Monday, January 20, 2020

Welcome to Planet Auto Cars

2020 and on Musso, 230CE, Autosport, Kamiq, 330e the future

(Reading time: 5 - 10 minutes)

Welcome to 2020 as you've likely seen we've rebranded and also increased output to our YouTube channel and we've started taking on more and more cars.

The year 2019 was very interesting for us, it brought some rather large challenges, however we overcame these and overall we had unprecedented growth as well gaining over 3000 subscribers to our Planet auto Youtube Channel .

We have grown exponentially in the last year is going from strength to strength and thank you for the support, apologies for this post being a little late, we've been extremely busy in the last week alone we've had three press cars including Ssang Yong Musso Saracen a formidable pickup, Skoda Kamiq a compact SUV and a BMW 330e the new hybrid 3 series.

As well as that we've been to Auto Sport International where we went live, we also combined picking up our classic Mercedes 230 CE from our former partner, we wanted to demonstrate how versatile the Musso pickup was, we sourced our own car trailer set off on the Wednesday before auto sport and headed across to Lincolnshire.

When we arrived Tim and his father were awaiting, both Tim and Everard helped us start the car as the battery had depleted completely, we then all started the task of loading Mercedes which is around 1400 kg on the back of the car trailer all four tires were flat, we wisely order a winch too.

We then took in in turns to winch the car onto the bed, luckily the bed moved, this made it far easier to load.

Indespension on White Lund in Morecambe sorted us out with the trailer, they also talked us through how to load, how to secure the load, how to disconnect the trailer, how to operate the trailer including pumping up the bed and unhooking the hinges and balancing your load correctly and more.

Jamie knew everything and explained very clearly and even hooked it up to our Musso.

It was time to set off on our 400 mile journey to be honest the Musso Saracen towing the car trailer felt like we had no load whatsoever, even though this trailer weighed in at around 750kg, it was like you were driving the Ssang Yong pickup with no load.

We managed a decent economy of between 32 and 33mpg and as you know I don't drive particularly slowly, well accelerate on this occasion I couldn't exceed 60 due to the road laws.

The Musso handled exceptionally well on the motorway and on A roads the only challenge I did have is the fact that the car trailer was so wide but even with the car on after we collected it and left Tim's father's it didn't make that much difference to the driving experience.

The Pickup pulled it with ease our economy did drop to around 26mpg however the towing experience was faultless.

The Ssang Yong Musso is powered by a 2.2 turbo diesel engine which is the same one in the Ruxton, the truck is actually built on this SUV too and boasts that it is more SUV than pick up it has a six speed aisin gearbox and cruise control which makes pulling faultless, one thing we did notice around 40mph because of the weight it did get a bit indecisive with gear changes, but when you got to a say 60 it was faultless it would drop down gears to climb hills and felt bullet-proof.

It's very refined in the cabin very little noise even for a 2.2 diesel, no sway, very well planted and at no point did you think you had lack of power it just went, even pulling away from start up a steep hill it would just power through quite staggering this pick up is under £28,000.

As you'll see from the road trip on YouTube we had immense fun we met up with Joseph Lloyd of Lloyd vehicle consulting, he had chance to travel in it and also helped me do some of the manoeuvering as well as did Annabel.

After we returned from our road trip we then had the Skoda KAMIQ this is a fantastic compact SUV is also built on the Arona platform which is on MQB platform this is powered by a 1 L three cylinder turbo engine coupled to a five speed manual you can also get TDI, petrol engines vary from 95 bhp up to 150 these come equipped with a six speed manual, it's well refined lots of intelligent safety and other cool things that Skoda offer, umbrella in the door etc .

Currently we've got the BMW 330e outside this is the latest hybrid from the German manufacturer extremely well refined virtual cockpit, driving modes including Sport, Hybrid etc.

We've got an M sport edition and it is fantastic, pulls 0-62mph in 5.9 seconds and it's got lots of bells and whistles excellent lights, excellent handling and full electric mode.

That's our review cars for the last week we also attended Auto Sport International, we turned up with with the Mercedes and Musso and started adventuring, we went to the Performance and Modified section 1st and saw some absolutely immense machines KREAM were showcasing their Bugatti Veyron, Mercedes G wagon 6 x 6 various Porsches and other boutique style luxury wrapped cars.

There were lots of tuners to peruse including Yiannimize, Liberty walk with tuners as well as MillTek who were showcasing their active sound system for Tesla.

Auto sport International they had their own cars right round the outside of the arenas from early Formula One through to the latest racing cars including the Volkswagen TDI Le Mans car one of the highlights was certainly the rally cars, there were some great group B cars subaru's etc and a Mira Fury and a Lotus Sunbeam, Metro 6R4.

