The new Peugeot 508 fastback makes a serious style statement

2019 Peugeot 508 1.5BlueHDI First Drive Review

The new Peugeot 508 fastback
The new Peugeot 508 fastback is now on sale in Ireland

The new Peugeot 508 has just arrived in Ireland and goes on sale priced from €32,400. Available initially as a ‘fastback’ (looks like a saloon but is actually a hatchback), an SW estate version will arrive in Ireland this summer. Caroline drove from Dublin to Cork in the new Peugeot 508 at the recent Irish press launch.

Styling

The Peugeot 508 makes a serious style statement in the D-segment, breaking the mould of the traditional, four door saloon silhouette with a sports coupé inspired look. Frameless windows are a neat touch often reserved for more expensive, premium cars. The 508 embodies Peugeot’s move upmarket and the look changes a little depending on trim level. The high spec GT Line models for example have a special chequered chrome radiator grille, striking LED headlights and 18” alloys.

Interior

The interior of the new Peugeot 508 is not like anything we’ve seen in this segment before. Angled around the driver, there is a cool looking digital instrument panel above a compact steering wheel. To the driver’s left are some beautiful ‘piano keys’ to operate shortcuts on the 8” infotainment screen. Material quality is good around the cabin with flashier trim elements as you move through the grades.

Practicality

The new Peugeot 508 is actually a hatchback and the boot opens to reveal 487 litres of space with a good wide opening. The car will seat five and feels reasonably spacious inside for this class of vehicle.

The interior of the new Peugeot 508
The interior of the new Peugeot 508

Engines

Two petrol engines and four diesel engines will be available, depending on trim, including a 1.6 THP petrol 180bhp automatic 8-speed S&S; a 1.6 THP petrol 225bhp automatic 8-speed S&S (GT only); a 1.5 BlueHDi diesel 130bhp 6-speed manual S&S, 1.5 BlueHDi diesel 130bhp automatic 8-Speed S&S; a 2.0 BlueHDi diesel 160bhp automatic 8-Speed S&S; and a top of the range 2.0 BlueHDi diesel 180bhp automatic 8-Speed S&S.

On the road

The new Peugeot 508 is built on the same EMP2 platform that underpins the popular 3008 and 5008 SUVs. On the road the new 508 is smooth and agile to drive, while the 1.5-litre 130hp diesel offered plenty of pulling power to cover our test route. We will bring you more detailed driving impressions after a full road test in the coming months.

Equipment

Peugeot Ireland is selling the new 508 in a choice of four trims: Active, Allure, GT Line and GT.

Standard equipment includes 8” touchscreen, digital instrument panel, 16” alloys, spare wheel, lane keeping assist, cruise control, active safety brake, AGR (ergonomic) seats, automatic wipers and lights, front and rear parking aid with camera and electric folding mirrors.

The Allure gains a 10” touchscreen with satellite navigation, blind spot monitoring, high beam assist, road sign recognition, advanced driver attention alert, 17” alloys, keyless access and start, lumbar support and dark tinted rear glass.

The Peugeot 508 goes on sale in Ireland priced from €32,400
The Peugeot 508 goes on sale in Ireland priced from €32,400

The GT Line adds 18” alloys, wireless phone charging, adaptive cruise control, full LED headlights and 3D LED rear lights, electric lumbar support, GT Line exterior and interior styling and iCockpit Amplify (choice of two interior ambiences: Boost or Relax) with Driver Sports Pack.

The range-topping GT 2.0 BlueHDi 180bhp automatic version comes equipped with 18” alloys, Focal sound system, Nappa leather seats with full electric driver’s massage seat, active suspension control, an electric tailgate and GT exterior and interior styling.

Pricing

Active models are available from €32,400, Allure from €34,930, GT Line from €38,170 and GT from €49,120.

Rivals

The Peugeot 508 will go up against the Volkswagen Passat, Opel Insignia Grand Sport, Mazda6, Ford Mondeo, among other D-segment saloons.

