Latest articles from Jonathan


Camera system "to revolutionise" parking
Camera system "to revolutionise" parking By Jonathan Goddard

Nissan is set to introduce the world’s first ever system offering the driver a bird’s eye real-time view of the vehicle and its surroundings. Debuting in the new Elgrand, scheduled for introduction at the end of this month, the cool kit will also... Read more

Mini Cooper D
3.0 stars Mini Cooper D By Jonathan Goddard

Let’s get something important out the way. The diesel Mini is no where near as good as the Cooper, S or even the One. But a small diesel will never (well maybe not never) be as good as a petrol equivalent so that’s not a fair comparison. Importantly,... Read more

Seven out of ten rural road signs "unnecessary"
Seven out of ten rural road signs "unnecessary" By Jonathan Goddard

Around 70% of road signs in rural areas are unnecessary, according to a new report. The Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) claims that a limited test on a 10-mile stretch of road in Hampshire proves that seven in ten road signs should be removed... Read more

Skoda Octavia 2.0 TDi Laurin & Klement
4.5 stars Skoda Octavia 2.0 TDi Laurin & Klement By Jonathan Goddard

Skoda has been getting a lot of good press in the past few years. As a manufacturer it has topped customer the JD Power and Top Gear satisfaction surveys, and the Octavia has won a variety of "car of the year" accolades all over Europe. But is it all... Read more

Fiat 500 smallest car to achieve 5-star safety
Fiat 500 smallest car to achieve 5-star safety By Jonathan Goddard

The impossibly cute new Fiat 500 has become the first ever car of its size to achieve top marks for accident safety. The Euro NCAP five-star crash safety rating, which looks at all aspects of driver and passenger protection, is reserved for only the sturdiest... Read more

MPH makes 200mph kings of the show
MPH makes 200mph kings of the show By Jonathan Goddard

This year’s MPH motor show extravaganza will for the first time ever assemble every 200mph+ car ever made under one roof. The Jeremy Clarkson-fronted event, which runs in November in both London and Birmingham, will feature the fusrt ever 200mph+ car... Read more

Route 66 Chicago 6000 GPS receiver
3.0 stars Route 66 Chicago 6000 GPS receiver By Jonathan Goddard

Portable in-car satnav systems have come a long way in a short time. Budget models have shown particular improvement. Garmin's woeful Streetpilot, launched a couple of years back, would have forever put many off buying a budget model again. Today, devices... Read more

Peugeot 407 SW HDi 136 SE
2.0 stars Peugeot 407 SW HDi 136 SE By Jonathan Goddard

I used to own a 307. It was without doubt the worst car I have owned and coupled with the experience I have had in testing a multitude of French cars, it convinced me once and for all that our Gallic cousins are as good at making cars as they are at making... Read more

BMW Z4 Coupe 3.0si SE
2.5 stars BMW Z4 Coupe 3.0si SE By Jonathan Goddard

When I first drove the Z4 a few years back, I really loved it. Its challenging looks won me over, it's supremely quick and its roof mechanism is first rate. The Coupe is essentially unchanged dynamically so I wasn't expecting much difference. I was wrong.... Read more

Honda CR-V 2.0 i-VTEC
3.0 stars Honda CR-V 2.0 i-VTEC By Jonathan Goddard

The CR-V has always been a cracking machine, offering a truly car-like driving experience with the ride height and practicality of a 4x4. The last version added great styling, high levels of comfort and relatively low running costs. Unfortunately, the... Read more

Honda Accord Tourer 2.4 EX Auto
4.5 stars Honda Accord Tourer 2.4 EX Auto By Jonathan Goddard

I'll make something clear up front: I'm currently working out what company car I can afford to run, and I was close to discounting the Accord Tourer because it's just out of my budget range. Since having one on test, I’ve decided there are some things... Read more

Altea gets the 4x4 treatment
Altea gets the 4x4 treatment By Jonathan Goddard

SEAT has unveiled the Altea Freetrack Prototype, a 4x4 concept based on its existing Altea hatchback. At 185 mm higher than the Altea, the Freetrack has the same 250bhp 2.0 T FSI engine as the recently debuted in the new Leon Cupra. The model’s width... Read more

Audi unveils most powerful diesel SUV
Audi unveils most powerful diesel SUV By Jonathan Goddard

The most powerful diesel SUV on the market will be shown at the Geneva Motor Show next week. The 335bhp Audi Q7 has a 4.2-litre V8 TDI, capable of hitting 62mph in just 6.4 seconds and with a top speed of 146mph. Power is transmitted through a six-speed... Read more

Pink Panther limo for sale on eBay
Pink Panther limo for sale on eBay By Jonathan Goddard