One crazy thing is one member of the public or trade walked up to me and said that they'd see me on a previous British motorsport video drifting Paul Swift's BMW, i was staggered, now that was an interesting revelation and that's just the last week.

Moving forward we have got so much planned with more BMWs with more Peugeot cars well with loads more manufacturers coming hoping to get the new L200 as well, we've just had the ASX and i'm currently editing on the computer, we will also be attending the biggest shows this year including London concours both Goodwood Events, Festival of Speed and Revival, Salon Prive, Concours of Elegance and no doubt some others that I have missed.

We've also got some challenges coming with the Joseph Lloyd, The Rubbish Mechanic, Matt from Furious Driving and a whole host of other YouTubers, that will be at Santa pod Raceway where we will race and there will also be an economy challenge and all types of things.

This is what I missed last year due to Annabelle's challenging health but this year we're ready and raring to go, we are also going to go on tour in the Mercedes 230 CE and the Mk2 at some point, we have our mechanic Christian who has just got a new unit working on the Golf, meaning the Golf GTI Mk2 now running an ABF will be back on the road and as the Mercedes 230 CE 1991 coupe is now home this is going to be restored too, plated up at the back because it has gone in the normal place a W124 goes due to water ingress through the sealant into some of the core structure which holds on the rear axle which makes it is a very important repair.

Apart from that the Mercedes is in very good condition starts, runs and it's gonna be a very exciting year it really is, we expect our YouTube channel to grow significantly as well.

We also have a new automotive event to attend, the British Motor Show we've already been to the launch at Farnborough we've been talking to Andy Entwistle and we should be doing more with him we've also got for a 5000 subscriber giveaway,tickets to the #BMS, that will be a VIP package.

I think this is going be one of the longest posts I've ever written to this website, however you guys needed updating because after Michael left everything went a bit sideways we had to re-evaluate our systems we had to look at our processes and we had to streamline and I won't lie it has been a challenge we've had to do a lot of catching up because just before Michael left we decided that we were going basically go tenfold and get as much content out as possible.

We are now catching up with this also means we've  got lots more content to bring you includong Salon Prive which has not been published with supercars - even more projects as well as well as that we've been filming some the project work on a road trip and the Insight from Honda trip and the Musso.

There is lots to look forward to and thank you for your continued support keep watching the channel keep visiting the website and liking or social media posts it all does help and happy New Year I know it's little late and Innocent smoothies have already said that you don't say it now, but I need to say it.

Watch out for giveaways as you see we've rebranded so we've got new merchandise, we will be selling this at some point however currently it is just the prizewinners don't forget to visit the Planet auto Youtube Channel and thank you

 
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Hydrogen EV Charger AFC Energy

(Reading time: 2 - 3 minutes)

Welcome to the AFC Energy solution to EV Charging.
 
On Friday Annabelle and myself were invited to the launch of a new Hydrogen EV charger.
 
We arrived at the event there were Press, Officials and interested investors.
 
There was a new Audi eTron and a Tesla Model S P90D and 2 Rolec charging points, an AFC Energy printed small container.
 
The first thing you realise is the chargers aren't connected to any electric feed, rather to the container and that is where this EV charger is different, this Hydrogen EV Charger can run off grid, with absolutely no electric.
 
This type of application versatility is astounding, it is zero emission which inturn helps in reducing a carbon footprint.
 
It's can fit in an existing location where diesel generators have been operating.
 
The H Power Electric vehicle charger on display here is  a 20 kW unit and increases from there, this one is a 10ft unit.
 
This allows you to be able to charge your electric cars in places where there is no electrical grid in operation e.g. the desert and it's only bi-product is mineralised water which is an asset for a myriad of reasons.
 
It's sustainable and versatile making it an interesting charging solution.
 
The more electric vehicles that are put on our roads and require plugin charging puts more strain on our grid and people have been wondering if the existing infrastructure will be able to cope with the additional vehicles.
 
Plug in charging whether it be on street charging or home needs additional power.
 
H Power EV chargers don't need this, the video explains what the company wants to achieve and explains how the system works.
 
Find out more on AFC energy's website as well as prices, sizes and what is possible, this company have also partnered with The 2020 British Motor Show.
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50 Years of the Ford Capri Classic Motor Show NEC

(Reading time: 2 - 3 minutes)
 
It's quite crazy to think, the Ford Capri has just turned 50 years old this year, now everyone has either owned one or experienced one.
 
There were 3 Mk's produced in total and one of the final models was the Capri Brooklands Edition a 2.8l that came in green and was a special edition Capri.
 
We interview the founder of Ford Capri club Mansfield, this club attracts members from all over the UK with a range of fabulous cars.
 
These cars include a Zakspeed tribute, Tickford and the exact Mk3 Capri that was used as a base for the yellow Corgi model car that was sold in many toy shops.
 