Verdict

The Peugeot 508 makes a serious style statement in the D-segment and while SUVs have put these cars under pressure for some years now, Peugeot is fighting back with an upmarket and designer feel to their flagship ‘fastback’. The interior of the car is truly innovative. It's petrol and diesel power for now, with a plug-in hybrid scheduled for the autumn. We look forward to getting under the 508’s skin a little more later in the year and bring you a full road test report.

The new Peugeot 508 fastback makes a serious style statement
The new Peugeot 508 fastback makes a serious style statement

Caroline Kidd


The Peugeot Rifter has just arrived in Ireland

2019 Peugeot Rifter First Drive Review

The Peugeot Rifter has just arrived in Ireland
The Peugeot Rifter has just arrived in Ireland

The new Peugeot Rifter has just arrived in Ireland and goes on sale priced from €23,540. The Rifter replaces the Partner Tepee MPV, with a focus on practicality and versatility at good value pricing. Caroline drove from Cork to Dublin in the new Peugeot Rifter at the recent Irish press launch.

Styling

The Peugeot Rifter is essentially a van-based MPV and there is only so much you can do to make a van attractive. But Peugeot has persevered, borrowing SUV characteristics from the 3008 and 5008 SUVs - a high ride height, large wheels, and wheel arch and rear bumper protection. It’s also available in a high spec GT Line, which gives the Rifter considerable more visual chutzpah at a price.

Interior

The interior of the new Peugeot Rifter does not betray its van roots – you’ll know you’re driving something a bit more basic. There’s loads of hard plastics and not much in the way of glamour. But the Rifter still gets a version of Peugeot’s quirky i-Cockpit and there is a slick looking touchscreen in the centre of the dashboard.

Practicality

Practicality is the Rifter’s middle name! The new Peugeot Rifter is available in two lengths, with 5 or 7 seats. This van-based MPV maximises space for occupants with its dimensions and boxy shape. There is loads of headroom and legroom and three individual seats in the rear. There is extra storage and cubby holes throughout the cabin. There’s a wide boot opening with a separate opening window, 775 litre boot and sliding side doors for ease of access.

The interior of the Peugeot Rifter
The interior of the Peugeot Rifter

Engines

There are two petrol engines and four diesel engines: a 1.2 PureTech petrol 110bhp S&S 6-speed; a 1.2 PureTech petrol 130bhp automatic 8-speed S&S (April 2019); a 1.5 BlueHDi diesel 75bhp 5-speed; a 1.5 BlueHDi diesel 100bhp 5-Speed; a 1.5 BlueHDi diesel 130bhp 6-Speed S&S; and a 1.5 BlueHDi diesel 130bhp automatic 8-Speed S&S.

On the road

If you are used to driving a car, the Peugeot Rifter might feel peculiar for a bit. But after a while you soon settle in. The test car was powered by the 1.5-litre BlueHDI diesel with 100hp and a five speed manual gearbox. Power was adequate and in car refinement and comfort is fine for long journeys. We’ll be spending more time with the Rifter later in the year and will bring you a full road test and driving impressions then!

Equipment

Peugeot Ireland is selling the Rifter in three trims: Active, Allure and GT Line.

Standard equipment includes 8” touchscreen, digital instrument panel, 16” wheels, full size spare wheel, air conditioning, Active Safety Brake, Lane Keeping Assist and Speed Limit Recognition.

The Allure gains 16” alloys, rear parking sensors, auto lights and wipers, leather steering wheel, front fog lights, folding front passenger seat, electric parking brake, 3 individual magic flat seats in row 2 and electric rear windows.

The GT Line adds 17” alloys, keyless access and start, High Beam Assist, Traffic Sign Recognition and Advanced Driver Attention Alert, dark tinted rear windows, front and rear parking aid, dual zone climatronic air conditioning and GT Line styling.

The Peugeot Rifter has many practical features including the rear tailgate window
The Peugeot Rifter has many practical features including the rear tailgate opening window

Pricing

Active models are available from €23,540, Allure from €25,570, and GT Line from €28,400.

Rivals

The Peugeot Rifter will go up against the Ford Tourneo, Opel Combo Life and Volkswagen Caddy Life.

