The cars are the stars of 2013

The Daily Telegraph - Saturday - - Front Page -

I think in many ways we are liv­ing through a golden age of car de­sign: new types of car and driv­e­train so­lu­tions seem to ap­pear ev­ery day, but in 2013 I did not get my hands on many of th­ese ex­cit­ing in­no­va­tions. Al­most the only ve­hi­cle I got to test this year was a hov­er­craft. Ob­vi­ously this was a lot of fun, but in 2014 I think I need to drive more cars.

High on the list is the new Jaguar F-type Coupé. When I saw the soft­top at the Paris mo­tor show I didn’t like it at all, but by putting a roof on the F-type they’ve made it look a lot bet­ter. It’s also cheaper and pre­sum­ably there’s more boot space.

As an Alfa Romeo fan I’m another who is look­ing for­ward to the 4C, as well as the BMW 3-se­ries-ri­valling Gi­u­lia and the facelifted Gi­uli­etta, but I do won­der if the com­pany has done any work on im­prov­ing the dealer net­work. When I owned an Alfa 166 the place where I got it ser­viced was ac­tu­ally fea­tured on ITVs Garages From Hell in 2001 – and it wasn’t even the worst of the Alfa garages I’d tried. There’s no point in hav­ing great cars if the peo­ple who sell and main­tain them are be­low par.

This year cy­cling has been in the news, but sadly mostly for rid­ers be­ing killed. At least this has prompted a de­bate about cy­cling and road safety in gen­eral, but more needs to be done.

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