May19

Toyota Town

Some years ago I was amazed to learn that Toyota is not only a car company, but a place too. Knowing this, I was very curious to visit. What would I find ? Detroit ? Stuttgart ? Coventry ? something completely different ? I booked a factory tour online, and hopped on a train from Tokyo to...

May08

Japanese Domestic Ma...

Arriving in the US for the first time in 1995, I was expecting a steep learning curve around recognizing cars on the street. After all, in Europe a Buick is a swan, Mercury a poisonous silver substance and Cadillacs something bought on special import by balding night club owners with wives...

Feb11

Significant Mileston...

Last week a car was inducted into the Library of Congress, alongside the site of the Battle of Gettysburg and the Statue of Liberty. The important point here is that cars are being recognized as part of what it is to be American. Implicit in this is that the use of cars – driving them on...

Sitges-Terramar R...

San Sebastian was remarkable as a racing track, but as my lap-of-the-track video shows there isn’t much to see nowadays – to get an impression of how it was, reading and imagination is needed. Sitges-Terramar, by contrast, is a complete, banked autodrome, which barring a few weeds in...

San Sebastian –...

Think of motor racing in Northern Spain, and the natural default is the Barcelona circuit used as a F1 test track for so many years, not the epic days or yore. Looking more closely it seems pre-fascist Spain was pretty keen on motorsport, in the wealthy nobles-and-amateurs-only way similar to...

Jan22

C’etait un Rendez-vo...

Part 3 in a sporadic series on Great Motoring Films; spoiler alert – watch the film before you read this: C’etait un rendez-vous – “it was a meeting” if my schoolboy French serves, is a romantic dream, a blonde, Paris and bad behavior in a Ferrari. My favourite moment is the very...