Verdict

The Peugeot Rifter enters the MPV market with a price and engine range advantage over the Volkswagen and Ford rivals. On first glance, the Rifter deserves a closer look as the blend of space and practicality make it searingly good value. I look forward to bringing you a full report after a road test later in the year!

The new Peugeot Rifter is available from €23,540
The new Peugeot Rifter is available from €23,540

Caroline Kidd


The new Audi A1 Sportback has arrived in Ireland

2019 Audi A1 Sportback Arrives In Ireland

The new Audi A1 Sportback has arrived in Ireland
The new Audi A1 Sportback has arrived in Ireland

Audi Ireland has announced that the second generation Audi A1 Sportback is available to order now in Ireland. Pricing for the new Audi A1 Sportback starts from €25,450 on-the-road.

The new Audi A1 Sportback is available in 10 different colours and has more interior space, new technology and a range of assistance systems when compared to the previous A1. Luggage capacity has also increased to 335 litres.

Inside there is a fully digital instrument cluster with a high-resolution, 10.25-inch display and a multifunction steering wheel as standard. The Audi virtual cockpit is offered as an option. The Audi smartphone interface comes as standard and integrates iOS and Android smartphones using Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

The new A1 is initially available with a 1.0-litre three-cylinder turbo petrol engine with 116hp – the '30 TFSI'. There's a 6-speed manual gearbox and seven-speed S tronic dual-clutch transmission available. Other engine options include a 1.5 and 2.0-litre TFSI.

As an alternative to the standard suspension on Attraction and SE, tauter sport suspension is fitted as standard to S line models.


Outstanding Contribution to Road Safety presented to Gardai Press Office at the SIMI Motor Industry Awards 2019

SIMI Irish Motor Industry Awards 2019

Outstanding Contribution to Road Safety presented to Gardai Press Office at the SIMI Motor Industry Awards 2019
Outstanding Contribution to Road Safety presented to Gardai Press Office at the SIMI Motor Industry Awards 2019

The SIMI (Society of the Irish Motor Industry) held its 66th Annual Dinner at the Clayton Hotel in Dublin incorporating the SIMI Irish Motor Industry Awards in partnership with sponsor Bank of Ireland Finance.

Over 700 people working in the motor industry in Ireland were in attendance, with Oliver Callan acting as MC for the night.

In his speech, SIMI President Gerard O’Farrell reinforced the motor industry’s commitment towards zero emissions, and warned against short-term decisions, based on a simplistic view of the environmental and air quality challenges facing Ireland. He emphasised “the need for an agreed, realistic, roadmap with ambitious targets based on an understanding of what can be achieved.” This, he said, needs to be "a multi-annual commitment, led by Government and involving all of the stakeholders.”

Mr O’Farrell outlined how “the creation of Autonomous, Connected, Electric and shared technologies will offer potential for high calibre job creation and significant economic growth. Ireland is well positioned to play a leading role in developing the technology underpinning such vehicles and their operation.” The President called upon the Government to act now, to prepare the national infrastructure and reduce our exposure to risk as these vehicles become more mainstream. He called for the development of a cohesive policy, which will allow Ireland to be at the forefront of knowledge creation.

While outlining the wide-range of potential career opportunities available, the President also addressed the immediate challenge of attracting and recruiting sufficient numbers of apprentices and other trainee professionals. He encouraged the industry to focus on increasing the intake of apprentices and other trainees in order to safe-guard against potential skills shortages in the future.

The SIMI Motor Industry Awards are given in ten categories and are open to all sectors of the Irish motor industry. This year's awards were presented by Brian Cooke, Director General Designate of the Society of the Irish Motor Industry (SIMI), and Derek McDermott, Managing Director of Bank of Ireland Finance.

