A round-up of today's other stories in brief
Rallying call for drivers with disabilities
Rally School Ireland is now offering drivers with disabilities the chance to experience its driver training school. The school offers a range of courses, from safety training and driving skills courses through to high performance experiences, and all are now available for drivers with disabilities.
The scheme was launched by Irish Paralympic athlete Ray O’Dwyer.
The school offers wheelchair users the chance to hone their driving skills for collision avoidance and skid control.
“We have kept the classroom stuff to a minimum and jammed the courses with practical experience carried out in a controlled, safe environment,” said David Smyth, managing director of the school.
Courses start at €175 for the BMW Winter Driving Training scheme and €195 for the Advanced Motability Experience. The dedicated track also plays host to a supercar course, and the school has adjusted its Ferrari F355, Porsche 911 and Subaru Impreza Turbo rally car, adding push/pull hand and steering wheel controls so that wheelchair users can now enjoy the fun. Prices start at €110 for use of one of the supercars, €220 to experience two of them, and you can try all three for €295. Further details at rallyschoolireland.ie
September registers another drop in sales
Car sales fell again in September, down 10 per cent on the same month last year with 2,487 cars registered.
The overall registrations this year are down 12 per cent at 76,630, dropping from 87,163 over the first three quarters of last year.
Volkswagen has taken the lead as the best-selling brand, with 9,700 registrations compared to Toyota with 9,612. Both are well ahead of Ford on 8,273.
Once more, the last day of the month represented a remarkable peak in new registrations, with 506 of the 2,487 new cars in September getting new plates on that day, well ahead of the next-busiest day of the month, September 19th, when 159 cars were registered.
Volkswagen in particular had a busy final two days of the month, with 132 of its 325 new cars registered during this two-day period.
Carmakers team up
It seems like we are entering an age of alliances and joint ventures in the European motoring world. Lots of new partnerships were announced at the Paris motor show.
Mercedes and the Renault-Nissan alliance, already working together on a new small car platform, have announced an extension of their tie-up to produce a new range of four-cylinder turbo engines and a new automatic gearbox that will combine fuel-saving stop-start and hassle-saving self-parking.
Meanwhile, across town – or, more accuately, across the Alps – Fiat has announced that Alfa Romeo and Maserati will get a little closer, sharing a new generation of petrol and diesel engines.
Maserati will, incidentally, be hard at work on a new, smaller version of the Quattroporte that will rival the BMW 5 Series, to be called Ghibli, a classic Maserati name from the 1960s.
Meanwhile, Fiat has revealed that its tie-up with Mazda to co-develop and build the next generation of MX-5 and Spider sports cars could be expanded to include other models.