easy it might be for criminals to tune into your car’s controls. 1 We’ve glanced upon this subject before in this page, but Fiat Chrysler’s sudden recall of a staggering 1.4 million cars in the USA has pushed the issue of […]