The winner of Independent Aftersales Operation of the Year was Autokey, Dublin 22
The winner of Independent Aftersales Operation of the Year was Autokey, Dublin 22

Category Award Winners

  • Franchised Sales Operation of the Year - Tom Murphy Car Sales, Waterford
  • Franchised Aftersales Operation of the Year- Kevin Egan Cars, Sligo
  • Commercial Vehicle Operation of the Year- Fitzgerald Commercial Ltd, Co Cork
  • Independent Sales Operation of the Year- Auto Assure Ltd, Co. Louth
  • Independent Aftersales Operation of the Year- Autokey, Dublin 22
  • Innovation in Fleet Management Solutions- Provision Vehicle Cameras Dublin 15
  • Vehicle Recovery Operator of the Year- Dysart Breakdown Recovery Repairs Ltd t/a Dysart Motors Co. Laois
  • Bodyshop of the Year- Pratt's Auto Bodyshop, Carlow
  • Innovation in Bodyshop Operation - Accident Repair Centre, Dublin 24
  • Motor Factor of the Year- Parts for Cars, Dublin 6

Winners were chosen based on a demonstrated award-winning level of excellence and best practice over the last 12 months, as adjudicated by an independent panel.

A special recognition award, in conjunction with the Road Safety Authority, was presented to the Gardai Press Office for their contribution towards road safety.


Aer Lingus has announced a new partnership with Avis and Budget on car hire

Aer Lingus Car Hire Partnership With Avis Budget Group

Aer Lingus has announced a new partnership with Avis and Budget on car hire
Aer Lingus has announced a new partnership with Avis and Budget on car hire

Aer Lingus has announced a new partnership with Avis Budget Group. Now passengers with Aer Lingus can search for car hire options from Avis and Budget via cars.aerlingus.com.

The new partnership gives the airline’s AerClub members the opportunity to collect Avios on all car hire purchases and enjoy additional benefits including a dedicated reservation line, a free additional driver* and payment flexibility. Aer Lingus guests will collect 3 Avios per €1 spent with Avis and 2 Avios per €1 spent with Budget. Customers can also pay for car rental using Avios.

Avis Budget Group is a leading global car hire provider, present in over 11,000 locations around the world. The company provides thousands of car rentals per year to Irish holidaymakers, with the top five destinations in 2018 including the UK, USA, France, Spain and Italy.

Commenting on the Aer Lingus and Avis Budget Group partnership, Jennifer Fox, Director of Performance Delivery and Retail, ‎Aer Lingus said: “We are delighted to announce our partnership with Avis and Budget. Our new car hire offering promises guests choice and convenience whatever their need or budget, together with a quality and world-leading service. The partnership also serves to enhance our existing loyalty programme AerClub, enabling AerClub members to collect Avios on their car hire purchases.”

Julia Kemp, Director of International Sales & Partnerships, Avis Budget Group commented: “Our new agreement with Aer Lingus is an exciting development and further expands our exclusive partnership with International Airlines Group (IAG). It’s also a step forward in aligning mobility services in the travel industry and an example of how we are always looking for new and innovate ways to streamline and improve our services to customers, making the rental process stress-free and convenient. This partnership helps contribute to these aims and we hope customers enjoy the benefits of the partnership.

*Applicable to Avis car hire only


The new Fiat 500X

2019 Fiat 500X 1.0 Petrol Review

The new Fiat 500X
The new Fiat 500X is on sale in Ireland now

Caroline drives the 2019 Fiat 500X!

The Fiat 500X landed in Ireland in 2015, just as the compact crossover boom was taking hold. There have been a host of new entrants since but the Fiat 500X does the compact crossover thing the cheeky Italian way. That means that the 500X has oodles of style and charm inherited from the very successful Fiat 500 city car. But being a larger vehicle altogether makes it much more practical. There’s more space and more doors.

The 500X uses a clever formula, at least on paper. At some point Fiat 500 owners were going to outgrow the city car and need more space, and why not get it in the trendy skin of a crossover?

What's new for the 2019 Fiat 500X?

And now the Fiat 500X has recently received a mid-life refresh with updates to styling, interior, equipment and the debut of a new family of turbo petrol engines. On the outside, there are new LED daytime running lights, LED headlights and rear lights, while the cockpit has also been updated to integrate more technology, improve ergonomics and refresh interior trims.

In Ireland pricing kicks off at €21,795, and the 500X comes in three trims or flavours: Urban, City Cross and Cross.

