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April Fools' Day through the years

by Neil Briscoe on 12 Apr 2016

changagoidem Features | April Fools' Day through the years

It's usually the name that gives it away. For instance, when MINI released a press statement about a new model, the Cooper T, which ran on bio-fuel derived from tea leaves, the quoted spokesperson was Ivanna Cuppa. It's a detail missed by many, even some who assumed that the story wasn't a hoax, but once you read these things properly the honk-quack gaggery starts to stand out.

Sometimes, the details are a little more subtle. For instance, BMW issued a release that claimed it was installing a hurricane-force fan into the heating system of the automobile that would blow high-speed…

Ice and snow conquered by hatchback

by Neil Briscoe on 10 Apr 2016

changagoidem Features | Ice and snow conquered by hatchback

When snow falls here in Ireland, we get sautomobileed because it's slippery. Visions of becoming that guy from the Six One News who managed to slip on ice so spectacularly that he kicked himself in the forehead swim through our brains and we start looking into the possibility of fitting winter tyres or snow socks.

Snow isn't sautomobiley because it's slippery. Snow is sautomobiley because it's quiet.

We had gotten used, at that point, to the noise levels in the little Mazda CX-3 being quite high. The CX-3 tends to be a noisy automobile at…

Ehang Autonomous Aerial Vehicle

by Shane O' Donoghue on 30 Mar 2016

changagoidem Features | Ehang Autonomous Aerial Vehicle

If Ehang has its way, we'll ditch our automobiles and buy fully autonomous manned drones instead. Here's what it's all about.

Automobile makers took over the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Vegas this year like never before. The hot topics were connectivity and autonomous driving. But are automobiles, even those that can completely drive themselves, already more or less obsolete? That's what Ehang, a Chinese company, has in mind for the not too distant future, as it revealed its '184' model in Vegas, the world's first passenger-automobilerying…

UK looks to driverless future, we’re stuck in neutral

by Neil Briscoe on 26 Mar 2016

changagoidem Features | UK looks to driverless future, we’re stuck in neutral

It’s not often that I agree with George Osborne, the UK Chancellor of the Exchequer. In fact, I can’t think of any previous instance in which our two minds have been as one, but when he stood up in the House of Commons and gave his Budget 2016 speech, I was at least passingly approving of one of the proposals contained therein - a solid plan for the testing of driverless and robotic automobiles on UK roads.

According to the plan, a trial of driverless automobiles will begin next year on ‘a strategic road network’ yet to be named, but…

The case for driving enjoyment

by Maurice Malone on 24 Mar 2016

changagoidem Features | The case for driving enjoyment

I love driving. Always have done. Learnt the basics of over- and understeer, centres of gravity and the merits of plastic tyres on a diet of pedal tractors and go-karts. Practiced on-the-limit handling via PlayStation controllers and pixels on Gran Turismo and Colin McRae Rally. Progressed onto actual tractors as soon as I could reach the pedals (only experienced oversteer on agricultural machinery once, a story for another time and not something I’m in a hurry to try again...) and, finally, automobiles. Like most farmers' sons, initial introductions consisted of a decrepit rust-mobile, ideally ran on green diesel, in which…

Moroccan motoring madness

by Melanie May on 10 Mar 2016

changagoidem Features | Moroccan motoring madness

I'm standing on the footpath trying to cross the road, well many roads, as this seems to be a large unmarked junction. The mosque is to my right and the call to prayer is echoing out across the city. Men in robes and flip flops dash across the roads, but I (literally) haven't got the balls to step out in front of the speeding onslaught of traffic like they do. I'm still trying to work out what direction the automobiles are coming from, plus here comes another photo opportunity: a Volkswagen Golf MkI followed by a Jetta MkII. The windscreen…






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