20 October 2016

Dundalk firm is Peugeot Dealer of the Year 2016

Lynn Motors, main Peugeot dealers in Dundalk, are Peugeot Dealers of the Year 2016. Mark Lynn, Dealer Principal, was presented with the award at the annual Peugeot Dealer Conference, held at Clontarf Castle, Dublin on 18 October.

The company was appointed Main Peugeot Dealers in 1993 and in 2013 a newly refurbished showroom was unveiled on the existing site on the Newry Road, Dundalk.

Pictured at the Conference are Colin Sheridan, Sales and Marketing Director, Gowan Distributors Limited, Peugeot importers in Ireland; Don and Mark Lynn, Lynn Motors; and Des Cannon, Managing Director at Gowan Distributors Limited.

Liguria is a foodies destination

Situated in north west Italy, Liguria is otherwise known as the Italian Riviera. The long and narrow coastal region is well known for its capital Genoa, the iconic UNESCO World Heritage Cinque Terre villages and for being the home of pesto. Liguria boasts the perfect blend between authencity and a relaxed pace of life and is renowned for its incredible beaches, beautifully preserved medieval villages, stunning mountains and unique cuisine.

Liguria is a unique destination for foodies. The region is well known for being the land of olive oil, focaccia and Ligurian pesto. Its cuisine is rich in tastes and every area of the region is renowned for its traditional recipes and fresh produce.

Here are our top three Ligurian foodie experiences:

New Audi Q2 arrives this weekend

Irish Audi fans will be able to see the new Q2 compact SUV in showrooms from this weekend, and put down orders from €32,490, writes Brian Byrne.

The main seller in the model is expected to be the one powered by a 1.6 diesel with 110hp. Other options will be 1.0 and 1.4 turbocharged petrol engines, prices for which have not yet been released.

There will be two trim lines, SE and S-Line.

The car is in the same size space as Renault's Captur and Nissan's Juke

Chinese global brand to launch in Europe

This is the first car which will go into production from the new global brand, Lynk, from Chinese auto giant Geely Automotive, writes Brian Byrne.

The Lynk 01 will be a compact SUV with power from a 1.5 petrol hybrid engine, targeting vehicles in REurope such as the new Kia Niro and Toyota's RAV 4.

Geely owns Volvo and the platform developed in Sweden will also underpin the next generation of that brand's 40 series cars.

Lynk models will go on sale in Europe in 2018. The name reflects the company's aims to be part of the connected car movement.

First Kodiaqs roll off the line

Though it won't be on sale until February of next year, Skoda has rolled the first units of its Kodiaq off the assembly line, writes Brian Byrne.

The Kodiaq was revealed in Berlin on 1 September. The new car will arrive in Ireland in February 2017.

It is based on the Vision S Concept shown at the Geneva Motor Show earlier this year.

18 October 2016

Winter driving tips from Easytrip

With the darker evenings of winter time almost upon us, tolling tag provider Easytrip is offering winter driving tips for Irish motorists.

Vehicle check: before the onset of wintry weather, check your lights, your oil and anti-freeze levels, your wiper blade condition, water levels, and your tyres for any bulges or small cuts – don’t forget to check the spare tyre.

Be safe, be seen: use dipped lights even before darkness has fallen when following other vehicles and in built-up areas.

Watch out for motorcyclists and cyclists: leave space for cyclists and be prepared for the fact that cyclists may not have sufficient lighting or have high visibility clothing on.

Overtaking: it is more difficult to judge a safe gap in the dark so don’t overtake unless you are absolutely certain it is safe to do so — particularly on motorways.

Be aware of pedestrians: particularly in poorly light areas and pay particular attention to children that may be walking to and from school.

Driving in fog or heavy rain: switch on your fog lights and drive slowly when visibility is poor. Turn on your hazard lights if necessary to alert drivers following behind.

Keep your distance: always remember to keep the recommended distance between you and the car in front — two seconds in dry conditions and four seconds in wet.