Fancy owning a piece of TV motoring history? Well now you can, after the owner of the Pink Panther limo posted the vehicle on ebay today.The famed stretched pink monstrosity from the opening Pink Panther cartoon credits, based on an Oldsmobile, was designed... Read more

BMW 320d M Sport Touring
3.5 stars BMW 320d M Sport Touring By Jonathan Goddard

I own a 1989 BMW 320i Touring. I love it, despite its foibles. Sitting at the helm somehow makes you feel that little bit special. Sitting in the cabin of the latest 3 Series Touring gives me more of the same. It’s great how BMW has a sense of heritage... Read more

Rover RDX60 prototype found in Longbridge storeroom
Rover RDX60 prototype found in Longbridge storeroom By Jonathan Goddard

Just as the surrounded Third Reich spent much of its dying energy developing machines it thought might turn the tide of war, defunct manufacturer Rover was working on its own white elephant in the days before its demise.As the former MG Rover factory... Read more

BMW X3 2.0d SE
3.0 stars BMW X3 2.0d SE By Jonathan Goddard

I’ve never really understood why anyone would buy a BMW X3. It’s by no means a bad car – far from it, in fact. Sure, early ones looked a bit funny, the ride was unforgivably choppy and the interior had been built by Romanian peasants earning three... Read more

AA slams Richmond over emissions parking plan
AA slams Richmond over emissions parking plan By Jonathan Goddard

A vote to determine the introduction of emissions-based parking charges is going ahead dispite, a leading motoring organisations claims the move is nothing more than a cynical money-making scheme. Larger vehicles in some of the capital’s boroughs –... Read more

Ford creates stretched Transit XXL
Ford creates stretched Transit XXL By Jonathan Goddard

On the scale of uselessness, a limousine van would rate pretty high. None the less, Ford’s Commercial Vehicle development team has created an unusual one-off – the Transit XXL. Using "off-the-shelf" Ford Transit components throughout, the XXL is based... Read more

Volvo announces XC60 concept car
Volvo announces XC60 concept car By Jonathan Goddard

The latest concept from Volvo has been unveiled - and continuing the current trend for genre mash-ups, it looks like a 4x4 coupe could be coming our way. The design, which we are assured will form the basis of the new XC60, will be shown at the Detroit... Read more

China home to most expensive Rolls-Royce ever built
China home to most expensive Rolls-Royce ever built By Jonathan Goddard

There’s yet more evidence of China’s superpower status with the news today that it’s now home to the most expensive Rolls-Royce ever built. An anonymous (not for long, surely) property developer in Beijing has snapped up the $2.2 million super-luxury... Read more

Volvo to revolutionise hybrid and electric car making
Volvo to revolutionise hybrid and electric car making By Jonathan Goddard

Volvo has invested £150,000 in a company that says it has developed am energy-efficient conductor that could revolutionise hybrid and electric car making. The conductor is used, among other things, when battery direct current is converted into alternating... Read more

Hummer goes Green with new concept car
Hummer goes Green with new concept car By Jonathan Goddard

The words Hummer and environmental sustainability don’t normally sit too well with each other, but a concept design for a next-generation Hummer has won an award for demonstrating just that. General Motors’ Advanced Design department scooped the LA... Read more

Kia Sedona 2.9 CRDi people carrier
3.5 stars Kia Sedona 2.9 CRDi people carrier By Jonathan Goddard

If you ever feel the need to buy a car with seven seats, it’s time to take yourself to the shed, put some Cure on the stereo and blow yourself away with a homemade pipe bomb. Yes, life is over for you, but if you want to carry on with your miserable... Read more

Volkswagen unveils new Tiguan compact 4x4
Volkswagen unveils new Tiguan compact 4x4 By Jonathan Goddard

Volkswagen has unveiled an all-new concept compact 4x4 at the LA Auto Show – and for what passes as quick turnaround in the automotive world, it will go on sale by the end of next year. The Tiguan, so named after the result of a poll of more than 350,000... Read more

Volkswagen Touareg tows Boeing 747
Volkswagen Touareg tows Boeing 747 By Jonathan Goddard

As PR stunts go, getting a Volkswagen Touareg to successfully tow a Boeing 747 is rather impressive. The 155-tonne retired passenger liner - the very same one you can see in the background on Top Gear when they’re testing cars on the track - was hauled... Read more

Mini Cooper S
4.0 stars Mini Cooper S By Jonathan Goddard

Even though the old (new) Mini was a blast, it always failed the acid test, which for almost any car is the answer to the following question: "Would I buy one?" Gloriously, the new (new) Mini - which looks almost exactly like the old (new) Mini but is... Read more