The Urban model comes with a decent standard specification including 16-inch alloy wheels, leather steering wheel, body-coloured dashboard, air conditioning, cruise control and an electric parking brake. There’s also safety equipment like Traffic Sign Recognition, Intelligent Speed Assist and Lane Assist driving assist systems standard on all versions, as is the Uconnect 7-inch touchscreen, with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility.

The interior of the 2019 Fiat 500X
The interior of the 2019 Fiat 500X

The City Cross (from €23,395) adds a few more aesthetic bits including 17-inch alloy wheels, satin chrome inserts, body-coloured door mirrors and front and rear grey skid plate. There are also front fog lights, a 3.5-inch colour TFT monitor, automatic climate control and rear parking sensors.

The range topper is the Cross as tested here (from €24,995) with 18-inch alloy wheels, roof bars and dark tinted rear windows. Inside, it adds TomTom navigation to the 7-inch touchscreen, along with Parkview rear parking camera, dusk sensor and front armrest.

There is a choice of 14 different colours, including the new tricoat Ivory, metallic Blue Italia and Techno Green.

The interior of the Fiat 500X

Inside the Fiat 500X is a colourful and cheerful place. The body coloured dash panel is a classic touch of the 500 family and a lot of the switchgear is shared between the two cars. The plastics are mostly hard around the car but there is some more soft touch panelling also and overall quality is not a problem. You sit surprisingly high in the 500X also so there is a nice commanding driving position too.

The 500X is a compact vehicle so by its nature the interior space is not that much more accommodating than your average supermini. Four will be comfortable inside and the boot is very good for this class of vehicle at 350 litres.

The Fiat 500X has a new family of turbo petrol engines available
The Fiat 500X has a new family of turbo petrol engines available

The new engine line up for the Fiat 500X is petrol only, but the big news is that Fiat has introduced two new turbo petrol units to the range. Buyers can choose from a three-cylinder 1.0-litre powerplant that delivers 120hp and 190Nm of torque and is paired with a six-speed manual transmission, as well as a four-cylinder 1.3-litre engine with 150hp and 270Nm of torque, combined with a six-speed dual clutch automatic transmission (DCT).

There is also an entry level 110hp 1.6 E-Torq, combined with a manual transmission.

On the road in the Fiat 500X

My test car was a Fiat 500X Cross 1.0-litre 120hp turbo petrol model with a list price of €24,995. These small 1.0-litre turbo petrol engines are ideal for this size of vehicle, and it’s no different for the Fiat 500X. There is plenty of power and refinement is also good across town and motorway, with no vibration at all coming through to the cabin. Over a week of driving my fuel consumption averaged at 7.1l/100km and motor tax is €280 per year for this model.

Elsewhere, the Fiat 500X is an easy drive with light steering that makes it great for urban environments. On the motorway it’s very stable and composed, with only very rough road surfaces catching it out. The 500X is sadly not as fun to drive as the Fiat 500 city car, with the taller SUV body making it feel a bit more clumsy in corners.  But for this class of vehicle, it’s all perfectly adequate.

The Fiat 500X is a cheerful and colourful character for the compact crossover segment
The Fiat 500X is a cheerful and colourful character for the compact crossover segment

The Fiat 500X takes many style cues from the 500 city car, which is a good thing. Putting it in a larger and more practical body with chunky crossover style should make it searingly popular. However the compact crossover segment is vast and it’s easy for the 500X to be overlooked. Yet this cheeky Italian is stylish and comes well-equipped, while the new 1.0-litre turbo petrol engine really feels like it belongs here. And though there may be a few niggles, with that face it’s impossible to be angry with the 500X for long!

