McLaren Technology Centre

The future looks bright

SGMW members are treated to an exclusive tour of the high-tech McLaren car production centre Under the flightpath into Farnborough Airport, which many of us have experienced on car launch trips, there is a striking piece of architecture to be seen near Woking. This flowing confection of glass and steel, reflected in an adjoining lake, is the architectural icon that …

Suzuki SGMW event

Something old…

…and something blue; SGMW members drive latest Suzukis and remember epic 1980s Rhino Rallies Suzuki went the extra furlong and treated SGMW members to an event that is becoming rare – a partners’ weekend at the Lingfield Park Marriott Hotel and Country Club, which borders the racecourse in the heart of the Surrey countryside. Alun Parry, Jade Wells and the …

SGMW karting 2016

Ford wins on final corner

Seconds before the chequered flag, Ford seizes victory in SGMW GP After trailing the Fiat team in second place for 55 minutes, Ford’s Jake Cassetta spotted his chance to gain victory in the 2016 SGMW Karting Grand Prix. “I got within sight of the Fiat kart two laps before the end of the race and did my best to catch …

Results of 2016 SGMW Karting Grand Prix revealed

Following a last corner battle that led to a nail-biting finale, the results of the Southern Group of Motoring Writers’ 3rd annual Karting Grand Prix have been revealed. The event – which yielded a group record £4,445 donation to charity – comprised a 150-minute endurance race, with a practice session and safety briefing beforehand. The event – held at the …

Peter Cracknell reports on Kia Invitation day at Longcross Test Track

Kia’s faithful association with the Southern Group took a further welcome step in August at Longcross Test track. The facility goes by a number of other names such as Chobham Test Track, and its history dates back to World War 2, from when it was used as a tank testing and training course. Motor manufacturers have used it consistently when …

Dave Randle gives the ‘Emissionary Position’ on the VW Gate scandal

For more than a quarter of a century, the world’s carmakers have been pursuing unrealistic targets, set for them by regulatory authorities with political origins and an eye on winning brownie points from increasingly vocal ecologists. With its demand-driven rapid turnover of products, the auto-industry was the obvious subject of these targets. Power stations, whether coal, oil or gas-fired, don’t …

Bigger and better Karting Challenge raises even more for Air Ambulance

Now established as an annual highlight of the motor industry PR world, the Southern Group of Motoring Writers’ charity Karting Grand Prix turbocharged its fund-raising by more than £1,000 this year. Group chairman Sue Baker was able to hand over a cheque for £4,350 towards the lifesaving work of the Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance – easily topping 2014’s …

Changing Chairs at SGMW

Members of the Southern Group of Motoring Writers have appointed a new Chairman after Sue Baker decided to stand down following five years’ tireless work in promoting the Group – she is succeeded by fellow freelancer Chris Rees. The change of chairs came at the Group’s AGM, held at The Aviator Hotel, Farnborough and kindly hosted by PSA in order …

Prestigious Grand Prix turns into a ‘Wheel’ Challenge

  FIAT’S press and PR department has been presented with a steering wheel trophy to mark its victory earlier this year in the Southern Group of Motoring Writers’ Karting Grand Prix. But the FIAT team has just a couple of months to bask in the trophy’s glory before donning race suits and helmets once more to defend the title, and …

Summer Party

Saturday 5th July. Dawn. Where’s that sun that has been shining for virtually the whole summer so far? Not only is it hiding, the BBC weatherman is also even mumbling about rain. Undeterred, I donned my waterproofs, got in my very un-weatherproof Caterham and made my way to Kent for the SGMW Summer Party at The Woodman pub, near Sevenoaks. …