Renault Zoes take 1-2 class wins in Monte e-Rallye

Renault's Zoe electric car won first and second place in their all-electric class in the 2016 e-Rallye Monte Carlo, writes Brian Byrne.

The cars also took second and third places overall in the rally, behind the fuel-cell Toyota Mirai.

All three vehicles were driven by French crews over the 4-day event, with daily stages Fontainbleu to Moulins, Moulins to Circuit d'Ales, Ales to Monaco, and finally a circuit from Monaco to Monaco via Castillon-Sospel.

In all, the route totalled 1,300km.

17 October 2016

New Niro arrives

Kia's latest new model, the Niro compact SUV, goes on sale in Ireland at a starting price of €29,095 inc VRT reduction, writes Brian Byrne.

The hybrid-only vehicle is powered by a 1.6 petrol engine and electric motor with a combined output of 141hp.

The rated fuel consumption is 3.8L/100km (74.3mpg equivalent).

The Niro is a little larger than the cee'd hatchback, and slots below the Sportage in the crossover segment.

In Ireland there is initially one grade, EXL, with standard equipment including satnav, heated steering wheel, lane keep assistance and LED front and rear lights.

Kia Ireland has also launched the Optima Sportwagon, with one EX trim level, for €29,950. The specification includes 18" alloys, a 7” Satnav system with Tom Tom WiFi Services and dual zone air conditioning.

Veloster on steroids for SEMA

Hyundai will be showcasing a special Veloster Concept at the Las Vegas SEMA speciality automotive show from 1 November, writes Brian Byrne.

The car has been developed with Gurnade, who specialise in renderings and graphics in the automotive industry. The company provided the pre-show rendering above as a base for the design.

Hyundai is a regular attender at SEMA, and the showcar has both beefed-up suspension and a more powerful engine, specified for the racetrack.

The interior will also be race ready, with harnesses, racing seats and other relevant details.

Enterprise Rent-a-Car partners Dublin Marathon

Enterprise Rent-a-Car is the official car sponsor for the SSE Airtricity Dublin Marathon, writes Brian Byrne.

A total of 30 vehicles will be provided by the company for the event, now in its 36th year and taking place on Sunday 30 October.

The vehicles will act as pace cars, safety vehicles, stationary timing vehicles, and logistics vans.

Members of the Enterprise team will also take part in stewarding the event, and a number of them will be participating, including national marketing manager JP Denker, pictured above.

A lot going on in the Basque Country

Guggenheim Bilbao is celebrating 20 years since its opening in 1997 by launching a special yearly commemoration around the concept of 'Art Changes Everything'. According to Bilbao Tourism Board, the special program will be aimed at strengthening the museum’s position as a reference point in the international art scene and increasing its attractiveness in the global arena with activities that will target both the local community and foreign visitors.

There will be three main areas of focus. In the artistic field, there will be an ambitious project for the conservation of the museum's own collection and a special exhibition program.  Additionally, the Guggenheim will be work with cultural entities and the local art community by providing young Basque artists the opportunity to exhibit their work through a collaborative project. Finally, there will be a series of celebratory events created with and for local citizens and international tourists.

Another important highlight for the Guggenheim Museum is the Francis Bacon exhibition that can be viewed until 8 January. The exhibition will be showing a selection of 50 paintings of the artist, including 30 works of various classical and modern masters who influenced his career.

PHEV Mini 'close to reality'

BMW's Mini brand is close to completing the brand's first hybrid model, a plug-in hybrid which the company claims will offer better acceleration than its traditional engines, writes Brian Byrne.

The car will offer electric-only drive of up to 80km/h in an auto mode or 130km/h in an 'max' e-mode. A 'Save Battery' mode will operate the car with its standard engine, allowing the battery to be recharged while travelling to an urban destination where the electric mode would be more appropriate.

The battery for the powertrain is located under the rear seats, and the PHEV Mini has a significantly lower centre of gravity, with a 50:50 weight balance front and rear.

A launch date has not been revealed, but the company says the variant 'will soon be a reality'.