Caroline Kidd

Model tested: Fiat 500X Cross 1.0 120hp
Price: 
€24,995 (Range starts at €21,795)
Engine: 1.0-litre turbo petrol
Power: 
120 hp
Torque: 190 Nm
0-100km/h:  
10.9 seconds
Top speed: 188 km/h
Economy: 
5.8-6.0 l/100km
CO2 emissions: 
133-139g/km
Motor tax: 
€280 per year


changing lanes

2019 Honda CR-V Hybrid First Drive Review

The new Honda CR-V Hybrid pictured at Barberstown Castle, Straffan
The new Honda CR-V Hybrid pictured at Barberstown Castle, Straffan

Honda Ireland has just welcomed the new Honda CR-V Hybrid to Ireland. It joins the all-new Honda CR-V 1.5-litre VTEC Turbo (petrol) that arrived in Ireland in 2018. The 2019 Honda CR-V Hybrid is the first Honda SUV to be available as a hybrid in Europe and the car uses a 2.0-litre petrol electric powertrain. Caroline went to the Irish launch in County Kildare to test drive the new CR-V Hybrid.

Styling

The Honda CR-V Hybrid has considerable stature and road presence. The evolution between the styling of this new model and the previous generation has been quite gentle, but there are broader and more muscular wheel arches, sharper contours on the bonnet and rear quarters, as well as the latest Honda headlight signature. LED lights and 18” alloy wheels come as standard. There are eight exterior colours to choose from including Rallye Red, Crystal Black and Lunar Silver.

Interior

The Honda CR-V has a fabulous build quality and the interior is immaculately finished with plenty of soft touch materials, metallic trim and wood-effect inserts in the dashboard and doors. On all but the entry model, there is a stylish looking 7” touchscreen set in the dash with the Honda Connect infotainment system.

Practicality

This is a large vehicle, with plenty of interior space and a 497 litre boot. Honda has increased the wheelbase to eke out more passenger space. The 2019 Honda CR-V Hybrid is available with five seats only, though the 1.5-litre petrol models do come with an optional seven seats.

The interior of the new Honda CR-V Hybrid
The interior of the 2019 Honda CR-V Hybrid

Engines

The 2019 Honda CR-V Hybrid uses a 2.0-litre petrol electric hybrid powertrain with 184hp and 175Nm of torque available in both the front wheel drive and four wheel drive model. The CR-V Hybrid puts its power to the road using a CVT automatic gearbox. The manufacturer quotes fuel consumption for the front wheel drive model at 5.3l/100km and C02 emissions at just 120g.

On the road

The Honda CR-V Hybrid is one of the most aerodynamic cars in its class and features Honda’s Active Shutter Grille system to improve fuel efficiency. The hybrid system is operated via buttons rather than a traditional gear lever – Drive, Park, Neutral and Reverse. There is also a Sport mode button for a more responsive throttle input. A short range EV mode can be selected when in town and it gives about 2km of pure EV range, depending on battery charge and driving conditions.

I took the Honda CR-V Hybrid AWD for a short test drive around Kildare. The CR-V Hybrid is quiet and smooth on the move with a natural feeling hybrid drive and CVT gearbox. The CR-V Hybrid is more stoic than sporty in the handling department but it’s a competent drive for the five seat SUV, with good comfort and refinement, a must for this type of vehicle. Fuel consumption on my 30 minute test drive averaged at about 6.7l/100km.

Equipment

Honda Ireland is selling the new CR-V Hybrid in four grades: Comfort, Lifestyle, Elegance and Executive. Standard equipment includes 18” alloys, keyless entry and start, emergency call, Honda Sensing suite of safety equipment including adaptive cruise control and lane keeping assist system, driver lumbar support, climate control, and LED headlights. Lifestyle models add equipment including rain sensing wipers, electrically folding side mirrors, leather steering wheel, dual automatic climate control, front and rear parking sensors, rear view camera and Honda Connect with 7” touchscreen. The Elegance model has leather upholstery, front heated seats, active cornering lights and ambient lighting. The Executive model has an opening panoramic glass roof, head-up display, heated steering wheel, electric tailgate and rear heated seats.

The new Honda CR-V Hybrid is a spacious five seat SUV
The new Honda CR-V Hybrid is a spacious five seat SUV

Pricing

Comfort is available from €38,000, Lifestyle from €40,500, Elegance from €43,500 and Executive from €49,500. Prices quoted here are for FWD models including grants reductions for hybrids, with AWD cars available from €43,500.