Report finds brake failure widespread
Report finds brake failure widespread By Jonathan Goddard

The brakes on a third of all cars could fail without notice, a new report warns. Tests carried out by independent service garages on behalf of car care company Comma found half of all motorists had defective braking systems, with 29% of them so poor they... Read more

Chrysler 300C CRD Touring
3.0 stars Chrysler 300C CRD Touring By Jonathan Goddard

Chrysler, Cadillac, Chevrolet, Dodge ... no, we’re not on the long straight highways that criss-cross the USA. We’re on sedate country lanes in Berkshire, Cheshire, Somerset and Lancashire. The Americans are invading. In a country once almost entirely... Read more

Classic mini dragsters go up for auction
Classic mini dragsters go up for auction By Jonathan Goddard

Stuck for an idea what to buy your car-loving sprog or sprogette for Crimbo? Well how about a mini dragster? Engineer Brian Eyre, one of the founders of kart racing in Britain, designed the so-called "bathtub hotrods" nearly two decades ago. His grandchildren... Read more

Porsche 997 Carrera S cabrio
4.0 stars Porsche 997 Carrera S cabrio By Jonathan Goddard

Remember the old car sticker, usually stuck in the rear window of a banged up old Rover that read: "My other car’s a Porsche"? That was back in the day when the Porsche badge meant rich, ostentatious and exclusive. These days, Porsche means something... Read more

Peugeot 4007 becomes company's first 4x4
Peugeot 4007 becomes company's first 4x4 By Jonathan Goddard

Just when the world seems to be going cold (or should be hot?) on 4x4s, Peugeot has decided to produce its first ever SUV. The 4007 is the result of co-operation between PSA Peugeot-Citroen and Mitsubishi, and it will be on sale sometime next year. Styled... Read more

Speed cameras deceived by switching lanes
Speed cameras deceived by switching lanes By Jonathan Goddard

Despite it’s oh-so clever name, the new generations of SPECS cameras can’t actually see very well. Designed to calculate a vehicle’s average speed over a long distance, the "hi-tech" cameras can apparently be fooled by the incredibly fiendish tactic... Read more

Drop in traffic cops has led to lawless motorists in London
Drop in traffic cops has led to lawless motorists in London By Jonathan Goddard

London’s roads are "lawless", according to the Mayor’s official road safety czar. Jenny Jones said the massive drop in the number of traffic police in the capital was “disastrous” and that the Met had become “heavily over-reliant” on technology... Read more

Atacama VW concept van sees light of day
Atacama VW concept van sees light of day By Jonathan Goddard

Yes, it’s a van. But, lordy, what a van. It’s unlikely you’ll have heard of the Crafter - VW’s new load carrier - unless you work in the trade, but it’s conceptual sister is the Atacama, and it looks great. The four-wheel drive concept is the... Read more

Vauxhall Astra Twin Top 1.6 16v Sport
2.5 stars Vauxhall Astra Twin Top 1.6 16v Sport By Jonathan Goddard

Peugeot did it first, and now everyone seems to be having a crack. No, we're not talking about building cars that fall apart in a brisk wind, but the current fascination with churning out hard-roof drop-tops – or coupe-cabriolets as they are known –... Read more

New Kia cee’d to come with 7 year warranty
New Kia cee’d to come with 7 year warranty By Jonathan Goddard

It won’t really matter if Kia’s new cee’d model breaks down – it will sell with a monumental 7-year/150,000km warranty. Simply put, that is the best warranty ever offered by any manufacturer for a car sold in the UK and Europe. Comprising 5 years... Read more

BMW Hydrogen 7 car to be mass market within 5 years
BMW Hydrogen 7 car to be mass market within 5 years By Jonathan Goddard

BMW is likely to be the very first mass-market manufacturer to make a hydrogen-drive car commercially available. After successful completion of a development programme, the BMW Hydrogen 7 - a H-powered version of the 7 Series - has been unveiled. Powered... Read more

Met police add green Honda Hybrids to its fleet
Met police add green Honda Hybrids to its fleet By Jonathan Goddard

The Met Police may be committed to working for a safer London, but now they are also working for a greener London after deciding to add 117 new Honda Civic Hybrids to its 6000-strong fleet. The deal represents the biggest ever British fleet deal for alternative... Read more

Survey finds Japanese cars better than European ones
Survey finds Japanese cars better than European ones By Jonathan Goddard

The Japanese ability to make damn fine cars hasn’t been lost in translation, according to a new report. Once the joke of the Western world, Japanese car firms have turned their image around completely from being purveyors of cheap crap to creators of... Read more