The Zakspeed is a rather special model, it's creator wanted the car to feature 3 points the racing car had, petrol filler on side rear window, a Turbo engine and a side exit exhaust, all these were achieved, both this and the RS were driven to the show in torrential weather, a rather brave feat.
 
Each car on display was pretty much spotless and each model was different and very cool in it's own unique way.
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Mitsubishi L200 Barbarian Series 5 Review & Road Test

(Reading time: 1 - 2 minutes)

Last week we reviewwed the Mitsubishi L200 Series 5, the pickup truck which is soon to be replaced by the new one, already available in Thailand.

This model is superb, a better turning circle, well refined and very capable off road which is easy to engage with it's Super Select II mode.

The L200 is powered by a 2.4 turbo diesel engine which develops a staggering 430nm of torque and is coupled to an auto gearbox.

To find out more watch our full video review, you won't be disappointed.

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MK2 Golf GTI restoration Battery tray

(Reading time: 2 - 3 minutes)

The Volkswagen Mk2 Golf project is no longer at a standstill, thanks to Triple M Roadside Assistance.

Christian turned up in his trust Ford Transit Connect to assess the Valver, after a look round, he said yes im up for it, great news for us.

Triple M is a mobile mechanic local to our area with a wealth of knowledge and vast automotive skill set - Typically, our garage door failed, fixed that with block of wood...after that though, we cleared the car bit, bumper and other bits and other things that were in front of the Mk2 Golf GTI, giving Christian room to peruse.

The video is a first taster at what's going to happen in the restoration of the classic Volkswagen, the battery tray was quite bad, rusty and holey.

On inspection the rust hadn't penetrated the inner wing meaning there was good metal that he could work with, it was in the chassis leg, however not as much that could compromise the integrity of the chassis.

Christian started by cleaning up the area, then cutting out the rot with a grinder until he hit solid metal.

Then it was just a case of cleaning up the area with a wire brush, and placing the battery tray over the top, aligning it and drilling holes for the weld.

The whole job took around 3 hours, including spraying and rust treating.

The Mk2 is well on the way to being back on the road!

Next Tuesday, it's the start of the engine conversion, which will require an engine crane.

First is change the timing belt whilst it is outside the car as this far easier, and it is a lot quicker.

As you can see, the VW project forges on and ChickenPig our Mk2 Golf may well be ready for spring - yay! then it's the Mercedes W124...

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MG ZS EV 400 mile Road Trip Pt1

(Reading time: 1 - 2 minutes)

Watch our adventure as we take the MG ZS EV on a road trip of over 400 miles, we use apps, we charge and we have fun, this is Part One, two and three to follow.

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The Kia Stonic

(Reading time: 1 - 2 minutes)

The Kia Stonic is a B SUV built on the same platform as the Rio, it's roomy, punchy and great value. This is our 8th best performer this month on our youtube channel, and it's not surprising.

The model we had came with 1 litre turbo charged 3 cylinder with a 6 speed manual gearbox, we gained around 40 - 45 mpg.

Infotainment includes DAB, Apple carplay and Android Auto.

 

The video shows a full review including our driving experience.

 

 

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2001 Honda Insight - A hybrid ahead of its time?

(Reading time: 1 - 2 minutes)

The Honda Insight 1st Gen, a hybrid car devleoped with one goal in mind ground breaking fuel economy.

The 2 seater is powered by 1 litre 3 cylinder VTEC and an electric motor.

It offers around 70 mpg, even Ben has achieved 60mpg with his style of driving. It's construction is all aluminium, making it light and the design has cues such as covered wheels sloping roof and sloping sides.

It was manufactured in Suzuka Japan, the same factory as the NSX.

We have this car on review all week, we're even doing a long haul to see how an 18 year old hybrid copes in todays world.

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The Kia CEED 2019 CRDI 2 Review & Road Test

(Reading time: 1 - 2 minutes)

The Kia Ceed has come along way as has the Kia brand, this car is ready to take on the German premium hatchbacks. The model we have is the '2' which is the base model of the CEED, sayong that base level has some great option, auto lights with self dip and Apple car Play and Android Auto.

This car also returns around 70mpg, it is also NCAP 5 and looks rather cool too, find out more in the video review.

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Ford Ka+ Plus Active 2019 1.2 3 Cylinder Review

(Reading time: 1 - 2 minutes)

Wondering how the latest Ford Ka+ Active fairs?

Well we've just reviewed this rather well priced Crossover come city car from Ford. The model we had came with a 1.2 3 cylinder petrol engine with 85ps, you can also get another petrol model and 1 diesel too, they are all 5 speed manual.

Now how does the Active differ? Well you get 15" alloy wheels, AWD style cladding and rough road shocks.

Find out how it drives, if it's roomy and whether it's economical in the review.

 

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