Rivals

The new Honda CR-V Hybrid has a direct rival in the recently launched Toyota RAV4 Hybrid. Indirect rivals include other large SUVs like the Hyundai Santa Fe, Skoda Kodiaq and Nissan X-Trail.

Verdict

The 2019 Honda CR-V Hybrid starts off well with this new generation off CR-V sporting a terrific build, top interior quality and spacious interior. The hybrid powertrain is new for the CR-V but appears to be quite a natural fit with good refinement. I look forward to taking the CR-V Hybrid for a longer test drive later in the year to test how efficient it is over a week of driving!

Caroline Kidd

The new Honda CR-V Hybrid is available in Ireland from €38,000
The new Honda CR-V Hybrid is available in Ireland from €38,000

Continental Tyres Partners With National Adventure Race Series

Paul Mahon, Outfront Events, second from left, and Tom Dennigan, General Sales Manager, Continental Tyres Ireland, with adventure athletes, from left, Padraig O'Connor, Kelly Farrell, Laura O'Driscoll, National Champion, and Bernard Smyth
Paul Mahon, Outfront Events, second from left, and Tom Dennigan, General Sales Manager, Continental Tyres Ireland, with adventure athletes, from left, Padraig O'Connor, Kelly Farrell, Laura O'Driscoll, National Champion, and Bernard Smyth

Continental Tyres, the leading German premium tyre manufacturer, is the new title partner of the Irish National Adventure Race Series in conjunction with Series founders Multisport Adventure Ireland and promotion partner Kayathlon.

The initial one-year partnership will debut at the sold-out ‘Quest Kenmare’ adventure race along the Wild Atlantic Way on 2 March, concluding with the ‘Sea2Summit’ race in Westport, Co. Mayo on 9 November.

Adventure Racing is an increasingly popular, outdoor multi-sport event that includes running, cycling and kayaking in some of Ireland’s most rugged and scenic terrains. Events are open to experienced competitors seeking an endurance challenge, as well as novice participants looking to set a personal goal or team challenge.

The National Adventure Race Series was established in Ireland in 2011 by Multisport Adventure Ireland, giving participants an opportunity to compete for national titles. The series offers a selection of top-quality adventure races around Ireland, offering a variety of challenges based on strict criteria. The races include some new localised events plus more established races such as the renowned Gaelforce West and Quest Series events.

The Continental Tyres National Adventure Race Series offers participants an opportunity to become overall champion by achieving the most points which are taken from their top five events in their respective categories.

Paul Mahon of Multisport Adventure Ireland, founder of the National Adventure Race Series said: “We’re really happy to have Continental Tyres on board as title partner of this exciting series. Continental is a premium brand with a commitment to high performance, and they bring a level of expertise and profile that we hope will help to promote this emerging sport.

“Adventure Racing is the perfect sport for Ireland’s spectacular and diverse landscape,” says Mr Mahon. “For participants, it’s all about endurance and preparation, including having the right equipment – an area in which Continental excels.”

Speaking at today’s launch, Tom Dennigan of Continental Tyres Ireland, said: “This partnership is a really exciting new venture for us. Continental is about more than just cars: we also produce bicycle tyres and have a partnership with Adidas to develop premium rubber soles for trail and running shoes.

“All our products, including our premium car tyres, are focused on offering premium grip and safety for challenging environments,” Mr Dennigan says. “It’s going to be a lot of fun to dive into a sport that relies as heavily on grip as adventure racing does. We can’t wait for our first taste of this exciting sport in Kenmare on 2 March.”

To celebrate the new partnership, Continental Tyres is giving National Adventure Race Series participants an opportunity to win a range of additional prizes including bike tyres, Adidas trail and running shoes with Continental outsoles and some Advance Pitstop vouchers.

To find out more about the Continental Tyres National Adventure Race Series, go to www.msai.ie  or www.kayathalon.ie or follow the progress at Continental Tyres Ireland on Facebook and Instagram.


The 1936 Mercedes-Benz 500 K Cabriolet from the O’Flaherty Mercedes-Benz Classic Collection

See Vintage Mercedes-Benz Cars At MSL Ballsbridge Motors

The 1936 Mercedes-Benz 500 K Cabriolet from the O’Flaherty Mercedes-Benz Classic Collection
The 1936 Mercedes-Benz 500 K Cabriolet from the O’Flaherty Mercedes-Benz Classic Collection

An exhibition of the most iconic and rare vintage passenger cars from the acclaimed O’Flaherty Mercedes-Benz Classic Collection has opened at MSL Ballsbridge Motors on Dublin’s Shelbourne Road.

Intended as a tribute to company founder, the late Stephen O’Flaherty and his eldest sons, Michael and Nigel O’Flaherty, this is the first time the Collection has been on display for public viewing.

Cars from the collection will be displayed on a rotational basis for a limited four-week period in each case throughout the year, each model being replaced by another until visitors have had the opportunity to view all of the cars.

Two of the most exclusive models in the O’Flaherty Mercedes-Benz Classic Collection are a limited-edition working replica of Karl Benz’s famed 1886 Benz Patent Motor Car, the world’s first passenger car, and a 1898 Benz Velo Comfortable – the first motor car ever imported into Ireland.

Amongst the must-see models that will feature over the course of the year are an extremely rare 1911 vintage Benz model 8/18, the 1935 Mercedes-Benz 200 two-door sports-roadster, a 1936 500 K Cabriolet and a two-door 1955 300 SL Gullwing.

Visitors to the exhibition at MSL Ballsbridge Motors will enjoy the design features of these early vehicles whilst viewing them side-by-side with the latest Mercedes-Benz range of models that includes the A-Class, B-Class, C-Class and S-Class variants, coupled with the EQC, the first electric Mercedes-Benz which is set to arrive in the latter half of 2019.

The recently redeveloped showrooms at MSL Ballsbridge Motors can accommodate over 30 vehicles. The location also has its own very special place in Irish motoring history, being the premises where in 1950 the first Volkswagen Beetle built outside Germany was assembled.

The 1935 Mercedes-Benz 200 from the O’Flaherty Mercedes-Benz Classic Collection
The 1935 Mercedes-Benz 200 from the O’Flaherty Mercedes-Benz Classic Collection

tyres

Davanti Tyres Endorsed By The Pro Drivers At Portimão

Davanti Tyres are available in Ireland through Magowan Tyres and Premier Tyres
Davanti Tyres are available in Ireland through Magowan Tyres and Premier Tyres

The Autódromo do Algarve is one of the most technically challenging race circuits in the world - now its pro drivers have endorsed a new brand of tyres available throughout Ireland. In 2017 Davanti Tyres became the official tyre partner of the Autódromo do Algarve circuit, Portimão, Portugal, and has just agreed a three year extension to retain Davanti Tyres as its official tyre partner until 2022.

Under the partnership the fleet of high-performance cars used by the Autodromo’s elite AIA Racing School will continue to be fitted with Davanti tyres - specifically the DX640 Ultra High Performance (UHP) tyre, including the Porsche Cayman S, Cayman 718 S and 911 GT3, Honda Civic Type R, Mercedes AMG E53, E63 S and AMG GT C.

The pro drivers will drive at speeds in excess of 250km and hour on standard, road-legal Davanti tyres, which are available throughout Ireland from retailers Magowan Tyres and Premier Tyres.

“We have held this valued partnership for two years,” said Sean Maddocks, Davanti Sales Director for the UK and Ireland. “It is a prestigious partnership for us and we are proud of the faith the Autódromo team continue to show in our tyres’ on-track performance.”

AIA Racing School Director, Miguel Praia, said: “The tyres have performed impressively well and have been consistent, which anyone who drives at high speed will tell you, is critical,” he said. “The fact these tyres are not a special bespoke formulation or a sticky race tyre, they are simply standard road tyres that perform right on the ragged edge, is phenomenal."

“Our drivers are highly qualified professionals and they understand the importance of tyres as a safety feature. They have developed complete confidence in Davanti since we began this partnership as tyres that handle well and provide all the feedback and control you need to drive safely and well."

“We are proud to partner with Davanti Tyres.”